Sprawling between California and Nevada, Lake Tahoe is a year-round travel destination, but it really comes to life in winter. Visiting Lake Tahoe in winter is a pure delight, especially if you are a winter-sports enthusiast like we are. But if skiing or snowboarding are not your thing, there is still plenty of fun things to do in Lake Tahoe in winter.
Skiing or Snowboarding
One of the best things to do in Lake Tahoe in winter is definitely skiing or snowboarding. Tahoe is one of the two ski meccas in California, the other one being Mammoth Lakes. The area is home to over a dozen ski resorts and some of the best ski slopes that we have ever tried.
Walk on the lake shore
The large freshwater lake in the Sierra Nevada is a true paradise with jaw-dropping vistas and gorgeous groves of pines. After a hard morning on the slopes and some lunch, you can head for the beautiful winter hikes around the lake. And if you are lucky to have fresh snow, the lake shore turns into a true white paradise. But even if you don’t find snow around the lake, it’s still unbelievably beautiful there.
Cruise around the lake
You may watch the sunset from the lake aboard the M.S. Dixie II and enjoy the spectacular views of the Sierra Nevada’s peaks covered in snow. The 2.5-hour scenic cruise is a great way to relax and take some stunning photos. The cruise departs from historic Zephyr Cove and takes you to Emerald bay. Along the way you’ll learn about its fascinating history and the legend of the the Hermit on the Emerald Isle.
Have fun in town
If you are looking for some fun in town, you may try your luck at gambling in one of the casinos on Lake Tahoe Boulevard, or do some boutique shopping at Heavenly Village. Or how about a cup of hot cider by the fire pit in the Heavenly Plaza, listening to live music? Movies, maybe?
Take a walk in the woods
Taking a walk in the woods with snowshoes is a popular and rewarding winter experience at Lake Tahoe. Just a little south of Lake Tahoe, Hope Valley provides a host of scenic views and a variety of terrain to explore. Or you can try the Bayview Trail, near the eastern side of Emerald Bay which offers stunning views of Lake Tahoe and Emerald Bay. The trail is a little steep and not for beginners.
Dine at one of the many great restaurants in Lake Tahoe
If you spent your day in the cold clean air of Lake Tahoe, you’ll surely be hungry like a wolf in the evening. Lake Tahoe is home to a great deal of good restaurants and eateries, ranging from inexpensive cafés atop the mountain to very fancy restaurants with fine dining and lake views. There is a place for every budget and a food for every taste bud. Lake Tahoe is a great winter destination with 249 sunny days a year.