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Wild West Day Trip from Lake Tahoe with Train Ride

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South Lake Tahoe, United States
Wild West Day Trip from Lake Tahoe with Train Ride
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0 Adults1 Adult2 Adults3 Adults4 Adults5 Adults6 Adults0 Children1 Child2 Children0 Infants1 Infant2 Infants
Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance. Learn more
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Safety measures
icon7 hours  (approx.)
Pickup from select hotels
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English
Good for avoiding crowds

Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here

Overview

Go back in time to the old Wild West on this tour from South Lake Tahoe to Virginia City, Nevada, including a train ride on the Virginia & Truckee Railroad. With a guide, you’ll start your day trip by minibus, driving along part of the Pony Express. When you reach Virginia City, a National Historic Landmark District, take a 6.5-mile round-trip train ride before enjoying free time in town to explore at your leisure, perhaps visiting museums or a historical saloon.
  • Travel along part of the Pony Express trail to Nevada’s oldest city
  • Take a ride on the Virginia & Truckee Railroad
  • Visit museums and historic mansions, if you wish (own expense)
  • Learn about the region’s geology, history and wildlife from a knowledgeable guide
Saved to wishlist!
Transport by air-conditioned shuttle bus
Train ride
Hotel pickup and drop-off (selected hotels only)
Lunch
Admission to attractions (optional)
Gratuities
  • Hilton Vacation Club Lake Tahoe Resort , 901 Ski Run Blvd, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150-8569
  • Marriott Grand Residence Club, Lake Tahoe , 1001 Heavenly Village Way, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150-7068
  • Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel , 4130 Lake Tahoe Blvd., South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150-6965
  • 8:30 AM
    Lake Tahoe Vacation Resort departure time: 8:20am Marriott Resorts departure time: 8:30am Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel departure time: 8:40am
    Your day trip begins as you depart South Lake Tahoe with your driver/guide by minibus, with seats that recline and large windows that provide views of the mountain scenery during the approximate 90-minute drive across the state line to Virginia City, Nevada.

    During the drive, which passes through Carson City, Nevada’s state capital, listen to commentary from your guide about the area’s local animal life, plant life, geology and mining history during the days of the Wild West. Travel along a portion of the old Pony Express, the route from the 1860s that transported mail across the United States, before arriving in Virginia City, which began when the country’s first major silver deposit was discovered.

    Hop off the minibus at the Virginia & Truckee Railroad station for your 6.5-mile (10.5-km) round-trip train ride that takes you to the town of Gold Hill and back. During the journey, learn about the history of the railroad, which dates back to 1869. After your train ride, you have about 2.5 hours of free time in Virginia City to spend at your leisure. Explore the historic district, listed on the US National Register of Historic Places, and admire 19th-century buildings that line Main Street like the opera house and historical saloons like the St. Mary in the Mountains Catholic Church. Perhaps check out a museum or two, such as The Way It Was Museum or Mark Twain Museum, or have lunch at a local eatery, such as the Delta Saloon. (All entrance fees, food and drinks are at your own expense.)

    At the end of your free time, re-board the minibus for the return drive to South Lake Tahoe, where your day trip ends.
    Itinerary
    Stop At:  
    Virginia & Truckee Railroad
    7 mile train ride from Virginia City to Gold Hill and back.
    Duration: 1 hour 
    Admission Ticket Included
    Stop At:  
    Comstock Lode
    Comstock Lode - Silver City, Gold Hill, Virginia City
    Duration: 3 hours 
    Admission Ticket Free
    Stop At:  
    Virginia City Visitor Center
    On C street
    Duration: 10 minutes
    Admission Ticket Free
    Stop At:  
    The Delta Saloon
    Great place for lunch and refreshments
    Duration: 1 hour 
    Admission Ticket Free
    Stop At:  
    The Way It Was Museum
    Recommended museum by Discover Lake Tahoe Tours
    Duration: 30 minutes
    Admission Ticket Not Included
    Stop At:  
    St. Mary in the Mountains Catholic Church
    Must see...
    Duration: 20 minutes
    Admission Ticket Not Included
    Pass By:  
    Genoa Bar
    Oldest bar in Nevada
    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
    • It is recommended to bring comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a reusable water bottle
    • Not wheelchair accessible
    • Stroller accessible
    • Service animals allowed
    • Infants must sit on laps
    • Most travelers can participate
    • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 26 travelers
    • OPERATED BY Discover Lake Tahoe Tours
    You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
    • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
    • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
    • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
    • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
    • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

    Learn more about cancellations.

    The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
    Q:
    What is the policy on sanitization during Wild West Day Trip from Lake Tahoe with Train Ride?
    A:The policies on sanitization are:

    • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
    • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
    • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
    • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
    See all safety measures taken by Wild West Day Trip from Lake Tahoe with Train Ride.
    Q:
    What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during Wild West Day Trip from Lake Tahoe with Train Ride?
    A:The policy on staff health & safety is:

    • Guides required to regularly wash hands
    See all safety measures taken by Wild West Day Trip from Lake Tahoe with Train Ride.

    Traveler Photos

    Traveler Tips


    • "If you're interested in mining history the train is fine, but other than that I would recommend taking the trolley instead, you get to see more." See review
    • "Great to not have to drive and be able to view the scenery without worry." See review

    Reviews

    4.0
    star-4
    62 Reviews

    Reviews by Viator travelers

    We perform checks on reviews

    Showing 1-10 of 62 reviews
    star-4
    Fun day —
    RAMONA_L
    , Jun 2022
    Beautiful drive and the bus driver narration excellent knowledge !!! The train ride was ok !! Wish it was longer but beautiful and fun ! The time in town was perfect and rode back just in time to prepare for dinner
    star-2
    The company that booked...
    Hilda_W
    , Sep 2021
    The company that booked our trip told us that it was a 7 hour ride on an air conditioned train and it was not.
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    star-5
    Great trip
    Tracy_R
    , Aug 2021
    It was hot and smoky around the Lake Tahoe area. We loved it. We would do it again. And would recommend it
    star-5
    Great day!
    Mary_G
    , Aug 2021
    It was a beautiful day for seeing the views. Our driver and the guide on the train were very friendly and informative. We had a great day wandering Virginia City.
    star-3
    Uncomfortable & Expensive
    Jennifer_F
    , Jun 2021
    The train ride was nice, but honestly we thought it was going to be longer and less shuttle and some kind of drink or something for 144 a couple!!! The shuttle was informative, but everyone was bursting (needing to use the restroom). There should have been a bathroom stop along the way!!
    icon Response from Host , Jul 2021
    The train ride is a 7 mile round trip which is disclosed on every site and is a small portion of the tour. Most guests that sign up for this tour, do it because they love the history of mining and the Wild West and enjoy the narration part from the driver. We will definitely consider a restroom stop.
    2 travelers found this review helpful
    star-5
    Wild West Tour
    Arlene_G
    , Sep 2020
    The knowledge of our driver/historian is very commendable. I learned a lot in that short period of time. Thank you!
    star-3
    Nevada Charmer
    Barbara_C
    , Aug 2020
    I would have given this (5) stars, but on the day before our scheduled train tour, I received a text saying the train wouldn’t be running!! Reason, wouldn’t be making enough money during the week!! They decided to run it during the weekend!! How disappointing this was!! The bus tour guide was GREAT 👍🏻 & Virginia City was charming!!!
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    star-3
    Train not running
    Barbara_B
    , Aug 2020
    The bus driver was very informative and nice. Virginia City was also fun for my grandkids and myself. Only down fall was apparently the train is only running on the weekends. The day before my schedule to take it, someone called and said the train was not running and asked if we still wanted to go. I said yes, but the driver of my bus/van part of the tour told me it only runs on the weekends. So you might want be sure on your dates if it runs or not.
    2 travelers found this review helpful
    star-4
    Great!
    Jacqueline_P
    , Jul 2020
    The tour was excellent!! Although we were disappointed not to get the train ride. Our driver was very knowledgable and entertaining. Our driver took extra time to share with us views and stops. He was great!!
    star-5
    Wild wild west
    JWB
    , Jul 2020
    Guide/driver very knowledgeable and considerate. Dont miss the underground mine tour. We even saw wild mustangs. .
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    star-3
    Nothing Special
    Liz L
    , Oct 2019
    The place seemed kind of run down; it was disappointing. I was expecting something nicer with more character. But if you're looking to spend a few hours and have lunch, it's OK. The train ride was simply 3 miles one way and back again. If you're interested in mining history the train is fine, but other than that I would recommend taking the trolley instead--you get to see more.
    2 travelers found this review helpful
    star-5
    Not your normal locomotive
    Annette_S
    , Sep 2019
    This 35 minute train ride was both educational and informational. It takes place high atop one of the the mountains of the Sierra Nevadas. Quite a bit of mining history and scenic views. This tour allows over two hours of free time to explore the eats ,treats, and unique shops along Main Street. Our tour guide was friendly, knowledgeable and suggested places to explore and where to have lunch.
    star-4
    Informative Tour
    David H
    , Aug 2019
    Tour guide was very knowledgeable and gave us a lot of info about the area, the history, and Nevada facts. Only down side to his presentation was he named places and people like you should know who or where they were, and we live a thousand miles away. He also repeated himself a lot. Great to not have to drive and be able to view the scenery without worry.
    icon Response from Host , Aug 2019
    Thank you for writing a review and glad you enjoyed it. I'll pass your remarks on to the driver
    star-1
    big mistake
    Jon_S
    , Aug 2019
    Bought my tickets from viator. Never mentioned the itinerary, only pick-up time and place. Driver of bus never shut-up. He repeats himself constantly. Talked about wild mustangs at least 8 times. After the joke of a train ride we were taken to Virginia City and were stuck there for 2 and 1/2 hours. Didn't get back to Tahoe until 3:30. TOOK ALL DAY!
    icon Response from Host , Aug 2019
    In behalf of Discover Lake Tahoe Tours, I'm sorry about your unpleasant experience with us. Obviously, I have to reach out to Viator to better inform guests of the itinerary. I'm a bit confused regarding driver taking.., this tour is listed as narrated tour and guests in the past loved it ( read reviews ) also in regards to being stuck there for 2 1/2 hours, the only complaint I usually get is that there isn't enough time. Thank you.
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    star-5
    Nice scenic tour
    teresapU9697YO
    , Aug 2019
    This little tour into Nevada provided a nice break away from Lake Tahoe for a day. The coach was very comfortable. The driver was very knowledgable and friendly. There was a lot of information about the Pony Express and Gold Rush. The train ride in Virginia City was good but a little short - the conductor was brilliant with some very funny commentry. We had lots of free time to explore Virginia City before heading back to Tahoe via a drive through Carson City.
    icon Response from Host , Aug 2019
    Thank you so much for taking your time for writing a review. Also, I'm so happy you enjoyed the tour. Again, thank you
    star-5
    Van and Train Ride
    Kimberly_L
    , Jul 2019
    I learned so much from this tour! First on the van ride we had a very informative driver. He took us to many historical places on the way to Virginia City. The train ride was really fun and the steam engine was working that day, too. I learned even more information about the mining and old western towns. We went on the 4th of July so also saw a great parade in Virginia City.
    star-5
    Great Bus driver - told all about what...
    Linda_C
    , Oct 2017
    Great Bus driver - told all about what we saw. Great Train conductor. Relaxing, delightful.
    star-4
    The tour was interesting and the...
    Mary E
    , Oct 2017
    The tour was interesting and the tour guide was very knowledgeable about the South Lake Tahoe area and the history surrounding it. The train ride in Virginia City was only 35 minutes and the train volunteer talked about the mines and the overall history of Virginia City. All in all the tour was relaxing and fun. We had 2-1/2 hours to eat lunch, shop and explore Virginia City on our own before boarding the tour van back to South Lake Tahoe. I would highly recommend this tour for anyone new to the area and first time visitors.
    star-4
    Guide on bus was !Train ride was...
    Dina_R
    , Sep 2017
    Guide on bus was !Train ride was very short. Would have enjoyed more information on what to see in Virginia City, rather than being dropped in shopping area.
    star-5
    Enjoyed going back in time and...
    Sharon S
    , Sep 2017
    Enjoyed going back in time and visiting what it would have been like during the Gold Rush days. Virginia City is small quaint western town with several good restaurants and lots of unique shopping stores. Also enjoyed hearing the history of the area from Lake Tahoe to Virginia City. The train ride is short but gives you the true flavor of the past which was very enjoyable. Visited Carson City and saw some historical sites there as well. I would recommend this trip to anyone visiting the area.

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