Lake Lanier Islands

Gainesville, Lake Lanier Islands, Georgia

The city of Gainesville, GA sits on the shores of Lake Sidney Lanier, 55 miles northeast of downtown Atlanta. At the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and with a population of about 30,000, it is the economic center of Northeast Georgia.

Gainesville’s area main attraction is the 38,000-acre Lake Lanier, which formed behind an Army Corps of Engineers dam. The lake has over 690 miles of shoreline and over 100 small islands. It offers visitors 46 park areas and 10 marinas. In 1996 Lake Lanier served as the 1996 Olympic Rowing Kayaking and Canoe Venue.


The city of Gainesville itself has a restored downtown area with unique gift shops, antiques, and elegant dining. City points of interest include the Arts Council housed in a transformed railroad depot and Quinlan Visual Arts Center visual arts education center.

Motor sports enthusiast will enjoy Lanier National Speedway, a car-racing track sanctioned by NASCAR, and Road Atlanta where the Atlanta Grand Prix takes place. Other notable attractions in the area include Lake Lanier Islands golf courses and the Chateau Elan Winery.

Hotels and motels in Gainesville, Buford and near Lake Lanier range from luxuries to budget friendly. They all put visitors within 5 miles of area attractions.