The crystal clear waters of Smith Mountain Lake in the Roanoke Region of south-central Virginia are a gift to any lake lover. The lake was created in the 1960s with the erection of the Smith Mountain Dam. In addition to providing clean energy, the dam has bequeathed the region with a water wonderland. The sprawling lake has about 500 miles of shoreline and covers an area of 32 square miles. This leaves boaters with plenty of room to maneuver, even on busy days.
In addition to all the aquatic activities inherent to a lake of its size, the Smith Mountain Lake region has other things that keep visitors coming back year after year. These include a number of wineries (which organize a wine festival on the lake hosted every September) and historical sites such as the childhood home of Booker T. Washington, now a National Monument. Scenic hikes abound.
Pro Tip: Though it is currently closed due to COVID-19 (check the site before your vacation to see if it’s reopened) the dam itself has a visitor center that tells the region’s history and offers a first-hand look at the technological and architectural marvel that is hydroelectric power generation.
With plenty of activities for people of all ages, Smith Mountain Lake makes for a great family vacation spot. The lake is large so there are a number of possibilities when it comes to accommodation. To make things easier, we’ve come up with a list of 10 properties currently up for grabs to renters.
The Castle — French Tudor Mansion
Located in The Water’s Edge (an upscale community on the southern banks of the lake), The Castle is a fine way to discover a particularly luxurious flavor of family life. Golfers in the family will greatly appreciate the proximity to the local country club, a highly-rated 18-hole PGA course.
While golf isn’t for everyone, the whole family will appreciate the home’s spaciousness and privacy. Boat rentals can be facilitated by the owners, who can also supply a talented in-home chef and arrange for grocery deliveries. Like many properties in the area, there is a one-week booking minimum during the summer.
Reel Relaxed$285/nightly avg
Located on a quiet arm of the northern part of the lake, Reel Relaxed offers guests a way to enjoy the water in comfortable surroundings. The property comes stocked with fishing gear and three kayaks. Cast out from the home’s private pier or make the journey to the larger dock at the state park 15 minutes away.
With a king room, a queen, a full, and a room with three twins, there’s space for the whole family. There are two wineries (Ramulose Ridge Vineyards and Hickory Hill Vineyards) less than 5 minutes from the home. Note that the house is above the lake so guests will need to tackle a stretch of stairs to get to the lake.
Chateau Relaxeau$460/nightly avg
Situated in the middle of the southern shore (which boasts access to the most open water), Chateau Relaxeau is a great place from which to discover the joys of Smith Mountain Lake. Light and even water seem to pour into the warm living room via large lakeside windows. The home is good for a large party because of its five bedrooms and spacious common areas, indoors and out. The slope down to the lake is quite gentle even for those with mobility issues.
In addition to the obligatory dock and grills, the house also has air hockey and foosball in the downstairs rec room.
Sitting on 5 acres of lakeside woodland, this large house is a luxurious way to enjoy time at the lake with friends and family. The house itself is a beautiful 4,200-square-foot mix of rough stone and woodwork, both inside and out. Notable features include a glorious two-story dock, a secondary dock, and a massive hot tub that fits seven bathers.
Take the canoe out over this misty lake at any hour and learn the pleasures of life on the water. Be advised there is a one-week minimum stay for guests in the summer season.
Dream Deals Retreat$443/nightly avg
This lovely lakeside home grants guests easy access to the lake and local amenities. It is just a few minutes away from Bridgewater Plaza, a small commercial area with big attractions like restaurants, shopping, children’s play areas, and boat rentals. No trip to the lake is complete without a boat and the convenience of having them so close is a big plus.
The large home sleeps up to 10 people across three queen bedrooms, a king, and a bedroom with two bunk beds. Note that during the peak summer season there is a one-week minimum stay for renters.
Deep Blue View$650/nightly avg
With extraordinary views of blue water and lush green mountains, this stunning home promises a vacation to remember. The mixture of fine materials gives this house a stylish touch, from leather sofas and homey wood paneling to stone floors. The designers certainly did their homework.
The large dock comes with a kayak and can easily be furnished with boats, jet skis, and more after a visit to the nearby marina. For land-based activities, the home has a basketball hoop and foosball table. With five bedrooms and an equal number of bathrooms, privacy and comfort can be maintained even with a full house.
Pet-Friendly Log Cabin$1,050/nightly avg
While people love time on the lake, dogs arguably have even more fun. Treat yourself and your pets to an idyllic retreat in this beautifully-furnished cabin on the quiet eastern end of Mount Smith Lake. It has “the look” you’d expect: exposed timber, stone fireplaces, and leather chairs aplenty.
The home comes with kayaks and canoes so you can get out on the water night or day. Ping pong is also a popular pastime with guests here. Solar power has kept the lights on for the past 15 years so you can be green while enjoying your time on the big blue.
Here Comes The Sun$248/nightly avg
With a sandy beach, pool and ping pong tables, a hammock, a fire pit, and more, there’s no shortage of relaxing activities at this pet-friendly lakefront home. The house is just down the shore (or road) from the trails of Smith Mountain Lake State Park. You can get there by road but the house does supply two kayaks for those keen on making the approach by water.
The fenced-in backyard is perfect for letting your dog romp in a secure setting. There’s a king bedroom on the ground floor. A queen and bunk bedrooms can be found upstairs.
Lake Haven Retreat$543/nightly avg
From the granite countertops of the open-concept kitchen to the gorgeous covered dock, this home is rich with glamorous features large and small. A beautiful solid wood dining table makes dining alfresco all the more appealing.
There’s a full bathroom for all three bedrooms with plenty of room for everyone. The house comes with kayaks, paddle boards, and an array of inflatable goodies. The state park is quite close, as are restaurants including The Landing, a local favorite.
Historic Log Cabin$138/nightly avg
Constructed in the late 18th century in our nation’s early years, this log cabin is a genuine artifact from the region’s history. With a galley kitchen and rough stone fireplace, the place really does feel like a relic from the past. That doesn’t mean it isn’t comfortable, however. The furniture is modern but fits with the building’s antique character. The main bedroom has a queen bed and there’s a second bedroom with two twins and another queen, making this an ideal retreat for either a couple or a family.
The owners have provided kayaks, canoes, and paddle boards. Located in a secluded and wooded area, privacy for you and yours is assured. There is also a new structure near the cabin, a covered area with a grill and outdoor shower. Pets are most welcome.
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