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ICONIC CITY: Our Guide to Things to Do in Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe Edgewood resort best place to stay

Edgewood Tahoe

Adventure abounds in and around this emerald jewel.

For many, Lake Tahoe is a winter excursion filled with skiing, sledding and snow-capped mountains, but to see this town as a year-round destination, brings on a whole new sense of adventure. Lake Tahoe has two distinct “towns” on the North and South sides of this emerald jewel, and for this guide, we will be traveling the South shore.

Lake Tahoe is the largest Alpine lake in the U.S. at 6,225 feet above sea level and is nestled by the Carson Range and the Sierra Nevada mountains, with peaks that top out at almost 11,000 feet. This pristine lake is surrounded by marshes, coves and forest all waiting to be explored. With its 72 miles of shoreline, it can accommodate the almost 15 million visitors a year in search of connecting with nature and craving new experiences to renew their senses.

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For first-time visitors who are awe-struck by the beauty of Lake Tahoe, the majestic mountains, open skies and the crystal-clear blue water quickly become immersed in all its wonders. What makes this town unique is that even during the most-crowded times, it is easy to get “lost” on the lake or in the woods just to feel cool breezes off the water, listen to the waves crash on the shore or hear the leaves rustle in the wind.
With full-time residents only accounting for 40,000 people, Lake Tahoe is very protective of the blue water and vast forest entrusted to the town and keeping it preserved for future generations. The Keep Tahoe Blue organization, which was founded in 1957, continues to help define the balance between outdoor recreation, human use and lake resilience.
With all there is to experience at Lake Tahoe, set in a picturesque locale, you are sure to find the getaway you imagined in this slice of paradise.

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WHERE TO STAY
Your stay in Lake Tahoe means luxury, service and amenities. Each of these resorts offers guests the exact stay they are craving; where no detail is missed, beautiful views abound and tranquility reigns supreme.

Each of these resorts offers guests the exact stay they are craving; where no detail is missed, beautiful views abound and tranquility reigns supreme.

best place to say at Edgewood in Lake Tahoe

Edgewood Tahoe

Edgewood Tahoe
With its stunning grounds right on the shore of Lake Tahoe, this boutique resort offers delights that are beyond compare. The elevated dining experience at the Edgewood Restaurant with lake views only enhance the enjoyment of the Brandt Farms Filet Mignon and Praline Panna Cotta for dessert. The spa offers an array of treatments that will make you feel pampered following a day out on the lake or after playing golf on the world-renowned course created by George Fazio and renovated later by golf architect Tom Fazio.

best place to stay at The Landing in Lake Tahoe

The Landing Resort and Spa

The Landing Resort and Spa
This secluded lakeside resort offers its guests tranquility with its relaxed atmosphere and lakefront accommodations, where every creature comfort is yours. The resort boasts Alpine luxury of rich wood details, European rain showers and a stone fireplace in each room. The private dining alcove at Jimmy’s Restaurant is the perfect place to indulge in a meal of Seafood Risotto with your own private fireplace to enjoy. Then head out to the patio to partake in a Watermelon Basil Mojito under the moonlight and stars.

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Marriott Grand Residence in Lake Tahoe

Marriott Grand Residence Club

Marriott Grand Residence Club
This resort has all the amenities that any guest would enjoy, but it is also in the midst of dining and shopping in Heavenly Village. A short walk will take you to The Social House for a light breakfast or Rise ‘n Shine cocktails. Even in the middle of the hustle of this town, this hotel still offers the calm oasis many treasure in Lake Tahoe, with well-appointed modern residences that offer the creature comforts of home. Enjoy an afternoon in the outdoor pool or the evening sitting by the fire.

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WHERE TO EAT
Dining in Lake Tahoe is a foodie’s paradise where fresh, local ingredients are a mainstay, and the quality of the meal is what dining is all about. These restaurants focus on what they do best and have become favorites on the South shore.

These restaurants focus on what they do best and have become favorites on the South shore.

best place to each Azul Latin Kitchen Lake Tahoe

Azul Latin Kitchen

Azul Latin Kitchen
As a standout restaurant in Heavenly Village, Azul Latin Kitchen is focused on serving the best Mexican and South American cuisine, where the ingredients are locally sourced. The chef’s take on lighter and healthier food is perfect for those wanting to indulge in a fajita burrito topped with the red mole and green suiza sauce. The craft cocktails are reason alone to stop by, and The Wild Hibiscus Margarita is the perfect finish.

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Cold Water Brewery & Grill

Cold Water Brewery & Grill
Sometimes the best meal is made-from-scratch comfort food and a cold brew. Being a top spot among the locals on the South shore, try the Knock ‘Em Dead Red Ale that pairs perfectly with the CW Burger or the fish and chips. This all-grain brewery crafts each unique beer on site with even the most discerning IPA palate in mind.

Sprouts Café Tahoe
Sprouts offers lighter fare and wholesome food, where fresh ingredients won’t make you feel guilty when you splurge on the Ugly, Gooey, Excellent Nachos. The menu offers a number of perfect to-go options great for a picnic and for those heading out on a hike or bike ride. The Turkey Sandwich with onions, romaine, guacamole and balsamic vinaigrette on whole wheat bread packs protein and flavor in one.

best place to eat in Lake Tahoe

Sprouts Café Tahoe

Ten Crows best place to eat in Lake Tahoe

Ten Crows BBQ

Ten Crows BBQ
The welcoming Southern hospitality of Ten Crows gives patrons a place to unwind and gather with friends while enjoying California contemporary-style food with a Southern twist. The brisket is perfectly seasoned and smoked overnight for the best flavor BBQ in town. Sweet tea is the quintessential drink of the South, and Ten Crows’ Tennessee Tea includes Jack Daniels, peach liqueur and lemon which makes this old time drink a local favorite.

best pizza restaurant Base Camp Pizza Co in Lake Tahoe

Base Camp Pizza Co.

Base Camp Pizza Co.
After a day of activity in Lake Tahoe, you are bound to be famished and looking to satisfy your appetite, and Base Camp Pizza is the place to dine. Base Camp has a full menu of Italian dishes, but the pizza is a standout from the rest. The Fire Roasted Veggie pizza topped off with goat cheese and the classic Base Camp pizza will fit the bill. On a cool night, indulge in a warm cocktail like the Slippery Slope with peanut butter Whiskey, Frangelico, Bailey’s, coffee and a splash of hot chocolate.

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WHAT TO DO
If you are looking for a vacation focused on outdoor adventure, then Lake Tahoe is a perfect fit. The opportunities to immerse yourself in the splendor of this place range from biking, boating and parasailing, which will keep you asking, “What’s next?”

Clearly Tahoe transparent kayaking in Lake Tahoe

Clearly Tahoe

Clearly Tahoe
With Tahoe’s stunning emerald lake, what else is there to do but spend an afternoon in a transparent kayak enjoying the scenery along the shoreline with views of down below? Some tours will take enthusiasts to areas where the water is more than 65 feet deep! Clearly Tahoe offers tours for all age and skill levels with an evening tour where the beautiful sunset over Mount Tallac is in perfect view. There is also an eco-friendly tour which focuses on the wildlife and plants along the Tahoe Truckee Marsh.

Heavenly Mountain gondola ride in Lake Tahoe

Heavenly Mountain Gondola

Heavenly Mountain Gondola
This mountain resort is one of the largest in North America and boasts one of the most beautiful views anywhere. This scenic gondola ride offers 360-degree views of Lake Tahoe that will leave you in awe of its beauty. The gondola takes you about two and a half miles to the top of the mountain where you can take the Tamarack Express chairlift and access a variety of hiking trails from beginner to expert. If you are wanting to extend the ride a bit, hop off half-way up at the observation deck to sit back and savor the view.

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Castle,In,The,Jungle

SDClicks / Shutterstock

Emerald Bay State Park
Emerald Bay is considered the crown jewel of Lake Tahoe because of its expansive views of the lake, with a stop at the scenic overlook at Inspiration Point a must for visitors. There is no lack of things to do for an outdoor enthusiast, with hiking or biking trails, kayaking or paddleboarding to keep you going sunrise to sunset, which are two of the most beautiful times of day to view the lake. This park is also home to Vikingsholm Castle, a 38-room mansion, which is considered one of the finest examples of Scandinavian architecture in the U.S., offering tours during the summer. Enjoy the Rubicon Trail that runs by the castle and along the bay shoreline.

Lake Tahoe Sport Fishing best thing to do

Lake Tahoe Sport Fishing

Lake Tahoe Sport Fishing
With sport fishing enthusiasm on the rise, consider a charter from Lake Tahoe Sport Fishing. The company has experienced captains who are on the lake 365 days a year and know where to find the best places to catch Mackinaw or Rainbow Trout and Kokanee Salmon. The company supplies everything you need for an afternoon on the lake, even partnering with MacDuff’s Pub so you can eat whatever you catch for dinner!

parasailing best thing to do in Lake Tahoe

Tahoe Sports Parasailing

Tahoe Sports Parasailing
Time to take to the sky and view the lake from the air. Parasailing is a great way to view the crystal-clear water with a bird’s-eye view as though you are flying over the water. Depending on your comfort level, you can choose different heights from 400 feet to 1000 for those who like the adrenaline rush.

Glen,Alpine,Falls,Lake,Tahoe,California,With,Spring,Flow

John P. Kallestad / Shutterstock

Hikers Paradise
There are so many places to hike in South Lake Tahoe that depending on the view you desire, there is a trail to match. The Upper Glen Alpine Falls Trail is a little off the beaten path and about a one-mile round-trip hike to the rushing waters. The lower falls are more impressive with a short drive to see them. A more strenuous hike is found on Round Lake with its six and a half miles of thick forest of Aspen and Pine trees, and steep climbing to reach Big Meadow with beautiful views and vast wild flowers.

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