Lakes have an inherent advantage over the ocean when it comes to vacations. It inspires quiet reflection and serves as a place to slow life down, especially this summer. Lakes are also a great spot to cool off and chill out in the fresh and clean water. Fortunately, the US offers lake vacations fit for every season and activity, ranging from shallow ones to wonder-like crater lakes. If you’ve longed for a lakeside retreat, Owner Direct has a broad range of vacation rentals. Choose from rustic cabins or luxurious villas as your perfect hideaways. Get ready because here are some of the most amazing lake destinations for a great getaway!
Resting on the California–Nevada border, Lake Tahoe has long been a favorite vacation destination year after year. The steep granite cliff sides, towering mountaintops, and crystal-clear waters helped Lake Tahoe to earn the reputation of being one of the most beautiful bodies of water in the US.
Aside from being known as America’s second deepest lake, it’s one of the highest-elevation lakes in the country. The surrounding area boasts miles of hiking trails, picturesque vistas, and some of the best skiing in North America. In addition to those, you’ll find San Francisco-style shopping and dining along the north shore. You can test your luck in the south shore’s Reno-esque casinos, go for a sunset sail, take a shot at paddleboarding, try mountain gondola rides, hot air balloon adventures, and scenic cruises on the lake.
Michigan’s Great Lakes
The Great Lakes State got its nickname for a reason. The Great Lakes are huge inland seas containing 21% of the world’s surface fresh water. The Superior, Michigan, Huron, Erie, and Ontario lakes are connected to the Atlantic Ocean via the St. Lawrence River. Aside from providing wildlife habitats, the lakes also serve as a scenic backdrop for outdoor activities such as kayaking, boating, and fishing. One thing’s for sure, you’ll be in awe!
First, explore some of the tranquil lighthouse-peppered islands around Wisconsin, hop on ferries that dot the Great Lakes, or dive in to see historic shipwrecks. Then check-out the superb beaches, architecture, shopping, and nightlife in Chicago, or get some craft beers and visit the Harley Davidson Museum of Milwaukee. Next, enjoy the scenic coastal hiking trails on the rugged Door Peninsula, tour the Sleeping Bear Dunes, discover the Mackinac Island or the Upper Peninsula, and look for wildlife in the Isle Royale National Park. Finally, if you still have time, practice your swing at the golf courses, or try some snow sports if you’re visiting during winter in the Upper Peninsula. If you want to visit where the crowds are manageable and the skies are clear and bright, visit during spring and autumn.
Salt Lake, Utah
Located north and west of Salt Lake City, The Great Salt Lake and its islands provide outstanding scenery and recreational opportunities in Northern Utah. It’s the largest natural lake west of the Mississippi River and the largest saltwater lake in the western hemisphere. The lake lies in parts of five counties: Box Elder, Davis, Tooele, Weber, and Salt Lake, and is fed by 3 major rivers: Bear, Weber, and Jordan. The close proximity to spectacular outdoor recreation is a key appeal for travelers and residents alike.
At the Great Salt Lake Marina, you can launch your boat or kayak, go on a sunset cruise, or take in the spectacular view. Antelope Island State Park is the best place to swim, where white oolitic sand beaches provide easy access to the lake. Floating is a unique experience here because of the high salt content, making it easier to float than ever. There’s also hiking and biking trails, and the historic Fielding Garr Ranch. The Shorelands Preserve is an essential stopping point for millions of migratory birds. The magnificence of the Great Salt Lake is nothing short of awe-inspiring.
The Gem State is dotted with some of the most beautiful lakes in the country. All of which feature spectacular, scenic, and tranquil bodies of water to explore. In short, Idaho is for those who love the great outdoors!
Lake Pend Oreille is the deepest lake in Idaho and the largest in the state. Its picturesque waterways and rocky banks make it a popular spot for summer activities like sailing, fishing, or just splashing around. Sandpoint is the largest community here where you’ll find lots of public docks and marinas. Hayden Lake boasts a timbered shoreline, pristine sandy beaches, and sparkling water. There are lots of vacation rentals that will give you easy access to the public beach called Honeysuckle.
Bear Lake, referred to as “The Caribbean of the Rockies”, is shared between Idaho and Utah. Its turquoise water and sandy beach will make you enjoy all kinds of activities under the sun. The Island Park Reservoir is a recreational paradise surrounded by the Caribou-Targhee National Forest. Its shoreline boasts boat ramps for canoeing, kayaking, sailing, and more. There’s also excellent fishing, or you can just sunbathe and swim.
The Sunshine State practically enjoys summer year round, which makes it ideal to enjoy the many lakes in Central Florida. The Winter Haven Chain of Lakes is connected by canals that lie mostly within the city of Winter Haven. The lakes provide a wide range of activities like fishing, kayaking, paddleboarding, flyboarding, or pontooning. The city itself has 21 boat ramps, 30 waterfront parks, and 14 public docks. Some of the lakes are Lake Killarney and Lake Virginia.
Lake Tohopekaliga, or Lake Toho, is the largest lake in Osceola County. The lake is also known for bass fishing and bird watching. The Lakefront Park boasts scenic walking paths with benches where you may view lots of wildlife. Not to mention the mini lighthouse and playground! Lake Kissimmee is for boaters and nature lovers. It consists of 5 islands, with Brahma Island being the largest. Followed by Sturm Island, Bird Island, Rabbit Island, and Ox Island. The Butler Chains of Lakes is made up of 11 interconnected lakes with boat access available only at Lake Isleworth.
Lake Osoyoos, Washington
Oroville provides numerous fun activities and relaxing scenery in its small town located in Northeast Washington, and borders Lake Osoyoos. The lake spans into the Canadian town of Osoyoos in the province of British Columbia. As a result of its size, visitors and residents alike can enjoy a lot of recreational opportunities such as swimming, boating, water sports, and fishing. Additionally, it’s home to Osoyoos Lake State Veteran’s Memorial Park that provides sandy shores, green lawns, and shade trees. Spend a day at Legion Beach Park. If you still have time, go for a sunset cruise from the Spirit Beach Marina.
If you’re deciding on where to spend your vacation, let these destinations tip the scale. You can’t get a more classic American vacation than a trip to the lake! Which lake will you be diving in to beat the summer heat? Share your favorite by commenting below.