The Best Places to Go Boating in The U.S.

There’s nothing quite like it. The wide-open blue sky without a cloud in sight. A refreshing breeze touching your face. And of course, the glistening blue water as wide as the eye can see! Boating is both a relaxing and community-oriented pastime for a reason. Boating lovers spend time reflecting on the water to relax. Or it can be an opportunity to spend much-needed time with friends or family on the water.

Whatever your boating preferences are, the United States has something for everyone. From the west to the east coast, you’ll find gorgeous views everywhere. If you’re looking to vary your sightseeing by boat, read this guide. We’ll discover some of the best places to go boating in the United States!

Nantucket, Massachusetts

When you think of the east coast, boating is an essential activity. Just 30 miles from the Atlantic Ocean, Nantucket is a hotspot for seal-watching, oyster-indulging, and much more! Nantucket Harbor is a luxury boating dock for those experienced in navigating New England waters. Enjoy delicious restaurants, relaxing spas, and glistening beaches within walking distance of the dock!

Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri

Tourists flock to Missouri to enjoy Lake of the Ozarks for a reason. The lake has over 1,000 miles of shoreline, making it a top destination in the Midwest. Big seasonal events draw in boater aficionados like the August “Shootout” Boat Race and the Invitational Powerboat Race. Pontoons, bass boats, and racing crafts are all over the water. If you’re not into events, you can also take your boat out for a relaxing trip to a local restaurant on the water.

Newport, Rhode Island

Newport is called “The Sailing Capital of the World” for a reason. Take in breathtaking views of local mansions and vintage lighthouses while you navigate the Atlantic. Boaters love Newport because of the limitless exploration possibilities. Spend a day in nearby Middletown to laze on the beaches. Or head over to Jamestown for a history lesson. Whatever your interests, Newport will provide a gorgeous view with a delicious meal nearby.

Pompano Beach, FL

This beautiful beach gets its name from the pompano fish that occupy its waters. The entire town is easily accessible by boat, making it easy for visitors to sightsee on the water. Sail through the Atlantic Ocean and get relax with drinks and entertainment when you’d like a break! Boaters love to grab an ice-cold drink at Sand Harbor Resort and relax at Exchange Club Park.

Lake Tahoe, California

If you want a view of the mountains while on the water, look no further than Lake Tahoe. Thanks to scenery and wildlife, Lake Tahoe is a place of breathless serenity. Be careful though, because there are invasive species checks required for all boats as a result. Rent a motorboat or bring your personal boat through the beautiful waters. Luxurious valet services can even park your boat while you dine at a delicious restaurant after a long day on the water.

Mackinac Island, Michigan

Imagine a place where cars aren’t allowed and everyone boats. Your dreams can become reality at Mackinac Island! While many people take a ferry from Mackinac City, you can also use your personal boat to access the island. Enjoy the blue waters of Lake Michigan. You can choose to leisurely boat around Lake Michigan or partake in an event like the Chicago Yacht Club’s annual race around Lake Michigan!

San Francisco, California

If you’re looking to sail the Pacific, San Francisco is an excellent option. Sailors opt for San Francisco for blustery and sunny weather, but power boats are also welcome. San Francisco is also a hotspot for fishing and birdwatching! Whether it’s whale watching or relaxing on the boat, you’ll have no shortage of views. The best view of all might just be the Golden Gate Bridge!

Chesapeake Bay, Virginia

For picturesque views and historical sights, boating lovers must sail over to the Chesapeake Bay in Virginia! But be aware, you can easily keep boating for miles as the Chesapeake Bay spans over six separate states! With over 200 miles of water at your disposal, you certainly won’t get bored on this trip. But you may want to plan ahead: a boating license is required. Plus, with the sheer volume of the bay, you’ll want to plan out your trip, so you don’t get lost!

Ma’alaea Harbor, Hawaii

One can only dream of sharing the water among turtles and whales, but it’s a reality at Ma’alaea Harbor in Hawaii. Located conveniently right between the Kahului Airport and the Lahaina resort, this harbor has no shortage of views. Enjoy Maui by boat and indulge in the waterside restaurants! Don’t forget to make time for snorkeling and whale watching as well!

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