Spending time in nature is a great way to reduce stress and feel refreshed. Luckily, there are many beautiful parks and lakes where you can immerse yourself in nature in the McKinney area. Lakes provide so many opportunities for recreational activities, in the water and on land. From swimming and boating to picnics and hiking, the gorgeous natural scenery around lakes is ideal for a relaxing outing or weekend vacation. Each lake area is unique with different amenities, activities, and vibes, so whether you’re looking for a family-friendly afternoon or a place to party with friends, there’s a lake for you.
Towne Lake Recreation Area
A downtown McKinney favorite, the Towne Lake Recreation Area has something for everyone. The beautiful 22-acre Towne Lake has a fishing pier and paddle boat rentals, although there is no swimming area. You can relax and watch the ducks while walking the 1.2-mile trail around Towne Lake. Younger kids love the play structures and older kids enjoy the baseball and volleyball fields. There’s also a challenging disc golf course and several pristine horseshoe courts which pair perfectly with a picnic under the pavilion.
Check the Recreation Center at Towne Lake schedule for diverse programs and services for groups, families, and individuals.
Towne Lake is located at 1405 Wilson Creek Parkway, McKinney, TX 75069.
Bethany Lakes Park
Just 15 minutes south of McKinney in the town of Allen is a lovely 40-acre community park with four small lakes. Amenities include a clubhouse available for indoor rentals, a covered pavilion for outdoor gatherings, and 14 picnic areas. You can go fishing along the shore or off the fishing pier. There is a playground area, ball fields with a backstop, and hiking and biking trails. The Joe Farmer Recreation Center is part of the park and the facility provides a wide variety of indoor and outdoor classes, programs, and special events for all ages.
Bethany Lakes Park is located at 745 South Allen Heights Drive, Allen, TX 75002.
One of the larger lakes in northern Texas, Lake Lavon spans 21,400 acres and has 121 miles of shoreline. It is perfect for a couple of hours of exploring or a weekend camping trip, Lake Lavon is ideal for recreational activities. On all sides of the lake, you’ll find places to visit like the 5 beaches for swimming, 6 large shelters, 16 parks, 19 boat ramps, 71 tent camping sites, 167 camping sites with electricity, and 244 picnic sites for soaking in nature. Other features include a 9-mile equestrian and hiking trail, and 75 acres of primitive hiking and off-road biking trails.
Lake Lavon has multiple access points; check the lake’s website for specific locations of parks, boat ramps, and campgrounds.
Lake Ray Hubbard
About 30 minutes south of McKinney you’ll find Lake Ray Hubbard. Another large, recreational lake at nearly 22,000 acres, Lake Ray Hubbard is great for boating, skiing, and fishing. There are numerous beautiful parks, nice beaches for swimming, and miles of hiking and biking trails. It is a popular destination for sport fishing, too. You’ll find striped bass, white crappie, largemouth bass, channel catfish, blue catfish, and some bass and catfish hybrids in the lake.
After a long day playing in the lake, stop by the Rockwall Harbor waterfront entertainment center for shopping, dining, live music, movies, and walkways all along the water’s edge.
Lake Ray Hubbard‘s Rockwall Harbor is located at 2059 Summer Lee Drive, Rockwall, TX 75032.
An hour north of McKinney is Lake Texoma, one of the United States’ largest reservoirs. There’s no shortage of recreational activities like boating, kayaking, swimming, camping, fishing, and hiking. For a fun weekend getaway, try renting one of the lakefront cabins and go fishing for striped bass with an expert fishing guide, hike the Cross Timbers Trails on the southern shoreline for memorable scenery, and watch the sunset on a chartered evening cruise. Don’t forget to visit the Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge to see some stunning animals or tie up your boat at The Islands party area for a fun time.
Lake Texoma has multiple access points; check the lake’s website for specific locations of parks, marinas, and trails.
Just 45 minutes west of McKinney lies Lewisville Lake, with an enormous 29,000 acres of water and 233 miles of shoreline. All the usual recreational activities are available like boat rentals, paddle boarding, swimming, RV and tent camping. Lewisville Lake has a reputation for fun weekends at Party Cove, located near the middle of the lake by Westlake Park. Partiers tie up their boats in the cove, blast lively music, swim, and have a good time. Rent a party barge and bring all your friends to Party Cove for unique weekend activity on the lake.
Lewisville Lake‘s Westlake Park is located at East Main Street, Hickory, TX 75065.
Lake Ray Roberts
Under an hour from McKinney to the northwest, there is a beautiful destination at Lake Ray Roberts. Ideal for relaxation and enjoying nature, there are many water and land activities to try. For water activities, you can go fishing on the pier, rent a boat at the marina, swim at one of the great beaches, or go canoeing. For land activities, you can go horseback riding, geocaching, backpacking, or cycling. Follow over 20 miles of trails along the Greenbelt Corridor and Trinity River. Four picnic pavilions and two large campsites are excellent for single-day events or weekend vacations.
Lake Ray Robert‘s Greenbelt Corridor trailhead is located at FM 455 and Lake Ray Roberts Dam Road, Aubrey TX 76227.
So, there you have it. The seven best lakes within an hour’s drive of McKinney according to Huffines Hyundai McKinney. We know there are a lot more lakes, big and small, in the McKinney area. If we forgot to include your favorite lake spot, we’d love to hear from you so we can add your favorite lake to this list. Drop us a line and let us know what other lakes McKinney locals love to visit. We will make sure to add it to our list.
Image via Flickr by GrapevineTxOnline.com