Boat Rentals on Lake Nantahala
Lakes End has the only restaurant and marina with boat rentals and fuel service directly on the lake. They also offer guided boat tours and excursions.
Nantahala Lake Marine offers boat rentals for tubing and skiing boasting the only certified mechanic in area.
Also see Lake Nantahala Fishing Tips
Young Harris offers boat and jet ski rentals.
Nantahala Lake Activities On the Water
Fishing on Lake Nantahala
Bryant Bait & Tackle is conveniently located down the road from Lazy Bear Lodge and offers everything visitors need to fish and hunt in Nantahala including fishing licenses. They also carry a selection of drinks and snacks.
Trout fishing, fly fishing or spin casting in the Nantahala River is excellent all season. The Nantahala was the host river for the 2011 USA National Fly Fishing Championships. The mouth of the river is located less than 10 minutes away from Lazy Bear Lodge. If you want to fish you’ll need a North Carolina fishing license and Trout stamp.
Nantahala Fly Fishing specializes in fly fishing the waters of the Nantahala River and offer guided float trips down the Lower Nantahala.
River Rafting at Our Lakeside Nantahala Cabin
Nantahala Outdoor Center is the nation’s largest outdoor recreation company. Over a million guests visit NOC annually to embark on a diverse collection of more than 120 different river and land-based itineraries, learn to kayak at NOC’s world-renowned Paddling School, travel abroad with NOC’s Adventure Travel program, test the latest outdoor gear and shop at its LEED-certified flagship retail stores or enjoy NOC’s resort amenities such as its three restaurants and multi-tiered lodging.
Endless River Adventures offers whitewater rafting, kayaking, and fly fishing.
Carolina Outfitters offers whitewater rafting, gem mining, horseback riding, train tours, and nature float trips.
Wildwater Nantahala offers white water rafting and zip line canopy tours.
If you need a break from the Nantahala then check out Ocoee River Adventure and their whitewater rafting trips on the Ocoee River.
Nantahala Lake Activities in the Car
Blue Ridge Parkway
The Blue Ridge Parkway’s southern starting point. There are several nice loop trips within a reasonable distance that are excellent especially during peak leaf season. Visit http://www.blueridgeparkway.org/ and try out their interactive map to plan a day trip.
Entrance to The Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Clingmans Dome is the highest point in the Great Smokey Mountains at 6,643 ft of elevation and offers great views of the mountain and surrounding states.
The Great Smokey Mountain Railroads in Bryson City offers scenic and child friendly train rides year round.
Bartram Trail: Wallace Branch to William’s Pulpit is a 4.1 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Franklin, North Carolina that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
The Appalachian National Scenic Trail, generally known as the Appalachian Trail or simply the A.T., is a marked hiking trail in the Eastern United States extending between Springer Mountain in Georgia and Mount Katahdin in Maine. The trail is about 2,200 miles (3,500 km) long, though the exact length changes over time as parts are modified or rerouted.
This forest is one of the Nation’s most impressive remnants of old-growth forest. The forest contains magnificent examples of more than 100 tree species, many over 400-years-old, and some more than 20 feet in circumference and 100 feet tall. This 3,800-acre forest was set aside in 1936 as a memorial to the author of the poem “Trees,” Joyce Kilmer, who was killed in action in France during World War I. This forest, part of the Joyce Kilmer-Slick Rock Wilderness, is maintained in its primitive state. The only way to see this forest is on foot. A 2-mile trail leads to the Joyce Kilmer Memorial and loops through giant trees. A restroom and picnic tables are located at the trailhead.
The Pisgah National Forest is a land of mile-high peaks, cascading waterfalls, and heavily forested slopes. Comprised of over 500,000 acres, the Pisgah is primarily a hardwood forest with whitewater rivers, waterfalls and hundreds of miles of trails. This national forest is home of the first tract of land purchased under the Weeks Act of 1911 which led to the creation of the national forests in the eastern United States. It is also home of the first school of forestry in the United States, now preserved at the Cradle of Forestry in America historic site, and boasts two of the first designated wilderness areas in the east. The Pisgah, Grandfather and Appalachian Ranger Districts are scattered along the eastern edge of the mountains of western North Carolina and offer visitors a variety of opportunities for outdoor recreation and enjoying the natural beauty of the mountains.
This beautiful recreation area is just 5 minutes north of Bryson City, NC and is within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. At Deep Creek, you’ll find trail experiences ranging from easy to strenuous. Trails meander alongside Deep Creek and Indian Creek, across small bridges and through large stands of rhododendron and mountain laurel. There are several loop trails and three scenic waterfalls, with easy walking access, including Juneywhank Falls, Tom Branch Falls, and Indian Creek Falls.
- Or rent a tube near the entrance to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and take a ride down the creek. There is also a swimming hole.
- Fish for native brook, brown or rainbow trout.
- After your hike enjoy a picnic along the banks of Deep Creek. Or plan to stay awhile at the beautiful National Park campground or at one of the close-by private campgrounds.
Ranger Falls Loop Trail is a 2.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Highlands, North Carolina that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
Cliffside Lake Recreation Area, a tucked-away haven of tranquility, where you can swim, fish, hike, picnic, and take part in family nature programs.
Silver Run Falls illustrates the simple beauty of water spilling over rocks into a quiet pool below. There is a short, easy trail to the base of the falls. The falls are located off NC 107, 4.1 miles south of Cashiers. Park in the pull-off on the left.
Waterfalls Close to Our Nantahala Lakeside Cabin
Juney Whank Falls is divided into an upper and lower section. Both can be viewed from the footbridge which crosses Juney Whank Branch at the falls. Together they drop 90 feet from top to bottom. The trail to the waterfall is 0.8 miles roundtrip and is considered moderate in difficulty.
Indian Creek and Toms Branch Falls An easy 1.6 mile roundtrip hike will allow you to enjoy two beautiful waterfalls in the Deep Creek area. Walk Deep Creek Trail 0.7 mile to the junction with Indian Creek Trail. On your way you can view the elegant, 60′ high Tom Branch Falls located on the far side of Deep Creek. Turn right at the junction with Indian Creek Trail and proceed approximately 200′ to Indian Creek Falls. The falls are 25 feet in height.
Bridal Veil Falls is unique because you can drive your car right underneath it! The water falls 120 feet from above, right over U.S. 64. It is a good place to stop on your way to Dry Falls and Cullasaja Falls. It’s 120 feet from the top of the falls to the pavement. Enjoy the watery “veil” as you drive behind the falls.
Silver Run Falls spills 30 feet into a pool of water. There is a short, easy trail to the base of the falls.
Glen Falls is made up of three large waterfalls and each drops about 60 feet. A steep, 1 mile trail leads to the falls.