Choosing fun vacation spots in America can be like opening a box of wet matches–it may not be easy finding one that will light your fire. Luckily, Lake Havasu City, Arizona gets more than 300 days of glorious Western sunshine every year, so your match should strike when you play in the dreamlike desert landscape.
To see water you’ll have to head out onto Lake Havasu which just so happens to be the boating Mecca of the Southwest and one of the most popular Arizona weekend getaways!
With more than 60 miles of navigable waterways and no speed or size restrictions for boats, Lake Havasu offer possibilities for aquatic adventures as vast as the wide Western sky.
Sail the afternoon away at a leisurely pace or carry out your own Jacques Cousteau expedition and explore the depths of Lake Havasu in full scuba gear. Bring the kids out to play on the white sandy beaches and watch them splash, dive and swim in the clear blue waters of the lake in one of the best Arizona vacation spots.
When it’s time to dry off, head out into the surrounding desert landscape to frolic in the last fringes of the Western frontier (and find more fun vacation spots). Hike all day through breathtaking red-rock beauty and set up camp underneath the most brilliant night sky you’ll likely ever see. Scoff at antiquated notions like “boundaries” while you roll over gargantuan sand dunes in the area’s many off-road Arizona playgrounds or discover an oasis of rock climbing suitable for all skill levels.
Looking for a little civilization? Head back to Lake Havasu City for top-notch dining, gambling, entertainment and shopping. Tour the world-famous London Bridge or relax in a Lake Side bistro. Whether you’re vacationing with friends or on a family outing, filled with friendly, helpful locals who greet you with a smile, we put legendary Southern hospitality to shame.
You’ll find that Lake Havasu City is the perfect home base for all of your Southwestern expeditions in the fun vacation spots in the area, including Las Vegas, Phoenix, the Bill Williams River National Wildlife Refuge and more. Explore our Arizona road trip ideas!
So, come let loose here on Arizona’s playground! There’s no end to the amount of action you can pack into Arizona weekend getaways in Lake Havasu City. Ask for our Visitors Guide and sign up to receive the latest enews from Lake Havasu City. Soon you’ll be asking for Lake Havasu, Arizona relocation information!
Before Lake Havasu City was known for its world famous London Bridge, lake, miniature lighthouses and beautiful Bridgewater Channel (commonly known as “The Channel”), its future site was an empty expanse of Arizona desert. Lake Havasu was formed by the construction of the Parker Dam from 1934-1938. The reservoir created nearly 450 miles of shoreline and was filled to its capacity of 211 billion gallons in 1940-1942.
In 1963, Robert McCulloch, owner of McCulloch Motors, was flying over Lake Havasu looking for a place to test his outboard engines. He thought that the land surrounding Lake Havasu had great potential for an emerging city. Lake Havasu City was established on September 30, 1963 by resolution #63-12-1as the Lake Havasu Irrigation and Drainage District by the Mohave County Board of Supervisors, making it a legal entity. McCulloch and developer C.V. Wood joined efforts and founded what would be a thriving community. C.V. Wood had previously designed the Disneyland amusement park in Anaheim, California. After four years, a total of 16,520 acres were acquired and prepared for lease.
In 1964, the land had only one unimproved road into the city. McCulloch needed a way to get prospective buyers to the new city; so he chose air charter. Between 1964 and 1978, 2,702 flights brought 137,000 potential land buyers to Lake Havasu City in a huge sales push that targeted mainly people from colder climates. In 1978, the last parcel of land was sold, and the city was incorporated later that year. By 1981, Lake Havasu City boasted a population of 17,000. In subsequent years, the city experienced population growth at a steady flow of about 1,000 people annually. Most came in search of refuge from big cities, and to enjoy Lake Havasu City’s beautiful weather and laid-back lifestyle.
Lake Havasu City’s claim to fame is the London Bridge. The bridge was built as a conventional structure clad with the original granite to retain its antique look. The bridge was reconstructed on a dry piece of land. The land was then dredged from underneath the bridge, creating Bridgewater Channel and “The Island” across the bridge. On October 10, 1971, the completed bridge was formally dedicated in a ceremony attended by over 50,000 American and British spectators and dignitaries.
Nearly 50 years after Robert McCulloch’s initial visit, Lake Havasu City is now home to over 52,000 people and a thriving tourism industry that attracts over 750,000 visitors annually. The community regularly hosts well-known events such as Desert Storm, a world famous boat racing competition, the IJSBA (World Jet Ski Finals), the “Relics and Rods”, a classic car show, the Havasu Island Balloon Festival & Fair, and other exciting events throughout the year.
Lake Havasu is not affiliated with AmericanTowns Media