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Trip List by Wendymath

Beat the Crowd at Smith Mountain Lake

3 May 2006  Spur of the moment weekend getaway
3.0 of 5 bubbles based on 4 votes

Activities at Smith Mountain Lake in Moneta, VA are obvious: swim and fish. But there is more to do than that, and it's even better in the spring before the crowds arrive.

  • Category: Perfect weekend
  • Traveler type: Active/Outdoors
  • Appeals to: Couples/romantics, Families with small children, Budget travellers
  • Seasons: Spring, Summer
  • 1. Westlake Waterfront Inn

    The Westlake Waterfront Inn sits at the end of the road at Indian Pointe. Since the hotel is one-room deep, there is a front door and back door, so you can sit on either deck and enjoy lake views and sunsets from either side. If you bring your boat or rent one, you can dock at your door.

  • 2. Rent a boat

    While there are several places to rent boats, Bridgewater Marina offers good rates and the convenience of several locations. A good map with buoys marked makes touring the 500 miles of shoreline easy and fun. When you get hungry, you can dock at the Bridgewater Shopping Plaza and grab lunch.

  • 3. Go shopping

    Art galleries and wakeboard shops, boutique resortwear and SML logowear, ice cream and seafood - a variety of shops operate side by side. Whether you are camping, staying in a hotel or renting a house, you can enjoy both solitude and civilization. Down the road is Westlake Commons, a new shopping center with some more upscale offerings, but they are not accessible by boat.

  • 4. Shop some more

    Several upscale shops include men's clothing, art gallery, and gifts.

  • 5. Booker T. Washington Memorial

    A reconstruction of buildings near Booker T. Washington's birthplace and hiking trail make this a good diversion from the regular lake activities.

  • 6. Hickory Hill Winery

    Hickory Hill is a delightful little vineyard especially in the spring. This family welcomes spring with a kite flying day in March and Arbor Day celebration in April.

  • 7. White Rock Vineyards and Winery

    This is a relatively young company, but the family offers true southern hospitality. Wine tastings are from noon to 5 p.m. Thursday through Monday. Enjoy beautiful views from their veranda.

  • 8. State Park

    SML State Park offers a beach in addition to fishing and boating. Lots of hiking trails, picnic areas, interpretive programs and cabins make this park worth a visit.

  • 9. Smith Mountain Lake Dam

    At the Dam Visitor's Center, you can view a slide show about the construction, play a computer-animated game, and view the three-dimensional map of the lake area with roads, communities, and landmarks. Outside you can enjoy the dam and gorge from the overlook and even have a picnic at the picnic area which offers tables, large shelters and charcoal grills. The Visitor's Center is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.