The southern states in the United States are stunning and full of beauty. There are mountains, beaches, large hills, and wetlands with many lakes running through them. It is easy to understand how there are so many beautiful lakes in America’s South, especially since it is made up of 13 states. Pack your bags with comfortable clothes, sneakers, and binoculars as we discover the 14 most beautiful lakes in America’s South!
1. Guntersville Lake
Guntersville Lake, also referred to as Lake Guntersville, is a freshwater lake in northern Alabama. It is 75 miles long and offers stunning views and plenty of fishing spots. This artificial lake was dammed by Guntersville Dam along the Tennessee River. Fishers often catch black crappies, largemouth bass, and catfish while on the water. It is part of Lake Guntersville State Park, where bird-watching is a popular activity.
2. Weiss Lake
Interestingly, the Alabama Power Company owns and operates Weiss Lake. It is about 32,000 acres, with a maximum depth of 62 feet. Although most of the lake is in Alabama, some parts run through Floyd County, Georgia. In this beautiful lake, you can enjoy the 447 miles of coastline and recreational activities like canoeing and boating. Weiss Lake is a family-friendly lake where you can quietly enjoy scenic views along the water.
3. Lake Wedowee
Lake Wedowee is a relatively new lake that was created by the flooding of the plains behind the R.L. Harris Dam. It is a 10,660-acre reservoir in Randolph County, Alabama. The town the lake is named after is small, with a population of less than 800. Although it is small, Lake Wedowee sees thousands of visitors during summer for swimming, boating, fishing, and camping. Bluegill and striped bass are especially common in the pristine water.
4. Lake Burton
In the fall, as leaves change into vibrant colors, visitors flock to Lake Burton to enjoy the cool weather and camping activities. Luke Burton is in Georgia and has a surface area of 2,775 acres. It is a large lake created over 100 years ago. Lake Burton is owned and maintained by the Georgia Power/Southern Company. This public lake is popular for its crystal clear water and wooden boat parade. Multiple traditional events are conducted each year on Lake Burton, including a huge 4th of July celebration with fireworks.
5. Tallulah Falls Lake
Tallulah Falls Lake is a 63-acre reservoir in Northeast Georgia. It is the smallest lake in the area and is maintained by Georgia Power. Tallulah Falls Lake was formed in 1914 with the creation of the Tallulah Falls Dam. Visitors can enjoy various activities along the 3.6 miles of shore. It is a wonderful vacation spot for families looking to enjoy the natural beauty. While staying at a cabin on the lake, you can also fish in the water for crappies and spotted bass.
6. Lake Blackshear
Lake Blackshear is a massive lake in Northern Georgia. No two parts of the lake look alike. This majestic lake is 20 miles long. It is rather narrow in some parts, but that is what some locals love about the lake. The average depth of the lake is 10.5 feet, while the maximum is 47 feet. Interestingly, when Lake Blackshear was created, the cypress trees in the area were not cut down. Although it was thought that the trees would decompose and die at the bottom of the lake, there are multiple live cypress trees remaining underwater.
7. High Falls Lake
Within High Falls State Park, you can find High Falls Lake. This lake is in Georgia, between the cities of Macon and Atlanta. Surrounding the gorgeous lake are hundreds, if not thousands, of pine trees. The lake is about 650 acres and provides family fun and plenty of recreational activities for everyone. You can camp near the lake in tents or yurts. Next time you are in the area, take a relaxing paddle through the lake to enjoy the scenic views and wildlife.
8. Lake Marion
Lake Marion, in central South Carolina, is the largest lake in the state. The size is not the only impressive part of this lake. It is also exceptionally stunning! The lake is so large it covers 110,000 acres, including farmlands and marshes. There are multiple fishing piers directly on Lake Marion, giving visitors and locals easy access to fish like white perch and catfish. Fun fact, the largest largemouth bass in the state was caught in Lake Marion.
9. Grand Lake o’ the Cherokees
In the foothills of the Ozark Mountain Range, Grand Lake o’ the Cherokees, also referred to as Grand Lake, sits in all of its glory. The damming of the Grand River in 1940 formed the Grand Lake. The U.S. government used this unique lake and dam for war during the 1940s. Now, it is mainly an entertainment destination for locals and visitors. It is one of the best bass fishing lakes in the country. You can also sail well on this lake because the wind in the area is predictable and great for sailing conditions.
10. Lake Greenwood
The Federal Power Commission created Lake Greenwood by damming the Saluda River. The hydroelectric dam still serves the area today. Lake Greenwood has a surface area of 11,400 acres. The average depth of the lake is 21.8 feet, while the maximum depth is 69.3 feet. Lake Greenwood is a popular fishing destination in South Carolina for bluegill, black crappies, striped bass, and channel catfish. Multiple fishing piers and bridges are in this lake.
11. Caddo Lake
Caddo Lake is breathtaking. It is on the Texas and Louisiana border. Uniquely, Caddo Lake is a lake and a bayou. The wetlands are internationally protected, and for a good reason. Caddo Lake has a rich history and was first settled and used by Native Americans. It is a stunning lake with vibrant vegetation and large trees. You can expect to find alligators, bobcats, owls, river otters, and beavers while visiting the lake. It is actually the largest natural lake in Texas.
12. Valentine Lake
Valentine Lake in Louisiana does not get enough credit. It is a peaceful, majestic, and quiet lake about 28 miles from Alexandria, Louisiana. It is in Kisatchie National Forest and requires visitors to take a quick 1-mile hike to the lake. Once you are at the lake, you can kayak and canoe. Motorized boats are not allowed on the water, so you can enjoy a paddle through the lake. In the forest surrounding the secluded lake, you can sometimes spot black bears, alligators, and wild horses.
13. Grenada Lake
Grenada Lake is an artificial lake in Mississippi on the Yalobusha River. It is a flood control reservoir but is frequently used by locals for recreational water sports and activities. The surface area of the lake is 35,000 acres, with a shore length of 148 miles. Crappies are everywhere in the lake. They are massive and known as “three-pound crappies.” If fishing is not your type, you can waterski or wakeboard.
14. Lake of the Ozarks
We couldn’t end this list without mentioning the Lake of the Ozarks. From above, it looks a lot like a dragon or slithering serpent. Locals have nicknamed this artificial lake “the Missouri Dragon.” It is 93 miles long and 130 feet deep. The Lake of the Ozarks State Park is the largest state park in Missouri. You can also find water snakes in this lake.
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