Looking for the best South Lake Tahoe family resorts? Are you thinking about planning a family vacation that will knock your socks off? Looking for a fabulous family vacation destination out of the norm? Then give South Lake Tahoe a whirl. This amazing family vacation spot will wow and amaze the novice and seasoned traveler, no matter the season. Make this family vacation a South Lake Tahoe family vacation, and it will be one you’ll never forget. Also see the South Lake Tahoe family activities post and the city page for more info.
Lake Tahoe is awesome! Beginning in late autumn and continuing through the winter and spring, the Sierra Nevada mountain region becomes a winter wonderland. Snow is measured in feet, not inches, and a normal winter will see accumulations of 30 to 40 feet in the higher elevations. Winter can last up to six months in the mountains, which is great news for winter sports enthusiasts. The temperatures stay relatively mild, usually above freezing during the day and only dropping into the 20s at night. During most days, the sun shines and adds the perfect finishing touch to the ideal winter vacation.
One of the highest, largest, deepest, cleanest and coldest lakes in the world, 1000 foot deep Lake Tahoe is situated at a mile high elevation in an alpine bowl of forested granite peaks. The drive around the entire circumference of Lake Tahoe is 72 miles in length and takes about three hours. It is recommended during the summer months only. During the winter, Highway 89, which runs along the west shore and connects South Tahoe and Tahoe City closes when there is too much snow. A delightful alternative to driving around the lake is to view it from a paddle wheeler on a summer cruise.
During normal snow years, many ski resorts are open by Thanksgiving and some even operate through July 4. As a result, summer visitors can ski in the morning and enjoy a pleasant afternoon of river rafting. During any lulls in snowfall, ski resorts make snow. Most resorts have installed sophisticated snow-making equipment on a large percentage of their terrain.
The North and South Lake Tahoe areas have the greatest concentration of ski resorts in North America, with 15 alpine resorts and 12 cross-country resorts offering a wide range of terrain and level of expertise. For the novice skier or snowboarder, lessons are offered at most of the resorts.
Also offered are packages, which include rental equipment, maps, lift tickets or trail passes, along with lessons.
Other popular activities include sleigh rides, dog sled rides, snowshoeing, ice skating, snowmobiling in the fall, winter, and spring; and in the summer: golf, hiking, bicycling, fishing, boating, ballooning, and river rafting. Superb casino gaming and entertainment are available year round. The Olympic games and World Cup skiing have both been hosted by Lake Tahoe. It is a world-class destination.
South Lake Tahoe (South Shore) is much more populated and developed, with a concentration of casinos, miles of motels, shops, restaurants, etc. There is always lots to do in and around this area. It is also well known for its clubs, restaurants and night life.
If you’re going in the summer, plan to jet-ski, parasail, and take a hot air balloon ride right off the lake!
The Lake Tahoe area straddles the Nevada/California border. The state line cuts through the lake lengthwise, so that the western shore is in California; the eastern shore in Nevada and some properties situated north and south of the Lake are in both States. One such hotel even has a dotted line running through its rooms to indicate in which State occupants are located.
The drive entirely around Lake Tahoe is 72 miles in length and takes about three hours. It is recommended during the summer months only. During the winter, Highway 89, which runs along the west shore and connects South Tahoe and Tahoe City closes when there is too much snow. There is good public transportation to all points of interest. Summer and winter are the optimal times to visit the Lake Tahoe area.
Remember that there is the possibility of snow in the higher elevations throughout the year. Always check the weather forecast before driving into the mountains in order to be prepared.
Family Resorts and Hotels in South Lake Tahoe:
Also, check out our South Lake Tahoe family vacation activities post for ideas and recommendations on kid friendly activities in the area.
If you’ve visited South Lake Tahoe on your family vacation, leave us a comment, we’d love to hear all about your family adventures!