“I thought it must be the fairest picture the whole earth affords.”
– Mark Twain
Noted for its spectacular natural beauty, Lake Tahoe’s premier year-round vacation resort is one of the most scenic destinations in the nation. Lake Tahoe is the largest alpine lake in the world. It is 12 miles wide, 22 miles long and features 72 miles of sandy shoreline. The name “Tahoe” comes from the Washoe (Native American) word “Da-ow-a-ga,” which means “Lake of the Sky.” Located along the border between California and Nevada in the snow-capped Sierra Nevada Mountains, South Lake Tahoe is approximately a 4-hour drive from San Francisco.
Fun Lake Tahoe Attractions
Lake Tahoe offers a wide range of fun Summer and Winter recreational activities. The sun shines over 300 days a year, making Tahoe a perfect outdoor destination year-round. Enjoy scenic lake cruises, boating, kayaking, parasailing, water-skiing, fishing, horseback riding, carriage and haywagon rides, tennis, year-round golfing, mountain biking, and hiking. North and South Lake Tahoe (California and Nevada) offer world-class Alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling and snowboarding during the Winter months. Lake Tahoe is also one of the nation’s most popular gaming destinations. Try your hand at “Lady Luck” at Lake Tahoe’s Las Vegas-style casinos and resorts – Blackjack, Baccarat, Bingo, Craps, Roulette, Poker, Slot Machines… and more!
Tahoe’s scenic South Shore has it all – non-stop action or relaxation. Enjoy beautiful beaches, fun water sports, parks, forests and hiking trails, world-class ski resorts, museums, art galleries, shopping, restaurants, casinos, nightclubs, outdoor concerts and gambling 24/7. Visit Heavenly Village and ride the Heavenly Gondola to the top of the mountain for stunning Tahoe views. Emerald Bay, Camp Richardson Beach, Zephyr Cove, Nevada Beach (our favorite Tahoe beach), and Eagle Falls are popular South Shore attractions. July 4th “Lights on the Lake” is a fun time to visit South Lake Tahoe.
Tahoe’s laid-back North Shore features scenic parks and forests, filled with giant Ponderosa Pines and Douglas Firs – and 20 miles of shoreline. Kings Beach, Carnelian Bay and Squaw Valley (the ski resort was host to the 1960 Winter Olympics) are popular North Shore attractions. Kings Beach State Recreation Area is one of the most popular beaches. Its 700 feet of lakefront is the largest public access white sandy beach on Lake Tahoe’s North Shore. Enjoy fun nightlife and gambling at the Nevada-side casinos.
Lake Tahoe Ski Resorts
- Alpine Meadows
- Heavenly Mountain Resort
- Mt. Rose
- Squaw Valley
- Sugar Bowl
Heavenly Mountain Resort, Gondola & Observation Deck
Heavenly is the largest resort in California. The mountain, at over 10,000 feet, is Lake Tahoe’s highest summit. It averages almost 400 inches of snowfall every year. The Gondola at Heavenly is a fun Lake Tahoe attraction. Enjoy stunning views of Lake Tahoe as the 8-passenger cable cars take you 2.4 miles up the mountain in 12 minutes. The Observation Deck, located at 9,123 feet, offers panoramic views of the Carson Valley, Desolation Wilderness and Lake Tahoe.
Book Lake Tahoe Sightseeing Tours, Day Trips and Fun Things To Do
Take a fun Lake Tahoe Emerald Bay Cruise or a Sunset Dinner Cruise on M.S. Dixie II. Emerald Bay is one of Tahoe’s most scenic spots, perfect for picture-taking. The Sunset Cruise includes champagne, dinner, live music and dancing. Rent a Powerboat and enjoy a day on the lake with your family or friends. Book a thrilling South Lake Tahoe Parasailing Ride and get a birds-eye view of the area as you soar through the air. Visit wineries and go wine-tasting on an El Dorado Wine Country Tour from South Lake Tahoe. Take a Half-Day Lake Tahoe Photographic Tour, led by an experienced photo guide. Get professional photography tips as you take in Lake Tahoe’s most breathtaking sights.
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The Best Time To Visit Lake Tahoe
Anytime is a good time to visit scenic Lake Tahoe. The popular year-round destination draws millions of visitors from around the globe. The hottest months are July through August. Expect snow and low temperatures during November to early April. Spring and Fall can be relatively mild or chilly during the day and cold at night, so be sure to wear layers.
Note that the weather can change on a dime. We experienced ALL four seasons (and snow) during one of our visits in early June!
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