Things to Do in Tahoe This Winter (That Aren't Snow Sports)
While Lake Tahoe attracts most of its visitors from December to April for skiing and snowboarding, this world-class mountain destination has plenty more to offer visitors uninterested in strapping sticks on their feet and hurling themselves down a hill. Read on for additional ways to enjoy the lake’s alpine environment and wintertime pursuits.
Take to the ice
Cut some shapes on the ice rink.
The traditional après-ski winter activity, ice skating can be found at Northstar California Resort, where the outdoor rink in the village center is surrounded by twinkle lights, firepits, and open-air cabanas. If you’d rather try something a little quirkier, head to South Lake Tahoe for a curling lesson at Lake Tahoe Epic Curling.
Hop in a horse-drawn sleigh
Indulge in a classic winter wonderland activity.
Make some memories with your friends, family, or sweetheart at Borges Sleigh Rides, located at Sand Harbor State Park on the Nevada side of the lake. As you glide across the snow, you can curl up with a blanket and admire the winter wonderland in this less-crowded part of the lake.
Winter's for relaxing too.
When the extreme skiers of Squaw Valley need to stretch and recharge, they head to Wanderlust Yoga Studio in the base village. But you don’t have to be a skier or rider to take a class at this spacious studio, where large windows provide a backdrop of the mountains and, fingers crossed, falling flakes. Alternatively, head to David Walley’s Resort Hot Springs & Spa in Genoa, Nevada, for a relaxing soak in the mineral waters of the outdoor pools.
Visit local breweries
Sip some Lake Tahoe ales.
Discover Lake Tahoe’s beer scene on a brewpub tour, where you can warm up by sampling a variety of locally crafted brews. Book a guided experience so you don’t have to worry about driving, or make up your own itinerary to follow with family or friends. In South Lake Tahoe, Jenn Boyd with the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority recommends Lake Tahoe AleWorX, South Lake Brewing Company, Cold Water Brewery & Grill, and Sidellis Lake Tahoe.
Go walking in the moonlight
Take a hike.
Take dinner up a notch at the Chalet at Alpine Meadows, a Bavarian-themed restaurant about halfway up the mountain. To get there, you’ll work for your meal by snowshoeing up the hill after the lifts have closed. You and your dinner companions will have the mountain to yourself as you hike, providing a tranquil atmosphere that’s great for couples as well as family groups. When you reach the Chalet, sit down to Alps-style dishes such as cheesy soup, schnitzel, and apple strudel.
Enjoy a signature winter event
Tahoe's answer(s) to Mardi Gras.
Ski season at Lake Tahoe boasts a spirited vibe nearly all the time, but special events offer even more festivity in the form of music, food, and activities for both adults and kids. To get in on the action, time your visit around one of North Lake Tahoe’s annual celebrations—Jessica Pauletto, who works with the North Lake Tahoe visitors bureau, recommends Snowfest, a 10-day Mardi Gras–themed festival with fireworks, a parade, and the Polar Bear Swim, or WinterWondergrass, a 3-day bluegrass music festival at Squaw Valley with beer tastings.