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Best Lakeside Getaways Near Orange County

lake arrowhead 610
(credit: Shutterstock)

(credit: Shutterstock)

Spring has sprung, and the Orange County area has plenty of nearby lakes to visit now that the weather is warm. Water sports like jet skiing and boating take center stage, but each of these lakes has its own personality. Extreme sports, wine-tasting and wildlife sanctuaries are just a few of the unique offerings found at these local lakes. Sparkling water and fresh air in a sunny lakeside setting is the perfect way to unwind this spring.

Crane Lakeside Park
(credit: Janet M./Yelp)

Crane Lakeside Park And RV Resort
15980 Grand Ave.
Lake Elsinore, CA 92530
(951) 678-2112

Set right next to the shores of beautiful Lake Elsinore, the Crane Lakeside Park and RV Resort is the perfect spring or summer vacation destination. Watersports take center stage here, so in addition to swimming and fishing, guests can add jet skiing, windsurfing, canoeing and more to their list of exhilarating activities. The resort's convenient setting also invites guests to hike or ride horseback through the mountains before coming back down to the lake for a nice relaxing dip. Other nearby activities to check out include wine-tasting, outlet shopping and motocross races.

lake perris
(credit: Shutterstock)

Lake Perris State Recreation Area
17801 Lake Perris Drive
Perris, CA 92571
(951) 940-5600

The list of exciting outdoor games and sports is virtually endless at the Lake Perris State Recreation Area. Water-based activities include boating, fishing, scuba diving and snorkeling just to name a few. The local terrain also includes miles of hiking, biking and horse trails with commanding views of the lake and surrounding area, perfect for getting some exercise and great photos. A variety of campsites are available for use, including family and primitive sites, and for those who enjoy a little more comfort, full RV hookups are available.

Mallard Bay Resort
(credit: rayann t./Yelp)

Mallard Bay Resort
214 Lagunita Ln.
Big Bear Lake, CA 92315
(909) 866-2526

For the ultimate in lakeside luxury, the Mallard Bay Resort offers guests a range of lodging options packed with amenities including cable TV, Internet, fireplaces, full kitchens and more. As an added accommodation, visitors with boats or other water crafts get a free private dock for their vessel. The Mallard Bay Resort is located conveniently close to Big Bear Lake Village where guests can stock up on food or other supplies once situated in the cabin. Springtime in Big Bear is sunny and gorgeous, and with hiking, fishing and water sports available on or near the lake, there are plenty of ways to celebrate spring in this pristine natural wonderland.

Related: Best Family-Friendly Spring Break Getaways Near Orange County

lake arrowhead resort and spa
(credit: Lake Arrowhead Resort And Spa)

Lake Arrowhead Resort And Spa
27984 Highway 189
Lake Arrowhead, CA 92352
(909) 336-1511

Experience nature's pristine beauty in style and comfort at the Lake Arrowhead Resort and Spa. Premium rooms and suites offer clear views of the lake from private balconies, and all suites feature jacuzzi tubs and first-rate amenities. Active, nature-loving guests will love visiting the local wildlife sanctuary or getting a bird's eye view of the gorgeous landscape on a helicopter tour. For a more relaxing lakeside retreat, a massage or body scrub at the Spa Of The Pines will help rejuvenate both body and soul in the heart of this stunning natural wonderland.

Bonelli Park

Frank G. Bonelli Regional Park
120 Via Verde
San Dimas, CA 91773
(909) 599-8411

Bonelli Park provides nearly 2,000 acres of land to explore, and a virtually endless list of exciting water and land activities to partake in. Miles of trails offer hikers and horseback riders ample opportunity to enjoy the open space, and guests can cool off with a jet ski ride or a swim in the Puddingstone Reservoir. Hundreds of bird species flock to the lake and give bird lovers plenty to look for, and the fishing is top-notch. Guests to the park can extend their lakeside day trip with a stay at the nearby Puddingstone Resort, located adjacent to Bonelli Park.

Related: Best Eco-Friendly Getaways

David McDonald is a freelance writer covering all things Orange County. His work can be found on
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