Lake Anna State Park

It is hard to imagine Lake Anna without its signature state park of the same name. The 2,810-acre park, with its 10 miles of shoreline on the clear waters of the lake, is one of the most popular day-use facilities in the state system, serving over 200,000 visitors annually. The day-use designation is changing.

The recent campground addition only adds to the Park’s being a true family “destination”. Visitors can choose sites with or without water and electric hookups. The centrally located restrooms with hot showers, fire-rings, picnic tables and lantern holders are all well maintained.

Foremost among the park’s attractions are opportunities for boating, fishing and seasonal swimming at the park’s sandy beach. Now 30 years old the park continues to undergo improvements, recently adding a number of new multi-use trails–trails open to foot traffic as well as equestrian and bicycle travel. There are 11 trails within the park, offering a total of 15 miles of pathways, most of that distance being multi-use. While most of the trails are categorized as easy, two offer more strenuous hiking opportunity for those so inclined.

Lake Anna is one of 34 facilities in the Virginia State Park system. In October of 2001, that system took top honors with a gold medal from the National Sporting Goods Association and National Recreation and Parks Association for the number one system of state parks in the nation.

Set on a historic gold mining site, the park takes advantage of its colorful past, offering seasonal interpretive programs and all-season self-guided hikes through the its gently rolling forested lands. In the early 19th century, prospectors discovered gold at the site, which came to be known as Gold Hill. Mining of gold and other metals continued there until as late as the 1940s.

In the summer months, kids can learn from experts about panning for gold. Rangers will offer guided tours to the site of the Goodwin Gold Mine, which flourished on the park land long years ago.

The Visitor Center is a popular stop with wildlife and historical exhibits plus a small gift shop. It is open on the weekends from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Memorial Day through Labor Day.

The Lake Anna park is also a popular warm-weather picnic site, offering shelters available to larger groups, by reservation.

A boat-launching ramp is available and rentals of a variety of smaller watercraft, pontoon boats and jet skis are available from several commercial operators on the lake.

The park beach is open from Memorial Day to Labor Day and offers a snack bar, bathhouse and lifeguard.

For additional information on the park, its programs and schedules, call the park at (540) 854-5503 or go to the state parks website at www.dcr.state.va.us, then click on Lake Anna from the list at the left side of the parks home page.

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