Prepare to dive into the sparkling depths of pure Texas bliss as we explore the trio of aquatic wonders that are Lake Austin, Lake Conroe, and Lake Travis. From wild water sports to tranquil sunset cruises, this Texas Summer Getaway Guide is your ultimate ticket to an unforgettable escape!

Summer Vacation Ideas in Texas

Picture yourself basking under the sun, a refreshing beverage in hand, as you soak up the vibrant energy that radiates from these top lake getaways in Texas. Whether you crave the energetic vibe of Lake Austin, nestled in the heart of Austin’s bustling metropolis, or the serene tranquility of Lake Conroe, surrounded by lush forests and rolling hills, or even the majestic beauty of Lake Travis with its breathtaking cliffside views, these stunning destinations offer a little something for everyone.

Considering a summer vacation in Texas? Read on to learn more about the best lake vacations in the Lone Star State.

Lake Austin

Kayaking on Lake Austin.

Lake Austin — previously referred to as Lake McDonald — is a reservoir on the Colorado River within Austin’s city limits, making it one of the most popular lakes to visit in Texas. It’s a 30-minute drive from the many Austin vacation rentals in the city center and approximately 40 minutes from the airport. There’s plenty to do when you visit Lake Austin.

If you’re looking for rip roaring good times, look into recreational boating — a wildly popular activity at Lake Austin. For people preferring to stay on dry land, the beautiful Emma Long Metropolitan Park is located right next to the lake. It’s the perfect place for hiking or enjoying a picnic!

Many visitors are drawn to the area by the terrific fishing opportunities it offers. The waters harbor an array of largemouth bass, catfish, and sunfish in addition to other species. Avid anglers frequently catch fish weighing up to 10 pounds that make for highly impressive trophies — or dinner.

Where to Eat

If you’re a big foodie, you’ll be spoilt for choice at Lake Austin. There are many restaurants offering mouth-watering cuisines right by the lake. The Ski Shores Café, which has been running since 1954, is a local staple. Thanks to a large menu offering fresh seafood, burgers, and an extensive range of cocktails, it’s one of the most sought-after spots for a relaxing waterside evening.

The County Line — a striking redwood-decked lodge that serves up delicious BBQ food — is another popular restaurant. From German-style sausages to slow-cooked brisket, big meaty ribs, and so much more, their range of flavorsome dishes consistently have guests coming back for more.

Things to Do at Lake Austin

Whether you’re looking for an adults-only getaway or something more family-friendly, Lake Austin vacation rentals are near a range of excellent attractions that cater to people of all ages. You can explore the Inner Space Cavern, visit the petting zoo at Jourdan-Bachman Pioneer Farms, and go ice-skating at the Chaparral Ice Rink.

Lake Conroe

An aerial view of Lake Conroe.

Situated in Montgomery County, Lake Conroe is another terrific vacation spot. The nearby city of Conroe has its own airport, just a short 25-minute car drive away.

If you love swimming and water slides, the Jolly Mon Water Park is a stone’s throw away and sure to impress. With a lazy river, water jets, five swimming pools, two hot tubs, and a private beach, there’s something for the whole family here.

At Lake Conroe’s April Plaza, you can rent a boat for the day and purchase fishing supplies. A number of quality golf courses, including the Walden On Lake Conroe Golf Club, are also in close proximity to a number of vacation rentals. With rolling wooded terrain and a warm climate in the region, you won’t find many places that provide better golfing conditions than this.

Where to Eat

Even when staying at one of the more secluded Lake Conroe cabin rentals in the area, you’ll never be short of options when it comes to dining out. You can treat yourself to some of the area’s tastiest seafood at the Landshark Bar & Grill. Their Landshark fish and chips — consisting of beer-battered fish served with fries and mango coleslaw — is a meal to die for.

If you’re a fan of Asian cuisine, the Akashi Asian Bistro & Sushi Bar will blow you away. In addition to a selection of heavenly Japanese and Chinese dishes, plus a dedicated sushi bar, the Akashi Bistro & Sushi Bar also puts on live music regularly, which takes guest experiences here to the next level.

Things to Do at Lake Conroe

Wine lovers will appreciate Conroe too, thanks to a range of sublime vineyards such as B. E. Winery and the Ferm Meadery. Craft beer enthusiasts will also be in their element in any of several local breweries, including B52 Brewing, Copperhead Brewery, and the Southern Star Brewing Co. No matter what it is that gets you excited, it’ll likely be available in and around Lake Conroe.

Lake Travis

Luxury houses on the coast of Lake Travis in Austin, Texas.

Located to the northwest of Lake Austin, a 45-minute drive from Austin Airport, Lake Travis is a reservoir on the Colorado River. A vast body of water, the lake is over 63 miles long and has over 271 miles of shoreline with plenty of vacation rentals to choose from.

Unsurprisingly, holidaying at Lake Travis provides access to a dizzying array of fun activities. If you’re an adrenaline junkie, you’ll be enthralled by Lake Travis’ Zipline Adventures. For starters, this action-packed park offers the longest and fastest zipline in Texas.

If you want to make the most of your Lake Travis getaway, spend some time on the water. There are plenty of rental options to choose from. You can hire boats, jet skis, and paddleboards for the day (or longer) at your convenience.

Where to Eat

When hunger strikes after burning all that energy, Lake Travis is also home to some renowned dining spots. The Oasis on Lake Travis is a local legend, offering unrivaled views of the lake. To go with the exquisite scenery, the restaurant has a delicious selection of Tex-mex, burgers, and a whole lot more.

Beachside Billy’s Restaurant & Water Park can also be found lakeside. Here, customers can choose from a range of hand-cut steaks, fresh seafood, and delightful burgers.

Things to Do at Lake Travis

Families, including pets and children, have numerous options available for exploration in nearby Austin. From cafés such as the Central Market and Mozart’s Coffee Roasters to leash-free parks and public grounds like Red Bud Isle and Auditorium Shores at Town Lake, there are plenty of places to visit and enjoy the family vacation of a lifetime!

Enjoy the Best Texas Lakes

Texas summers are legendary, and these lakes are the perfect playgrounds to beat the heat, create lasting memories, and unwind from the daily hustle. So, what are you waiting for? With Lake Austin, Lake Conroe, and Lake Travis calling your name, these are three vacation destinations you won’t want to miss.