10 Lakes Near Austin, Texas

Posted Mar 7, 2022

A couple plays with their children by a lake.

Have you ever visited the lakes near Austin, TX? The fun activities and crystal clear waters at the lakes are an intriguing sight to behold.

The Lower Colorado River presents an exciting place for relaxation, water activities, and more. This guide will explore some of the best lakes to live on near Austin, Texas.

1.  Barton Creek Greenbelt

Barton Creek greenbelt is an Austin community park. This park provides access to one of the great lakes near Austin, TX, but it is purpose-built for relaxation. The recreation center runs from Zilker Park to Barton Creek in the wilderness area.

What makes the lake inviting is the dense green foliage, limestone cliffs, and flowing waters. You get the same experience as the deep lakes in the Austin highland area.

The significant part is that you can access the lake using its multiple entrances. Fun places include the longest cave in Travis County, called the airmen’s cave.

The Barton Creek Greenbelt lies in the South of Austin, Texas. And it is an exciting place for the following fun games:

  • Swimming;
  • Hiking;
  • Swimming;
  • Rock climbing;
  • Biking;
  • Rope swinging;
  • Sunbathing;
  • Bouldering.

2. Canyon Lake

There are lots of activities in Canyon lake. You can take a long walk on the Canyon lake dam trail. The dam trail covers about a 0.7-mile loop. Or, you can try out the Canyon Lake trout fishing expedition or join the golf course.

There are dozens of exciting places around Canyon lake for shopping at affordable rates. You can also seize the opportunity to eat out at restaurants with lakeside views.

Canyon lake is also exciting due to the hilly terrain. You can go mountain climbing and just sightseeing the live oak trees or limestone rocks. Also, find many native animals like the foxes, white-tailed deer, roadrunners, etc. In all, the canyon lake has an abundance of breathtaking natural scenery:

  • Golf course;
  • 8 engineer public parks;
  • Country club;
  • 23 boat ramps;
  • Yacht club;
  • 2 marines.

The breathtaking view of the body-of-water moving down from the canyon lake to the Guadalupe River is nothing but captivating. But, unfortunately, you can’t take it in at once because the lake covers about 8,230 acres. It has a total shoreline of 80 miles.

Some fun activities include:

  • Nature trips;
  • Canyon lake fishing;
  • Canyon lake dam;
  • Walking;
  • Hiking;
  • Running;
  • Fishing;
  • Scuba diving;
  • Parasailing;
  • Water skiing;
  • Helicopter tours;
  • Hiking;
  • Kayaking;
  • Boating or sailing.

3.  Inks Lake

Inks Dam is located just northwest of Austin, Texas. Inks Lake offers some of the finest wildlife reserves. It has 831 acres of natural habitat, including 12 miles of hiking trails.

Fun activities for Inks Lake near Austin, TX include:

  • Fishing;
  • Boating;
  • Aquatic recreation;
  • Hiking trail;
  • Long walk or strolls on old Inks bridge.

Land events

  • Backpack;
  • Camping/picnic;
  • Volleyball;
  • Geocache;
  • Bird’s blind viewing;
  • Scuba diving;
  • Water skiing;
  • Paddling;
  • Two-person Kayaking;
  • Boating.

Inks Lake is one of the best lakes in Austin Texas to swim. It has about 200 campsites and 22 cabins.

4. Krause Springs

Lake Krause provides a superb spot for family fun, RVing, and camping in the Hill Country of Texas.

Krause Springs stretches for 115 acres with 32 springs. In addition, there are man-made pools and a natural spring that flows directly into Lake Travis.

Lake Krause fun activities

  • Camping;
  • RVing;
  • Swimming;
  • Hiking trail.

5. Lady Bird Lake

Lady Bird Lake is a man-made lake reservoir in Austin, Texas’s Colorado River basin. It serves as a flood control river and recreational facility covering 416 acres.

It is the most centralized lake in all of Austin Texas. It runs from Lake Austin to the center of Austin, Texas.

Popular sports activities at Lady Bird Lake include:

  • Boardwalk (1.3 miles);
  • Biking;
  • Hiking trails;
  • Paddling;
  • Swimming;
  • Deep Eddy pool;
  • Barton springs;
  • Canoeing;
  • Standup paddleboarding (SUP);
  • Kayaking;
  • Dragon boat rides;
  • Paddle-board yoga.

You can access the Lady Bird Lake downtown, Austin, Texas, on the lower Colorado Rivers. It shares a border with Auditorium Shores and Zilker Park. You can use the Austin Texas lakes map to find your way around.

6. Lake Austin

Lake Austin, Texas, covers an area of 1,599 acres and it flows directly downtown into Lady Bird Lake.

Fun Activities at Lake Austin, Texas

  • Kayaking;
  • Canoeing;
  • Sailing/ boating;
  • Camping.

Lake Austin is one of the busiest, with boat rides all year round and both motorized boats and pontoons to rent.

Treat yourself to Mozart’s coffee roasters. Enjoy a day out while relaxing in the shaded patios. You can camp with family and friends at Metro Park where the giant cypress trees will provide ample shade while grilling.

7. Lake Buchanan

Lake Buchanan is formed from a hydroelectric power dam running across the Highlands. It is the first-ever and main dam in the Colorado river areas of Austin, Texas, covering 22,333 acres.

There are both private and public-owned relaxation facilities at Lake Buchanan. You can go boat ramping, use the beaches or camping at:

  • Black Rock Park;
  • Cedar Point Recreation Area;
  • Canyon of the Eagles.

Fun activities the Lack Buchanan

  • Paddling;
  • Ramping;
  • Boating;
  • Camping;
  • Fishing.

8. Lake Georgetown

Lake Georgetown is a reservoir lake and dam on the highlands. You can walk along the 26 miles of Goodwater Trail path that circles Lake Georgetown, and there are dozens of campsites along the trail. Enjoy sun-free recreation under the 200-year-old Georgetown oak tree.

Lake Georgetown Fun activities

  • Long walks;
  • Biking;
  • Mountain-biking;
  • Hiking;
  • Camping.

9. Lake Marble Falls

Lake Marble Falls is the most recent of all the lakes in the highland area of Austin, Texas. It is also the smallest lake, covering about 611 acres.

Lake Marble Falls may have a small waterfront, but a lot of fishing activities occur here. The crystal blue water makes for captivating views, and there are several exciting, fun activities for family and friends to pursue.

Fun activities at Lake Marble Falls

  • Water skiing;
  • Swimming;
  • Paddling;
  • Wakeboarding;
  • Paddle-boarding;
  • Camping;
  • Adventure parks.

There are both private and public parks around the area, crystal waters, adventure parks, and camping sites to spice up the day.

10. Lake Travis

Which is better, Lake Austin or Lake Travis? When searching for the most exciting and fun-filled lake on the highlands consider Lake Travis. It is also the closest lake near Austin, Texas, and at 210 feet deep is the largest lake in downtown Northwestern Texas.

Lake Travis has private and public beaches and parks. You get access to over eighteen parks and recreation centers to relax with your family. In addition, you can rent race boats, sailboats, houseboats, or craft for boat rides.

Lake Travis Fun Activities

  • Boating;
  • Kayaking;
  • Swimming;
  • Water skiing;
  • Fishing;
  • SUP;
  • Canoeing;
  • Scuba diving;
  • Swimming holes.

There are many pubs with lakeside views, mouthwatering dishes, and drinks. If you have more time on your hands, you can also explore the other parks/lakes near Lake Travis:

  • Guadalupe;
  • Sam Marcos;
  • Blanco;
  • Nueces;
  • Frio;
  • Medina rivers.

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Working with Lauren Yoder and Sarah Crowson has been an absolute pleasure as my husband and I ventured to buy our first home in Austin, TX.

They were patient with us through out the process allowing us to digest it all make clear decisions. While we bought our home while physically being in California, it brought a lot of challenges with viewing, closing etc. Lauren and Sarah made it a priority to include us in all steps of the process and went above and beyond to keep us in the loop and make sure we are comfortable!

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Kasey recently helped my wife and me with both the sale of our home as well as the purchase of a new home in Austin Texas. My wife and I have worked with over 15 real estate brokers and agents on several real estate transactions over the years and I can say with confidence that Kasey is the best we have ever partnered with. Kasey has the qualities that make her an extremely successful and effective real estate agent. I can’t say enough about her professionalism and knowledge within the industry. She has extremely high integrity, very conscientious, tenacious and a great advisor while always keeping the client’s best interests in mind. Kasey is a pleasure to work with!!!

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Westley Burger

We were first-time home buyers in the crazy Austin market and Erin Szczerba was an amazing agent who helped us successfully find a great home. She helped us learn about the buying process and had a lot of great advice along the way. Erin was very responsive and was able to set up viewings for us on short notice which was very helpful in the hot Austin market.The financing team that she recommended was also a great resource and was able to help us put offers in on short notice. With Erin’s help, we were able to get a winning offer in our our house just a couple hours after seeing it on a Saturday morning. We are very grateful to her for all her help and would definitely recommend her to anyone looking to buy in Austin region!

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Kasey Gilliam with Bramlett Residential Real Estate is by far the best realtor I have ever worked with. Eric Bramlett the owner has also been great through the entire process. My husband and I have bought and sold over 15 homes in the last 40 years so we have a lot of realtors to compare her too. Kasey is a true professional in every since of the word. She showed us a lot of homes over the last 1 1/2 years but never wasted our time with homes she knew wouldn’t work for us. Her honesty and her attention to detail was spot on. She was always accessible no matter when we contacted her. Kasey and her assistant Kim worked hard from showings, offers, contracts, working with title companies and other realtors. I would recommend Kasey Gilliam to my family and friends or anyone looking to buy and/or.sell in Austin. Trust me she works hard and knows her stuff.

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My husband and I sold our house in North Austin, Texas with the help and beautiful work of Kasey Gilliam and a team from Bramlett Residential Real Estate. We were thinking that the process of selling our house would be stressful and tedious, but was exciting every day. Up to date information was giving from the agency each time a house was listed in our area, and helped us to determined the most competitive price for our house with great results. They helped us in every stage of the process, from making our house attractive for a good price for listing it, to maintaining it in good shape, to until the closing process. We are so satisfied that we recommend their services.

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Kasey Gilliam with Eric Bramlett Residential successfully guided us through the house selling process from the very start when we were planning to sell, through deciding what improvements to make, taking photographs, listing, and closing. From the very beginning of our conversation, we knew we’d scored a pro who we could trust to give us solid advice and keep us on track, and that is exactly how it went down. She kept us apprised of the market with just the right amount of email updates. She was willing to work with our timeline, even when it changed a bit, and kept all the details managed and smooth, so that we didn’t need to. I would recommend her without hesitation to anyone looking to sell.

Ross G

Chris Kirk has been working with us in the Austin area looking for a home for the past several months and was there working diligently every step of the way. From looking at and scheduling viewings and working with other relators and business to help get us what we wanted. Chris was always knowledgeable and compassionate with our needs and fears, and never once left us hanging and if he said he was going to do something or check on it, it was always taken care of. Communication was out standing and he always made sure we understood what was going on and was willing to answer any question we had. Chris was spot on with his readings of the market and finding us the right house for our needs. He really does treat you like family and to me there are no better hands to trust a very serious purchase to. Even after the purchase he is there to help and work with you and that is some amazing customer service.

George Ting

Agent: Linda Baddour I rarely write reviews, and almost never 5 stars. However, my experience with Linda was far beyond any I have had with other (many) realtors, and I really have no criticisms or suggestions to her at all. She had excellent knowledge of local market, Especially north Austin where she has greatest familiarity. She listened well!! Can’t do well without doing that. Showed appropriate homes, and knowledgeable about each one. Very accommodative for intense 48 hours of driving around as I am out of towner. Suggested good bids which were successful resulting in purchasing 2 homes in that time frame. Then meticulously followed up on every detail, setting up inspections, getting amendments, getting repairs, following up, and closing smoothly. I was out of town after making the offers, and she performed as if I were looking over her shoulder. Excellent communicator, people skills and a pleasure to work with. I have recommended her to others where I am and they will seek her out as remote investors, given my experience.


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