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Lake Tahoe
Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe, California, USA

The Basics

Much of the world discovered Lake Tahoe when the Squaw Valley ski resort hosted the 1960 winter Olympics, and it has been a favorite destination ever since. Lake Tahoe is split into two sections—North Lake, which includes the towns of Truckee and Tahoe City, and South Lake, which includes the city of South Lake Tahoe.

Head to Tahoe for world-class skiing and snowboarding at resorts like Heavenly Mountain, Sugar Bowl, and Kirkwood. In addition to downhill skiing, the area offers snowshoeing, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, and other wintery fun. In the summer, the area is popular for kayaking, boating, stand-up paddleboarding, and Jet Skiing. The surrounding area is a popular camping spot and offers hiking and biking paths.

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Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay Cruise on M.S. Dixie II
Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay Cruise on M.S. Dixie II
$69.75 per adult
Traveler Favorite
Great day on the lake
Great perfect day warm in the sun cool when boat moving no smoke. Lake Tahoe as I remember it. Good commentary by boat of what we were seeing.
mortmayer, Oct 2021

Recent reviews from experiences in Lake Tahoe

star-5
Great experience!!! Lots...
Elvis_P, Oct 2021
Half-Day Self-Guided Electric Bike Tour | Lake Tahoe's Iconic East Shore Trail
Great experience!!! Lots of fun.. great way to enjoy Lake Tahoe .. great views and easy ride. Clean .
star-4
See the Lake
Patricia_D, Aug 2021
Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay Cruise on M.S. Dixie II
The boat was very nice. Clean. Staff was very nice. Drinks were excellent. The tour was nice too. emerald Bay was gorgeous.
star-5
Great day on the lake
mortmayer, Oct 2021
Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay Cruise on M.S. Dixie II
Great perfect day warm in the sun cool when boat moving no smoke. Lake Tahoe as I remember it. Good commentary by boat of what we were seeing.
star-4
M.S. Dixie fun on the lake
Nancy_M, Aug 2021
Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay Cruise on M.S. Dixie II
Always love being on the lake. My only concern, was the amount of passengers on the trip during Covid-19 restrictions. There didn't seem to be one. Cruise sold out to large number of people. We sat up on 3rd deck and felt relatively safe there. But lake always beautiful.
star-5
Lake Love
Kimberly_S, Oct 2021
Half-Day Self-Guided Electric Bike Tour | Lake Tahoe's Iconic East Shore Trail
We came for a wedding and wanted to see the lake and it did not disappoint. I would definitely take this tour again.
star-5
Excellent
Vickie_R, Aug 2021
Full-Day Lake Tahoe Circle Tour including Squaw Valley
The views around the lake were breathtaking. The tour has the perfect mix of stops and opportunities to take pictures. The guide, Nevada Smith was excellent!!! Great tour.
star-5
Super cool and unique experience
Kellie, Aug 2021
Full-Day Self-Guided Electric Bike Tour and Lake Tahoe's Iconic East Shore Trail
The whole process from booking to picking up/returning the e-bikes was super easy. The trail you end up taking is amazing and one of the best ways to experience the different views of the lake. Getting used to the weight and power of the ebike took a little getting used to for not having rode one before but it was very much enjoyable after getting used to. Would definitely check them out again when we are in the area
star-4
Enjoyable
LLC, Aug 2021
Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay Cruise on M.S. Dixie II
Very nice ride, not as beautiful as it would have been since the smoke from the wildfires made the scenery hazy. The boat itself needed some good cleaning!
star-4
Beautiful virws
Peggy_W, Jul 2021
Full-Day Lake Tahoe Circle Tour including Squaw Valley
The views were outstanding. The driver was very talented at going over the mountain roads and through traffic. I think he was a bit long winded, right?
star-5
Fabulous time
Beth_S, Jul 2021
Half-Day Self-Guided Electric Bike Tour | Lake Tahoe's Iconic East Shore Trail
Fabulous time. Staff was very friendly and took the time to explain the trail and how to best use the bikes. Will definitely do it again on a return visit to Lake Tahoe
star-5
Tahoe Experience
David_M, Aug 2021
Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay Cruise on M.S. Dixie II
This was a really good experience. My little 3 year old loved every single second of it, and my wife and I loved the drinks on board. The guided tour also helped us learned more about lake Tahoe and how it got the name along with other facts.
star-5
Lovely smooth ride and...
Martin_A, Oct 2021
Half-Day Self-Guided Electric Bike Tour | Lake Tahoe's Iconic East Shore Trail
Lovely smooth ride and beautiful lake views! First time riding an electric bike and I loved it, I want to buy one now! Thank you Viator for the great service and guidance!

Things to Know Before You Go

  • The lake’s elevation is 6,225 feet (1,897 meters), and mountain resorts sit even higher, so prepare for altitude sickness by staying hydrated.

  • The sun is strong in the mountains—wear sun protection year round.

  • Snow chains are usually required in bad weather unless you have a 4WD vehicle with snow tires; checkpoints are set up on mountain passes, and the highway patrol enforces snow chain regulations.

  • You can purchase snow chains from licensed vendors who set up on the sides of the roads.

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How to Get There

Reno-Tahoe International Airport, the closest major airport, is about 60 miles (95 km) from South Lake Tahoe and 37 miles (60 km) from Truckee. There is also a smaller Truckee Tahoe Airport. To reach the lake by car, take Interstate 80 from San Francisco and Sacramento, US 50 from Sacramento, or US 395 from Yosemite National Park.

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Trip ideas

Top Hiking Trails in Tahoe

Top Hiking Trails in Tahoe


When to Get There

Ski season is generally late November–April; winter holidays and long weekends such as Martin Luther King Jr. Day and President’s Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day, and Fourth of July, are the most crowded. There are very few roads through the mountains and around the lake, so traffic can get backed up. Spring and fall offer fewer crowds and a more relaxing environment, though some business close during these shoulder seasons.

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Truckee River

During the summer, if you’ve had your fill of lake activities, head to the Truckee River, located between the lake and the quaint, historic town of Truckee. You can spend your time river rafting, or exploring the walking and biking paths run along the riverbank, next to State Route 89.

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