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Smith Mountain Lake

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747 posts
43 reviews
Smith Mountain Lake

How far is it to SML from the center of Roanoke. Also, what is there to do in Roanoke and along the way to SML for families?

Destination Expert
for Virginia Beach
Level Contributor
6,257 posts
15 reviews
1. Re: Smith Mountain Lake

SML is 20,600 acres with 500 miles of shoreline. You can rent boats by the hour and day, including pontoon boats. You can rent various sizes of houseboats too for days at a time. You might be interested in this site that has lots of info on SML.


Friends with lots of children enjoy the following in Roanoke: millmountain.org/newseason.htm


smwv.org/ (the Va Science Museum)

vmt.org/ (Va Museum of Transportation)

There are several fun festivals. Not knowing your time frame, most are listed here: 10best.com/Roanoke/Local_Events/Local_Events/

The Market Square is fun on Saturday mornings.

You could hike in the Blue Ridge Mts.

As for things to do along the way....it would be great to find a little playground, even at a school, and an ice cream shop....I come at the Lake from another direction though so I'm not familiar. You might ask the Roanoke Visitor Info Center or ask them how you would find out. It is only about 30 minutes thought, so not bad.

Level Contributor
145 posts
8 reviews
2. Re: Smith Mountain Lake

It can vary from 40 minutes upwards, depending on what part of the lake you are trying to get to. We were travelling from the airport area to the closest end of the lake to Roanoke and were averaging 40 - 45 minutes to get door to door.

There are quite a few historical sites along the way. The only one I have been to is the Booker T. Washington Historical site. There isn't a ton there, so it doesn't take up much time, but it was interesting and educational.