9 Family-Friendly Things to Do in Lake of the Ozarks for Kids

Travel With Kids USA


The Lake of the Ozarks family activities make it a top family-friendly destination to take the kids on their summer vacation. There are so many ways that you can make a whole summer affordable, and accessible as well.

You can rent out your home during the time you’re away to offset the costs, for example, or remote work while you’re on vacation so that your kids have a fun summer out amongst nature.

You can also go up for a weekend or a week. It entirely depends on what works for you.

Canoeing on Lake of the Ozarks with kids

No matter how long you stay up there, you and your kids will love breathing in that fresh mountain air, and be spoiled for choice.

Best Family-Friendly Stays in the Lake of the Ozarks in 2024

There are so many great spots in the Ozarks for you to stay with your family, but when it comes to affordability, value, and amenities, these are by far the top properties to stay in:

1. Westgate Resorts (Lakes and Woods Locations)

Westgate has two locations in Branson Missouri, both of which are great picks for families.

Things to Do in Lake of the Ozarks for Kids Westgate Branson Lakes Resort

Not only is Branson in the heart of the Ozarks, but it’s also home to some of the best activities, including Silver Dollar City, a historic theme park and festival destination that offers something for everyone.

Not only are the rates value-focused, but you’ll also have access to a pool, a bunch of planned events and activities on-site, and even a full gym.

Plus, both the Westgate Resorts in Branson Missouri are pet friendly, so you can save immediately by not having to put your furry family member in a boarding kennel.

2. Beaver Lake Cottages

If you’re after a family-friendly camping experience, head to Arkansas instead to Beaver Lake Cottages, where you can camp in upscale cabins.

This is the most woodsy experience of all the camping options, so if you’re looking for a mix of everything, you may look at a resort closer to a town that has all the action.

3. Margaritaville Lake Resort

If you want to stick with nature and don’t intend to do much else but hang out on a lake, then going up to the Lake of the Ozarks to Margaritaville Lake Resort can be a better pick.

Margaritaville Lake Resort

Like the Westgate Lakes resort, this one is also right on the water and offers great access to the lakes and all there is to do.

Things to Do and Places to Stay in the Lake of the Ozarks for Kids in 2024

There are so many great nature spots, hikes, and outdoor activities but these are just a few of the Lake of the Ozarks family activities to do.

With thousands of trails, caves, and water sports adventure areas, you and your family are spoiled for choice. To help you pick, however, here are some recommendations.

1. Roark Creek Waterfall Trail

If you’re looking for a hike that’s easy for kids and has plenty of exciting waypoints, this trail is the one for you.

Roark Creek Waterfall Trail for things to do in the Ozarks with Kids

Not only is it an easy 1.5-mile out-and-back, but it also takes you through the woods, past several small waterfalls, and ends at a beautiful and towering 45-foot tall waterfall.

There are stairs as well, but those can be slippery, so be careful when taking this trail.

2. The Cathedral of Nature

This is a stunning canyon that quite literally only emerged a few years ago when a sinkhole appeared on a golf course.

The owner spent the next six years excavating it, and it opened to the public just a few years ago, making it one of the newest sites in the Ozarks.

Here you’ll find a beautiful mini canyon, and since it’s right outside Big Cedar Lodge, so there’s plenty to do all day for kids of all ages.

3. Ozarks Mountain Zipline

Couple on the Ozarks Mountain Zipline

If you want to get above the tree line, then go to Ozarks Mountain Zipline. It’s the largest zipline in the area, with the highest cables.

For example, you can take a 2-hour canopy tour for an above-this-world nature experience the whole family will love.

4. Butterfly Palace and Rain Forest Adventures

Ready to see thousands of exotic butterflies all at once? Head to this wildlife center.

It has several environments for their butterflies, so you and your family can see them and all their beautiful colors up close.

5. Branson’s Wild World

From fish to wolves, this wildlife center offers a little bit of everything.

To make it kid-friendly, there’s also an on-site arcade and a mini-golf section, giving you and your family so much to do in one place.

6. Bear Creek Trail Rides

Two Women Horse Back Riding Ozarks Trails

Take a trail on the most gentle horses around through a private ranch. This trail takes you along Bear Creek, through fields and meadows, and is great for first-timers and children alike.

7. Canyon Creek Ranch

This horseback riding experience offers two different trails, allowing you to pick and choose which options suit you and your experience best.

Rest easy, as all the horses are gentle giants, and the guides taking you out are fun and friendly.

8. Silver Dollar City

Silver Dollar City is a different kind of theme park.

Yes, there are thrill rides and plenty to eat, but it’s also where you can try out crafts and listen to live music, especially during the spring, summer, or fall festivals.

9. Shepherd of the Hills

Shepherd of the Hills Tree Top Rope Walkway in the Ozarks

This is another great destination with so much to do. Two of the big highlights are the short 30-minute guided horseback riding trail experiences, and then there’s also the new treetop trails.

Those treetop trails take you up above the forest floor through 600 feet of rope walkways.

Final Thoughts on Things to Do in the Lake of the Ozarks with Kids

If you’re looking for an exciting and family-friendly destinations, with fun and exciting Lake of the Ozarks family activities, then Lake of the Ozarks is the perfect place for you.

With a wide range of activities and attractions, there are plenty of things to do in the Lake of the Ozarks for kids.

From water parks and boat tours to hiking trails and animal encounters, there’s never a dull moment in this scenic location.

Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a longer vacation, the Lake of the Ozarks offers endless opportunities for fun and adventure. So pack your bags and get ready for an unforgettable experience with your kids at the Lake of the Ozarks!

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Andrzej Ejmont

Andrzej believes life to be a never ending adventure. Originally from Poland, he is a devoted husband and father. Dedicated and enthusiastic to chase all his dreams. Storytelling to entice other families to travel.