Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada
The breathtaking glacial Lake Louise shares its name with neighboring Lake Louise ski resort, which is famous for its incredible views and for annually hosting the World Cup alpine races in late November to early December. Spending time next to one of the world’s most beautiful mountain lakes is especially easy for guests of the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, as the historic hotel sits on the banks of the lake. Lake Louise is at its best in the late spring months, when the turquoise-hued waters are melted and snow-capped peaks make for a perfect backdrop. In the winter months, ice hockey tournaments and other outdoor activities abound on frozen Lake Louise.
Interlaken, which translates to “between lakes,” is a gorgeous municipality high in the Swiss Alps. The town of Interlaken sits between Thunersee and Brienzersee mountain lakes and is the starting point for the Jungfraujoch (train), which provides year-round outdoor enthusiasts with access to the Jungfrau Top of Europe ski area. The top of the Jungfraujoch transports skiers, hikers, climbers, mountain bikers and site-seers to the many trails and routes, which provide opportunities to explore the famed Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau peaks.
Maroon Lake, Aspen, Colorado
The Maroon Bells—the famed peaks pictured below—are among the American West’s most iconic images. In fact, the Maroon Bells and Maroon Lake, are some of the U.S.’s most photographed scenes. Located 10 miles from downtown Aspen, Maroon Lake is easy to get to via car or bus during the warmer months. In the winter many people cross-country ski or snowmobile to access this incredible view.
Lake Tahoe, California
Straddling Nevada and California, Lake Tahoe is the U.S. largest alpine lake, and sixth largest by volume in the U.S. The lake is host to year-round outdoor activities including skiing, hiking, SUPing, kayaking and boating. Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood and Squaw are among some of the ski resorts that enjoy incredible views of this pristine lake.
Lake Placid, New York
Home of the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympics, Lake Placid enjoys a long history of tourism and outdoor recreation. Whiteface ski resort looks down at the horseshoe-shaped mountain lake and provides skiers and snowboarders with incredible views of the lake and the surrounding Adirondack Mountains.
Lake Pend Oreille, Idaho
The largest lake in Idaho’s Panhandle, Lake Pend Oreille is 43 miles in length. The city of Sandpoint sits on the bank of the lake and provides the perfect basecamp for year-round activities. The views of Lake Pend Oreille from Schweitzer Mountain Resort, which is located just 12 miles from Sandpoint, are truly stunning. On a sunny day, the lake glitters from afar.
Mammoth Lakes, California
Located on the edge of the Long Valley Caldera, Mammoth Lakes is not only dotted with many gorgeous mountain lakes, but hot springs and rhyolite domes. The eastern entrance to Yosemite National Park is just 32 miles from Mammoth Lakes. Many small lakes are close to Mammoth ski resort and are frequented by hikers in the summer months or snowmobilers in the winter months.
Mont Tremblant, Quebec, Canada
Located in Quebec’s Laurentian Mountains, Mont Tremblant rises up next to Lac-Tremblant-Nord. The year-round views of the glittering lake below from Mont Tremblant’s trails round-out the picturesque experience that pervades this mountain resort from its charming European base village and gorgeous Laurentian scenery.