Norris Lake is a prime vacation destination in East Tennessee offering more than 800 miles of beautiful shoreline, a variety of marinas, boat and jet ski rentals, plenty of areas for camping and hundreds of private coves where you can float the day away. To help make the most of your trip, here are 5 things to do while you’re visiting Norris Lake that will make your vacation the best that it can be!

Visit Norris Paddling Adventures and spend a morning or afternoon paddling. Get on a stand up paddleboard, kayak, canoe, waterbike or even pair up for a fun ride on a pontoon peddleboat. It’s a fun, new way to explore the lake and get some exercise too.

Hiking is next on our list of things to do while you’re at Norris Lake. Sometimes it’s nice to get your feet on dry land and with hundreds of miles of trails surrounding the lake, it’s easy to find the perfect hiking spot. The lake is surrounded by three state parks and all of them offer great trail systems. Cove Lake State Park has over seven miles of trails ranging from easy to moderate. Big Ridge State Park has over 15 miles of hiking trails, many travel along the lakeshore and you’ll see remnants of early settlements. The trails range from easy to very rugged, so there is something for everyone. Norris Dam State Park has fifteen trails ranging in length from .5 mile to 5 miles, so you can take a short hike or make a day of it.

And that brings us to the next thing you don’t want to miss while you’re at Norris Lake…Good Food! Right off the trails at Norris Dam State Park is Clinch River Brewing, an absolute must visit when you’re at the lake! The brewery serves delicious, creole inspired dishes that pair perfectly with their craft beer. Sit back and relax in their beer garden and enjoy the beautiful scenery and laid back atmosphere.

Speaking of food and beer, have you stopped by Sequoyah Marina on a Friday night for some live music and delicious food? Fridays are great, but they serve up a delicious menu every day of the week. They also offer a scrumptious breakfast buffet on the weekends. It’s a great way to fuel up for a day of fun on the lake.

Stardust Marina is another must for great food on Norris Lake. Seafood, burgers, wraps, you name it, Stardust has it. We recommend trying the bang bang shrimp as an appetizer and the Asian street tacos for your meal…can you tell we’ve been there a time or two? If you’re lucky enough to be there on a Saturday evening, you’ll also get to enjoy live music on their patio from 6 – 10 pm.

Number four on our list is off-roading! We know you’re at the lake to enjoy the lake, but when you have the largest, privately owned off-road park in the country just a short drive from Norris Lake, you have to visit and play in some mud! Over 350 miles of trails and breathtaking views are waiting for you at Windrock Park! Bring your own off-road vehicle or rent one of their side by sides. We promise you’ll have the adventure of a lifetime.

Our list wouldn’t be complete without some rainy day activities, so number five on our list is go into town and check out some area museums and attractions. The Museum of Appalachia is just a short drive from the lake and offers plenty of fun for the whole family. Historic Downtown Clinton has over 20 antique shops and boutiques, along with great coffee shops and cafes. Learn the story of the Clinton Twelve and how they changed history at the Green McAdoo Cultural Center and drive into Oak Ridge to learn the fascinating history of the Secret City! Be sure to visit our website for other fun things to do in the area.