Top 10 Most Beautiful Lakes in the USA

Are you planning a vacation? Instead of traveling to exotic international locations, why not travel down to a local lake? Don't be put-off by the mundane language we've used to describe 'local' lakes. The US has more than a 100 beautiful lakes spread out over the varying geographical backgrounds and all of them are beyond compare. Most of the lakes are gorgeous with sun-filled backdrops, breezy winds, looming mountains, and emerald-clear waters filled with a range of sea life. If you want a wonderful vacation, all you have to do is find a lakeside cabin alongside any of the US's beautiful lakes, and you are guaranteed a great time. In fact, we've listed our top ten favorite fresh water lakes here that are a must-visit if you are in the area.

1: Crater Lake, Oregon

Crater Lake, Oregon

Crater Lake is unique as it formed when Mount Mazama erupted nearly 8000 years ago. The crater formed by the mountain eventually filled up with water forming a land-locked lake that is now called Crater Lake. As the lake is filled by rain and snowmelt, it remains pristine and extraordinarily clear all through the year. The clear waters allow sunlight to penetrate nearly 400 feet down in the 1943 feet deep lake. This makes the lake a great place to swim, fish, and scuba dive. The lake is also surrounded by nearly 2000-foot cliffs and the scenery around the lake is mind-blowing.

Address: Crater Lake National Park, OR 97604
Website: www.nps.gov

2: Lake Tahoe, California/Nevada

Lake Tahoe, California/Nevada
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/ClatieK

This lake is one of the most beautiful lakes in the US. It is a favorite destination for tourists due to the several ski resorts overlooking the river banks. The crystal-clear alpine lake is famous for its clear waters and the panorama of the surrounding mountains reflects on the water making it a photographer's dream. The mountain and lake scenery are top attractions all through the year and tourists also love the national parks bordering the lake. Most of the lake and the area surrounding it are devoted to tourism. There are restaurants, clubs, and casinos all around the lake that cater to these guests. For sporting enthusiasts, the area also offer winter sports like skiing, snowmobile riding, snowshoeing along with water sports, hiking, and bicycling.

Address: 3066 Lake Tahoe Blvd, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150

3: Lake Michigan, Wisconsin/Michigan/Illinois

Lake Michigan, Wisconsin/Michigan/Illinois
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/VV Nincic

Lake Michigan is the only one of the great lakes to be located entirely in the US. The lake is spread out over more than 307 miles and it is stunning. It has several cities located on its shores and thousands of beaches as well. Most of the beaches exhibit soft and off-white sand and they have islands like Beaver Island, Fox Islands, Northerly Island, and Manitou Islands located just off the borders. The Lake is also famous for its several national parks like the Hiawatha National Forest, Manistee National Forest, Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness, and Michigan Islands National Wildlife Refuge.

Address: Lake Michigan - WI, MI, IL

4: Finger Lakes, New York

Finger Lakes, New York
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Sue Reynolds

The Finger Lakes are a popular tourist destination located in Upstate New York. The lakes are so-called as they are long and narrow resembling fingers. The eleven lakes are huge and there are literally dozens of things that tourists can do all through the year. The lakes have picturesque waterfalls, magnificent parks, gorgeous beaches, one-of-a-kind museums, and resorts all along the borders. The Finger Lakes area is also New York's premier wine-producing region with more than a 100 different vineyards and wineries located on the lake borders.

Address: Finger Lakes, New York

5: Lake Powell, Utah/Arizona

Lake Powell, Utah/Arizona

The impossible deep blue waters of Lake Powell have stunned almost every visitor. On top of that, this is a man-made lake and it is simply surprising that the lake turned out so beautiful. Of course, there was a huge hue-and-cry when the Glen Canyon was dammed and the Canyon filled with the waters of Colorado River but it turned out to be worth it. Visitors can literally see the red sandstone river banks through the pristine, sapphire-hued river water. The river is lined with gorgeous beaches and tourists flock to the area during peak summer season. The lake also offers sport fishing and water sports for interested visitors. If you are in Arizona, a short drive to this man-made wonder is a must.

Address: Lake Powell, UT 86040
Read Further: Utah Top 10 Attractions

6: Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri

Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri
Photo Courtesy: Wikimedia/Ben Jacobson

The Lake of the Ozarks is located in the heart of Missouri and it is one of the premier tourist destinations in the state. The lake is bordered with world-class resorts that offer water sports like boating, swimming, scuba diving, and sports fishing. Tourists can also find world-class golfing facilities spread out near the lake borders with the most famous being the Lodge of Four Seasons, The Shawnee Bend Golf Course and the Osage National Golf Course. The lake is also bordered by state parks and hiking and camping is offered to tourists during peak tourist season.

Address: 5815 Osage Beach Pkwy, Osage Beach, MO 65065
Website: www.funlake.com

7: Lake Mille Lacs, Minnesota

Lake Mille Lacs, Minnesota
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Tony Webster

Lake Mille Lacs is a sports fisherman's dream. The lake offers shoreline break fishing, shallow reef-top fishing, and multi-species fishing that make it very popular with sports fishermen. The lake is open for fishing all through the year with large fish houses building on the lake for walleye, perch and tullibee fishing in winter. Apart from the fishing, the lake is beautiful with a lovely backdrop that reflects the seasonal changes in weather. The two islands in the center are also a major attraction as they house the Mille Lacs National Wildlife Refuge.

Address: HCR 67, Box 195, Brainerd, MN 56359

8: Lake Havasu, Arizona

Lake Havasu, Arizona
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Michael Theis

Havasu Lake is one of the most interesting lakes along the Colorado River. It is famous for the London Bridge. This historic point of interest is one of the main attractions on the lake but the natural scenery around the lake is beautiful as well. Tourists can find water sports, hiking and camping, and cultural events held around the lake. The lake is also famous for its fishing and boating and unique wildlife. In fact, tourists can enjoy a diverse geology of sand dunes, rugged canyons, wilderness areas, abandoned towns, and numerous roads and trails located all over the area.

Address: 1550 London Bridge Road, Lake Havasu City, AZ 86403

9: Lake Norman, North Carolina

Lake Norman, North Carolina
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Tracie Hall

Lake Norman is about 34-miles long and it has three picturesque towns of Cornelius, Davidson, and Huntersville perched on its banks. The man-made lake offers great fishing and boating but it is equally famous for its sporting facilities and resorts. Of course, the lake is gorgeous as well.

Address: Lake Norman State Park, Charlotte, NC

10: Lake Chelan, Washington

Lake Chelan, Washington
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Dan Nevill

Not many people know about tiny Lake Chelan and it is a well-kept secret. The beautiful 50.5 mile lake is the largest natural lake in Chelan County and it is beautiful. The glacier-fed lake has deep clear water and it is surrounded by beautiful resorts, vineyards, wineries and gourmet restaurants. However, the entire area has a small-town feel which makes it a great place to visit with family.

Address: Lake Chelan Marina, Chelan, WA 98816

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