South Lake Tahoe Destination Overview
Named the Best Lake In America according to a 2012 USA Today reader survey, South Lake Tahoe, lovingly coined as “America’s All Year Playground,” offers travelers a gorgeous and fun-filled environment for kids and adults alike, with countless activities abound and fantastic South Lake Tahoe Vacation Rentals.
Water, Water, Everywhere
It’s no surprise that water recreation is a mainstay on the lake famously nicknamed “Big Blue.” From serious sailing to paddle boating, from scuba diving to fishing, there isn’t much you can’t do on pristine Lake Tahoe. Scenic boat rides and dining cruises are a favorite here: they make trips to breathtaking locations like Zephyr Cove and Emerald Bay that are unforgettable. Fodor’s recommends you get aboard the famous Heavenly Gondola and the Hornblower’s Tahoe Queen, a sternwheeler with a full glass bottom, for memorable views of the crystal clear depths - so clear that Mark Twain once noted that "one can count the scales on a trout at a depth of a hundred and eighty feet."
Beaches Beyond Belief
Given that Lake Tahoe has 72 miles of shoreline, you would have to assume that there are some decent beaches to spend time exploring, and South Lake Tahoe has them in droves. Take in the gorgeous mountain views while you sit on South Lake Tahoe’s largest sandscape, Zephyr Cove Beach. Known as South Lake Tahoe’s party beach, it stretches more than a mile long and sits at one of the most scenic locations on the lake. There are plenty of water sport rental locations (jet skis, windsurfing, boating), horse stables, beach volleyball courts and the popular beachside Sunset Bar. If you’re looking for somewhere a little more peaceful, check out Nevada Beach. A favorite among families, Nevada Beach is also dog friendly, so you can literally bring the whole family, including the four-legged members.
Hitting The Powder
Winter sports are ingrained in the South Lake Tahoe lifestyle and culture, as the city is set in the gorgeous Sierra Mountain Range. Averaging 40 feet of snow and 300 days of sunshine each year, downhill skiers and snowboarders as well as cross-country skiing enthusiasts have found Lake Tahoe South to be one of their favorite year-round locations.
Peddling The Time Away
South Lake Tahoe offers myriad opportunities for biking. If you’re a serious cyclist you can ride seven Sierra Mountain summits in a single day or span the 72-mile circumference of the entire lake if you're feeling especially adventurous. The famed eight-mile Saxon Creek Trail is so steep (2520 feet on the way down) and fast, it’s been nicknamed “Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride.” More casual riders can cruise down the numerous paths in the bike-friendly community, with dozens of bike rental shops located throughout the city. Even better, convenient beach access allows for you to hop off your bike and dive right into America’s second-deepest lake after a long ride.
Links On The Lake
Home to the annual American Century Championship, one of the most extravagant celebrity tournaments in the world, South Lake Tahoe boasts a whopping six golf courses: Bijou Municipal, Edgewood Tahoe, Lake Tahoe, Tahoe Paradise, Carson Valley and Genoa Lakes. This is not entirely surprising when you consider the near-perfect conditions and gorgeous scenery here that are ideal for the classic sport.
Dining Like A Laker
Whether you’re looking for something extravagant like the timbale of coconut-cured lomi lomi salmon at Evan’s American Gourmet Cafe, which Zagat describes as “wonderful for anywhere,” or looking for a simple local favorite like Macduffs Pub, which received a near-perfect rating from over 400 yelp.com reviewers, South Lake Tahoe has you covered. The city has so many fantastic restaurants, bistros, cafes, grills and taquerias, you might find yourself having to make some extremely difficult foodie choices.
Get Up And Double Down
Home to five top-notch casinos, South Lake Tahoe can bring out the gambler in almost anyone. With the classic mainstays like Harrah’s Lake Tahoe and The Horizon, as well as the ultra-modern MontBleu, each location offers a huge variety of gaming. Even more, they host some of the world’s hottest musical acts including The Dave Matthews Band, Brad Paisley, Journey, The Robert Cray Band, The Yardbirds, The Mavericks, and a whole lot more.
Play All Day, Play All Night
South Lake Tahoe appears to have everything you want on any given day. Impressively enough, they also happen to have everything you want on any given night. If you’re looking for the true dance club experience with go-go dancers and laser light, head to Opal Ultra Lounge. Want a classic tavern with great beer on tap? Visit Murphy’s Irish Pub. If peanut shells on the floor at an always-reliable dive is your preferred locale, head to Turn 3.