If you’re wondering what to do in Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri, here is what you must put on your list to get the most from this wonderful and family friendly area in southern Missouri. When you first get to the Lake of the Ozarks area it will become clear that there are many things to do in the area. Whether you have come for a conference or a family vacation, chances are there are things to do here that you had not considered. Here are some top choices to consider before you leave the area.
Fishing Lake of the Ozarks
Perhaps the biggest draw to the area is the lake itself, and fishing is a huge opportunity here. Whether you are here to teach a kid to fish or with the guys, with 55,000 acres of fishable water spanning many miles there is a fishing hole for everyone. Boat owners will find that public water access is easy to find. The most convenient for those staying in one of the many hotels on the highway 54 strip are the ramps in Lake Ozark on Lake Road 54-50 near Bagnell Dam or in Osage Beach at Lake of the Ozarks State Park just off of highway 54.
For those who would like to fish that don’t have a boat, rentals are easy to find as well and there are many marinas along the lake offering everything from a simple fishing boat to houseboat rentals on Lake of the Ozarks that allow you to fish, cook and sleep during your trip.
On the lake you will catch largemouth bass, catfish, walleye, and bluegill – as well as crappie from great crappie beds. If you have neither a boat or experience, consider a Lake of the Ozarks fishing guide to take you out for the day and bring you directly to the fishing hole.
Golfing at Lake of the Ozarks
The lakes area is full of very good golf courses, ranging from the fairly common to extremely challenging championship courses. If you want to get a real challenge, check out Osage National north of Lake Ozark. Originally designed by Arnold Palmer, this course will give you a look at the Osage River on the other side of the dam, and it is full of slope and water to keep you challenged. The Four Seasons is also a course that will keep good golfers entertained.
Bear Creek is a great course at a fair price that is very easy to get to. They also have a killer breakfast, so get there early and enjoy. Another good value is Dogwood Hills, though it is one of the more common course in the area, so golfers looking to play on Missouri’s hilly lake courses will be disappointed at it’s lack of elevation changes.
There are many others to consider, and you could play a different course every day for a week and not get through them all. Consider heading south to Old Kinderhook where this Tom Weiskopf designed course awaits. Deer Chase is another worth playing.
Lake of the Ozarks Family Fun Spots
When you are traveling with the family, there are many fun things to do along the highway 54 strip to keep the entire family entertained. There are some waterparks that will help you cool off on a hot summer day. Big Surf Waterpark at highway 54 & Y in Linn Creek is a superb choice and contains everything from the exciting Raging Rapids to the calming Lazy River. The Timber Falls indoor waterpark offers water fun, even in the cold of winter.
Outdoor fun starts with Gran Valley Go Karts in Osage Beach. Race around the curvy hillside track and see who is the fastest driver in your clan. For another kind of ride, head down to Camdenton to go horseback riding at the Hayburner Ranch, where you will find 180 acres of land with trails to ride for an unforgettable experience.
On top of these, you will find plenty of opportunities for mini golf, bowling, old time photos, and even a petting zoo.
Theatre and Entertainment
Catch a show at the Main Street Music Hall in Osage Beach, offering an Opry-style show that has been going for years. This is not Branson, Missouri, but there is an Opry here.
If you like wine, there are wineries in the area offering local creations and wine tasting. In Camdenton you will find Casa de Loco Winery and Golden Rock Winery, or to the north in Lake Ozark the Shawnee Bluff winery that not only offers wine, but a panoramic view near the lake that allows you to see for miles.
Shoppers will love the outlet mall in Osage Beach, among the biggest anywhere, with blocks and blocks of stores laid out in an attractive format that is enjoyable to shop. It’s not as big as Mall of America, but it’s big nonetheless. The mall is right on highway 54, making it easy to get to, and parking is rarely a problem.
The entire Lake of the Ozarks region offers these things and much more. If you need a list of what to do in Lake of the Ozarks, you now have a great start.