The Best Lakes and Beaches in Missouri


Photo credit: Photo by James Carr, via Wikimedia Commons

When you think of beach life, you may not think of Missouri. We’re hoping to help change that, because Missouri has some spectacular lakes and beaches within its borders. From all corners of the state, here are the best lakes and beaches in Missouri:

Lake of the Ozarks

The lake was created by damming the Osage River, which accounts for its unique serpentine shape. It is made up of the Osage Arm — the main channel that stretches 92 miles — and its four offshoots, the Gravois Arm, Grand Glaize Arm, Little Niangua Arm and Big Niangua Arm. A true lake resort destination, Lake of the Ozarks offers boating, golfing, shopping, fishing, and a host of other recreation activities. Plus, it’s just plain beautiful.

Harry S. Truman Reservoir

At 55,600 acres, the Truman Reservoir is the largest man-made lake in Missouri. The reservoir is is Benton, Henry, St. Clair and Hickory counties, and includes the Harry S. Truman State Park in Benton County. Noted for its clear waters and dramatic bluffs, the lake offers boating, swimming, and more.

Lake Wappapello

Another reservoir, Lake Wappapello is in southeastern Missouri about 2 hours south of St. Louis. It also has a state park of the same name, where you can camp, hike, go horseback riding, kayak, fish and more.

Table Rock Lake

Located in southwestern Missouri, Table Rock Lake has nearly 800 miles of shoreline. It is near Branson and Silver Dollar City, and is a great spot for outdoor recreation and relaxation. The lake also includes Table Rock State Park. Scuba dive, parasail, fish, hike, or just kick back with a glass of wine and a a great view.

Bull Shoals Lake

Straddling northern Arkansas and southern Missouri, Bull Shoals Lake is in the ruggedly beautiful Ozark Mountains. You can hike the trails, tour the dam, rent a boat, go for a swim at one of the public beaches, fish and more at this lovely lake.

Mark Twain Lake

Mark Twain Lake, as well as Mark Twain State Park, are in north-central Missouri, near Hannibal, the historic hometown of the famous author for whom they’re named. More than 2 million people visited the lake last year, which is known for its hunting and fishing. Sailing is popular, as are boating, kayaking, camping, picnics and more.

Pomme de Terre

Located in southwestern Missouri, Pomme de Terre is well known for its excellent fishing. Pomme de Terre State Park also has two public swimming beaches, hiking trails, a marina and more.

Stockton Lake

This 25,000-acre lake in western Missouri is another that’s known for its clear waters and smooth sailing. (Literally. Sailing is really good here.) You can also water ski, scuba dive, swim, fish and more. Spend a weekend, or just go for a long picnic. Either way, don’t miss it.

Is your favorite lake not on our list? Let us know! Give us a call at 636.462.3500, or email us here.

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