About Lake County California

Nestled between three of California\'s premiere wine producing regions - Napa, Sonoma, and Mendocino Counties - Lake County has begun to take its place as a notable grape-growing region as well.

The county is aptly named for Clear Lake, which sits in the geographic middle of the county. This expansive lake is the largest natural freshwater lake in California and geologists have dubbed it as likely to be the oldest lake in North America. For many, the lake is the centerpiece of the region, providing visitors with the opportunity to enjoy a variety of water sports, including swimming, fishing, boating, and water skiing. As a matter of fact, Clear Lake has been touted as the number one bass fishing lake in the country! The state park that surrounds the lake also offers hiking trails and opportunities for wildlife viewing. The beautiful Konocti Hills surround the lake and add to the awesome scenery.

Lake County includes two incorporated towns: Clearlake and Lakeport. The former is the largest city in Lake County, situated on the eastern shore of the lake itself. Lakeport is the county seat and sits at the west end of Clear Lake. It\'s home to Library Park, where visitors can find a boat launch and fishing pier as well as a playground, ball field, and plenty of room for a picnic. The little village of Lakeport is actually quite charming, with a Main Street area boasting small shops, galleries, and eateries. Lakeport is also home to the interesting Lake County Historical Courthouse Museum, which features artifacts from the many Native American tribes that once inhabited the region.

Clear Lake plays an important role in the lives of many of the towns in the county, most of which are situated around the lake. At the lower end, you\'ll find - quite appropriately - the town of Lower Lake. With a population of about 2,000, Lower Lake is a typical small town with a handful of fast food eateries, a few shops, and a pristine bed and breakfast establishment with its own private lake. Here you\'ll also find Anderson Marsh State Park, a newer state park that presents guests with historic and prehistoric evidence of human habitation dating back about 10,000 years. Boating, fishing, and bird watching are popular here as well.

On the eastern side of Clear Lake, visitors can head to the towns of Clearlake Oaks, Lucerne, and Nice, all situated on Highway 20 and easily accessible from the 101 Freeway. Lucerne is home to Alpine County Park, where guests can fish, swim, boat, or picnic. Lucerne was quite a popular vacation destination in the early 1900s, given its proximity to Clear Lake, and the town still retains its turn-of-the-century charm today.
Nice (pronounced Neece) was named after the town on the French Riviera. This tiny town hosts its annual Redbud Festival each spring, providing visitors with a street fair atmosphere featuring entertainment, good food, arts and crafts, games, and lots of fun. More information about hostels.

Kelseyville is located just west of the lake on Highway 175. This charming small town is home to the Taylor Observatory, created to promote the study of astronomy. Opened in 1985, it was a gift to the community from a local educator. Also located here is the Norton Planetarium, the only such facility north of the Bay Area.

The two towns not located on the lake are Middletown and Cobb. Hidden Valley Lake, a 110-acre man-made lake, is located just north of Middletown and offers plenty of recreational opportunities. The area boasts two beaches and lots of room for swimming and fishing. Cobb is home to the 3,500 acre Boggs Mountain State Forest, where guests can enjoy 14 miles of trails for hikers and horseback riders as well as a handful of camping sites.

As Lake County continues to grow, so does its agri-tourism industry. Known for decades for its pears and walnuts and recognized as an up-and-coming wine producing region, Lake County boasts a plethora of farmer\'s markets where guests can purchase local products as well as farms, orchards, and wineries that offer tours and tastings.

Lake County California Upcoming Events

Harvest Carnival


Carnival with multiple jump houses, rock climbing wall, horse rides, dunk tanks, games, food, music, and more. Benefit f

Living History Day


Step back in time and discover yesteryear. Period clad staff will be demonstrating the use of various machines, toys and

Wine and Chocolate


Annual event pairing Lake County wines (thirty participating wineries) with gourmet chocolates. Enjoy demonstrations, cl


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