With over 70 miles of shoreline, much of which is public lands, Priest Lake offers a wide variety of swimming and beach recreation opportunities.
On the east side of the Lake, both Indian Creek and Lionhead Units of Priest Lake State Park have excellent day use areas on large sandy beaches with designated swimming areas. At both sites, day use visitors also have access to grills, picnic tables, rest rooms, etc. During the summer season, Indian Creek unit offers a wide variety of organized activities that are available to both campers and day use visitors. Public boat docking facilities are also available in the vicinity of the launch ramps at both park units.
There are also beaches along Huckleberry Bay and Canoe Point that have public easements. The best access to these beaches is via boat as private property often precludes access from the landward side. All are primitive, without facilities. A small public beach is also located just north of Bishop's Marina in Coolin.
On the west side of the Lake, the USFS Priest Lake Ranger District maintains day use/picnic facilities at Luby Bay Campground and at Reeder Bay Campground (Ledgewood Picnic Area). Both have beach access and the normal array of picnic tables, fire pits, etc. There is a $3 charge to use the Luby Bay Picnic Area, but no charge at Ledgewood. The District also maintains day use areas on Kalispell and Bartoo Islands and the designated camping areas on those islands are also available for day use provided there is no conflict with campers. Likewise, the four designated campgrounds on Upper Priest Lake are also available for day use if not fully occupied by campers.
There are also numerous public land beaches on the west shoreline, primarily towards the northern end of the Lake. The beaches are accessible only via boat or short excursions off main hiking trails. These beaches are seldom crowded and often provide a 'private beach' for day use visitors. Eightmile Island also has a day use beach area. All of these uncontrolled beaches are PACK-IT-IN PACK-IT-OUT areas.
None of the resorts on the lake have public, day use swimming/picnic areas.