Washington's Lake Crescent is a catch-and-release recreational lake, with trout and salmon.

Planning a Visit to Lake Crescent

More than a place of beauty and mystery, there’s plenty to do at Lake Crescent. From hiking to swimming, kayaking to fishing, camping to cabins, here’s a look at planning a visit to Lake Crescent.

Emerald Bay and South Lake Tahoe. Photo © Christopher Arns.

Planning Your Time in Lake Tahoe

The San Francisco Bay Area is a top vacation destination for people from all over the world. So where do people who live there take their vacations? Sparkling blue Lake Tahoe and its surrounding mountains, lakes, ski resorts, hiking trails, hot springs, charming mountain towns, casinos, and varied wilderness areas say “vacation” to just about anyone.

Lake Shasta. Photo © Maislam/Dreamstime.

Houseboating on Shasta Lake

Shasta Lake PR agencies have named the lake “the houseboating capital of the world.” That bold statement may or may not be true, but Shasta Lake certainly is California’s most popular houseboating destination. You can rent a houseboat at almost any marina on the lake, and no special boating knowledge is required to rent a houseboat, though you may be required to provide a valid driver’s license.

Mono Lake in the South Tufa area. Photo © sarahjanet/123rf.

Mono Lake’s Tufa Towers

Mono Lake, eerie in its stillness, is the main attraction in the northern part of the Eastern Sierra, just east of Yosemite. Over time, the lake has collected huge stores of calcium carbonate, which solidifies into strange-looking tufa towers–freestanding calcite towers, knobs, and spires. If you’re visiting the Eastern Sierra, you won’t want to miss this natural wonder.

View of Lake Izabal from Castillo de San Felipe de Lara. Photo © Stuart Gray/123rf.

Planning Your Time in El Oriente and Izabal

The Izabal region features a unique kind of Caribbean experience not at all like Cancún or the West Indies but nonetheless beautiful. Meanwhile in El Oriente, Copán showcases some of the Mayan world’s finest ruins and the surrounding mountainous countryside is becoming increasingly popular with travelers exploring coffee farms, a jungle bird park, and hot springs.

Lake Shasta. Photo © Maislam/Dreamstime.

What to See at Shasta Lake

Shasta Lake doesn’t look like most lakes. Rather than a bowl shape, the lake is fed by three major rivers; to create this sprawling artificial lake, five towns were drowned. The remains are still down there, most sunk so deep that even scuba divers cannot explore them. A tour of the amazing Lake Shasta Caverns is a welcome respite from summer heat, and even if you’re not fascinated by engineering statistics and superlatives, a tour of the Shasta Dam is a great experience.

Two swans with black necks and bright red beaks swim through the water.

Visit Parque Nacional Laguna Blanca in Argentina

Designated a major international wetland under the Ramsar convention, Parque Nacional Laguna Blanca has a large breeding population of striking black-necked swans. It’s also the place to spot coots, ducks, grebes, gulls, upland geese, and the occasional flamingo.

Moss grows on a bulging knot along the trunk of a larch tree.

Visit Chile’s Parque Pumalín

Parque Pumalín is a 317,000-hectare private nature reserve straddling the highway north of Chaitén. Find out more about the park including flora, geography, sights, and recreational opportunities.

Oaxaca's Parque Nacional Lagunas de Chacahua spreads for about 20 miles of open-ocean beach shoreline and islet-studded jungly lagoons midway between Pinotepa Nacional and Puerto Escondido.

Parque Nacional Lagunas de Chacahua in Oaxaca, Mexico

The Parque Nacional Lagunas de Chacahua spreads for about 20 miles of open-ocean beach shoreline and islet-studded jungly lagoons. With so much ground to explore, it usually takes a full day and must be done by boat. Here are available excursions, highlights, and accommodations.