Are you searching for decent family picnic spots in Tennessee? Here are the best lakes in Tennessee for a family vacation. Tennessee is a state located in the southeastern United States. It is bordered by eight states: Kentucky to the north, Virginia to the northeast, North Carolina to the east, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi to the south, Arkansas to the west, and Missouri to the northwest. The state has a rich history and was originally part of North Carolina but then became its own state in 1796.
What are the best lakes in Tennessee for a family vacation?
Some of the best lakes in Tennessee are Norris Lake, Douglas, Old Hickory Lake, J. Percy Priest Lake, Watts Bar Lake, Watauga Lake, Tellico Reservoir, Dale Hollow Reservoir, Chickamauga Lake, Cherokee Lake, Center Hill Lake, Nickajack Lake, and Reelfoot Lake, among others.
Tennessee was an important state during the American Civil War; it was the last state to secede from the Union and was the site of many important battles. Today, Tennessee is known for its tourist attractions, including Graceland (the home of Elvis Presley), the Grand Ole Opry, and Nashville (the country music capital of the world). It’s also home to many lakes that make amazing picnic spots.
As residents of Tennessee, we have put together a list of some of the best lakes in Tennessee for a family vacation. Choose any of these lakes and have a wonderful time in mother nature.
The Best Lakes In Tennesee For A Family Vacation
Norris Lake is a reservoir located in the Appalachian Mountains of northeastern Tennessee. The lake is approximately Norris Dam, an impoundment of the Clinch River.
Norris Lake spans over 33,000 acres and has over 800 miles of shoreline. The lake is named after Neil S. Norris, who supervised the construction of Norris Dam. Norris Lake is a popular destination for fishing, swimming, boating, and camping.
The lake is home to several fish species, including bass, catfish, and trout. In addition, Norris Lake is known for its scenic beauty and offers numerous opportunities for hiking and wildlife viewing.
Douglas Lake is a reservoir located in East Tennessee. It covers approximately 50,000 acres of land and has over 800 miles of shoreline. Douglas Lake came into being in 1943 when the Tennessee Valley Authority dammed the French Broad River.
The main purpose of the reservoir is to provide power for the TVA’s Douglas Hydroelectric Plant, but it is also a popular recreation spot. Douglas Lake is home to various fish, including bass, catfish, and crappie.
Anglers come from all over to fish on Douglas Lake, and there are several marinas and boat ramps available for visitors. In addition to fishing, Douglas Lake offers opportunities for swimming, boating, hiking, and picnicking.
Visitors can also enjoy scenic views of the Great Smoky Mountains while they enjoy their food. Douglas Lake is truly a place where visitors enjoy the best of both worlds – natural beauty and recreational fun.
Old Hickory Lake
Old Hickory Lake is a man-made lake in Tennessee stretching over 40 miles along the Cumberland River. The lake was created in the early 1940s as part of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) project to provide power and flood control for the region.
Old Hickory Lake is a popular destination for boating, fishing, and other outdoor activities. The TVA operates a dam at Old Hickory Lake, which helps to regulate water levels and prevent flooding.
In addition, the TVA maintains a network of recreation areas around the lake, including picnicking and camping sites. Old Hickory Lake is an important part of the Tennessee landscape, providing many benefits for residents and visitors alike.
J. Percy Priest Lake
J. Percy Priest Lake is a reservoir located in Tennessee. The lake was created in 1968 for the purpose of providing water for the nearby city of Nashville. J. Percy Priest Lake is named after a former United States Congressman from Tennessee who served from 1940 to 1942.
The lake has an area of 14,000 acres and is home to many species of fish, including bass, crappie, and catfish. J. Percy Priest Lake is a popular destination for fishing, swimming, and boating.
There are several marinas and campgrounds located around the lake, and the J. Percy Priest Dam offers scenic views of the lake and its surroundings.
Watts Bar Lake
Watts Bar Lake is a reservoir in Tennessee that spans over 50,000 acres. The lake is located on the Watts Bar Nuclear Plant site and is used for recreation, fishing, and boating.
The Watts Bar Dam was completed in 1942 and impounds the Tennessee River. The reservoir has over 800 miles of shoreline and is a popular spot for swimming, camping, and hiking. The Watts Bar Nuclear Plant is located on the lake and provides power to the surrounding area.
The plant has two nuclear reactors that began operation in 1996 and 2016. Watts Bar Lake is a beautiful spot in Tennessee that offers many recreational activities for visitors.
Watauga Lake is a reservoir located in northeastern Tennessee, in the Appalachian Mountains. Watauga Lake is created by Watauga Dam, which impounds the Watauga River. Watauga Lake is approximately six miles (9.7 km) long and covers an area of Watauga County.
Watauga Dam is located at the Elk River and Watauga River confluence. The lake is surrounded by mountains and has over 200 miles (320 km) of shoreline. It is a popular destination for fishing, swimming, canoeing, kayaking, and, of course, picnicking.
There are also several campgrounds and cabins located around the lake. Watauga Lake is home to several fish species, including bass, trout, and walleye. Watauga Lake is also a stopover point for migrating birds. In addition to its recreational activities, Watauga Lake provides hydroelectric power to the surrounding area.
Tellico Reservoir is a man-made lake in the Appalachian Mountains of east Tennessee. The reservoir was created in 1979 by the construction of Tellico Dam on the Little Tennessee River. Tellico Reservoir is part of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) system of dams and reservoirs.
The primary purpose of Tellico Dam is to provide flood control for the Tennessee River system. Tellico Reservoir has a surface area of 29,700 acres and a shoreline length of 520 miles. The reservoir is located in Loudoun County, Tennessee and extends into Monroe County, Tennessee.
Tellico Reservoir is a popular destination for boating, fishing, swimming, and camping. There are several marinas and public boat ramps around the reservoir. Tellico Reservoir is home to a variety of fish species, including largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, spotted bass, crappie, catfish, and trout.
Tellico Dam is also used to generate hydroelectric power. The Tellico Hydroelectric Plant has a generating capacity of 101 megawatts.
Dale Hollow Reservoir
Dale Hollow Reservoir is a man-made lake located on the Kentucky-Tennessee border. The reservoir covers an area of approximately 27,700 acres and has a shoreline of 662 miles.
It was created in 1943 when the Dale Hollow Dam was created on the Cumberland River. Dale Hollow Reservoir is a popular destination for boating, fishing, and swimming. The reservoir is home to a variety of fish, including bass, trout, and catfish.
It is also known for its clear water, which makes it a popular spot for scuba diving and snorkeling. In addition to its recreational uses, Dale Hollow Reservoir provides water for hydroelectric power generation and flood control.
Chickamauga Lake is located in Tennessee and is part of the Chickamauga Reservoir. The Chickamauga Reservoir is a man-made lake created in 1940 when the Chickamauga Dam was completed. The reservoir is fed by the Tennessee River and provides water for the city of Chattanooga.
Chickamauga Lake is a popular recreation spot for boating, fishing, and swimming. The lake is also home to several marinas and campgrounds. Chickamauga Dam is managed by the Tennessee Valley Authority and is one of nine dams that make up the TVA system.
The Chickamauga Lock provides navigation for barges and pleasure boats between Chickamauga Lake and the Tennessee River. Chickamauga Lake is named for the nearby Chickamauga Creek, which flows into the Tennessee River just upstream from the Chickamauga Dam.
Cherokee Lake is a man-made reservoir in Tennessee that covers over 30,000 acres. It was created in the 1940s by impounding the Cherokee Reservoir, and it is now operated by the Tennessee Valley Authority.
Cherokee Lake is a popular spot for fishing, boating, and swimming, and it is home to various fish species, including bass, catfish, and crappie. The lake also provides drinking water for the nearby city of Knoxville.
Cherokee Lake is named for the Cherokee people who once inhabited the area. The name “Cherokee” comes from a Native American word meaning “people of different speech.”
The Cherokee were forcibly removed from their homeland in the 1830s during the Trail of Tears, and many of them settled in Oklahoma. Today, there are still Cherokee communities in both Tennessee and North Carolina.
Center Hill Lake
Center Hill Lake is another man-made reservoir in middle Tennessee. The lake was created in 1948 when the Center Hill Dam was completed on the Caney Fork River.
Center Hill Lake is one of nine reservoirs on the Cumberland River system, and it is the second largest of those reservoirs. The lake covers an area of 18,220 acres, and it has a shoreline of over 500 miles.
Center Hill Lake is a popular destination for fishing, swimming, boating, and camping. The lake is home to a variety of fish species, which includes trout, bass, and crappie. In addition to its many recreational opportunities, Center Hill Lake also provides hydroelectric power to the region.
Nickajack Lake is a man-made reservoir in the southern United States. It is located on the Tennessee River in Hamilton County, Tennessee. Nickajack Lake was created by the Tennessee Valley Authority in 1967 by impounding the river’s waters. The lake is named for a nearby Creek Indian village that was inundated by the new reservoir.
Nickajack Lake is a popular recreation destination, offering boating, fishing, and swimming opportunities. The lake is also home to a variety of wildlife, including bald eagles, ospreys, and herons. Nickajack Dam, which impounds the lake, is used for hydroelectric power generation and flood control.
Reelfoot Lake is a shallow freshwater lake in the western part of Tennessee. It is approximately 20 miles long and 10 miles wide, with an average depth of 5 feet. The lake was created by the 1811–12 New Madrid earthquakes, which caused the Mississippi River to flow backward for a short period.
Reelfoot Lake is home to a variety of fish, including bass, bluegill, and catfish. It is also a popular destination for birdwatching, as it is home to over 300 species of birds, including herons, egrets, and ducks. Reelfoot Lake State Park offers a variety of activities such as fishing, boating, hiking, and camping.
Kentucky Lake is one of the largest man-made lakes in the United States. Stretching for over 160 miles, it straddles the Kentucky-Tennessee border. Kentucky Lake was created in 1944 when the Tennessee Valley Authority dammed the Tennessee River.
The resulting lake is a popular spot for fishing, boating, and swimming. Kentucky Lake is also home to numerous wildlife species, including bald eagles, osprey, and deer.
In addition to its natural beauty, Kentucky Lake also offers a variety of cultural attractions, such as museums, art galleries, and historic sites. Whether you’re looking for a place to relax or an adventure, Kentucky Lake is sure to have something for you.
Pickwick Lake is a reservoir on the Tennessee-Mississippi border in the southeastern United States. The lake is approximately 64,000 acres in size and has over 500 miles of shoreline.
It is named after the nearby town of Pickwick Dam, Tennessee. The lake is a popular recreation spot for boating, fishing, swimming, and camping. There are also several marinas and public parks located around the lake.
Pickwick Lake is home to various fish species, including largemouth bass, crappie, catfish, and sunfish. The lake is also famous for its scenic beauty and is a popular destination for photographers and nature lovers.