Beyond Brunch: 15 Best Mother’s Day Boating Spots

There’s no denying that everyone loves brunch. But isn’t that a little overdone? This Mother’s Day, be a bit more adventurous, relaxing, or playful with these local favorite boating sandbars, coves, and backyard destinations. 

We asked boaters in your local areas what their favorite boating spots were. Read on to see where they go to enjoy a fun day on the water.

5 Ways to Staycation with Mom

  • 1. Wingaersheek Beach, MA

    Wingaersheek Beach, 5 miles (8 km) north of the center of Gloucester, Massachusetts, is a family-friendly spot with warm, shallow, safe water for children of all ages. Boaters love Wingaersheek because they can approach it via the Annisquam River and moor just out of the channel's deeper water.

  • 2. Marina Bay, Quincy, MA

    Marina Bay is the place to go outside of Boston for a laid-back atmosphere where you can dine, drink, and relax. Grab some ice cream and enjoy a gorgeous New England sunny day.

  • 3. Cabbage Key Marina, Pineland, FL

    Located approximately 20 miles northwest of Ft. Meyers is Cabbage Key. It’s the ideal destination for a romantic getaway for just mom and dad or bring the whole family and explore the nature trails. Relax – old Florida style. Enjoy a book by the water, bring an easel and paint, or bring your own fishing pole and fish off the dock.

  • 4. Jewfish Key Sandbar, Longboat Key, FL

    This popular weekend spot is a local favorite due to its clear water and secluded location. Grab the floaties and relax with the family while exploring for sea creatures. The edges of the bar offer fantastic swimming holes and the water is clear and comfortable. You’ll want to use a bow anchor and a stern anchor when securing your spot.

  • 5. Three-Rooker Island, Clearwater, FL

    Three-Rooker Bar is a small, semicircular island bar just off the coast of northern Pinellas that has emerged within the last decade. On weekends boaters gather to enjoy Caribbean-blue water and the white, sugary-soft sand. This island is accessible only by boat or personal watercraft. The closest ramp is the Dunedin Marina and Anclote Park. Tip: No glass or pets allowed on the beach.

  • 6. Maynards on the Lake, Excelsior, MN

    I know we said no brunch spots, but we’d be amiss if we did not include Maynards on Lake Minnetonka. Head by boat and enjoy their Mother’s Day brunch while sitting lake-side. 

  • 7. Ingram Cove, Lake Hopatcong, NJ

    Ingram Cove is a bay located just .5 miles from Hopatcong, in Sussex County, New Jersey. Don’t forget the fishing rods, as this spot is known to hook up.

  • 8. Osborn Island, Brick, NJ

    Osborn Island is frequented by river traffic as a nice place to relax and have a drink. The island itself offers multiple trails crisscrossing the woods, beach areas that allow anyone to come ashore, and a nice relaxing atmosphere.

  • 9. Cypress Creek Park, Austin, TX

    Cypress Creek Park is located on Lake Travis in the scenic Hill Country of central Texas. This small, easy-to-reach park, within a 30-minute drive from downtown Austin, is a favorite spot for boating, picnicking, and fishing. Amenities include: Barbecue grills, boat ramp, fishing, picnic tables, and portable toilets.

  • 10. Ha Ha Tonka State Park, Lake of the Ozarks, MO

    With its intriguing history and outstanding geologic features, Ha Ha Tonka State Park is one state park that should not be missed. Access the park from the Lake of the Ozarks within the Big Niangua arm at the 14-½ mile marker. There are docks on both the castle ruins and spring side of the cove. The boat length limit for docking at the park is 24 feet.

  • 11. Peanut Island, West Palm Beach, FL

    Peanut Island Park is located on the Intracoastal Waterway, near the Lake Worth Inlet, Riviera Beach, and a top boating destination for those in Palm Beach County. Amenities include a dock, designated swimming area, snorkeling, sandbars, picnic areas, restrooms, showers, camping, and even a presidential nuclear bomb shelter. Fun fact: it got its name from a peanut oil shipping terminal that at one time was to be built there.

  • 12. Zieglers Cove, Norwalk, CT

    West of the Norwalk Islands is one of the prettiest little coves on the Sound, Zieglers Cove. It’s a wonderful, undeveloped spot. However, there is very little room to anchor close in. Stay away from boats on mooring since they swing at a different rate. Since there are numerous charted rocks, use compass bearings off the various points on your way in and out, and keep your speed under 2 knots.

  • 13. Sand City Island, Long Island, NY

    A shore secret along Northport, NY, is Sand City, a popular boater’s beach and swimming hangout that was home to a sand-mining operation from 1925 through 1964. The fine sand here was used to make cement, and much of it can still be found in New York City’s sidewalks and buildings. The sand bottom here is great for anchoring, and the protected cove is a popular spot to overnight.

  • 14. Fall Creek Waterfall on Lake Keowee, Salem, SC

    The Fall Creek Waterfall is one of the hottest spots on Lake Keowee to hang out and enjoy an afternoon. During the week it is relatively quiet, but on the weekends, you can see upwards of 30 boats moored enjoying the view.

  • 15. Morris Island, Charleston, SC

    Visit the iconic Morris Island Light House by boat from offshore, but make sure the tide is high. Visit land and go shell-seeking on the island. Bonus points if you see dolphins on your way!

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