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Lake Manawa State Park

Lake Manawa State Park

1100 South Shore Drive
Council Bluffs, IA 51501
ph. 712-366-0220
fax  712-366-0474

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Facilities and Activities

Lake Manawa State Park provides many locations for fun family picnics. A number of open picnic shelters are located around the lake. These may be reserved online through the park reservation system. A shelter with kitchen facilities is a recent addition.

Lake Manawa State Park provides ample opportunity for a hike or a leisurely walk or a bike ride along the shoreline. A nature trail with a paved surface offers opportunity to walkers and for the mobility-impaired. A paved bike trail within the park has been constructed and connects to the Western Trails Center, Council Bluffs trail system, and the Wabash Trace Trail.

For the extreme bikers, there are approximately 8 miles of mountain bike trails located near the boat ramps of the Missouri River. From easy to difficult, these trails are sure to test your biking ability.

Lake Activities (Swimming, boating, fishing)
Lake Manawa is the premier boating spot in the Omaha/Council Bluffs area. Boat motors of any size may be operated on the lake. Modern boat ramps are located on the north, south and west sides of the lake. A Missouri River boat ramp also provides boaters access to the river.

M and M Services at Lake Manawa Beach is open Memorial Day weekend thru Labor Day weekend, 7 days a week, 11 AM - 7 PM daily. Sand volleyball; a good variety of food and snacks, and floaties for sale. Rentals include tubes, kayaks, canoes and paddle boards. Information also available on the Lake Manawa Beach Facebook page or call 712-366-4802.

Lake Manawa Sailing Association  712-256-3832 (facility); 402-660-2720 (President of the Association) is open Friday before Memorial Day through Labor Day, 7 days a week, noon to 8:00 pm Monday thru Friday and 9:00 am to 9:00 pm on Saturdays and Sundays. They have dry storage for approximately 110 sailboats and other non-motorized boats, wet-slips for 10 boats, and locker and sail storage. They have a ramp for launching sailboats and docks for tying-up. Beach and picnic shelter are also provided, recreational facilities for members and the public. Additional information is available at  www.sailmanawa.com.

Lake Manawa is also a favorite spot for anglers of all ages. Good catches of crappies, bluegills and catfish may be had throughout the year. Excellent populations of good size bass and walleye can be expected.

Lake Manawa is a great place for swimmers and sunbathers, young and old. A modern beach facility provides opportunities for swimming, as well as refreshments.

Beach Monitoring Results

Lake Manawa State Park is one of the most popular outdoor recreation facilities in the Omaha/Council Bluffs metropolitan area. The park's 1,529 acres encompass a beautiful 772-acre lake. Lake Manawa was formed during a flood in 1881 when a portion of the river channel was cut off by the meandering of the great Missouri River. Over the years, the resulting "oxbow" lake, became a major outdoor recreation center for thousands of visitors. "Manawa" is a Native American term meaning "peace and comfort."

Nearby Towns
Lake Manawa State Park is located 2 1/2 miles south of Interstate 80 (Exit 3) at Council Bluffs, Iowa. It is located 2 1/2 miles west of Interstate 29 (Exit 47).

Nearby Lakes

Lake Manawa
Saganaush Pond
Missouri River (Little Sioux to Council Bluffs)
Big Lake (Including Gilbert's Pond)
Carter Lake
Folsom Lake
Pony Creek Lake


Within park
Bait, Beach, Bicycling, Bird Watching, Boat Launch Ramp, Boat Rental, Boating, Camping - Youth Group, Canoe Rental, Canoeing, Concession, Dock, Boat, Dump Station, Firewood Sales, Hiking, Horseshoe Pits, Kayaking, Mountain Biking, Picnic Area, Picnic Shelter, Pier, Fishing, Pit Toilets, Playground, Restrooms, Retail, Bait & Tackle, Swimming - Beach, Trails, Bicycle, Trails, Cross Country Skiing, Walking, Wildflower Viewing, Wildlife Viewing

Less than a mile
ATM/Cash Machine, Church, Fuel, Boats, Fuel, Vehicles, Maintenance, RV/Camper, Rentals, Fishing Equipment, Retail, Ice

More than a mile
Art & Museum, Cabins, Maintenance, Boat