You know that peaceful feeling that comes with taking a break from your daily grind? That’s what you’ll find at any Lake Wylie accommodation as the calm lake boasts 325 miles of shoreline bordering North and South Carolina. The area features more family activities than you can shake a canoe paddle at, and your hardest job is to figure out what to do next. Swimming, fishing, boating, and whitewater rafting are givens when a lake is your vacation destination. Take a spooky ghost tour, forget your worries on a roller coaster, or head over to Lowe’s Speedway to fulfill your NASCAR fix. Pick one of many fantastic vacation rentals at Lake Wylie situated on the waterfront or in the woods. With that said, here are the top things to do on an unforgettable family vacation.

1. Become a Captain of a Boat

Trade your desk chair for the driver’s seat on a boat to begin exploring Lake Wylie, which borders South Carolina and North Carolina. Take in all or part of the 325 miles of shoreline for sightseeing, fishing, or just cruising along. Launch your own boat at Allison Creek or Nivens Creek, and keep her moored at the private dock adjacent to your cozy lakeshore vacation rental cabin. Or, you can always rent one at Tailrace Marina, including life jackets. Take a picnic basket and a cooler of drinks for a lazy day on the water. There is no need to hurry. Time stands still on the lake.

2. Swim Often

If you want some privacy, look for a nice vacation rental house near the lake that features a pool in the backyard. Enjoy the added seclusion and security of letting the kids cut loose away from the other vacationers at the lake while you lounge in your deck chair and catch a few rays. If you prefer to stay in a vacation rental on the lakefront, take advantage of public swimming at the beach in Ebenezer Park lake access at Rock Hill. Then again, you might rent a houseboat at River Hills Marina and swim right from the decks of your vacation epicenter.

3. Go Fish

It’s a simple matter of planning: add one small child, one small rod, and reel, and one small fish to equal a really big deal. A leisurely morning by the lake, while you have your second cup of coffee, makes a memorable time for your kiddies to learn how to fish. Pick up bait and tackle at Tailrace Marina or River Hills Marina to give a little one a big surprise. Be the hero your kids know you are.

4. Zoom Over to Carowinds

Shake things up and get the kids excited when you announce a trip to Carowinds, a 105-acre theme and water park situated just about seven miles east of the lake, on the border of South Carolina and North Carolina. Take lots of time with this one as it features more than 100 rides, shows, and movie-themed adventures for all ages. Hop on those roller coasters and scream like you mean it.

5. Ride the Ziplines

Do you ever dream of flying? Make it happen when you vacation at Lake Wylie with an excursion to Canaan Zipline Canopy Tour at Rock Hill. Choose the full canopy tour, which features nine lines, a suspension bridge, and two nature trails, lasting about three-and-a-half hours. Or save some money and some time with the hour-and-a-half Boot Leg tour, a five-line tour, and a nature hike. Participants must weight between 75 and 265 pounds.

6. Stand Up on a Paddle Board

Grab a paddleboard, a paddle, and a life jacket; attach the ankle leash, step aboard, and shove off on a new adventure. Anything you don’t already own, you can get at one of the marinas. Rentals include paddles and life jackets. Basically, anyone who has mastered climbing stairs can figure out a paddle board on their first outing. Watch the kids have a blast on these things, and maybe even stage some races.

7. Paddle Down the Catawba River

Polish up your moxie and take the kids on a self-guided float on the Catawba River from Lake Wylie Dam in Fort Mill to River Park in Rock Hill. Experience a beautiful stretch of river where you may see eagles, deer, otters, geese, and plenty of fish. It’s a fairly calm journey of 6.5 miles that takes about two to three hours but watch for the large rocks and a few small rapids that you must maneuver. Take your cooler, kids, and waterproof camera for a breathtaking adventure.

8. Play a Round of Golf

Putter around at Tega Cay Golf Club in Fort Mill for a beautiful and challenging experience on an exquisite 27-hole course that sites on more than 200 acres surrounding Lake Wylie. Dine in the elegant clubhouse restaurant and shop in the fully-stocked pro shop. Some luxurious vacation rentals include tees for two. Make room for the golf clubs in the SUV.

9. Brave a Haunted Walking Tour of Charlotte, North Carolina

Get your spine tingled and share a few nervous giggles on a spooky 1.5-hour walking tour of uptown Charlotte. Follow your expert guide and listen to the ghostly stories by lantern light. Visit historic landmarks where it is said the ghosts of olden times yet linger. Walk past the ghoulish medical school, haunted by the ghost of a girl whose cadaver was sold to medical students there. No, she didn’t just touch the back of your neck. That’s just your imagination. Right?

10. Catch NASCAR Racing

If you are an adrenaline junkie, feed the need for speed with a visit to Lowes Motor Speedway in Concord. Check on chances to ride side-by-side with a drag race driver at exhilarating speeds; or, just ask for tickets to the events you can watch. The venue offers lots of tours and auto shows throughout the year, and it’s about an hour or less from the lake, depending on where your vacation rental is situated.