Boater’s Guide to CT’s Candlewood Lake

Connecticut’s Candlewood Lake is hugely popular among boaters. Given that it has so much to offer – from spectacular fishing to epic wakeboarding to quiet, secluded coves perfect for family picnics – its popularity is well-deserved.

Candlewood is the largest lake in Connecticut, at 5,420 acres. It was created in 1928 for generating electricity by the Connecticut Light and Power Company. Parts of it are located in the city of Danbury and the towns of Brookfield, New Milford, Sherman and New Fairfield.

The lake is the kind of place that will put a smile on any boater’s face. Anglers love it for its lively fishing scene. Candlewood Lake is known for being one of the top smallmouth bass fishing lakes in the country. It’s also known to have trout, perch, white catfish and many more species. Large stretches of open water also make the lake popular among those who enjoy wakeboarding, waterskiing and tubing. Among the favorite spots for watersports enthusiasts is the area off Hollywyle Park in New Fairfield.

Candlewood Lake is also a favorite destination for families. The lake is known for its many secluded anchorages and is home to lots of small islands that are inviting places to beach a boat and have a picnic. One popular spot among boaters is Chicken Rock in Sherman, where visitors climb rocks and jump into the water.

When visiting Candlewood Lake, be sure to stop by Boston Whaler New England dealer MarineMax of Brookfield (203-740-2628). Located near the lake on Candlewood Lake Road in Brookfield, they can give you great insight on what to see and do in the area.

The lake is a popular spot for trailer boaters, but it is restricted to boats under 26 feet unless approved by special permit. Call 860-354-6928 or visit www.candlewoodlakeauthority.org for information. There are two main boat ramps on the lake – one in Lattins Cove in Danbury and one in Squantz Cove in New Fairfield.

Candlewood Lake is home to several marinas. Pocono Point Marina (203-778-6000) in Danbury has slips, fuel, maintenance service and more. Echo Bay Marina (203-775-7077) in Brookfield is another full-service marina with dockage and fuel.

When you work up an appetite after a day on the lake, a great dock-and-dine option is Down the Hatch Restaurant (203-775-6635) in Brookfield. It is open from May to October and offers a diverse menu. Another restaurant not far from the lake is Mangia Mangia ( 203-775-2191), a popular Italian restaurant in Brookfield. Also, Widow Brown’s Café ( 203-743-7021) is an enjoyable bar and grill in Danbury.