Here Are 10 Of The Most Beautiful Lakes In Southern California, According To Our Readers
Southern California is famous for its beaches. Sun and surf are synonymous with it. However, it also has some of the most gorgeous and breathtaking lakes you’ll ever see, which are just as wonderful to visit. We asked our readers what their favorite lakes are and here are the 10 most beautiful lakes in Southern California, according to our readers over at Only In Southern California and Southern California Nature Lovers!
1. Lake Arrowhead
We start our list with
. Nestled in the “Alps of Southern California”, this is an idyllic, forested lake with elegant mountain resorts within the San Bernardina National Forest. Its 14 miles of shoreline is surrounded by high-end residential neighborhoods and boat marinas. However, the main attraction is the beautiful blue water of the lake itself reflecting the summer sun.
2. Cachuma Lake
may be an artificial reservoir, but its beauty is no less profound than that found in many natural lakes. The water level of this lake rises and falls considerably depending on weather conditions. Swimming is disallowed here as the water is meant for drinking by the surrounding citizens, however, it’s still well worth a visit for kayaking, boating, and canoeing.
Lake Cachuma, California, USA
3. Big Bear Lake
Often simply called “Big Bear” by locals,
Big Bear Lake
is a huge favorite of Southern Californians for fishing and hiking during the summer and skiing and snowboarding in the winter. While it was originally named for the copious amounts of grizzly bears that were in the area during the Gold Rush of the 1800s, it is now more frequented by black bears. The natural hot spring here is also quite a draw.
4. Convict Lake
Originally called Wit-sa-nap by the Paiute Nation,
has stunning, turquoise-hued water and is surrounded by the Sierra Nevada Mountains, most notably Mount Morrison. It was created by glaciers and can reach 140 feet in depth. It’s been a filming location for Western movies and gained its current name due to escaped prisoners that hid out in the area in 1871.
Convict Lake, California 93546, USA
5. Franklin Lake
Hiding within the awe-inspiring Sequoia National Park,
takes some hiking to get to but is well worth the trek. The utterly gorgeous scenery is lined with excellent hiking trails and the lake’s indigo waters are quite a sight to behold. A strange fact about the area is that marmot warnings are issued in late summer as they like to chew on the foam parts and brake cables of parked cars.
Franklin Lake, California 93634, USA
6. Lake Fulmor
Located in the San Bernardino National Forest,
is a perfect fishing location for rainbow trout, largemouth bass, catfish, and bluegill. This beautiful lake is surrounded by lush forests teeming with wildlife like ground squirrels, Stellar’s Jays, tree frogs, and butterflies. Visiting does require paying an Adventure Pass fee, but the fee is small and the place is idyllic.
Lake Fulmor, California 92220, USA
7. Lake Gregory
has an inland beach that is popular with local families. Kayaking and canoeing are favorite activities here and there is a dog park as well as dog-friendly hiking trails. Cedar and pine trees surround this lovely lake and it’s a popular summer swimming spot. Its biggest attraction is the Rim of the World Waterpark which is fully inflatable!
24171 Lake Dr, Crestline, CA 92325, USA
8. Lake Perris
An artificial lake that was constructed in 1973,
is a very popular recreational area during the summer and contains 131,400 acre-feet of water. The high desert surroundings are full of wildlife including coyotes, bobcats, roadrunners, mule deer, quail, rabbits, and more. It’s a favorite fishing spot for spotted bass, largemouth bass, bluegill, rainbow trout, carp, and server other species of fish.
Perris Reservoir, California, USA
9. Lake Skinner
Nestled at the base of Bachelor Mountain,
was created at the same time as Lake Perris in 1973 when the Skinner Clearwell Dam was constructed. Locals flock here for swimming, fishing, and sailing as well as horseback riding and hiking the surrounding trails. It is surrounded by RV sites and campsites and is great fun for a family visit.
37701 Warren Rd, Winchester, CA 92596, USA
10. Silverwood Lake
is a picturesque reservoir with several coves around it like Like Oak Cove, Chamise Cove, Big Momma Cove, Outhouse Cove, and Campground Cove. It’s a popular camping and boating spot and the shoreline is dotted with several small beaches. The State Water Project constructed the Cedar Springs Dam in 1971 which created this reservoir. While it’s an excellent recreation area, fishing is discouraged due to elevated levels of mercury and PCBs in the fish. That doesn’t prevent this lake from being a ton of fun for paddling around on its serene waters.
Silverwood Lake, California 92345, USA
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading about these lovely lakes. If we missed your favorite, let us know about it for next time! Meanwhile, be sure to visit some of the most incredible natural wonders in Southern California.
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