[dropcap]N[/dropcap]orthern Alabama has been keeping a delightful secret at the southern end of the of the Appalachian Mountain’s foothills. It has been said that time spent at the lake restores the soul, so rest assured that with 69,000 acres of smooth water, Lake Guntersville has more than enough of what it takes.
Located along the banks of the Tennessee River in Northeastern Alabama, Lake Guntersville Resort State Park promises to enthrall leisure travelers and adventure seekers alike. Whether in search of a resort style retreat or enlivened outdoor pursuits in the park’s 6,000 acres of natural woodlands, a day spent at Alabama’s largest lake can be slow and easy or fast and fun. For those craving the peace and quiet of a lake community, there are meandering trails along the water’s banks with benches perfectly situated for catching an evening sunset. Endless exploration lies in wait among the ridges, waterfalls, and river in beautiful Lake Guntersville State Park.
Known for its largemouth bass, anglers flock from places near and far in hope of capturing the big one. Fishing guides are on standby waiting to reveal hidden coves and tributaries teeming with bass.
When temperatures rise, the lake is the place to be — from waterskiing to wakeboarding, whether you are looking for a challenging day of water play or a leisurely boat ride, Lake Guntersville is your getaway destination.
Hiking trails lead to a historic downtown with unique boutiques that offer everything from the whimsical to one-of-a-kind rustic. For dinner, there’s the creative farm-to-table menu at Old Town Stock House, where Chef Crystal McKone partners with local growers to find the freshest ingredients. The restaurant is housed in a renovated building dating back to 1901, with the wood interior and brick walls providing an intimate atmosphere where the conversation flows leisurely through courses that tempt the palate.
Take to the sky for a bird’s eye view from atop the tree line with Lake Guntersville State Park’s Screaming Eagle Aerial Adventure zip line course or explore below the surface with a visit and guided tour at Cathedral Caverns. Lake City Amusement Park, with its retro vibe and kid-friendly rides provides an entertaining break for those looking to get off the water for a few hours.
After a busy day outdoors, the fun doesn’t have to end. Stop by Main Channel Brewery for a glass of their popular Amber. Then head over to Crawmama’s for a plate of fried shrimp or their famous crawfish. The food is delicious and the experience is unique. The restaurant, with its patchwork walls and concrete floors, is a local favorite and most Friday and Saturday nights the restaurant features live music.
Traditional hotels with lake views, cabins, chalets, and even a lodge perched atop Taylor Mountain and overlooking Lake Guntersville offer options for weekend getaways or week-long family vacations. Several resort campgrounds that sit directly on the water provide yet another way to escape and enjoy a little lakeside living.