Destination guide

Enjoy the beauty of Watauga Lake

Whether you come in search of a rustic fishing shack hidden between the sugar maples and beech trees of the Cherokee Forest, or just want to kick back in a waterside mansion replete with roaring wood fires and bubbling hot tubs, there's sure to be a Watauga Lake vacation rental to suit. But the bonuses don't stop there, because vacationing in this corner of north-eastern Tennessee also means doorstep access to kayaking routes and some of Appalachia's most wonderful hiking trails. You'll be waxing down the walking boots and prepping the drybags in no time…

Things to do

Dams and dreamy outdoors in Watauga Lake

No trip to the vast waters of Watauga Lake could possibly be complete without catching at least a glimpse of the colossal Watauga Dam. This hulking structure is responsible for creating the highest reservoir in Tennessee, and soars to over 300 feet between the Appalachian hillsides. Below that, you'll be able to catch glimpses of local birds in the Watauga Dam wildlife observation area, which is just a taster of the natural wonders to come in the greater Cherokee National Forest – think black bear habitats, and famous walking routes like the John Muir Recreation Trail.


Watauga Lake means watersports galore

Long days of bobbing between the various tendrils of Watauga Lake on sailboats, or sunning yourself on the deck of private motorboat rentals, are in store for folk who love to get on the water. Meanwhile, those who've managed to book one of the coveted Watauga Lake vacation rentals on the shoreline can enjoy kayak-to-door access, or private trout fishing jetties all to themselves. And between the water sports? Well, there's always time for whisky tasting and wine excursions, right?


Breezy highland summers in Watauga Lake

The altitude of Watauga Lake – more than 1,900 feet up in the Appalachian Mountains – means that it manages to dodge the humid summers that lowland Tennessee contends with between May and September. Instead, the months of June, July, and August here are high time for vacations when Watauga Lake vacation rentals fill up with boaters, fishers, walkers, and wildlife spotters, and when temperatures hover around the high 60s and low 70s for much of the season. Meanwhile, fall means the lowest chance of rain.

Natural features

Watauga Lake is a hidden jewel in Appalachia

The landscapes around Watauga Lake have been hailed as some of the most breathtaking in the whole of eastern Tennessee. It's easy to see why. Undulating peaks rise and fall all around the water's edge, clad in pockets of chestnut, beech, and maple. Meanwhile, hidden coves and beaches pepper the banks, and babbling streams emerge from the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains to join the water. The main natural reserve is always going to be the Cherokee National Forest though, which has access to the world-famous Appalachian Trail.

Where to stay around Watauga Lake?

Our 2019 property listings offer a large selection of 763 vacation rentals near Watauga Lake. From 297 Cabins to 247 Houses, find a unique house rental for you to enjoy a memorable stay with your family and friends. The best places to stay near Watauga Lake for a holiday or a weekend are on HomeAway.

What are the most popular destinations to visit in Watauga Lake?

There are many lovely places to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in Watauga Lake. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular destinations to visit are:

  • North Carolina: 24,618 vacation rentals
  • Boone: 2,340 vacation rentals
  • Virginia: 6,410 vacation rentals
  • Blue Ridge Mountains: 13,551 vacation rentals
  • Blowing Rock: 2,087 vacation rentals

And HomeAway offers you the chance to discover many other popular destinations in Watauga Lake! Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available in other popular destinations.

What are the main cities to discover in Watauga Lake?

Whether you're traveling with family or friends, here are the cities with the largest selection of vacation rentals for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in Watauga Lake:

  • Boone: 2,340 rentals
  • Blowing Rock: 2,087 rentals
  • Banner Elk: 2,082 rentals
  • Beech Mountain: 1,600 rentals
  • Burnsville: 4,107 rentals

For other cities, please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

Near which points of interest can I spend my holidays in Watauga Lake?

HomeAway offers a large selection of rentals near lovely places in Watauga Lake. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular points of interest to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend are:

  • Bristol Motor Speedway: 276 rentals
  • Virginia Creeper Trail: 417 rentals
  • The Blowing Rock: 2,214 rentals
  • Sugar Mountain Resort: 1,785 rentals
  • Appalachian State University: 2,173 rentals

But there are many other points of interest around Watauga Lake listed on HomeAway where you can find your place to stay. Just write your wanted destination in our search bar and have a look at our selection.

Explore destinations around Watauga Lake