Taking a lakeside vacation is one of the best ways to reconnect with nature and spend some time doing something new. You can swim, boat, fish, or just enjoy the scenery from a lakeside cottage. People who live on or near South Carolina lakes year-round will tell you that there’s no better spot to unwind than on one of South Carolina’s many lakes.
But what makes lakes so great? Here are three reasons why lakeside vacations are worth it:
- The wildlife
- The water
A day on the lake offers a great escape from daily life and all its stresses. A lake vacation is perfect for rejuvenating your mind and body after a long week/month/year at work or can be just the thing you need to rekindle romance with that special someone.
Our database of lakes below will help you discover:
- Your new favorite swimming hole. We can help you research the best South Carolina lakes for swimming for your next getaway.
- The perfect lake with a view for your next “unplug from the world” South Carolina lake vacation.
- For fishing or watersports, we’ll show you the best lakes for boating in South Carolina. Looking to hook some black crappie? We’ll help you find the best spots on the East coast!
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For the outdoorsy types that love camping, hiking, and fishing, there are certainly lakeside getaways in South Carolina that will suit your needs. But, the beauty of the lakes in South Carolina is their diversity. We’ll walk you through some of our favorites.
The best lakes to visit in South Carolina
If you’re looking to escape from the city, but you aren’t sure where exactly to start, here’s a list of some of the best lakes in South Carolina and why they’re great. From there, it should be easy to pick out your favorite and set off on an amazing lakeside getaway.
Lake Hartwell: One of the most popular lakes in South Carolina, Lake Hartwell is located on the border with Georgia and is especially popular among fishermen because it offers an abundance of fish (you’ll never go hungry.) It’s also perfect for boating and swimming. If biking or hiking is more your speed, try one of the many trails around the lake. There are many camping options including Sadlers Creek State Park, a popular destination for guests of the 56,000-acre lake.
Lake Murray: At 50,000 acres, the “Jewel of South Carolina” is 41 miles long and offers all kinds of amenities for visitors. For those that want to be on the water, boat rentals are available or you can take a tour if you just want to go along for the ride. There are designated swimming areas great for paddle boarding or just cooling off on a hot day. When you’re not on the water there’s plenty of other entertainment options like hiking, bird watching, or just enjoying some of the tasty nearby restaurants.
Lake Bowen: Located near the North Carolina border in Spartanburg County, Lake Bowen is a rather shallow lake at only about 41 feet deep, but If you’re looking for a lakeside getaway for a quick fishing trip it’s a good spot. If you have your own boat, the lake has two boat ramps for easy access. The lake offers a variety of fish including several species of bass and catfish. If you’ve got a crowd, you can throw a party by renting a picnic pavilion on the lakeside.
Lake Greenwood: Lake Greenwood is part of Lake Greenwood State Park and has been rated as one of the top things to do in South Carolina. A popular spot for hikers, the park offers camping, kayaking, boating, and much more. Lake Greenwood really offers up a little bit of everything on the water and off. Scuba lessons are available, but the area is also popular for golfers and people into geocaching. Honestly, you can’t really go wrong with this as your destination!
Lake Keowee: One of the more popular lakes in South Carolina, Lake Keowee is a man-made reservoir located in the northwest corner of the state. The lake is a popular destination for people into waterskiing, swimming, or just taking a relaxing picnic along the shore. The lake has multiple boat launches, but the launches nor the swimming areas are staffed so make sure if anyone goes in the water be sure you have a buddy nearby as there are occasional alligator sitings.
Lake Marion: Lake Marion is the largest lake in South Carolina and it has over 300 miles of shoreline. Santee State Park is a large park located on the lake and offers access for boaters as well as sizable swimming areas that are popular for families looking to beat the heat. Campers accommodate RVs and have electrical hookups, so if you’re looking for a great place to stay while on a road trip down the East Coast, Lake Marion is definitely worth checking out!
If you’re looking to escape from your daily life and enjoy some rest and relaxation on a vacation in South Carolina, then these lakes provide some of the best options you can find anywhere in the United States.