Lake County is California's family recreation and getaway destination. In Lake County you'll find friendly communities, attractions, outdoor recreation, activities, beautiful rural scenery, and the best air quality in the state (as determined by the California Air Resources Board).
Lake County is home to Clear Lake, the largest natural freshwater lake within California and possibly the oldest lake in North America. The elevation for Clear Lake is 1,326 feet. The region is rich with historical and cultural resources, as well as recreational opportunities.
Within Lake County are two incorporated cities, the county seat of Lakeport and Clearlake, the largest city, and the communities of Blue Lakes, Clearlake Oaks, Clearlake Park, Cobb, Finley, Glenhaven, Hidden Valley Lake, Kelseyville, Loch Lomond, Lower Lake, Lucerne, Middletown, Nice, Spring Valley, Upper Lake, and Witter Springs. .
Adventurous visitors will enjoy Lake County's national forests and other public lands with trails for hiking, dirt biking, off-highway vehicle riding, rock and stone collecting, and bird watching, plus areas for hang gliding, fishing, and hunting.
History and genealogy buffs will find several "treasures" at the two county museums, the Lake County Museum in Lakeport and the Lower Lake Historical Schoolhouse Museum in Lower Lake.
Art lovers will find the work of local artists displayed in many places including galleries, civic buildings, restaurants, banks, and other businesses.
Area wineries with tasting rooms include Guenoc and Langtry Estate Vineyards and Winery, Ployez Winery, Steele Wines, and Wildhurst Vineyards. Winery events often feature wine tasting, art, and music.
Stargazers and astronomers will enjoy a trip to the Taylor Planetarium & Observatory in Kelseyville. Operated by the Lake County Office of Education, the observatory presents lecture and slide programs, and visitors may participate in telescope viewing of the stars and planets.
Outdoor recreation include the many watersports enjoyed at the county's lakes and streams, plus hiking, soaring, skydiving, and bicycling. Five golf courses, including one championship 18-hole course, are located in the county.
With over 100 miles of shoreline, Clear Lake is a popular spot for watersports enthusiasts. Visitors enjoy fishing, swimming, sailing, wind surfing, parasailing, waterskiing, boating, and riding jet skis. There are 11 free boat launch ramps around the lake that are open to the public. Individuals may rent boats and personal watercraft from many businesses around the lake.
Anglers will enjoy testing their luck on Clear Lake, known as the "Bass Capital of the West." Largemouth bass, crappie, catfish, bluegill, and rainbow trout can be found in the county's lakes. Fishing boats can be rented, and many stores and facilities around the lake specialize in fishing equipment. Numerous fishing tournaments and derbies are held through the year.
Car racing fans can enjoy competition between winged midgets, modified, street and mini-stocks when the Northern California Racing Association presents races every Saturday night, beginning in April and continuing into October, at the Lakeport Speedway at the county fairgrounds.
Visitors looking to spend a couple of nights or longer vacation can choose from ample accommodations ranging from basic camping facilities to cozy bed-and-breakfast inns and full-scale hotels. Several resorts around Clear Lake, on Cobb Mountain, and at Blue Lakes feature self-contained cabins and cottages.
Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers
Effective April 8, 2008, all boats require an Inspection Sticker prior to launching in Lake County waters to protect our lakes from invasive quagga and zebra mussels. Find out more by calling the Lake County Mussel Hotline at (707) 263-2556 or go to: www.co.lake.ca.us/mussels