From sunrise to sunsets, Lake Norman has so much to offer. Whether you're looking for a lakeside dining experience, a trip to the beach or a fun day on the water, we've got you covered. Plan your next escape to the lake with some of these beautiful locations and unique experiences in Lake Norman.


Lakefront Restaurants

One of the most common questions we get is, what restaurants in the area have dining by the lake? Well, you're in luck because Lake Norman offers a few options for dining by the water. Hello, Sailor, Port City Club, and North Harbor Club all provide a unique experience to dine so close to the lake, and they even provide docking options for those that want to arrive by boat. These restaurants are beautiful with menu items that won't disappoint.

Popular options at Hello, Sailor include the spicy chicken sandwich, lobster rolls, and you can start it all of with the hushpuppies. Port City Club has some great seafood including the fish tacos, calamari and many other options. Start your visit to North Harbor Club with the fried pickles and then make sure to get yourself the lobster mac n cheese. The food is great and all of these restaurants provide you with great photo opportunities and are perfect for a date night or special occasion with truly incredible scenery. 


Lakefront Beaches and Trails

The Lake Norman area offers a few beaches where you can enjoy the sun and water. Lake Norman State Park is currently the only swimming beach that's open to the public. Jetton Park is located in Cornelius and has much to offer. The tennis courts are in great shape, and there's many beautiful trails to walk your dog. While there's no swimming allowed, you can still hang out on the beach and get a nice tan.

Another option is Ramsey Creek Park. This park has many things to do including boat launching and docks, a playground, picnic shelters, nature trails, fishing pier and although the swimming beach is closed for now, the dog park remains open.

Blythe Landing is another lakeside recreational property. It's a great place to bring the kids to play on the playground and picnic areas. There's tables along the shoreline and boat ramps as well. If you're feeling energized, bring a volleyball and head to the sand courts near the entrance of the park.

For more lakeside things to do, you can head to Latta Nature Preserve for a lot of sight-seeing. One of the great sights you can see here is the waters of Mt. Island Lake and Gar Creek. The preserve offers over 16 miles of trials and if you have a dog and a leash, you're more than welcome to bring them out to the popular trails like the Hill Trail and Buzzard Rock Trail, which leads to a waterfront view. For more details about the preserve, check out this; Your 24-Hour Guide to Latta Nature Preserve. You can always watch the beautiful sunsets of Lake Norman at public access docks, including those at the lakefront restaurants and parks.


Lakefront Fishing

If you don't have yourself a boat, don't worry. Fishing can be done by the lake at any of the waterfront parks. If you're looking for a more tailored experience, then you'll want to go to Ramsey Creek Park where they have an ADA-compliant fishing pier perfect for all types of angling. While Jetton doesn't offer a fishing pier, you are still welcome to fish from the shoreline. There are plenty of guided experiences if you're newer to fishing. If you don't need a guide, you can rent a boat and fish on your own.

To learn more about guided fishing experiences, please read our blog, A Guide to Fishing on Lake Norman. On the blog you can also learn how to get your fishing license before going out.


Getting On The Lake

If being by the lake motivates you to get out on the lake, there are plenty of options to choose from. Some watersport options include Ride LKN which offers wake surfing and wake boarding, and Lake Norman Boat Club is another spot with those same options. Prefer paddle boarding? We have you covered for your perfect paddle boarding excursion at Aloha Paddle Sports and Moose Paddleboard Company among others. If you're looking to just hang out in a boat, then you'll want to get yourself a boat rental.

Some of the local boat rental options include Cajun Carolina Adventures, and Crown Boat Rentals for a non-captained experience. If you're looking for a captain, then some options include Carolina Boat Rentals and Cornelius Pontoon Rentals. Most of these rental companies sell out quickly in the summer, especially around the 4th of July.

Check out Queens Landing and Party Pontoon which provide public boat tours and cruises in the area with food provided during the experience. There are plenty of lakeside options available at Lake Norman. Come by the Visitor Center and get some LKN apparel to rock while on the lake. Whatever it is that you may be looking for, we have what you need to start planning your next experience by the lake. And don't forget to share your photos with us @VisitLakeNorman so we can hear about your experience.