Parksville Lake, Tennessee, USA

Also known as:  Lake Ocoee, Ocoee Lake

Welcome to the ultimate guide for history, statistics, local fun facts and the best things to do at Parksville Lake.

If you’re considering Parksville Lake vacation rentals, we’ve made it super easy to explore accommodations and nearby hotels using the interactive map below. Simply click on a listing to compare similar properties, best rates and availability for your dates. Or keep scrolling to read our Parksville Lake guide!

Parksville Lake visitor and community guide

Lake Locations: USA - South - Tennessee - East -

Parksville Lake, also known as Ocoee Reservoir, is one of three reservoirs in Polk County near Cleveland,TN. Together the reservoirs run through some of the most beautiful country in Tennessee and provide visitors with plenty of opportunities for outdoor adventures.

Parksville Lake is the largest of the three reservoirs, and it is impounded by the Ocoee No. 1 Dam on the Ocoee River. The other two are Ocoee No. 2 and 3. Completed in 1911 by the Tennessee Electric Power Company, the dam was built on the Great Smoky Fault and was one of the first hydroelectric projects in the area. The Tennessee Valley Authority acquired Ocoee No.1 and 2 in 1939 and built Ocoee No. 3 in 1942 to produce power for WWII.

In addition to supplying reliable power through three plants below the three dams, the Ocoee River is one of the ten best whitewater rivers in the country. There is exceptional whitewater below Ocoee No. 2. There is a five mile long wooden flume that carries water from Dam No. 2 to Powerhouse No. 2. The flume is on the National Register of Historic Places. When the flume was closed for repair, the TVA released water directly into the riverbed creating exceptional whitewater. After the flume was fixed, the TVA made arrangements to periodically release water to maintain the popular whitewater condition. The Ocoee Whitewater Center is below Ocoee No.3 Dam. The 1,500 foot long Center was the site of the 1996 Olympic Slalom Canoe/Kayak Event. Today there are several outfitters that can supply rafting trips for visitors.

Those preferring quieter water will find plenty on Parksville Lake. With almost 2,000 acres of water and several creeks feeding the lake, there are plenty of places to paddle and boat. Anglers will find lots of fish to challenge them including black, largemouth, and spotted bass. There are several public boat ramps and a marina, along with designated swimming and picnic areas.

Most of the land surrounding Parksville Lake and the other two reservoirs is managed by the US Forest Service as part of Cherokee National Forest. Tennessee’s only national forest, Cherokee National Forest covers about 630,000 acres and is Tennessee’s largest tract of public land. The forest was created in 1936 when President Roosevelt combined parts of two national forests and a division of a third. The Civilian Conservation Corps was instrumental in bringing back the parts of the forest that suffered from too much logging and intensive farming.

The Ocoee Scenic Byway travels through Cherokee National Forest and past Parksville Lake. The first National Forest Byway in the nation, it is 19 miles of US Hwy 64 and 7 miles of Forest Service Road 77. It’s a beautiful way to explore the forest and lake and extends to the Old Copper Road. Wagons used the road to transport to transport copper ore down the Ocoee River Gorge to the railroad in Cleveland.

The name Ocoee is Cherokee for “apricot vine place.” It is a name as colorful and interesting as the area around the river and dams that are named for it. Whether you prefer the excitement of whitewater or the calmer exploration of auto touring, Parksville Lake and the surrounding area is sure to have something to please everyone.

Custom Parksville Lake house decor

Read our full review of these personalized lake house signs.

Things to do at Parksville Lake

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Swimming
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Picnicking
  • National Forest

Fish species found at Parksville Lake

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Spotted Bass

Best hotels and vacation rentals at Parksville Lake

The Parksville Lake map shown above is a simple and stress-free way to search for trip accommodations. But if you want to take a deeper dive to find the ideal waterfront home, cabin, condo, hotel or resort, visit our favorite lodging partners by clicking the buttons below.

Note: These are affiliate links so we may earn a small commission if you book through them. While there is no extra cost to you, it helps provide resources to keep our site running (thank you)! You can read our full disclosure policy here.

Parksville Lake photo gallery

New photos coming soon!

Parksville Lake statistics & helpful links


We strive to keep the information on LakeLubbers as accurate as possible. However, if you’ve found something in this article that needs updating, we’d certainly love to hear from you! Please fill out our Content Correction form.

Advertise your Parksville Lake vacation rental

LakeLubbers will soon offer homeowners and property managers the opportunity to to showcase their vacation rentals to the thousands of lake lovers searching our site daily for accommodations. If you’d like additional details, please contact our advertising team here.


Looking for the Parksville Lake forum?

LakeLubbers previously offered visitors the ability to create accounts and participate in lake forums. When we overhauled the site’s content management system in 2021 we had to disable those features. We’re evaluating options and welcome your comments and feedback here.

We also encourage you to join our lake-lovin’ community on Facebook and Instagram!

Spread the word! Share our Parksville Lake article with your fellow Lake Lubbers!