Lanier Islands offers summertime fun for the whole family
When it comes to summertime fun at the lake, whether you’re looking for a day, a weekend or longer, Lake Lanier Islands truly has something for everyone.
Located in Buford, over several islands in Lake Lanier, the 1,500-acre Lanier Islands property is more than just a beach. From golf to zip-lining to swimming, boating hiking and horseback riding, Lanier Islands offers worlds of fun in one location.
Fun on the water
Lake Lanier covers 38,000 acres, and the best way to explore them is by boat.
Even if you don’t own a boat, Lanier Islands makes it easy for you to be a boater for a day, with several types of boats to rent at Harbor Landing, the facility’s on-site marina. You can have your pick of a pontoon boat, tritoon (a triple-hull pontoon boat), a houseboat, or even an excursion yacht. You can also rent wakeboards, tubes and other watersports equipment.
Guests may also purchase fishing equipment, bait and other boating supplies at the Harbor Landing store.
If you do have your own boat, Margaritaville at Lanier Islands offers boat slips at two sets of docks: LandShark Landing and Paradise Beach’s docks, which is closer to the Water Park, Chill Zone restaurants and the Family Fun Zone section of the Water Park.
Grab the clubs
If golfing is your passion, Lanier Islands offers Legacy on Lanier Golf, an 18-hole course that is spread over the islands. According to lanierislands.com, Legacy is “a brilliant throwback to classically-designed courses not dependent on length to challenge golfers.”
The course is, “beautiful to the eyes, challenging to the skills and memorable to the spirit,” the website states.
If you don’t have time to fit in all 18 holes, Lanier Islands offers a driving range, which is included in the greens fee.
Explore by horseback
Gentle horses are available at the Stables at Lanier Islands, to take you through scenic trails along the shores of Lake Lanier.
Lanier Islands also offers pony rides, riding lessons, and summer and fall horse camps. Lessons with certified ARIA (American Riding Instructors Association) instructors can be private and semi-private and are good for beginner or intermediate riders. Both English and Western disciplines offered, and group lessons for three to five people are also available.
Perfect for kids of all ages is the newly-opened Margaritaville at Lanier Islands, a lakeside water park with a variety of attractions. There’s a kids’ Fun Zone for the younger set and the Wild Waves pool for everyone. Those looking for more excitement can slide down the Black-out in total darkness, experience heart-pounding drops and breath-taking vertical plummets or zip across the lake on a zip line.
Zip through the canopy
If you want to sail above it all for adventurous fun, Lanier Islands Lodge boasts seven zip lines and two sky bridges, for ages seven and up.
A variety of zip lining packages are available, from an express one-hour tour to the three-hour Lakeside Tour — and everything in between. There is even a three-hour Full Moon Zipping tour, where you can zip through the canopy under a full moon.
Have a spa day
If your idea of fun is to be pampered into relaxation, head for Tranquility Spa. The boutique spa offers a variety of rejuvenating services and packages, including couple's massage, hot stone therapy, customized facials, prenatal massages and salt scrubs.
Where to eat and stay
There are a variety of options for dining and lodging during your stay at Lanier Islands.
Casual cuisine, either indoor or poolside, can be found at Bullfrogs Bar & Grille.
For a more sophisticated experience, try Sidney’s, which features elegant continental fare, and is renowned for its Sunday brunch and stunning panoramic views of Lake Lanier.
Open in the summer is Paradise Cantina which offers food to enjoy at the beach: chips and salsa, burritos, tacos, fresh salad bowls, sangria and margaritas.
At Landshark Bar & Grill, you can find everything from street tacos, coconut shrimp, crisp salads, to your favorite brews and boat drinks.
If your trip to Lanier Islands includes an overnight stay, the resort has several types of lodging, including Legacy Lodge, Legacy Villas, lake houses and campgrounds. Each accommodation is pet friendly, for dogs under 75 pounds. The fee to bring a pet is $75 per stay, and there is a two-pet limit.
Lanier Islands offers a variety of packages for all of its attractions. Current “special offers” are a Family Fun Package, a Three-Day Stay, and a Bed and Breakfast package. For more information about Lanier Islands, visit lanierislands.com.
This story comes from our free publication, Lake Living Magazine.