Things to do on gorgeous Table Rock Lake in southwest Missouri – a close drive from St. Louis and Kansas City and a quick flight from Chicago and Denver!

tubing on table rock lake
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Table Rock Lake is nestled in Southwest Missouri, near Branson. It’s a beautiful place to live or visit! Known for its clear water, it boasts almost 800 miles of shoreline and a wide range of things to do.

Did you know? Table Rock Lake was created as a recreational lake to control floods and create hydroelectric power. It is managed by the Corp of Engineers.  It was named Table Rock Lake due to the rock shelf above the White River, but you’ll see a shelf along a lot of the shoreline.

I grew up visiting Table Rock Lake with my family and five years ago, we decided to purchase a Lake Cottage to create memories with our family! This modern lake house is the perfect home for us, with great views, an idyllic location and the right floor plan for our little family.

We love this area so much and feel so lucky to get to enjoy our time here. I’ve written about things to do in Branson with kids, as well as our favorite tips for visiting Silver Dollar City at Christmas.

Without further ado, here’s 22 things to do on Table Rock Lake – and if I missed any, let me know!

Things to Do on Table Rock Lake


Table Rock has long been known for fishing! In fact, there are several tournaments held on the lake throughout the year. You’ll find Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, White Bass, Crappie, Bluegill, Catfish and Long Ear Sunfish. You’ll even find Walleye, Warmouth, Striped Bass and Paddlefish.

You can learn about Missouri fishing regulations here and Arkansas fishing regulations here.


There are great places to hike lakeside, including Table Rock Lake State Park, the White River Valley Trail System, and Chinquapin Trail, which are all connected. Nearby you’ll also find great hiking at Dogwood Canyon and at the Ruth and Paul Henning Conservation Area.

Jump Off the Rope Swings

One of the most memorable experiences at Table Rock Lake is jumping off the rope swings! It was always a favorite of mine as a child and now our girls get to share in the joy! 

It’s fun for all ages and a great gathering place. 

Jump off a Cliff

There are several great cliffs to jump off of around the lake and each one is more fun than the last. Again, it’s always a great place to make new friends – you’ll find that boaters are always friendly. Who isn’t happy on the water? See the map for more!

Please note this activity comes at a risk. It’s best to choose a day where it’s not busy so few boats are around.

girl jumping off cliff on table rock lake

Eat on the Water

Table Rock Lake boasts several floating and lakeside restaurants. Many of them are open Memorial Day to Labor Day. You can find the full guide of Table Rock Lake Restaurants that includes what they have to offer, where they are located, docking instructions and more!

While you’re at it, check out my collection of the best Boat Snacks to take for a day on the water – like these Snackle Boxes!

tubing on table rock lake

Water Sports

The lake is a great place to learn how to water ski, tube, surf, knee board, wake board and more! Items can be purchased or rented at the Ski Shack at Kimberling City or Indian Point.

sunset at table rock lake

Take a Sunset Cruise

Boating is of course always a highlight at the lake, but the sunsets are beyond breathtaking! You can drop your boat at one of the many public access ramps, rent a boat or take the Branson Belle, Catamaran, Goin Jessi or Lady Liberty for a cruise.

Watch Fireworks

There are fireworks Memorial Day weekend, 4th of July weekend and Labor Day weekend in addition to the Branson Belle fireworks which give locals and boaters a free display throughout the summer (see their site for cruise dates).

There’s nothing quite like the reflection of fireworks on the water. It’s truly magical.

table rock lake sunrise

Go to the Beach

  • Moonshine Beach (free) – kick back on a hot summer day and let the kids play in the sand and swim at the beach on Table Rock Lake. They offer changing rooms, picnic shelters and limited parking. It’s always a favorite with the kiddos! Located at 3778 MO-165, Branson, Missouri 65616
  • Joe Bald – Day use
  • Mill Creek – $5
  • Baxter Public Use
  • Kings River Marina
  • Cricket Creek Campground

Dewey Short Visitor Center

Take a break on a cold or rainy day and enjoy the view and activities at the visitor center. Build a dam, read a book or enjoy one of the interactive activities while learning about the hydroelectric dam.

You can visit the Dewey Short Visitor Center and get a close up view of Table Rock Dam by car or boat! There is a complimentary dock and small beach nearby. It’s also connected to several trails that are perfect for an easy walk or bike ride!

Catch a Boat Show or Regatta

  • The Classics Cruisin’ Boat Show is always a great time! You can catch them at a number of places across the lake or watch them cruise! It’s always fun to see. They even have activities for kids, like coloring their very own wood boats to set sail. 
  • Join a Regatta like this one for Cobalt (I’m sure there are many more!)
swing at bar

Pull up a Swing

and grab a drink while listening to live music at Parrot’s Pavilion Tiki Bar. You can enjoy games and cocktails waterside. You’ll often find live music, but you’ll always find a good time. Go ahead and pull up a swing at the bar!

Look for Seashells

While nestled in the middle of the country, you can find an abundance of seashells along the shoreline! One of our favorite spots to collect is along the shoreline at Hideaway Marina, but you’ll often find them on the islands as well!

boat by lake


A few of the Marinas have well curated boutiques filled with great gifts, swimwear and more. State Park Marina, Hideaway Marina and Campbell Point are favorites, but they all have a little something to offer!

  • State Park Marina
  • Hideaway Marina
  • Indian Point Marina
  • Kings River Marina
  • Point of Kimberling Marina
  • Cape Fair Marina
  • Big M Marina
  • Campbell Point Marin
  • Eagle Rock Marina
  • Baxter Marina
  • Long Creek Marina
  • Cricket Creek Marina
  • Bent Hook Marina

Of course who doesn’t love shopping for life jackets, flip flops, wake boards, skis and more? Williams Brothers Ski Shop and Ski Shack are great go-tos on the water.

waterfall at big cedar

See a Waterfall

Cruise to Devil’s Pool at Big Cedar to experience a gorgeous waterfall up close.


Bring your own or rent a kayak at State Park Marina, Stillwaters, Big Cedar or the resort you are visiting. It’s a great way to take in the true beauty of Table Rock Lake and see the layers of rock up close.

3 girls on paddleboard


Enjoy the gentle waters in a cove while sneaking a little workout in.

Paddle Boat

Rent a paddle boat at the resort you’re staying at, or State Park Marina.


Take the catamaran out for a cruise with an array of activities, including a giant slide.


The lake is fun above and below the water’s surface! There are so many places to explore including Zebulon Pike, the former town of Oasis, The Enchanted Forest and Duck Island. Book with the Indian Point Dive Center 417-338-6900 or White River Dive Company 417-334-9073.

Slalom Course

There are 4 slalom courses nestled on Table Rock.

  • Little Cow Creek
  • Just past Hideaway Marina before Point 9
  • Lower Kings River Just past Kings River Marina
  • Little Indian Creek/Dogwood Creek
3 girls swimming in table rock lake


There are a number of great places to swim at Table Rock Lake. Visit a beach, find a quiet cove or even a lively one and enjoy!

Enjoy the Wildlife

Each day and season brings something new! Watch deer drink from the lake, search for the eagles as they search for fish, see turtles, turkeys, fox, songbirds and more.

Wave to a Stranger

There are so many friendly faces on Table Rock Lake. Nothing brings me more joy than seeing everyone smile, wave and support local! You can connect with them on the Table Rock Lake Facebook Group as well!

Table Rock Lake Map

Find everything mentioned above and more on this interactive map.

Did I miss something? If so, leave it in the comments below! 

id in tree

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  1. Hi, Julie. Thanks for all the great information. We’re going to Table Rock for the first time just after everything gets rolling (after Memorial Day weekend). I am looking forward to some water time (if it’s not too cold), a bit of fishing (which I hadn’t done in years until some salt water fishing in Florida this year), and some Tiki time… which could start any day after noon rolls around. We’ll be just off 13 Hwy at the Holiday Inn Club Vacations properties, so I hope there are things to do right around that area. All the best to you and your family.

    1. That’s right by Kimberling City in Lampe! You’ll be by Pop’s, which has amazing views and lake front dining and are within reach of everything you mentioned. If you need anything, let me know! I hope you enjoy a wonderful vacation!

    1. Thank you! Please let me know if you need anything along the way! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

  2. You forgot scuba diving. Indian Point Dive Center has scuba diving for all levels from beginners to advanced certified.