Did you know one of the largest bass ever caught in the world was caught in Georgia? From reservoirs, streams and rivers to lakes of all sizes and saltwater fishing, the abundant waters found in Georgia, especially in Georgia State Parks, make for a true Angler’s Paradise! Get out on the water in honor of National Fishing and Boating Week from June 4 to June 12, 2022, and enjoy a weekend full of boating and fishing at one of Georgia’s State Parks. The first full week of June marks this year’s national celebration and coincides with several free (no fees!) fishing days that Georgia State Parks are offering including:
- Two free fishing days during National Fishing and Boating Week (June 4 & June 11)
- One additional free fishing day on National Hunting and Fishing Day (September 24)
- Kids fishing events
From bass slam anglers to the more leisurely trout fisherman, Georgia’s State Parks are the perfect locations for those who are just dipping their toes, or in this case rods, in. For those new to the sport, many parks loan fishing rods and tackle boxes and sell bait. For more information on fishing in Georgia or to purchase a fishing license, click here and find out all you need to know before you go. Make a weekend out of it and book comfortable and affordable accommodations at Georgia State Parks.
10 Georgia State Parks that offer some of the best fishing in the state:
Lake Allatoona at Red Top Mountain State Park
Spotted bass, hybrid bass, striped bass & crappie
Lake Blackshear at Georgia Veterans State Park
Largemouth bass, white and black crappie, bream, hybrid striped bass & channel catfish
Lake Burton at Moccasin Creek State Park
Spotted bass, largemouth bass & brown trout. The stream’s fishing pier (for trout) is open only to seniors and kids, while the lake is open to everyone.
High Falls Lake at High Falls State Park
Largemouth bass, crappie, catfish & striped bass
Duke’s Creek at Smithgall Woods State Park
One of North Georgia’s premier catch-and-release trout streams, reserved for overnight guests only in June. Visitors should check the site for day use availability and reservations as spots are limited.
Lake Richard B. Russell at Richard B. Russell State Park
Largemouth bass, spotted bass, black crappie & striped bass
Lake Seminole at Seminole State Park
Largemouth bass, redear sunfish, black crappie & channel fish
Boating in Georgia State Parks
What says “summer is here” more than an aquatic escape to cool off? Water lovers will find a variety of tranquil settings, while more adventurous travelers can explore the parks through guided boat tours, kayak rentals or stand-up paddleboards. Georgia’s State Parks offer a wide variety of boating environments ranging from lakes, rivers, swamps, and tidal marshes. Ramps, docks, rentals, and marinas are easily accessible, making a great escape easy to accomplish as summer temperatures rise. For more information on boating in Georgia, check out boating rules & regulations and registration. When boating or out on the water, be sure to follow the state’s water-safety initiative, SPLASH, to remain safe.
Top 10 places to enjoy boating in Georgia State Parks:
Laura S. Walker State Park
Although Laura S. Walker State Park is known for its gentle fairways and 18-holes at The Lakes Golf Course, the park also offers opportunities for fishing, swimming, and boating in its 120-acre lake. The lake offers opportunities for fishing, swimming, kayaking, and boating. Kayaks are available to rent and private boats with a 10 HP limit are permitted on the lake (except between 9 a.m.–6 p.m. EDT & 9 a.m.–7 p.m. DST).
Mistletoe State Park
Sprawling 71,100 acres, Clarks Hill Lake is one of the largest lakes in the Southeast, as well as one of the most-visited Corps of Engineers reservoirs in the nation. Also known as Strom Thurmond Lake, it defines part of Georgia’s border with South Carolina. Guests will find the perfect bass-fishing vacation at Mistletoe State Park with its three boat ramps and fisherman’s cabin with private dock. A large campground sits on a peninsula, offering spectacular views of both sunset and sunrise over the sparkling water. After a day in the sun, visitors can relax in lakeside cottages or log cabins, and overnight guests can rent kayaks and canoes as well.
Elijah Clark State Park
This small park provides easy access to Georgia’s largest lake, with a sandy swimming beach, four boat ramps and a wheelchair accessible fishing pier. The perfect escape to cool down this summer, guests can stay overnight in one of 20 fully equipped cottages or in the popular 172-site campground. Rental cottages are located on the lake’s edge allowing guests to enjoy the water throughout their stay.
Tugaloo State Park
One of Georgia’s most visited state parks offers spectacular views of Lake Hartwell from nearly every direction stretching over 55,590 acres. Guests come for excellent bass fishing, water skiing, sailing, hiking, geocaching, and swimming at the sandy beach. Anglers especially appreciate the six-lane mega ramp used for large fishing tournaments. Six “glamping” yurts offer a fun vacation twist where guests can toast s’more over their campfire and sip coffee on their private porch. Some of the park’s 20 cottages have private boat docks, and more than 100 campsites accommodate RVs or tents.
Florence Marina State Park
Where the Chattahoochee River meets the 45,000-acre Lake Walter F. George, Florence Marina transports and immerses you in nature. The natural deep-water marina offers an accessible fishing pier, 66 boat slips for rent and a boat ramp. Florence Marina offers jon boat rentals before 1 p.m. For a week-long escape, visitors can choose from fully equipped cottages, efficiency units and a small campground.
George T. Bagby State Park
George T. Bagby State Park is found near the southern end of this reservoir which also goes by the name Lake Eufaula. This destination offers a full-service marina, boat ramps, sandy swimming beach and six cozy cottages.
Don Carter State Park
While much of Lake Sidney Lanier bustles with boaters, Don Carter State Park offers a quiet escape to the north. Boat ramps provide quick access to both the lake and Chattahoochee River for paddling and fishing. During summer, visitors can rent aquacycles, standup paddleboards and kayaks. Campers can choose from modern RV sites or primitive tent sites, while eight cottages offer the comforts of home. An open-air picnic shelter sits above the swimming beach, perfect for family reunions.
Seminole State Park
Beautiful Lake Seminole is tucked into southwest Georgia, offering 37,500 acres of exceptional boating and fishing. Because Seminole State Park surrounds a small cove, visitors usually enjoy smooth water for skiing, tubing, and swimming. Lakeside cottages and a small campground welcome guests to spend week-long vacations at this 604-acre state park.
Richard B. Russell State Park
On 26,650 acres, anglers and boaters will find the perfect summer vacation escape on sparkling Lake Richard B. Russell. Park visitors will find excellent boating, fishing, and swimming, as well as six miles of hiking and biking trails. The undeveloped shoreline of the lake provides an unspoiled setting for those who want to relax on the water. Private boats are permitted on the lake. A campground and fully equipped cottages are right near the water’s edge.
Red Top Mountain State Park
One of Georgia’s busiest state parks sits on a peninsula of popular Lake Allatoona. While it’s just 30 miles from Atlanta, these 11,862 acres bring spectacular scenery that transports guests to a respite from big-city life. Guests can visit Park Marina for boat and waterski rentals. Twenty new cottages feature open floorplans and woodburning stoves, as well screened porches with lake and forest views. A newly renovated day-use area welcomes guests with picnic spots, grills, and a bathhouse by the beach. The park’s campground is currently under renovation, adding full hookups, RV pull-through sites, new bathhouses, and improved roadways.