If you’re sitting at home googling “lakes near me” and wondering which are the best lakes to explore on a weekend or a daytrip, here are five beautiful North Texas lakes that are within easy reach of Plano, Frisco and McKinney.

Lake Cypress Springs

Known as the “best kept secret in Texas,” Lake Cypress Springs is truly one of many hidden gems in North Texas and certainly one of the best lakes to explore on a day trip from Collin County. And it’s only a two-hour drive from the Dallas area — just far enough to stay overnight if you want. So, if you’re into camping, there’s plenty of ways to do so at Lake Cypress Springs with its rental cabins and RV parks. There are also hiking trails — Lake Bob Sandlin Trails and Daingerfield State Park Trails — for those of you who love a good hike. 

On Cypress Creek in the Cypress River Basin 15 miles northwest of Pittsburg in Franklin County | cypressspringslake.com

Marina at eagle mountain lake. | courtesy of eagle mountain lake’s website

Eagle Mountain Lake

Hiker’s beware — if you’re looking for one of the best lakes with incredible hiking opportunities, then here it is. Eagle Mountain Lake, located 15 miles north of downtown Fort Worth, has tons of hiking trails around the lake. But aside from hiking, Eagle Mountain Lake is also a great place for fishing, skiing, wakeboarding and recreational boating. 

On the West Fork Trinity River, just north of Fort Worth and Lake Worth in Tarrant County | eaglemountainlake.org

Sunset at cedar creek lake. | courtesy of cedar creek lake’s website

Cedar Creek Lake

Do you like llamas? Weird question, I know. But at Cedar Creek Lake’s Llamaland Ranch campground, you can hangout with llamas for the day. Cedar Creek Lake is the fourth largest lake in Texas. And, on top of that, it’s only about 50 miles southeast of downtown Dallas.

The lake also offers fishing, boating, golf courses and a fun park, making it one of the best lakes to visit for short lakeside vacation.

15 miles west of Athens in the area between US 175 and Texas 274 | cedarcreeklake.com

Lake travis. | courtesy of lake travis’ website

Lake Travis

This lake is one of those tried and true places that you know you’ll have a great time at. With everything from fishing, camping, boating, diving, flyboarding, sailing, water parks and wakeboarding, Lake Travis is truly for those who like to have a lot to do. And around the lake, there is entertainment ranging from live music to wineries to golf courses. 

On the Colorado River northwest of Austin in Travis and Burnet counties | laketravis.com

Lake Grapevine

I grew up going to Lake Grapevine, and I can attest that it’s a great place for a boat party. And it has just about everything you could ask for — hiking/biking trails, parks, camping, fishing, boating, kayaking, cabin rentals and much more. Oh, and did I mention there’s a floating water park located in Meadowmere Park on the lake, too? Yes — it’s just as fun as it sounds! Lake Grapevine is so close to Collin County, this is one of the best lakes in the area for a fun daytrip.

On Denton Creek, a tributary of the Elm Fork of the Trinity River in Tarrant and Denton Counties, just north of the City of Grapevine | lake-grapevine.com

Looking for more day trips & weekend adventures?

Look no further, click on the links below for more best lakes, exciting day trips and adventures all around North Texas and beyond!

Best weekend getaways: Denton

South Padre Island is an Artistic, Windy Getaway on the Texas Coast

Stay Overnight in a Cabin on the Rim of Palo Duro Canyon

Best weekend getaways: McKinney

Best weekend getaways: Canton

Best weekend getaways: Austin

Best weekend getaways: San Antonio

Best weekend getaways: Fort Worth

Bailey Lewis

Bailey Lewis recently graduated from the University of Oklahoma and served as The OU Daily's news editor and enterprise editor. Previously, she was a summer 2020 news intern at the Malheur Enterprise,...