The park has a beach on one of Virginia's most popular lakes, a fishing pond accessible to children and the disabled, a bathhouse-concessions complex and a boat launch. Camping, picnicking, six camping cabins and 10 two-bedroom cabins, seven with views of the lake, also are available. With more than 15 miles of trails, the park offers many hiking, biking and horseback riding options. Visitor center exhibits trace the history of the area's gold mining and highlight the park's natural features. Nature and gold panning programs are popular, and the park offers guided tours of the Goodwin Gold Mine.
Note: Day-use parking areas near the beach and picnic areas fill up rapidly when the summer weather is nice on weekends and holidays. When this happens, park staff close the park road to additional traffic until enough parking spots have been vacated. Park closure may remain in effect until 4 p.m. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Anglers may access the park's boat ramp an hour before sunrise for early morning fishing. Lights have been added to help with early and late boat ramp activity. An automatic gate allows campers to exit the boat ramp area and return to the campground after hours.
Dawn - dusk.
The park lies adjacent to Route 601 off Route 208, 25 miles southwest of Fredericksburg and 60 miles northwest of Richmond.
Drive Time: Northern Virginia, one hour; Richmond, one hour; Tidewater/Norfolk/Virginia Beach, three hours; Roanoke, four hours
From I-95, take Exit 118 at Thornburg and travel about four miles on Rt. 606. At Snell, continue through the traffic light on Rt. 208. Stay on Rt. 208 west for 2 miles. At the stop light, continue straight for a short distance to another stop light. At this light, turn left onto Courthouse RD (Rt 208 west). Continue on Rt. 208 through the stop light at Spotsylvania High School. In 8 miles, turn right onto Rt. 601 Lawyers Road and drive 3 miles. You’ll see the state park sign on your left.
Going east on I-64, take Exit 143 at Ferncliff and stay on Rt. 208 east for six miles. Go through Louisa and continue five more miles on 208 east to Mineral. Turn left at the traffic light, crossing railroad tracks. Take an immediate left onto Rt. 522 north and stay on the road for six miles to the intersection just before Dickinson Store. Take a right there onto Rt. (New Bridge Road) and travel eight miles. You’ll cross a bridge. When you get to Rt. 601 (Lawyers Road), turn left and go three miles. The park sign will be on your left.
From west on I-64, take Exit 159 at Gum Springs. Take Rt. 522 north for 11 miles until you reach the village of Cuckoo. Stay on Rt. 522 until you reach Mineral. Turn right at the traffic light, crossing railroad tracks. Take an immediate left onto Rt. 522 north and stay on the road for six miles to the intersection just before Dickinson Store. Take a right there onto Rt. (New Bridge Road) and travel eight miles. You’ll cross a bridge. When you get to Rt. 601 (Lawyers Road), turn left and go three miles. The park sign will be on your left.
Traveling south on Rt. 522, it’s best to go past the state park sign at the Rt. 612 intersection and, instead, stay on Rt. 522 for eight miles. At that point, you’ll see Dickinson Store. Turn left onto Rt. 208 east. Stay on that road for eight miles. You’ll cross a bridge. When you get to Rt. 601 (Lawyers Road), turn left and go three miles. The park sign will be on your left.
3,127 acres with 10 miles of lake frontage. Lake size: 13,000 acres.
Visit a Flickr photoset of typical cabins and lodges at the park. Cabins and lodges vary. Dwellings may not match what's shown in the photos.
Click here for details on reservation cancellation and transfer policies. A fee is charged per pet per night for cabin stays.
Boat launching is free for overnight gueests. During prime season, a day of guarded beach swimming per night's stay is free to overnight guests. Read more about swimming in the park's Recreation section.
Site type: Two-bedroom frame, 3; two-bedroom frame waterview, 7. All cabins have two bedrooms and wood-frame construction (cedar siding), metal roof, dry wall and wood laminate flooring. Ceramic tile flooring in the bathrooms. Units have shower-bath. Each sleeps six, no bed rentals; a queen-size bed in one bedroom, two singles in the other bedroom. Also a queen pull-out sofa in the living room.
Camping Lodge (bunkhouse) - No weekly requirement.
The park rents a camping lodge (bunkhouse) that's next to the bathhouse in the north camping loop. The bunkhouse is not a full-service lodge. The north loop's bathhouse includes the only restroom facilities for your stay. It's a two-room trailer with seven bunk beds, a refrigerator, a microwave oven, a coffee pot and an air conditioner. The bunkhouse also has a charcoal grill and deck outside. Cooking and smoking are not permitted inside the lodge. Five vehicles are permitted with rental of the lodge; the daily parking fee must be paid for additional vehicles.
This facility becomes available in March each year. Unlike most overnight facilities, it is not sold 11 months in advance. Check-in is 4 p.m., and check-out is 10 a.m. Late arrivals should call the park beforehand for directions and the lodge's key pick-up arrangement. Transfer deadline, cancellation and pet fees are the same as those for cabins.
State law permits alcohol use only in private areas (inside a cabin or camping unit) or in areas designated on permits issued by the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control.
The camping lodge is next to the park's north camp loop bathhouse, which may be rented by calling the Customer Service Center, (800) 933-PARK (7275). Large groups should consider renting the camping lodge and the group camping area.
The campground offers sites with and without water and electric hookups, centrally located restrooms with hot showers, fire-rings, picnic tables and lantern holders.
Total sites of each type: STD, 23; E/W, 23
STD - No hookups, various equipment (tents, popups. RVs) up to 60 feet; bathhouse with hot showers. Tents must fit on 20’ x 25' tent pad.
E/W - Electric and water hookups for various equipment (tents, popups, RVs) up to 60 feet; bathhouse with hot showers. Tents must fit on a 20’ x 25' tent pad.
Camp Cabins - six sites (Camp Cabins 01-06)
The park has 11 trails totaling more than 15 miles. All are for hiking with 12 miles designated as shared, multiple-use trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding. All trails also allow travel in both directions. They pass over moderate terrain through mixed hardwood and pine forest. All trails except Big Woods, Pigeon Run and Gold Hill trails are rated "easy," those three are rated more difficult. Click here to download an Old Pond Trail guide published by Friends of Lake Anna State Park. Click here to download a guide for the Railroad Ford self-guided trail.
Visit the Explore Virginia Outdoors website for enhanced maps and video tours of Lake Anna's trails.
Between the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day, guarded beach swimming is available for a fee. A snack bar and bathhouse also are available. 2016's hours are:
Weather and other issues may at times force suspension of guarded swimming. Refunds will not be made because of such issues. When guarded swimming is unavailable, guests may swim at the beach’s designated area but do so at their own risk. Swimming elsewhere in the park is not advised. Sun shelters are allowed on the grassy areas around the beach but not on the beach sand. Beach umbrellas are recommended for use there. Also, camping tents are not allowed in any day-use area.
Annual parking passes are available through the Customer Service Center or park. Discount swim coupons and annual swimming passes are available at the park only.
Day-use parking areas near the beach and picnic areas fill up rapidly on summer holidays. At such times, the park closes the park road to additional traffic until enough parking spots have been vacated. Park closure may remain in effect until 4 p.m. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Fishing: Lake Anna is well-known for its largemouth bass, crappie, bream. A variety of other freshwater fish can also be found. A valid Virginia fishing license is required. A 2-acre fishing pond designed for children and disabled persons only is located near the visitor center. Also, a public boat launching ramp is available, along with many areas for bank fishing. Call 1-800-933-PARK to purchase an annual boat launch passport. Click here for park fees.
None, but there are bridle trails. State law requires that visitors carry a copy of a negative Coggins report with each horse brought to the park.
Visit www.lakeannaonline.com for local businesses in the Lake Anna area that offer private campsites, lodging, restaurants, boat rentals, etc.
The picnicking area has grills and restroom facilities. Three picnic shelters are available on a first-come, first-served basis and are reserved by calling the Customer Service Center at (800) 933-PARK. Parking fees are not included in the shelter rental. See above for details.
Lake Anna State Park picnic shelters
Three shelters are available for rent. Two are small, one is large. They can be rented from 8 a.m. to dusk (all day). Click here for park fees. Shelters 1 and 2 are available annually from April 1-Oct. 31. Shelter 3 is available year-round. Because of large crowds and limited parking, the park rents no shelters on holiday weekends. The shelters are available then at no cost on a first-come, first-served basis. Guests are expected to be courteous and share space when possible. This is done because, in the past, guests with shelter reservations often could not be admitted into the park on busy holiday weekends; the parking lot was full. Also note that Shelter 2 is not rented on weekends from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Although shelters are free when no one has rented them, guests should understand that there’s a chance all or part of their party may be turned away if the parking lot is full.
Cancellation policy: No refund within 14 days before reserved date. Before then, there's a cancellation fee.
Amenities: Visitors should contact the park if they want to coordinate payment of park admissions and/or beach admissions for their overall group. Use of a caterer to prepare the meal requires a special use permit. The park is open daily from dawn to dusk. The swimming beach is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on holidays. See particular swimming dates above for more detail.
Shelter #1 (small): The shelter is a 40' x 20' framed tent so there are no poles in the center and the sides are open. No cement floor. The vinyl top has large green and white stripes. There are eight picnic tables and three pedestal grills (charcoal). The shelter can seat 50 people at one time; a group of more than 50 but fewer than 100 can use the site, however people will need to bring lawn chairs. Bringing additional tables and grills is discouraged. Parking space is not a problem. The shelter is at the far corner of the visitor center parking area approximately 200 yards from the beach and restrooms. No electrical outlets or water hydrants. There is not a good view of the lake, however the shelter offers more privacy and a woodland view.
Shelter #2 (small): The shelter is a 40' x 20' framed tent so there are no poles in the center and the sides are open. No cement floor. The vinyl top has large green and white stripes. There are eight picnic tables and two pedestal grills (charcoal). The shelter can seat 50 people at one time; a group of more than 50 but fewer than 100 can use the site, however people will need to bring lawn chairs. Bringing additional tables and grills is discouraged. Parking space is adequate but on busy weekends it may be necessary to offload supplies and park in the beach area parking lot, which is approximately 200 yards away. The shelter is near the shoreline with a view of the lake between the boat ramp and swimming beach. The shelter is within Picnic Area A, and the general public uses the picnic tables and grills around this area. Restrooms are approximately 100 yards away. No electric outlets or water hydrants.
Shelter #3 (large): The shelter is a 25' x 35' wooden frame structure with a cement floor. There are four large picnic tables equivalent to eight regular size tables and two pedestal grills (charcoal). Two tables are wheelchair accessible, and there is a cement walkway leading to the shelter. The shelter can seat 50 people at one time; a group of more than 50 but fewer than 75 can use the site, however people will need to bring lawn chairs. Bringing additional tables and grills is discouraged. Parking space is limited. Groups with more than 25 vehicles are not recommended during the summer season, Memorial Day-Labor Day. The shelter is within Picnic Area B with restrooms and a small playground approximately 50 yards away. No electric outlets or water hydrants. The shelter is not within walking distance of the swimming beach. Reaching the beach is best accomplished by having group members car-pool about ½ mile. Boats can be launched at the park boat ramp and driven a short distance to this area and anchored around the shoreline near the shelter. The shelter has a good view of the lake.
None at this park.
Open Wednesday through Sunday from Memorial Day through Labor Day from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. The visitor center has wildlife and historical exhibits as well as varying interpretive displays on gold mining. Be sure to visit the Gold Mine Gift Shop for a Lake Anna souvenir. All proceeds from the sale of souvenirs are used to operate and maintain Virginia State Parks.
Nearby you'll find: 208 Variety Store, 6274 Courthouse Road; Chelsea Jo's, 5152 Courthouse Road; Tavern on the Rail, 81 Tavern Rd.; Anna Cabana's, 4227 Boggs Drive; and Lakeview Restaurant on Rt. 719. This park has a snack bar in season.
Coin-operated laundry in south loop campground bathhouse.
This park has a facility for groups interested in teaching individuals about the world around them. To enhance the experience, canoe tours are available at certain times of the year. A stream, pond, lake and forest surround the center and the outdoor classroom. These facilities are great places to reserve for group programs. Educational groups may use Lake Anna’s Let’s Explore and Research Nature environmental education lesson plans, DCR’s Your Backyard Classrooms lessons, and park materials, equipment and grounds free of charge. Park staff can help plan the trip, but group leaders must conduct the programs and supervise the group. Training is available for teachers and volunteers. Contact the park for information about the training or to schedule a group activity.
None at this park.
Programs are held Wednesday through Sunday from Memorial Day to Labor Day and on various weekends the rest of the year. Programs include canoe tours, panning for gold, gold mine tours, children in nature, geo-caching and more. Click here to view all parks' events, festivals, workshops and interpretive programs.
The park's snack bar, which is near the swimming beach, offers hot dogs, chicken tenders, French fries, ice cream, soft drinks, etc. It's open Memorial Day through Labor Day. And don't miss the Gold Mine Gift Shop, located in the visitor center, open 11 a.m. - 5 p.m., open Wednesday through Sunday from Memorial Day through Labor Day. There's a small gift shop in the park office.
The land in Lake Anna State Park used to be known as "Gold Hill" and contained the Goodwin Gold Mine. Gold was first discovered in 1829 with mining reaching its peak in the 1880s. In 1971, Lake Anna was created to serve as a water coolant for Virginia Power's nuclear plant. In 1972, work began on the acquisition and development of a water-oriented state park. Lake Anna State Park opened in 1983.
Friends of Lake Anna State Park Inc., a nonprofit citizen group, helps support the park. The group's mission is to help conserve the park's natural, cultural, scenic and recreational resources. The group also helps provide various recreational and educational opportunities, and promotes environmental stewardship on one of Virginia's largest lakes. To join up or learn more about the friends group, please visit its website.
Master plans must be written for parks before they're built. The plans are updated at least once every 10 years thereafter. The plans cover the size, types, infrastructure and locations of facilities as well as the site's special features and resources. Three public meetings are held during the initial development of each plan. Click here for this park's master plan.