10 Virginia Lakes to Visit this Fall

by Casey Higgins | Posted: Oct 17, 2013 | Updated: Sep 12, 2016

Comments: 6 Comments

Last Updated: August 17, 2015

Fall’s colors reflect beautifully on the water of Virginia’s lakes. Head out on a clear day and you’ll have a stunning blue sky competing for attention. Who wins? You win. Love your fall in Virginia.

Kerr Lake is Virginia’s largest lake at more than 50,000 acres and 800+ miles of shoreline. Both Occoneechee State Park and Staunton River State Park provide access points. In-Fisherman magazine called it the number one Crappie fishing lake, and both state and national fishing tournaments have been hosted here.

Philpott Lake is a commanding 3,000 acres with 100 miles of shoreline, nine boat launches, eight campgrounds, and six beaches … oh, and two counties. How’s that for numbers? The trails along the lake are the perfect place for photos, birdwatching, and simply appreciating the beauty.

Philpott Lake Dam

Philpott Lake

Lake Gaston straddles Virginia and North Carolina, and at 20,000 acres, you can understand why. Whether you choose to drop a line and fish or just skim along in a boat, the colors of autumn are a great backdrop.

Lake Gaston

Lake Gaston

In Covington, you’ll find Lake Moomaw and Gathright Dam, where you can launch your boat from multiple access points (water level permitting), including Warm Springs, to enjoy 2,530-acres surface. Camping and plenty of recreational opportunities are available within this National Forest area.

Sherando Lake is located in the George Washington National Forest,  just off the Blue Ridge Parkway. It’s 24 acres of great fishing. An on-site campground invites you to stay for more than a day.

Sherando Lake

Sherando Lake

Smith Mountain Lake is a freshwater lake second in size to Kerr Lake, and still has an amazing 500 miles of shoreline. With many access points, you can choose how to approach this “Jewel of the Blue Ridge Mountains” – from Bedford County and Smith Mountain Lake State Park on the north shores, Franklin County on the southwest, or Pittsylvania County on the southeast. Whichever route you choose, the views are going to take your breath away.

Smith Mountain Lake

Smith Mountain Lake

Lake Anna is Virginia’s third largest lake at 13,000 acres of water surface and 200 miles of shoreline. Lake Anna State Park in Spotsylvania is the perfect public access point.

Lake Anna State Park

Lake Anna State Park

South Holston Lake is set within Washington County Park, the lake is available for fishing, swimming, and boating. Pull in your camper or pitch a tent to stay longer and enjoy the nearby fun, like the Virginia Creeper Trail!

Claytor Lake is the centerpiece of Claytor Lake State Park, and at 4,500 acres, it’s a sport fisherman’s haven. Not into fishing? No worries. Choose one of the 12 cabins overlooking the lake and just enjoy the view.

Lake Fairfax Park is 18-acres and a the key attraction to a park full of fun! Rent pedal boats, hop on a tour boat ride, or go fishin’. On-site camping.



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Ron says:

This site is my favorite site on the computer. The contents & presentation are great.

Lake Anna is so pretty all year round, but I think the fall is the best. http://www.lakeannavacationrental.com

Devon says:

I can’t believe Leesville Lake is not on this list! 14 mile of rustic serenity perfect for all your favorite water sports.

Jim says:

Smith Mountain Lake is perhaps the best fresh water lake on the east coast.

Carol Erlingheuser says:

On ur way to Fairy Stone State Park mid October. Hope to catch some leaf color

Lake Anna Va is just beautiful in the fall. The sunsets and the turning leaves are so pretty. http://www.lakeannavacationrental.com