Landlocked states are not generally known for their coastlines, but when lakes and rivers come into the mix the issue changes dramatically. In fact, lakes and rivers can be some of the best boating areas in the world, mainly due to their generally calm waters and ease of access.

Many U.S. states boast incredible lakes and rivers and have become sought after tourist destinations because of this, and Arizona is no exception. With its stunning landscape and numerous bodies of water Arizona has become the place to be for boaters from around the country, and the world.

If you’re considering a boating vacation with your family or friends, learn more about the best spots in Arizona to make a splash.


Lake Mead

Created as a result of the construction of the Hoover Dam, Lake Mead is arguably one of the most popular water sports areas of Arizona, and it’s the biggest man-made lake in the United States. It boasts over 550 miles of shoreline, much of it consisting of stunning cliffs and interesting rock formations created by the mighty Colorado River.

Support services for boaters abound here, and you’ll find everything that you need to make your boating adventure a spectacular one. Houseboat rentals are available here as are myriad shops, restaurants, and mechanic services. Plus, if you’re tired of your old vessel and have considered donating your boat to charity, you can pick up a new one from one of the many sales teams.

Lake Pleasant

Urban lakes can sometimes be a hit or miss experience for recreational boaters, but Lake Pleasant near Phoenix really delivers. Just 45 minutes from the heart of the city, Lake Pleasant covers 10,000 acres and is immensely popular with city residents in search of a quick getaway.

Large boat ramps, campgrounds, and RV facilities are just a few of the amenities that make Lake Pleasant such a popular spot for outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds. While this area is the perfect spot for families, holidays see large numbers of people who are there to party, so if you like your lake with a side of peacefulness, perhaps consider going during the less popular times of the year.


Lake Havasu

Perhaps best known as the site of the famous London Bridge, Lake Havasu is also one of the most popular Arizona boating locations. At over 40 miles long and up to 3 miles long in some spots, Lake Havasu is open to all types of watercraft, and even posts no speed limits, save the no-wake zones that are clearly marked, This means that Lake Havasu is extremely popular with those people who have high powered racing type boats, which are always fun to see.

Lake Havasu City is a popular tourist destination its own right, as well. With its quaint shops, many restaurants, and other services for tourists, a visit to Lake Havasu City can be a fun distraction if you want to take a break from the water.

Lake Powell

Consistently named as one of the most beautiful lakes in the world, Lake Powell straddles Utah and Arizona and is part of the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. This lake is huge and covers over 600 square kilometers.

Famous for its unique and colorful rock formations, hidden canyons, and solitude, Lake Powell sees over 2 million visitors per year. However, even during peak times it rarely feels crowded. Popular with families and other boating enthusiasts, Lake Powell offers services of all kinds, and is a very popular place for houseboat rental. Again, be warned that during holidays like Memorial and Labor Days and the Fourth of July people descend upon this quiet place to party, but with so much space it’s still easy to find some peace and quiet.


Recreational boating is one of the best ways to spend time with friends and family, explore beautiful parts of the country, and feel more connected with nature. Arizona boasts one of the best boating communities in some of the most pristine location anywhere in the United States.

If you’re considering a boating trip in the near future, look south to the great state of Arizona. You’ll be glad you did.