The United States has its fair share of lakes, and many of them are truly amazing (and great for a fall getaway). From the extremely popular Lake Tahoe, the magical Crater Lake, and the majestic Great Lakes, to the lesser known jewels of the Olympic National Park or Glacier National Park, the USA has it all.
A map that was recently created by Lakepedia, the online encyclopedia of lakes, shows the largest lake in every state. Let’s take a look at the top 5 lakes, and if they are worth a visit.
Visit These 5 Large Lakes In U.S. States
1. Great Salt Lake
Its proximity to Salt Lake City and the I-59 corridor makes it easily accessible, and there are plenty of hiking and mountain biking trails around the lake that you can enjoy.
Photo by Jake under Creative Commons
Where to stay
Close to the airport: Super 8 Salt Lake City Airport
Besides being affordable, this hotel also gives you easy access to Salt Lake City, the airport, and is a short 12-mile car ride away from the Great Salt Lake State Park.
Close to Antelope Island: Best Western Plus High Country Inn
This hotel is located in Ogden, and offers an outdoor pool and hot tub. More importantly, you will be close to Antelope Island, probably Great Salt Lake’s most important attraction, which is famous for its wildlife and incredible vistas that will remain etched in your memory for years to come.
Pet-friendly option: Super 8 Ogden
If you are looking for something on the more affordable spectrum, you can try the Super 8 Ogden, which is also pet-friendly.
2. Iliamna Lake
Covering a surface area of 1,014 square miles, Iliamna Lake is the largest lake in Alaska, and the second largest lake located entirely in a single state. The gateway to the lake is the town of Iliamna, which is located 30 miles south of Lake Clark National Park and Preserve. The clear, pristine waters of Iliamna Lake are home to the only freshwater seal in the United States. The lake is also known for its world-class fishing and the largest sockeye salmon run in the world.
Photo by FHP_Alaska under Creative Commons
Where to stay
On the lake: Angry Eagle Lodge & Outfitters
This is a very remote location, so Angry Eagle Lodge & Outfitters is a great option. They take care of everything and will organize your fishing and sightseeing trips in the area.
3. Lake Okeechobee
The largest lake in Florida, Lake Okeechobee is sometimes referred to as "Florida's inland sea" by the locals. It is the largest freshwater lake located entirely in a single state of the lower 48 states. The lake is very popular for its fishing, boating, and trails. The town of Clewiston, on the southern shore, has the most to offer.
Photo by Peter Dutton under Creative Commons
Where to stay
Budget option for 2 people: Plaza Travel Inn
Located in downtown Clewiston, this hotel is just a 5-minute drive from Lake Okeechobee. It features a microwave and refrigerator in each room, as well as free Wi-Fi.
Budget option for 4 people: Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Clewiston
Located on Highway 80/27, 2.5 miles west of Lake Okeechobee, this Clewiston hotel features an outdoor pool and whirlpool. The rooms and lobby are decorated in bright, bold colors.
Okeechobee town option: Travelodge Suites Okeechobee
If you want to visit the northern shore of the lake, you can go to Travelodge Suites Okeechobee. It features free WiFi throughout the property, and is pet-friendly.
4. Lake Pontchartrain
Lake Pontchartrain is referred to both as an estuary and a lake. However, locals from New Orleans, which sits at its shore, proudly refer to it as a lake, so who are we to argue? The lake is crossed by the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway, the 23.9-mile bridge that is the longest in North America.
Photo by Flickr user glennaa under Creative Commons
Where to Stay
Needless to say, you will find a lot of things to do in New Orleans, and an abundance of accommodation options.
Classy option (sleeps 4): French Quarter Suite in the Middle of Everything
This condo retains all the charm of era and the French Quarter, and is perfect for families and friends, while also being conveniently located for needs at the Louisiana Supreme Court and Appeals Court.
Budget option for 2: Family Inns New Orleans
This motel is less than a 15 minutes’ drive from the historic French Quarter. Free Wi-Fi and cable TV are offered.
Large Group Option: Live Like a Local, Uptown Neighborhood
This very nice first floor apartment is just blocks from St. Charles Ave, and is perfect for exploring all of New Orleans. It can accommodate up to 10 people.
5. Lake Sakakawea
Lake Sakakawea is a reservoir in North Dakota, the largest located entirely in a single state. The state park that bears the same name is great for families, and offers plenty of water, hiking, and biking activity options. It also features a marina, where you can rent boats and purchase food or marine supplies.
Photo by Flickr user kloeppel under Creative Commons
Where to Stay
Fun and friendly: Teddy's Residential Suites New Town
Located in New Town, this hotel is perfect for couples. It features free WiFi, and offers pet-friendly accommodation. It also has a hot tub and a fitness centre, and guests can enjoy a meal at the restaurant.
So these are the 5 biggest lakes located entirely in a single state. From the North of the country all the way to the South, they offer many and varied vacation options. What’s your favorite lake vacation destination?
This article was written by Catalin Trif.