Lake Mead National Recreation Area

Formed on the Colorado River above the Hoover Dam, the largest reservoir in the United States creates Arizona’s go-to water playground.

Arizona’s stretch of the Colorado River creates a green ribbon through the Mohave Desert backdrop of rocky canyons with sparse vegetation. All along Arizona’s west coast, visitors find plenty of ways to bring water into play. Lake Mead, a desert recreation area shared with neighboring Nevada, features some 750 miles of shoreline that offers memorable days of outdoor activity. Find out how to experience this spectacle from the shore and on the water.

Water, Water Everywhere

To best experience Lake Mead, bring a boat or rent one at multiple marinas located around the lake. Spend an entire day exploring coves and canyons notched into this surprising water playground in the Arizona desert. Hit the throttle to enjoy the thrill of open water while waterskiing and wakeboarding on the expansive surface of the lake. Visitors can also take it easy while exploring the mellow waterways on kayaks and tubes, discovering swimming beaches along the way that are perfect for picnics and refreshing dips in the water.

Set Up Camp

Arizona’s rugged desert backcountry isn’t the first place that people think of for waterfront lodging, let alone spending the night on the water. But Lake Mead has 15 lakeside locations that offer tent and RV camping. The lake also takes glamping to the next level with houseboats equipped for exploration by day and relaxation by night. Get in on Lake Mead’s best-kept secret by renting a houseboat and inviting friends for a lake vacation that surprises as much as it amazes.

Hit the Trails

The Mohave Desert’s vast expanses of flatlands interspersed with colorful rocky formations set the stage for scenic hikes. This desert landscape has scorching temperatures in the summer months. November through March sees more pleasant weather for exploring Arizona hiking trails that lead through red sandstone canyons, black volcanic fields and sandy stretches that seemingly never end. Start on the Historic Railroad Trail near the visitor center, a popular path among hikers and mountain bikers that follows the former rail route used during the building of the Hoover Dam. Many other hiking trails in the area offer varying levels of difficulty and provide a natural color show that captures Arizona’s signature beauty.

For More Information

Lake Mead National Recreation Area
601 Nevada Way
Boulder City, NV 89005
(702) 293-8906

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