Lakes in Virginia
Spend the day (or week!) at the lake. Fishing, camping, picnic areas, boat launches... Virginia's lakes are treasure troves for outdoor recreation. Read more about the best Virginia lakes below.
John H. Kerr Reservoir / Buggs Island Lake
Virginia's largest lake, John H. Kerr Reservoir / Buggs Island Lake includes more than 50,000 acres of fresh water and over 800 miles shoreline! Experience the lake from both Occoneechee State Park and Staunton River State Park. In-Fisherman magazine calls it the number one Crappie fishing lake, and both state and national fishing tournaments are hosted here.
Smith Mountain Lake
Smith Mountain Lake is second in size to Kerr Reservoir / Buggs Island Lake, and still has an amazing 500 miles of freshwater shoreline. With many access points, you can choose how to approach this "Jewel of the Blue Ridge Mountains" — from Bedford County and Smith Mountain Lake State Park on the north shores, Franklin County on the southwest, or Pittsylvania County on the southeast.
Virginia's third largest lake, Lake Anna welcomes you to enjoy your favorite watersport pleasure. Thirteen-thousand acres of water surface area provide 200 miles of shoreline.
Philpott Lake is 3,000 acres, with 100 miles of shoreline, nine boat launches, eight campgrounds, and six beaches inviting you to this lake that calls two counties home.
Lake Gaston straddles Virginia and North Carolina and at 20,000 acres, you can see why. Fish, boat, or swim at your heart's content!
Lake Keokee is a 92 acre lake, surrounded by a lovely wooded area, may be used for fishing or boating. The lake features a paved boat launching ramp, four picnic units with tables and grills, and a 3.7 mile lakeshore loop trail that provides access for shore fishing and wildlife walking.
Lake Arrowhead Beach
Pretty white sand awaits you at Lake Arrowhead Beach, 34-acre lake beach just below Skyline Drive. Concessions and a lifeguard are on-site, as are picnic accommodations. The lake also welcomes fishing and boating (bring your own kayak or canoe - no gas engines).
Located in the George Washington National Forest, Sherando Lake is just off the Blue Ridge Parkway and one of VIrginia's most scenic lakes. It's 24 acres of great swimming and fishing. An on-site campground invites you to stay for more than a day, and the sandy beach includes a bathhouse.
Cave Mountain Lake Recreation Area
Settle onto the beach area to enjoy swimming, the sun, and a picnic at Cave Mountain Lake Recreation Area. Fishing is also welcome at this 7-acre lake. Camping available.
Lake Moomaw and Gathright Dam
At Lake Moomaw and Gathright Dam, launch your boat from multiple access points (water level permitting), including Warm Springs, and enjoy this 2,530-acre lake. Camping, swimming sites, and plenty of other recreational opportunities are available within this National Forest area.
Stonehouse Lake Park
A fishing-only watershed lake, Stonehouse Lake Park is 41 acres and offers a boat ramp for non-gas engine vessels. A picnic pavilion, grills, playground, and restrooms make for a great day at the park.
Cavitt's Creek Park and Lake
Cavitt's Creek Park and Lake in Tazewell is a 54-acre lake surrounded by breathtaking mountains. Spend a weekend camping, rent paddle boats or "john" boats, or bring your own boat (no gas engines) to one of the two ramps. The lake is stocked with Trout, Bass, Walleye, and more. Don't forget your fishing license!
Claytor Lake is located in Southwest Virginia and features a Claytor Lake State Park. The lake is ideal for swimming, boating, paddlesports, hiking and picnicking while surrounded by the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains. The state park features 3 lodges, 15 cabins, and a full-service marina with slips, supplies, fuel, and boat rentals.
Wise Lake Reservoir
Wise Lake Reservoir Fishermen, come fish, launch a boat, or bring the family to enjoy the picnic area.
South Holston Lake
Set within Washington County Park in Abingdon, South Holston Lake is available for fishing, swimming, and boating. Pull in your camper or pitch a tent to stay longer.
Lake Fairfax Park
Lake Fairfax Park in Reston features an 18-acre lake as it's main attraction to a park full of fun! Rent pedal boats, hop on a tour boat ride, or go fishin'. On-site camping with a camp store, bathhouse, dump station, and even a waterpark make for a great family weekend away.
Lone Star Lakes Park
Lone Star Lakes Park in Suffolk has 11 lakes across the 1,000 acre park with shelters, a playground, a fishing pier, a 4-mile trail, and shoreline fishing areas. Activities include fresh water fishing, nature trails, picnic areas, horse trails, archery range, crabbing, and model airplane flying field.