3 Days like a Local in Lake Tahoe

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Advisor - Mica Sangiacomo
Curated By

Mica Sangiacomo

  • Domestic Travel

  • USA

  • California

  • Nature Escapes

  • Slow Travel

  • Adventure

  • Lakeside

  • Outdoors

Lake Tahoe Travel Guide Kayak.
Curator’s statement

In my very unbiased option, Lake Tahoe is the most beautiful location in the world! Find yourself immersed in the incredible Sierra Nevada mountains with countless activities at your fingertips. In the summer, hike, kayak, boat or simply relax and listen to the stillness of the lake. In the colder months, enjoy warm drinks by the fire or ski some of the most desirable mountains in the world.

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Day 1: Tahoe City

Lake Tahoe travel guide.

If you are flying into Reno, be sure to rent a car. Uber's are iffy, and it's worth having your own car to explore on your own time.

After checking in to your hotel, Airbnb or cabin head to Tahoe City for lunch. Tahoe Tap Haus has a wide range of food from burgers, pita sandwiches, salads to tater tots and so much more. Their beer menu changes constantly, so be sure to ask for the best local beer on tap. After lunch, poke around the shops in Tahoe City. Cross the street and walk along the trail near the lake. Adventure west toward Fanny Bridge and watch the water go into the Truckee River. The runoff is a must-see during spring time in particular.

Head to the Hyatt for sunset. If it's summer, be sure to reserve a spot on the sunset cruise catamaran. It will take you out onto the lake to watch the sun go down. The sun sets last in Incline Village, so this is the best place to watch it. After the cruise, grab a bite at Hiro Sushi (incredible sushi spot in Kings Beach) or at T's Rotisserie (small hole in the wall grab-and-go deliciousness.)

Check out who's playing at Crystal Bay Casino. They have fun bands pass through and it's definitely worth it if you're up for it.

Day 2: Boat day

Lake Tahoe travel guide.

Hike Flume Trail

Start the day by hiking one of the best, most scenic hikes on the lake— the Flume Trail. If you're a mountain biker, you can take the trail all the way up and down for a longer excursion. I suggest hiking about 2.5 miles up and back. Fun fact: There is a rock called monkey rock that looks like a gorilla. Be sure to snap a picture with it.

On your way back stop at Sunshine Deli to pick up sandwiches for the boat.

Boat Time

I suggest renting a party barge or luxury boat. The wind can pick up at the turn of a hat, so if you're not used to it, I definitely suggest a driver. Your hotel can set this up or you can use a local rental company. Spend the day exploring coves, tubing and jumping into the lake. Stop by Emerald Bay and anchor for lunch. Be careful of the Canadian Geese. Do not feed them (you've been warned.)

Local Dinner Bites

Head back to your hotel and regroup. Go to Gar Woods for dinner. Get the lettuce wraps and of course the famous Wet Woodies. The Rock Hard Wet Woody is sure to liven you up. Gar Woods is family friendly and is great for lunch, dinner and sunset. If you're partaking in Wet Woody's, leave the car.

If you want to keep the night going, go to Pete and Peter's in Tahoe City. It's a fun dive bar with bar games (pool, shuffle board, darts, etc.) or at Incline Bowl. This is a fun, newly redone bowling alley.

Day 3: Nature Way

Lake Tahoe travel guide.

Morning Kayak/ Paddle board

Rent kayaks or paddle boards and cruise the lake first thing in the morning. The water is calm in the morning, making this activity perfect to wake you up and soak in the beauty. Make sure to stay next to the buoy line for safety.

Beach Day

Spend the afternoon relaxing at the beach. If your hotel doesn't have one, I suggest King's Beach. There is parking lot, but definitely get there on the early end.

Mini Golfing

After the beach, go to Magic Carpet for mini golfing. The course is near the water so you can enjoy your last night in the fresh air and enjoying lake views.

Hike The Palisades

There are several incredible hikes on the ski mountain. Ask me for recommendations or look at All Trails for hikes that match your activity level.


For dinner go to Jake's on the Lake. Take in the views, sip some wine and eat a great meal. Their mud pie for dessert is an absolute must.

Places to eat & drink in Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe travel guide.

Char-Pit: Dive bar burger spot with picnic benches and outdoor seating. Best milkshakes ever!

The Log Cabin: Amazing brunch spot in a log cabin. Get the Eggs Benedict!

West Shore Cafe: Great spot on the lake for lunch and dinner.

Syd's Bagels: Coffee and breakfast in Tahoe City. Grab and go or eat there.

Advisor - Mica Sangiacomo

Travel Advisor

Mica Sangiacomo

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