The Ultimate Lake Oconee Vacation Guide | Vacation Like A Local

The Ultimate Lake Oconee Vacation Guide | Vacation Like A Local

Welcome!  We are so glad you made it here today.

In this Guide you will find everything you need to know about what to do and where to go while you are visiting us here at Lake Oconee.

First, we will share with you all the fun things to do while you visit Lake Oconee like listening to some live music, where to eat, best out of the box shopping and events to plan your visit around. Looking for a place to stay? Not to worry, we have a few suggestions.

Then, we’ll let you in on a few insider tips, like the best place to eat chicken salad or to have dinner on the lake while the sun is setting.

Sound good so far?  Let the fun begin...


Tip #1: Things to Do While Visiting Lake Oconee

Tip #2: Where To Eat: On & Off The Lake 

Tip #3: Best Boutiques Worth Checking Out

Tip #4: Events to Plan Your Stay Around

Tip #5: Best Lodging on Lake Oconee

Things to Do While Visiting Lake Oconee

Live Entertainment

You can’t go wrong with catching a concert at one of our local venues. For all our upcoming events, click here.

More Live Music:

Sports, Museums, History + More

Whether you are an outdoor enthusiast or a history buff, there is an activity that is calling your name. We offer the most thorough guide to Lake Oconee’s art, culture, history and just plain fun anywhere online.




Where To Eat + Drink: On & Off The Lake 





Best Boutiques Worth Checking Out




Events To Plan Your Stay Around

Lake Oconee Food & Wine

Third weekend in March. This three-day food and wine festival features over 200 wines from vintners across the globe as well as sought after international liquors. The festival highlights our regions most creative chefs and culinary expertise plus an eclectic mix of performers while benefiting the children of the Lake Oconee community. This event sells out quickly.

The Big Event

Third weekend in March. This event is sponsored by the Lake Oconee Builders Association and features local builders, suppliers and local businesses while offering an array of family fun. You will enjoy local talent, bounce houses, beer tent, boat show and so much more. Designed for the whole family.

Madison in May - Tour of Homes

First weekend in May. Historic Madison is proud to be one of the largest historic districts in the state of Georgia. Tour the collection of Madison’s finest architecturally significant homes.

Dairy Festival | Torture Trail Road Race

Always the first Saturday in June! The Pilot Club of Eatonton has sponsored this event for over 40 years. This multi-faceted event includes a Fun Run, 10k Road Race known as The Torture Trail, parade, vendor booths and more.

Outdoor Summer Concert Series at The Ritz Carlton Lake Oconee

The Ritz-Carlton Reynolds, Lake Oconee kicks off the summer in June and with live music and fireworks every week through Labor Day weekend. Use the link above to see upcoming bands and what weekly entrees the chefs have created for you!

Pickin on the Green

Last Friday in June. This family friendly event features live music, children’s activities, and of course shopping and dining.

4th of July at Lake Oconee

Lake Oconee knows how to celebrate the 4th of July!!! You will experience days of fireworks, amazing food from local restaurants, non-stop music events and more.

Southern Classic Annual BBQ Competition

This FREE event is 4th Saturday of August. This is a great way to enjoy the local BBQ flavors of the south by sampling chicken, pork ribs, beef tri-tip and more. Enjoy live music, kid crafts and more. Fun family event.

Taste of Eatonton

First Monday in October. If you plan on visiting the last weekend in September, stay an extra night and enjoy this event. Sample over 20 different local restaurants from Georgia’s Lake Country.

Downtown Cook-Off & Fall Festival

4th Saturday in October. Couple this event with the Rhythm + Brews or enjoy an all day chili cook off and fall festival by itself. This family fun event includes, yummy chili samples, crafters, vendors and musicians.

Rhythm & Brews Festival

Fourth Saturday in October. This event has become a local favorite. Live music, craft beer, wine tasting, food trucks and more.

Holiday Tour of Homes

First weekend in December. Tour the beautiful homes of Madison, Georgia while they are adorned in Christmas decor. Daytime and candlelight tours are available.

Best Lodging on Lake Oconee

Take the guess work out of searching for the perfect VRBO, call St James Vacation Homes and let them plan your dream vacation at Lake Oconee. They take care of all of the details including stocking the refrigerator with delicious homemade meals. Call 706.816.5069 or search listings below.

St James Vacation Homes logo.png

Lake Oconee

Vacation Rentals


We have partnered with Agoda (part of the Priceline family) for our Reservation system. Please click the images below to book with confidence that you are receiving the best possible rate at Lake Oconee. Agoda allows you to book online and pay once you arrive at the hotel.

The Ritz-Carlton Reynolds, Lake Oconee

The Lodge on Lake Oconee

Camping (RV + Tent)

We hope you found this ultimate guide useful. If there is anything we can do to help you plan you stay, please feel free to email,

Here are some additional posts that you might find useful:

Breakfast + Brunch Guide at Lake Oconee

Lake Oconee Marinas + Boat Ramps

The Best Girl’s Weekend at Lake Oconee

The Ultimate Guide To Best Happy Hours at Lake Oconee

Top 17 Spots For Outdoor Dining at Lake Oconee

Dog Friendly Restaurants at Lake Oconee

What To Do With Kids At Lake Oconee


Holly, Lynward and Evan

PS: While you are here, be our guest and take advantage of these great local deals.