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Picnic Areas in Land Between the Lakes

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Visitors can dine al fresco in the open spaces and natural surroundings that make the Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area so inviting to individuals, families and groups seeking comfortable picnic locations in western Kentucky northwest Tennessee.

There are a variety of options available to those who enjoy dining outdoors, from grabbing a snack to arranging a picnic lunch at any of the designated picnic sites in Land Between the Lakes.

If you plan to host a group picnic, you’ll find options for open-air pavilions located at The Homeplace 1850s Farm, the Woodlands Nature Station and the Golden Pond Visitor's Center. These spaces can be rented for a small fee and some are equipped with electricity and water.

While there are loads of picnic areas to choose from, here are three favorite spots of frequent visitors to this national recreation area.  

Cedar Pond

Those who spend their days exploring the various attractions available to visitors of Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley will enjoy a trek to Cedar Pond. The sights and sounds of Cedar Pond’s picnic area are breathtaking, offering guests a respite into nature. If you’re visiting at the right time of day, you’ll find lovely reflections of trees and other natural wonders that border the waters of Cedar Pond. The trail located at Cedar Pond winds through the woods and is very manageable for hikers.

This picnic area features a plethora of cedar trees and other native plants. Cedar Pond is located on the Trace along the Kentucky-Tennessee border, south of the Golden Pond Visitor's Center.

Hematite Lake

Tucked away in the woodlands of Land Between the Lakes is a scenic picnic area located on the grounds near Hematite Lake. This idyllic setting is filled with magnificent trees that have outlived the industries and early settlers that once thrived in this region. The picnic area provides visitors a lovely view of this 83.6-acre lake and easy access to the 2.2-mile walking trail that encircles it.  

Visitors to Hematite Lake’s picnic areas find that it’s a convenient location for exploring the many natural and manmade attractions that make up the Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area, including remnants of the Center Furnace that once supported the iron ore industry in the region.

Moss Creek

The Moss Creek Day Use area is located on the north end of the Land Between the Lakes.

In addition to serving as an ideal picnic area, it is also the site of a popular swimming hole, one that provides plenty of opportunities for lounging on a float or kayaking the calm waters of Moss Creek.

Other Picnic Sites in Land Between the Lakes

Other designated picnic areas include South Welcome Station the South Bison Range, Colson Overlook, Golden Pond Visitor Center, Jenny Ridge, Boarding House (Pavilion below the Nature Station), Star Camp, North Welcome Station, Kentucky Lake Scenic Drive. All designated picnic areas are equipped with picnic tables, chemical toilets and grills.

For more information on picnicking in Land Between the Lakes, call 1-800-LBL-7077.

Note:  ExploreKentuckyLake.com is not the official site of the Land Between The Lakes. You can access their official site here.


Cedar Waxwing
Photo by Teresa Gemeinhardt

The Cedar Waxwing is a beautiful bird that is common to The Land Between The Lakes region. You're likely to find them near fruiting trees and shrubs.