If you’re looking for a vacation spot that has something for everyone, look no further than Greer’s Ferry Lake in Arkansas. This beautiful lake is home to many fun activities and delicious restaurants. In this local’s guide, we’ll share some of our favorite things to see, do, and eat at Greer’s Ferry Lake. So pack your swimsuit and sunscreen, and get ready for the trip of a lifetime!
This is where I spent my childhood summers, and it’s a place that will always hold special memories for me. My grandparents have been living in this area for three decades, and now my parents are also locals. That’s why we’re so excited to get started on this blog post, which will be about all things local: culture, food, and fun!
About the Greers Ferry Lake
Greer’s Ferry Lake is 63.28 square miles of beautiful, clear water and is an Arkansas treasure. The lake is among the state’s five largest lakes and it lies nestled in the Ozark foothills. This award-winning reservoir is a national model for environmental cleanliness. The clear waters, mountains, and trees create a picturesque view for those who live and visit the lake.
What to do at Greers Ferry
Stop at Shiloh Marina for Ice Cream
Greer locals all agree that this marina has the best selection of ice cream. My kids absolutely love this activity when we are on the lake. They love to stop to pick out their favorite flavors of ice cream, chill out for a few minutes, and then they’re off again! As you can see they have been doing it since they were babies. It is a great family tradition.
Lake life is all about taking your time and not being in a hurry. I mean really taking your time and enjoying every minute of it. The marina has benches where you can sit and enjoy your ice cream while watching all the people on the lake. So sit back and enjoy that ice cream. My husband sure does!
Get Your Toes Sucked
While at Shiloh Marina feed the fish and get your toes sucked. I’ve been doing it since I was a kid and now watching my husband do the same thing is just as fun. You’ll find the fish and food behind the store. My kids think it is hilarious and they enjoy watching the fish suck our toes. They are too scared to do it right now, but one day they will join in on the fun.
Swim in a Cove at Greers Ferry Lake
For a newbie, I would advise you to swim in the cove, so you are not thrown around by the boat waves. The open water may seem like the place to be, but if you find yourself in need of some rest and relaxation, head to the coves like the locals do. This is where you will find the smooth waters that are perfect for drinking a chilled beer.
Check Out the Greers Ferry Dam
On the morning of October 3rd, President John Fitzgerald Kennedy would address thousands from across Arkansas as they converged on Heber Springs to hear him speak at Greers Ferry Dam. Just a short time after the Greers Ferry Dam dedication ceremony he would be assassinated and America would be in tears over their fallen leader.
If you have extra time off of the lake visit the observation platform for some incredible views.
Eat at the Dam Good Deli
Why would you leave the lake for lunch? Next to the dam at the Dam Marina is a quick-service deli. This deli has burgers, wraps, and sandwiches; all of which will stop those hunger pains. It is a favorite among the locals who are looking for a quick snack while on the lake. This is not a sit-down restaurant, but a grab-and-go stop. They have picnic tables outside so you can enjoy your lunch on the lake.
Jump Off Cliffs
Our favorite spot is at Jansens. If you’re looking for something new this summer, try jumping off cliffs. There are different heights so everyone in the family will be pleased. You can’t beat the view of jumping into this crystal clear lake. The sunlight reflects off its surface and illuminates your surroundings, giving you an instant sense that everything is alright in this world. Make sure you are wearing a life vest because we have seen people hit the water so hard they were knocked out. Once knocked out you will start to sink underwater. This is rare, but it’s better to safe than sorry. Just please wear a vest.
Visit Sandy Beach On 4th of July
The annual fireworks show at Sandy Beach is one of the most spectacular in all of Arkansas. Show up really early to get the best spot! Turn your radio station to KFFB 106.1 FM and listen as the fireworks follow along to the music. We love to hang out on our boat and watch the fireworks. It is 100% the best way to watch fireworks! The fireworks start at 9:30 pm and the music begins at 7:30 pm. (Double-check my times because it is subject to change). We usually park our boat and swim across to listen to the music and grab a few food truck items. Once it’s time for the fireworks, we swim back and hang out on our boats where we eat even more hotdogs and hamburgers.
Participate in the Cardboard Boat Races
If you are there during the 4th of July week, then you need to participate in the Cardboard Boat races. The race participants will use their cardboard ingenuity to build boats that can float and complete four heats around Greers Ferry Lake. They must also be made entirely out of the corrugated board (with tape allowed as an exception). With no wood or metal allowed–just your imagination! Click here for more information.
Watch Labor Day Fireworks at the Dam Site Marina and Fairfield Bay
The 4th of July is over for 2022, but if you missed the fireworks this year don’t worry because there will be another chance to see them come Labor Day. Make sure you don’t miss out on this!
Go Shopping at Lacey’s Marina
This is by far the best marina to shop at! You can purchase a Greers Ferry shirt or hat. You should also check out all the other cool lake boutique stuff they have while you are there. I’m loving the new Bogg beach bags. They have a massive selection! If you are looking for a life vest and water shoes they have that too.
Rent a Houseboat on Greers Ferry Lake
Houseboating is a great way to spend your vacation! You’ll be able to enjoy fishing, swimming, and partying all in one spot. What more could you want?
There are so many things to do on the top deck! You can sip some drinks by the bar, play cards, or just chill out. If you’re feeling too hot there is an exciting water slide. The first floor is like your own private floating home with an open kitchen, six bedrooms, and lots of living space. This can be an affordable option if you find 6 couples and divide the price among the crew. It is 100% worth it!
Best Places to Eat while at Greers Ferry Lake
Breakfast- The Little Red Restaurant
The perfect place to get a delicious and cheap breakfast. As a native Texan, I am extremely reluctant when it comes to getting burritos out of state, but I was not disappointed. Did I like it… well, I finished my meal.
I suggest sitting outside so you can enjoy the view.
I have very high standards when it comes to food and I don’t like tourist traps. If you follow my recommendations, then your meal will be delicious! The best BBQ is Richey’s Road House and the best hamburgers go to Round Rock Diner.
Last but not least, Have Fun!
That’s my credo. I live by it, and so should you! Get outside and make some memories!
So what are you waiting for? Get out your calendar and start planning your trip to Greer’s Ferry Lake. We promise you won’t be disappointed! If you’re looking for a fun adventure, or simply want to relax by the water, this is the perfect destination for you. And don’t forget, Glam Escapes can book everything for you so all you have to do is show up and enjoy yourself. We hope to see you soon!