Things To Do at Lakes

There are many things to do at lakes. We've thought of ideas for fun-filled days at the lake of your choice. Some lakes have the best stuff for you to do already set up. Like what?

lake surrounded with desert landscape as the sun setsWhat Do You Want To Do At Lakes?
Check Out Our Suggestions!
Cabin on a lake with a rowboat and trees in the background.Take the rowboat out & hang your feet over for a refreshing cooldown. Or put out a fishing pole. Just enjoy the rowing exercise & the lake ambience. What else can you do?
  • Swim from a dock or float. Or from a boat or houseboat's swim platform. We love finding a sandy beach. Then not far from lakes, how about swimming holes? 
  • Some lakes have all kinds of water sport rentals (if you don't have your own): paddle-boats, kayaks, canoes, all kinds of boats! Or toys: tubes, jet-skis, paddle-boards, bumper-boats, even noodles!
  • Have a picnic. Lakeside parks are great at providing picnicking spots, with covered picnic pavilions. Don't you love inviting friends, or the family? Have a celebration!
  • Have fun with your hobbies. Many lake parks have fields reserved for flying hobby planes, or running model vehicles. Some lakes sequester areas for launching electronic boats. Or instead schedule time for that activity.
  • Sports fun. Bring your own soccer ball, softball, baseball or basketball, to have an informal game with friends and family. When lake park fields aren't officially in use. Some have miniature golf. Another style's now popular: disc golf.
  • Nature: wildlife refuges, with viewing areas may be in your park. Wildlife love lakes. It's their drinking water, and provides cover for nesting & dens.
  • Taking your pet to the lake. Dogs especially love it! 
  • Thinking of tiny tykes. What fun things to do at lakes can we find? To keep them entertained? We have suggestions!
  • Couples can include lots of the above for fabulous outdoor dates. Many have been thinking of that recently.

Things to Do at Lakes With Kids

Looking around, there are really fun lakes for kids. Children usually like active things, getting animals involved, & things to do at lakes that are fun in the water. Specific ideas:

a boy and girl looking at a lakeThe Kids Are Ready for Fun!
  • Animal Encounters: Kids love animals. Parks have many ways to safely provide ways for kids to connect with animals. Lake parks are especially suited to that.
  • Playgrounds: Seems pretty obvious, yet there are particular styles worth checking into. Created to provide special things to do at lakes with unique playgrounds.
  • Camping: Many kids love this. We always took our kids camping. Our son loved it, our daughter, really not. As adults today, that trend still lives on! But they with that childhood experience, we think it was good for them. I believed they'd both say that. It included their friends, too. 
  1. Many lakes have campgrounds. What can you think of to include in that experience?

Magical, Ideal Lakes for Kids

We know about some parks that have such fun things to do at Lakes For Kids. Here are a few of them.


  • Lake Siskiyou - The Resort there has beach Splash Zone for kids.17
  • Lake Tahoe - Summer or winter, the place to go! Adults & kids: find many things to do at Lake Tahoe! Like year-round ski resorts for many activities, lots of safe beaches & other fun kid-friendly things to do at that lake.
  • Hume Lake Recreation Area - In Sequoia/Kings Canyon. Gorgeous area with lots to do! Like the lakeside trail with informational waymarks.16
A nature placard explaining the animals of an area.Displays in Parks Help You Know the Types of Animals to See Near the Lake

TEXAS - has lively & relaxing things to do at lakes for kids and their adults. Wanna see?

What Local Lakes Have Cool Stuff to Do?

Every Southwestern state has towns and cities with their own local parks. Many organize to give their citizens happy times close to home. But anyone is welcome to come enjoy the facilities they offer. If you're traveling, they'll provide you a refreshing break along the road. Maybe for your kids or pets, too. Which have we found?

Arizona Local Lakes

Two main interstates traverse the state, others are inter-connectors. Phoenix is a large sprawling city, but suburbs have beautiful local parks. That often incorporate lakes. Tucson also has some great things to do locally at lakes. We know some really good ones:

TUCSON - Crossing southern Arizona on Interstate 10, there are excellent Lakes in Tucson.1

Rocks line a stream comes from a distant lake with trees alongside.A stream connects the 2 lakes in Reid Park
  • Reid Park - Exiting on 22nd St. & heading East, you'll get to its left entrance. Two lakes are there, but much more to do at this fabulous park. Even an adjacent zoo!
  • Christopher Columbus Park - Open 6am-10:30pm. I-10 Exit 252 to El Camino Del Cerro, left at Silverbell, left at entrance. Two lakes, picnicking, dog park, playground. Quite popular locally.


  • Desert Breeze Park - In Chandler
  • Kiwanis Lake Park - In Tempe
  • Dobson Ranch Park - In Mesa: One of the Best for Every Child!


  • Off I-17 Exit 333 - Pumphouse County Natural Area & farther up the road on right to Kachina Wetlands Preserve. These parks are somewhat hidden gems in the North Country!

We Have More About These Arizona Parks

And Even More Arizona Parks Throughout Our State:

Great California Exurban Areas With Lakes


  • Arch Rock & Twin Tanks - Hidden history & this secret to get there.6 Take the shorter trail off White Tank Campground Road's end. From Hwy. 62 in Twentynine Palms, take Pinto Basin Rd. Find a natural bridge with no water underneath. Trek south past boulders for a tiny man-made pond-like historic basin for cattle.
  • Lake Morena - Visit this San Diego County Park for a day or more. Trails, picnic area, playground, boating & fishing.


  • Yosemite National Park has lesser discovered lakes!6
  1. Tenaya Lake - Alongside Tioga Rd. Lakeside picnicking with awesome views.
  2. Mono Lake - A most Mysterious Lake you won't forget! Off Hwy. 395, North of Lee Vining.


  • Lake Earl Wildlife Area - From Crescent City take 101N to Lake Earl Dr. for the biggest lagoon on the west coast. Terrific birding.6 Hiking, boating, fishing. Lake Talawa connects, adjacent, near the ocean & Tolowa Dunes State Park.7
  • Burney Falls/Lake Britton - From Fall River Mills, 11 miles on 299W. Take 89N 6 miles to waterfall trails parking.6 The state park has access to Lake Britton for boating & fishing. Or from Clark Creek Rd. for picnicking.8
  • Mammoth Lakes - Lots of things to do at this gorgeous lake! Try winter, for the Dog Sledding!

Colorado Small Town Lake Parks

  • Grand Lake - The state's largest natural lake. From I-70, 40N to Granby, then 34N. Like-named town known for country style.6 Nearby Rocky Mountain National Park & Arapaho National Recreation Area. Their claim: year-round vacation paradise. Plenty to do!9
  • Overland Trail Recreation Area - Sterling, off I-76 Exit 125 to Business 76/6 West. Onto 370 North, Rec Area lake on left. Paved trail around the lake. Swimming dogs, people fishing.10

New Mexico Lake Parks

  • Navajo Lake State Park11 - Lake created from dam in Los Pinos River. State's 2nd largest. All boating craft & water sports. From US64 forty miles East of  Farmington, then NM511 to NM539 to Navajo Dam, NM. Two marinas (505-632-3245), 7 campgrounds, picnicking, etc.
  • Lake Roberts12 - From I-25 Exit 63, 152W, 35N at San Lorenzo about 25 miles. Lakeside campground, trails, picnic tables. Small lake for non-motorized/electric.

Nevada "Back-of-Beyond" Park Lakes

  • Fallon Area - Off Hwy. 50, East of Silver Springs. Lahontan State Recreation Area is a delightful lakeside oasis, with camping, boating, fishing & swimming.6
  • Pioche Area - Southeast of town go to Echo Canyon State Park. The canyon has colorful cliffs!6 There's camping, ranger programs, & picnicking.13

Oklahoma Town Lakes

  • Claremore - Community park. Walk/jog track. Splash Pad & two playgrounds for kids. Picnic tables, fishing, small craft. From I-44 Toll Road Exit 255, make left to E2nd St., Right on N.Dorothy Ave., Right on E.Blue Starr Dr., take left into Lake Park Dr.
  • Paradise Hill - For access to 130 miles of Tenkiller lakeshore! Tenkiller State Park is the place to help for activities. From I-40 Exit 287, take Rt. 100N.

Texas Local Lake Parks

  • Balmorhea - You might not notice it! We've been here twice, each time a unique necessity! Once in summer to this unique oasis for a road-trip stop. Once in winter, when we were ice/snow stranded! What's it about?
  1. The curiosity is Balmorhea State Park. They have a combo spring fed pool/lake/swimming hole/concrete swimming pool! It's an experience.
  • Comfort - Joshua Springs Park & Preserve. From I-10, north of Boerne & Nelson City, Exit 533. Turn left & follow FM 289, left entrance into park. 9-acre Lake for boating & fishing. Opens 7am. Fabulous things to do at this lake park. Not run of the mill! Picnic tables, playground, dog park, much more!14

Utah Communities With Lakes

  • Fish Lake - Within Fish Lake National Forest. Lake community with many activities year-round. From I-70 Exit 48, get 259 to follow Utah 24E, about 9 miles after Koosheram Resevoir take left at intersection of 25N, 6 miles more to Fish Lake.6
  • Delta - Gunnison Bend Reservoir's county park. Famed for Snow Goose Festival: February's Last Weekend & March's 1st weekend. Summertime boating, fishing, swimming, picnics. From Delta, take Main Street to Sutherland. Turn left at 3000 West, go two miles south.15

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