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Why Go to Lake Tahoe

Incredible, extraordinary, mind-boggling … try as you might, you'll have difficulty finding words that do justice to the sheer beauty of Lake Tahoe. Resting on the California-Nevada border, Lake Tahoe has long been a favorite vacation spot, welcoming upward of 200,000 tourists on a good weekend. Visitors are drawn here by the steep granite cliff sides and towering mountaintops, as well as the crystal clear waters that have earned Lake Tahoe the reputation of being one of the most beautiful bodies of water in the United States. While the stunning blue lake alone is worth a trip, the surrounding area, also known as Lake Tahoe, boasts miles of hiking trails, dozens of picture-perfect vistas and some of the best skiing in North America.

But wait — there's more. Lake Tahoe seems to have adopted the major traits of its neighbors. You'll find San Francisco-style high-end shopping and dining along the lake's north shore, while opportunities to test your luck reside in the south shore's Reno-esque casinos. You'll also find plenty of activities that Lake Tahoe is proud to take credit for, including mountain gondola rides, hot air balloon adventures and scenic cruises across the mirror-like water.



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Lake Tahoe Travel Tips

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What You Need to Know

  • It's big This massive lake spans almost 200 square miles. To get the most out of your visit, choose an area and stay there — you can always come back for more.
  • It's cold Even in the middle of summer, Lake Tahoe's waters can feel like ice. If you're swimming, make sure to take frequent breaks to warm up.
  • It's expensive A Lake Tahoe vacation will put a rather hefty dent in your bank account; save accordingly and book as far in advance as possible to get a good deal.

How to Save Money in Lake Tahoe

  • Head south South Lake Tahoe is jam-packed with budget-friendly hotels and restaurants. Sure, they're not as glitzy as the places you'll find in Tahoe City or Incline Village, but your wallet will thank you.
  • Stay and ski Lift tickets at Lake Tahoe's ski areas are expensive. However, many resorts offer combo packages, so check ahead when booking your room.
  • Visit during the week You're more likely to score deals on hotels and lift tickets if you avoid the weekend crowds.

Getting Around Lake Tahoe

The best way to get around Lake Tahoe is by car. Because there are more than 70 miles of shoreline at just the lake alone, you'll find that having your own set of wheels will be most convenient. You can rent a car at the Reno/Tahoe International Airport (RNO) about 50 miles northeast of Tahoe City. The Tahoe Area Regional Transit (TART) provides public bus services, but only around the north shore. In South Lake Tahoe there are free shuttles between the casinos and ski resorts.

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