Ready for some fun in the sun? With three unique lakes, Branson is the perfect summer getaway! Read on for more information about Tablerock Lake, Lake Taneycomo, and Bull Shoals Lake.
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Table Rock Lake
Branson’s largest body of water, Table Rock Lake, boasts over 800 miles of shoreline, much of which is covered in lush trees and plentiful wildlife. A man-made body of water, this lake was created when the Table Rock Dam, completed in 1959, captured the White River. The warm, spacious waters make it the perfect place for boating, watersports, swimming, and fishing. In fact, it is renowned among anglers for the large bass, crappie, bluegill, and catfish that call the lake home, and the area’s many coves are prime fishing territory. These coves are also the perfect place for a relaxing afternoon spent on a dock, or dropping anchor and kicking back on a boat.
The shores of Table Rock Lake are home to some of the area’s most beloved attractions. Swimmers and sunbathers will love Moonshine Beach, a spacious, sandy bit of shoreline that feels just like a tropical getaway. Cape Fair, with its wide open waters, is another popular spot for a swim. Visitors looking for a break from the water can enjoy Table Rock State Park, which provides gorgeous views of the lake along hiking trails and picnic areas. There are also many caves adjacent to the lake that visitors can explore, such as Talking Rocks Cavern.
During the summer months Table Rock becomes the area’s premier spot for families and friends to gather and enjoy some fun in the sun. Adventurous visitors can make a splash wakeboarding, waterskiing, tubing, scuba diving, or even parasailing. Speed boats and jet skis are popular for exploring the lake and visiting it’s many natural landmarks, but those that enjoy exploring at a slower pace can do so on a kayak, canoe, or paddleboard. Rentals are available all around the lake for those visiting from out of town.
Attractions on Table Rock Lake:
3778 MO-165, Branson, MO 65616
Large, sandy beach perfect for swimming and sunbathing.
State Park Marina
380 State Park Marina Rd Branson, MO 65616
Boat, kayak, jet ski, and tube rentals.
Table Rock State Park
5272 MO-165, Branson, MO 65616
Hiking, picniking, and swimming off the shores of Table Rock Lake.
Talking Rocks Cavern
423 Fairy Cave Ln, Branson West, MO 65737
Guided tours of the cavern, as well as minigolf and panning for gems.
Lake Taneycomo, Branson’s smallest lake, has just 40 miles of shoreline, but it is considered by many to be the most beautiful. It shares some of this shoreline with the Branson Landing, which incorporates a boardwalk adjacent to the various shops, restaurants, and attractions. During the warmer months, visitors can enjoy the Landing’s fountain show reflecting off Taneycomo’s waters, featuring exhilarating plumes of fire and synchronized jets of water. This is also the perfect place to rent a kayak or sign up for a sightseeing tour of the lake.
Another man-made body of water, Lake Taneycomo (short for Taney County Missouri) was created in 1913, when the Power Site Dam captured the White River. For years Taneycomo was classified as a warm water lake, but 1959 saw the completion of the Table Rock Dam, just 22 miles upstream. The waters flowing from this new dam were much colder in temperature, and, luckily for fishermen, this created the perfect environment for a cold water fishery. Now Lake Taneycomo is home to some of the world’s best trout fishing, and three quarters of a million rainbow trout and brown trout are stocked each year. In fact, many state fishing records have been set in the cold, clear waters of Taneycomo. Visitors can also see the trout up close and learn about their life cycle at the Shepherd of the Hills Trout Hatchery, located at the foot of the dam.
Attractions on Lake Taneycomo:
100 Branson Landing Blvd, Branson, MO 65616
Shopping, dining, and attractions, featuring a boardwalk along the shores of Lake Taneycomo.
Lake Queen Sightseeing Cruise
9 South Boardwalk Branson, MO 65616
Sightseeing cruise featuring a guided tour of the history and wildlife of Lake Taneycomo, all while enjoying a delicious meal.
Shepherd of the Hills Trout Hatchery
483 Hatchery Rd, Branson, MO 65616
Guided hatchery tours offered from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
Bull Shoals Lake
Bull Shoals Lake might not be as popular as Table Rock Lake or Lake Taneycomo, but with 700 miles of shoreline it’s the perfect destination for those that want a quieter get away. Created in 1951, when the Bull Shoals Dam was completed, it is also a byproduct of the White River. Because of the dam’s location on the river, the lake levels fluctuate regularly, meaning the shoreline is widely undeveloped. This allows for some of the most beautiful natural sites, with stunning bluffs and rock ledges intermingling with lush trees.
A popular spot for fishing, Bull Shoals Lake is famous for its large mouth bass and spotted bass populations. In fact, many state records have been set on its waters. It’s also home to crappie and catfish, and unlike Table Rock and Taneycomo, walleye can be found in abundance. Boating, jet skiing, and kayaking are popular pastimes here, as well as tubing, wakeboarding, and waterskiing. At Bull Shoals visitors can enjoy all the same activities on calmer, less populated waters.