Best Boating Destinations in America

There’s no better way to spend summer than boating, grilling, lounging on a lake house, and enjoying the beautiful scenery of the water. With over 96,000 miles of coastline and thousands of lakes in America, the options for your next boating adventure are limitless. But when choosing a location, you have to consider what experience you’re seeking.

Do you want to fish or just lounge? Are you more relaxed in calm waters and easily get queasy with strong waves? Are you looking for watersports, cruises, sailing, or watercraft? What vessel do you prefer to use? What other activities do you want to do on your vacation, aside from boating? Upon establishing your preferences, you can next determine where you want to go.

When narrowing down your choices, you don’t have to worry because this article will help you decide which destination is best for your summer plans. Read on to find out the most promising boating places in America that can give you the perfect summer getaway!

Read also: 30+ Best Places For First Time International Travelers


Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. That means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we may receive a small commission (at zero cost to you). Please see our full disclosure & disclaimer policy for details.


Best Boating Destinations in the USA

1. Lake Pleasant

If you’re a first-time boater looking for a smoother experience, lakes are an excellent choice. In contrast to boating in oceans, which involves hefty restrictions and complicated nautical rules, lakes are simpler.

Specifically, the pristine waters of Lake Pleasant are every power boater’s dream. With over 10,000 acres of water surface, 70 feet average depth, and 116 miles of shoreline, Lake Pleasant is considered the largest lake in Scottsdale and Phoenix.

Its enormous area lets it accommodate speed boats, water skis, jet skis, kayaks, sails, boat rentals in Lake Pleasant, and other types of water sports. 

When boating in Lake Pleasant, you might also want to consider bird watching (and, hopefully, catch a glimpse of Bald Eagles), hiking, camping, picnics, and fishing. It is accessible, as it is situated just 35 miles from Downtown Phoenix. Thus, Lake Pleasant is highly in demand. 

READ MORE:  Best Haunted Places In The USA

Yet, despite the large volumes of people who relax at the lake, it hardly gets crowded. Its ample space is more than enough to welcome the many tourists who want to explore the area. It is open 24/7 and has a parking lot that can fit 700 vehicles. Lake Pleasant’s premises also include a 10-lane and 4-lane boat ramp, with two marinas offering a vast array of boat rental options.


2. Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale is located in Florida, and from all the coasts and waterways in the state, the fort is considered its prime boating destination. Due to its centralized location, Lauderdale has 100 marinas and 300 miles of rivers. With the weather in Florida usually sunny, the beaches in the area are filled with plenty of restaurants, hotels, and resorts. 

Apart from its great weather and perfect beaches, another factor attributing to Lauderdale’s popularity is the annual International Boat Show. During the event, about 1,500 unique boats are showcased.

Moreover, the waters are well-known for being a great place to fish tuna or tarpon, making it a center console fishing boats hub.


3. South Lake Tahoe

Regardless of the season, South Lake Tahoe in California is an enjoyable destination where you can ride a cruise, pontoon, or yacht. For other activities, you can ski, snowboard, ice-skate, and sled during the winter. 

In summer, you can go boating, shred down from a 10,067 feet peak of Heavenly Mountain Resort, party in the non-stop nightlife, dive into the depths of Lake Tahoe, or hike to Pope Beach or Emerald Bay. The mountains are especially awe-striking in the fall, painted in autumn colors.

South Lake Tahoe is usually referred to as a raw natural beauty because it views the Sierra Nevada mountains. Additionally, its history is rich, surrounded by the Zephyr Cove Resort, which was built in 1900 to respond to the Comstock silver mining.

Moreover, the Vikingsholm Castle is found within the lake’s proximity, narrating the story of the lake in its yesteryear.


4. Traverse City

Traverse City is found on the shores of Michigan. The area—sheltered by hills and coupled with the benefits of its deep waters—is protected from dangerous storms. Its blue waters are abundant in salmon, walleye, smallmouth bass, and steelhead, making it a favorite fishing spot.

READ MORE:  Interview with Hon. Pauline Truong: Expat Life in The USA

The bay has 100 miles of waterfront and is connected to plenty of islands. You can also visit the glacial lakes (Lake Leelanau and Crystal Lake) from Traverse City by boat. 

Other activities you can do after boating in the city are viewing the wineries, which have made Traverse City the Cherry Capital of the world, sleeping in the bear dunes of National Lakeshore, tasting beer with their several microbreweries, playing outdoor recreation sports (biking, golfing, skiing, racing), and enjoying farm-to-table dining. 



On a final note…

Boating has always been one of the favorite tourist vacation and travel activities of Americans. This popularity has helped boating cities to evolve in unique ways. Given the many locations, you can explore for your next trip, it might be challenging to pick a single spot. However, these four best destinations should definitely be included in your bucket list!



Pin this post!


Author's Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the company in question before planning your trip.

Guest Post Disclaimer: The views, opinions, and positions expressed in any guest posts featured on our site are those of the guest author alone and do not represent those of Wellington World Travels. The accuracy, completeness, and validity of any statements made within this article are not guaranteed. We accept no liability for any errors, omissions, or representations. The copyright of this content belongs to the author and any liability with regards to infringement of intellectual property rights remains with them.

Disclosure: Wellington World Travels uses affiliate links and paid advertisements. That means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we may receive a small commission (at zero cost to you). Read more about our Disclaimer & Disclosure Policy for more details.

Comment Policy:
Comments are welcomed and encouraged on this site. However, comments may not contain advertisements, profanity, potentially libelous statements, language insensitive to other religions, or comments not relating to the topic. Please see our full comment policy for more details. We reserve the right to edit or delete any comments submitted to this site without notice.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.