ARE WE THERE YET?
Smith Mountain Lake is packed with fun things for the whole family!
Article by guest blogger Dianne Mills of www.thesmlshow.com
The kids are screaming in the backseat, “Are we there yet?” or the teenagers are nagging you with “Why do we have to go?” and you feel as if this road trip will never end. Then, suddenly, you wind down those country roads and there it is, beautiful Smith Mountain Lake. You have arrived! The kids all quiet down as they look in awe over the landscape before them. What an incredible place to see! Your question now is, “What is there for families to do at Smith Mountain Lake?” Have no fear! The Smith Mountain Lake Show is here to help. Here are some suggestions to help you enjoy your stay:
Get Out On The Water!Rent a boat or jet ski from the marinas and head out on the lake for a couple of hours. There are plenty of places to rent boats, canoes, kayaks, and personal watercraft. You can rent them directly from the Smith Mountain Lake State Park concession area. They will get you out on the water in no time and you may never want to come back. Smith Mountain Lake has incredible views and it is a must to experience them on the water!
Introduce the Kids to the Fish at Bridgewater! A trip to the lake is not complete without feeding popcorn to the huge fish at Bridgewater Plaza. The carp, which range from 24 to 36 inches long, practically pluck the popcorn from your fingers. So get your camera and some money for popcorn and head to Bridgewater Plaza. The fish will be waiting for you!
Experience the Parks!The Smith Mountain Lake State Park in Bedford County offer water related activities including swimming, boating, and fishing. In addition to these are miles of hiking and walking trails. If you desire more strenuous hiking trails, a short drive up the road will take you to the Peaks of Otter. Plan a family picnic and enjoy it at one of the parks.
Putt Around Smith Mountain Lake!No one visits Smith Mountain Lake with the aspiration of playing mini-golf, but at Harbortown Mini-Golf at Hot Shots Family Fun Center on Route 122, you may find that playing a fun and exciting game of miniature golf might just be the ticket to fun your family is looking for. Each course offers a wide variety of holes that are constructed with attention to detail and designed for fun. The kids will enjoy the game and you will enjoy the much-needed relaxation walking through the course.
See A Movie!Roll out a blanket, grab the popcorn, and experience the nostalgia of an old drive-in theater movie at Westlake Towne Center.
Tell Campfire Stories!Camp at Smith Mountain Lake State Park and enjoy s’mores while telling stories around the fire. Many of the state park cabins and campsites have areas that will allow you to have a little campfire. There’s magic that comes from being under the stars by the waters of Smith Mountain Lake with the smell of marshmallows and graham crackers permeating your senses! Check the campground rules and be sure to ask permission before lighting your fire. The Park Rangers almost always have a Friday night welcome campfire with s'mores!
Celebrate Food! You’re a family and families need to eat…even on vacation. So why not take advantage of all Smith Mountain Lake has to offer by hitting up some top-notch restaurants? We have burger joints, Mexican, American, Chinese, Café & Deli’s, Pizza, and just about any other style of cooking your family loves to eat. Check out our restaurant section for a listing of eateries in the area. Pick out some you know you will like, or dare to be different and try something new! It’s all fair game at Smith Mountain Lake.
Learn The History!There is a lot of history surrounding the lake. Be sure to visit the Visitor’s Center at The National D-Day Memorial.
Take A Sight Seeing Cruise!If you don’t want to spend money on renting a boat and buying gas, let the the park as there are scheduled sightseeing cruises on Virginia Dare with narration by a park ranger!
Fish With A Guide!Smith Mountain Lake stripers are some of the most sought after game fish in Virginia. If you have never fished for stripers, then definitely consider hiring a guide to fish for that “ultimate” striped bass and the picture to take home and show all of your friends. Catching fish has never been so much FUN!