Traveling in 2022? Please check with each state/destination for its current COVID-19 guidelines, as these are constantly changing and the most accurate, up-to-date information may not be reflected here.
Vermont is a state known for its unbelievable natural beauty. Between the forestry and majestic mountains, there’s something everyone can enjoy. If you’re a fan of spending time on the lake, you’re in luck. Vermont has some incredible lakes to enjoy, whether you want to hang out on the shore and catch some sun or spend the day on a boat. Here are some of the best lakes in Vermont you must see at some point during your travels.
You can’t talk about the best lakes in Vermont without mentioning Lake Champlain. Lake Champlain is located between Vermont and New York that features Adirondack mountain views. The Canadian province of Quebec also shares part of the gorgeous freshwater lake.
At 120 miles long, there’s no shortage of things to do at Lake Champlain. For starters, you’ll find Burlington, Vermont’s most populated city, along Lake Champlain. There are several things to do in Burlington, from dining to shopping. You can spend a night in Burlington and see what the city has to offer if you prefer a more bustling area.
Other things to do around Lake Champlain include:
- Going on a boat tour—Places to check out include Sail Vermont LLC in Burlington and Captain Mike’s Sailing in Charlotte.
- Going kayaking—You can hit the water by renting kayaks at the Lake Champlain Community Sailing Center and PaddleSurf Champlain, both in Burlington.
- Going on a hike—There are plenty of places to hike near Lake Champlain. You can hike the trails at Niquette Bay in Colchester, Mt. Philo State Park in Charlotte, and Red Rocks Park in South Burlington, just to name a few spots.
If you’re planning a Vermont road trip, definitely put a spot near Lake Champlain on your list if you want a fun-filled and beautiful vacation to remember.
Located in the western part of Vermont near the New York border, Lake Bomoseen is a beautiful spot to make memories in The Green Mountain State. Head to the towns of Castleton and Hubbardton to enjoy all this lake has to offer. There are many water activities to do on Lake Bomoseen, including water skiing, swimming, and boating. If you don’t have your own boat, you can rent one at Woodard Marine Boat Rentals.
There are also plenty of places to hike near Lake Bomoseen. Bomoseen State Park in Castleton has trails you can hike, along with places to camp. There’s even a camping area within Bomoseen State Park called Half Moon Pond State Park to explore.
Lake Saint Catherine
Lake Saint Catherine is one of the top lakes in Vermont because it provides a great spot for visitors to relax and enjoy the great outdoors. It’s located in western Vermont in Rutland County, specifically in the towns of Wells and Poultney. Spend the day on this beautiful lake boating, swimming, or fishing with loved ones and enjoying Vermont’s natural beauty.
You can visit Lake Saint Catherine State Park in Poultney to experience more lakeside fun. There’s a sandy beach where families can gather to swim, as well as hiking trails and campsites. If you want to get the full Lake Saint Catherine experience, stop into town and grab some ice cream at Otto’s Ice Cream & General Store for a sweet treat. You can also visit Whaleback Vineyard and Taps Tavern to enjoy some spirits on your trip.
As one of the best lakes in Vermont to visit is Lake Willoughby, located in the northeastern part of the state in the town of Westmore. This scenic lake is actually the clearest lake in Vermont and its southern end is surrounded by the Willoughby State Forest. Grab the boat and hit the water to make memories of this gorgeous lake. You can also kayak and canoe on the lake. If you need kayak and canoe rentals, check out Clyde River Recreation in West Charleston.
If you’re itching to go on a hike, head to Willoughby State Forest. You’ll get some exercise while taking in some incredible Vermont views. Hit the trails and then hit the water for a ton of fun.
If you head up towards the Canadian border, you’ll find one of the best Vermont lakes to see. Lake Memphremagog is located between Newport and Magog, Quebec, Canada. A majority of the lake is in Quebec, but the portion that’s in Vermont is quite a sight. The lake is known to host sailing regattas in the summer and is a great spot for boating. If you need a boat, visit Newport Marine Services & Storage and ask about their boat rental services.
You can also bring your bike and ride along the lake at the Newport Bike Path. You could even ride your bike to Prouty Beach & Campground, a 36-acre park that has incredible views of Lake Memphremagog. The park also has athletic fields and courts to use, plus areas where you can play shuffleboard and horseshoes. There’s plenty to do in Newport once you’re done on Lake Memphremagog, so take some time to explore this beautiful lakeside city.
Perhaps you prefer lounging by a smaller lake. Crystal Lake, located near Barton in the northeast section of the state, is three miles long and one mile wide. The lake is home to Crystal Lake State Park, which has nearly a mile of shoreline for you to enjoy. There are also grills, picnic tables, and a place to rent canoes. Pack a cooler and some beach chairs and get ready to spend a beautiful day at the lake.
Head to northwest Elmore and you’ll find Lake Elmore, a 219-acre lake that’s a truly beautiful spot in Vermont. You’ll find Elmore State Park on the lake, which has a campground and hiking trails that lead to the top of Elmore Mountain. If you want to spend a day out on the lake, the campground has a place where you can rent things like canoes, kayaks, and rowboats.
There are also spots where you can go fishing, play volleyball, and of course, go swimming. There’s a little bit of something for everyone to do at Lake Elmore, so grab your family and friends and head here to let the good times roll.
This smaller lake in the Northeast Kingdom region is one of the best lakes in Vermont to visit. You can find Seymour Lake in the town of Morgan. The water is cool and clean, and there are plenty of activities to do, including swimming, canoeing, and sailing.
If you head about 15 minutes outside of Morgan, you’ll find Brighton State Park, located on Spectacle Pond. There’s a self-guided nature trail in the park you can walk along and trails where you can go mountain biking too. It’s a quick trip to make from Seymour Lake and is well worth it to explore more of the Northeast Kingdom.
Caspian Lake is a small, but beautiful, lake in Greensboro, Vermont. Bring the boat or kayak and spend the day relaxing on its great waters. It’s also a great fishing spot where you can find trout, landlocked salmon, and other types of fish. If you’re looking for a place to stay on Caspian Lake, check out Highland Lodge. Not only will you stay at a place that has lake access, but you’ll also stay at a place that sits on 136 acres of land. There’s plenty of places to hike and mountain bike, as well as natural wonders to discover. Once you take a trip to Caspian Lake, you’ll want to come back year after year.
Vermont is a gorgeous state just waiting to be explored. Vermont’s lakes, in particular, are some of the most splendid and tranquil to visit. A trip to a Vermont lake is sure to produce some incredible memories and travel stories.
Amy is the founder of New England with love. A proud Vermonter, she hopes to share her love of New England and help you find the best adventures in the region. Amy is also blogger/founder at Two Drifters, where she writes alongside her husband about romantic and couples travel, relationships, honeymoons, and more. When not working on websites, Amy is probably reading, cuddling with her husband and cats, & drinking a maple latte.