Best Room: For families, Knotty Pine one-room cottages with a second-bed loft, $91-$411. For couples, try the super-spacious cabins, $171-$398. (Rates are low season to high season.)
Best Economy Tips: Ski boats rent for $75 an hour, but canoes are free. Also, the dive-in movies for kids at the Swimming Hole (held four or five nights a week) are free.
Best Way To Get There: In May, the $140-million Branson Airport opened 10 miles from Big Cedar Lodge. From Atlanta and Dallas, Airtran flies for $89 one-way.
Big Cedar Lodge: www.big-cedar.com or 1-800-225-6343
photo: Johnny A. Morris