Photo by Peter Frank Edwards

The Perfect Maine Summer | Lakes

With over 6,000 lakes in the state of Maine, there are no shortage of inland waters that are worth the trip. Explore these lakes and find much more than just a place to swim.

Lake St. George

In the small town of Liberty, Lake St. George is one of Maine’s best-kept secrets—a lake with water so clear, the bottom of it is still visible 20 feet down. There’s a rope swing hidden on the south side of the lake, and kayakers can finagle their way up the rocks to jump into the transparent waters. Although the water tends to stay on the cooler side throughout the summer, the kayaking, swimming, and fishing are one-of-a-kind. There’s a campground on the northwest side, and a unique beach lies on the southwest shore, made up entirely of exposed granite bedrock. —Emma Simard

Kezar Lake

Nestled in the foothills of the White Mountains in Lovell, Kezar Lake spans over seven miles and is often cited as one of the most beautiful lakes in the world. The lake’s clean and clear water is not only ideal for swimming, but it is also a fishing destination filled with the likes of bass, lake trout, and salmon. Visitors can experience the beauty of both large and small inhabitants. Moose are often found grazing in the shallows among the water lilies, while loons can be seen bopping in and out of the water throughout the day. —Danielle Devine

Moosehead Lake

Maine’s largest lake, covering more than 74,000 acres, Moosehead is best known for its brook trout, landlocked salmon, and lake trout. Anglers can rent a boat and hire a registered Maine guide for insight and expertise—or brave it on their own. For those not interested in fishing, grab a kayak and explore one of the 80 islands within Moosehead Lake. Other popular activities in the region include moose safaris, historical tours, and scenic flights over the lake. —Emma Simard

Sebago Lake

At 316 feet deep, Sebago Lake is the deepest lake in the state and the second largest by area. The lake, which has 105 miles of shoreline, borders the towns of Casco, Naples, Raymond, Sebago, Standish, and Windham. Sebago Lake State Park is located on the lake’s north end; it has two public boat launches and a campground with 250 sites. With its deep waters, Sebago Lake is a popular fishing spot, particularly for trout. There are also several beaches along the lake, as well as a number of sandbars within it. —Kate Gardner

Belgrade Lakes

Why settle for one lake when you can have seven? The Belgrade Lakes region, a half-hour west of Waterville and north of Augusta, has water access at multiple points. There are town beaches in Rome, Belgrade, and Oakland. Most provide ideal sandy shorelines, floating docks, shaded picnic areas, playgrounds, and public restrooms. The more sporting types can try their luck at fishing some of the state’s most legendary waters, famous for landlocked salmon and northern pike. —Joel Kuschke

Flagstaff Lake

Flagstaff Lake, located in western Maine north of Sugarloaf, is the state’s largest man-made lake at more than 17,000 acres. It is also unusually shallow—only 48 feet at its deepest point. The outskirts of the lake, which borders the Bigelow Preserve, are mostly marshy and require swimmers to wade out deeper. This makes the lake a more popular spot for kayaking and canoeing. Flagstaff Lake has an interesting history in that entire villages are located below its surface. When the Long Falls Dam was built in 1950, the lake submerged Flagstaff Plantation, Dead River Plantation, and Bigelow Township. —Kate Gardner

Share The Inspiration