One of our favorite driving destinations is a small pioneer town that was the first settlement in what eventually became Nevada. It sits just on the other side of the Tahoe Mountain Ridge and has two main features: the oldest bar in Nevada and the youngest bar in Genoa. The main attraction is the Genoa Bar & Saloon (oldest), a simple and fun saloon that is littered with mementos of yesteryear. Right across the street is the Genoa Station Bar & Grill (youngest) where you can get some of the best food to find – in Genoa. We highly encourage an enjoyable drive over the mountains before having lunch at the Station and some afternoon drinks at the Saloon.
Emerald Bay sits at the southwestern point of Lake Tahoe and is about a 30 minute drive from Heavenly Village. Popular with both drivers and boaters, Emerald Bay is one of the most iconic, naturally beautiful and photographed places in Tahoe. Sitting in the middle of Emerald Bay is Fannette Island, the only island in all of Lake Tahoe. Emerald Bay’s premier on-shore feature is Vikingsholm, an impressive early-20th century mansion-turned-museum and one of the finest examples of Scandinavian architecture. If driving, Vikingsholm and Emerald Bay Beach is a steep, 15-minute walk/hike down to the shore.
Truckee is about an hour drive from Heavenly Village, and you’ll enjoy the drive as much as the destination. Driving either up the east shore or around and up the west shore, you’ll be treated with incredible sights all along the way. Once in Truckee, there’s plenty of options for fare and drinks, and there’s always the Truckee River if you feel like a slow and fun float in an inner tube. Other parts of the Truckee River have rapids if that’s more your speed.
Just 20 minutes north of Heavenly, Incline Village offers some of the most beautiful vistas in Tahoe. Highlighted by the Hyatt Hotel, Incline is great for an afternoon at the beach, or just for a (gourmet) meal. The Incline Golf Course, while farther away than the Edgewood Golf Course in South Lake Tahoe, is a great, inexpensive course.
Kings Beach, the town, includes one of the most popular beaches on the Lake, but also offers restaurants, shopping and the feel of being a resident.
A fun, lakeside town full of locals both seasonal and full-time. Tahoe City is located on the west shore, almost directly across the lake from Zephyr Cove and is the outlet for the Truckee River.