Lake Tahoe California, Nevada
Emerald Bay surrounded by lush forest
A hike rewarded with great views
All smiles after a fun day on the lake
Stand-up paddleboard for two
Kayaking through the gentle waters
Zipping down the mountainside
Getting a tow through the snow
Ready to play in the snow all day
Sunset over the mountains and Emerald Bay
Mountain biking through the rugged wilderness
Lake Tahoe: High-altitude adventures around a beautiful mountain lake
Of all the things you can do on this exceptional lake, kayaking is at the top of the list. A whole host of outfitters will set you up to cruise these waters and take in the incredible views (if stand up paddle boarding is your thing, you’re set there, too). Back on terra firma, hike Eagle Falls, a 2.9-kilometer jaunt through Sierra high country that takes you up to Eagle Lake, where you can cool off with a swim.
Resort life abounds here too. At Heavenly Mountain, join ski school, take a gondola ride or hop on the mountain coaster, a thrilling gravity-propelled roller coaster through the forest. Learn to snowboard or take a private, guided expedition through the mountain’s best spots at Kirkwood. Family-friendly Sierra at Tahoe offers tons of lessons and programs on its accessible mountain for adventurers of all ages.
Such Great Heights and Sights
Discover a hidden castle, Vikingsholm, on the edge of Emerald Bay. To get there, it’s about a 1.6-kilometer hike down a well-traveled path at about 1,900 meters. Along the way, enjoy amazing views of the bay and forest below, then take a tour of the 19th century estate. After your hike and tour, take in views of Lower Eagle Falls or unwind at Emerald Bay Beach.
Across the lake, hit Zephyr Cove Beach, where the shoreline arcs around the lake and is backed by beautiful woods. Here you can play volleyball, work on your tan or sip a refreshing drink before dipping into the alpine waters. Reserve a day to drive a 100-kilometer loop known as the Lake Tahoe Scenic Drive which goes completely around the lake, stopping at historic sites, parks, beaches and villages along the way.
Entertainment for All Ages
Catch a paddlewheel boat cruise around Emerald Bay on a well-appointed ship straight out of the early 1900s. For a few hours you’ll be treated to great dining, signature cocktails and views you’ll have plenty of time to take in. South Lake Tahoe’s Heavenly Village is the place to pick up Lake Tahoe souvenirs and Sierra-style fashions, but you can also score lunch or dinner, go ice skating and see a movie. Elsewhere in the area, you can hop over to Stateline, Nevada for some grown-up gaming and entertainment.
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The name Tahoe comes from a mispronunciation of the Washoe Native American name for Lake Tahoe, “da ow a ga,” which means, “edge of the lake.”
Tahoe is the second deepest lake in the USA, the third deepest in North America and 11th deepest in the world.
Lake Tahoe’s water is 99.994% pure, making it one of the purest large lakes in the world.
Photo: Aramark/Rachid Dahnoun