Editor’s Note: This is a personal review from 2014. We have updated any pertinent information but your experience and current offerings may vary. See their website for the most up-to-date and accurate information.
This is my third summer living in Lake County. After driving past the huge “Fish Lake Beach” sign on Route 12 every day, I finally ventured inside! You’ve probably passed it too if you’ve ever driven up Route 12 through Volo (Volo Auto Museum anyone? It’s across the street!).
Fish Lake Beach & Campground, Volo
My first impression of Fish Lake Beach/Campground is that it was way bigger than I expected (the campground, that is). They had spots for tent camping and RV camping and then tons and tons of trailers that looked like they stayed there all year round. Everything looked nice, and many had little gardens and decks all around them. I felt like I was driving through a friendly summer community, which in fact, I was!
The beach is open to the public on weekends ($4 per person. Kids 3 and under are free). I thought that was a very reasonable price as most of the pools around here cost more than that to get into. It’s not a huge beach, but I didn’t find it to be too small either. We went on a Sunday on a holiday weekend, and we had no problem finding a nice spot to lay our beach towels out on the sand. There were many people around: swimming, playing beach volleyball, picnicking, etc., and everyone was really, really nice. It was a little like taking a step back in time. Cars were lined up right to the beach. Music was playing, and people were having a good time. A little store sold ice cream, drinks, and hamburgers & hotdogs – all for a very reasonable price. The store had a lovely veranda with a swing, and next to that, a small mini-golf course. Nothing fancy, mind you, but still – for $2 around – not bad at all!
I checked out their newsletters and calendar in the store, and it listed all the activities they have for the campers – talent shows, scavenger hunts, dances, crafts, all kinds of fun stuff! It made me want to come for a camping trip!
The only downside I found from our entire visit that day was the continuous “breaks” that the lifeguards took. We were there only an hour and a half, and they had three breaks during that time. Each one lasted about 10-15 minutes. Now, if you have a toddler as I do, then you know how difficult it can be to get them to stop doing something they love. So each time, I had to drag my screaming 23-month-old out of the water. This was something I haven’t run into at other beaches. The staff seemed inattentive. This is the only area where they lose points with me. Otherwise, our experience here was pretty great.
Fish Lake also has a playground right on the beach, which my daughter enjoyed – especially their oversized bucket swings! They also had huge piles of sand for the kids to play in and paddle boats that you could rent. I will return to Fish Lake Beach another day. It sure is a hidden gem!
Fishing pole rentals, paddle boat rentals, and mini-golf are also available. See the website for hours, admission, and rental price list.