Lake Tahoe

Wild West Day Trip from Lake Tahoe with Train Ride

Badge of ExcellenceSouth Lake Tahoe, United States

From $90.00

Select Date and Travelers

Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance.
  • 7 hours (approx.)
  • Pickup from select hotels
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English


Go back in time to the old Wild West on this tour from South Lake Tahoe to Virginia City, Nevada, including a train ride on the Virginia & Truckee Railroad. With a guide, you’ll start your day trip by minibus, driving along part of the Pony Express. When you reach Virginia City, a National Historic Landmark District, take a 6.5-mile round-trip train ride before enjoying free time in town to explore at your leisure, perhaps visiting museums or a historical saloon.
  • Travel along part of the Pony Express trail to Nevada’s oldest city
  • Take a ride on the Virginia & Truckee Railroad
  • Visit museums and historic mansions, if you wish (own expense)
  • Learn about the region’s geology, history and wildlife from a knowledgeable guide

What's Included

  • Transport by air-conditioned shuttle bus
  • Train ride
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off (selected hotels only)
  • Lunch
  • Admission to attractions (optional)
  • Gratuities

Meeting And Pickup

Pickup points

Select a pickup point

Start time

08:30 AM

Pickup details

Lake Tahoe Vacation Resort departure time: 8:20am Marriott Resorts departure time: 8:30am Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel departure time: 8:40am

What To Expect

Your day trip begins as you depart South Lake Tahoe with your driver/guide by minibus, with seats that recline and large windows that provide views of the mountain scenery during the approximate 90-minute drive across the state line to Virginia City, Nevada.

During the drive, which passes through Carson City, Nevada’s state capital, listen to commentary from your guide about the area’s local animal life, plant life, geology and mining history during the days of the Wild West. Travel along a portion of the old Pony Express, the route from the 1860s that transported mail across the United States, before arriving in Virginia City, which began when the country’s first major silver deposit was discovered.

Hop off the minibus at the Virginia & Truckee Railroad station for your 6.5-mile (10.5-km) round-trip train ride that takes you to the town of Gold Hill and back. During the journey, learn about the history of the railroad, which dates back to 1869. After your train ride, you have about 2.5 hours of free time in Virginia City to spend at your leisure. Explore the historic district, listed on the US National Register of Historic Places, and admire 19th-century buildings that line Main Street like the opera house and historical saloons like the St. Mary in the Mountains Catholic Church. Perhaps check out a museum or two, such as The Way It Was Museum or Mark Twain Museum, or have lunch at a local eatery, such as the Delta Saloon. (All entrance fees, food and drinks are at your own expense.)

At the end of your free time, re-board the minibus for the return drive to South Lake Tahoe, where your day trip ends.

Virginia & Truckee Railroad

7 mile train ride from Virginia City to Gold Hill and back.

1 hour Admission Ticket Included

Comstock Lode

Comstock Lode - Silver City, Gold Hill, Virginia City

3 hours Admission Ticket Free

Additional Info

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • It is recommended to bring comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen and a reusable water bottle
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Service animals allowed
  • Infants must sit on laps
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 26 travelers

Cancellation Policy

You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

Traveler Photos

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Traveler Tips

If you're interested in mining history the train is fine, but other than that I would recommend taking the trolley instead, you get to see more.
Great to not have to drive and be able to view the scenery without worry.
76 reviews
Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
Reviews by Viator travelers.
Showing 1-10 of 76 reviews
Virginia city was great!...
Nicola_M, Oct 2022
Virginia city was great! Best part of the trip! The train ride was a little disappointing and the driver lacked knowledge and struggled to answer some questions
Great site seeing trip.
Susan_B, Oct 2022
Views from the mountains. Bus driver very knowledgeable about area. I’d recommend this trip to anyone that wants to get away from casinos for a day.
Nice town
Andrea_G, Oct 2022
Loved the town of Virginia City, nice lunch spots and sightseeing. Plenty of time to look around and do some shopping.
Interesting and educational
Roger_L, Oct 2022
Great bus driver who was very knowledgeable and social able. Loved the train ride and seeing the old-time saloons and main street.
I remember seeing the...
Celeste_G, Oct 2022
I remember seeing the wild horses and visiting all the spots in Virginia city. The mining history on the train was interesting.
Very fun trip. Reasonable price
Raymond_B, Sep 2022
The driver did a great job getting around. Also, the driver did a good job explaining things you saw along the way. I just wish the train ride part had been a bit longer
Nice ride
Maria_P, Aug 2022
The train ride was nice and short but too hot. The little town was nice and the museums with good info about how miners worked.
The tour bus driver was...
Nancy_w, Jul 2022
The tour bus driver was very knowledgeable and fun! The train ride was fun and the perfect length of time for a toddler.
Fun day —
RAMONA_L, Jun 2022
Beautiful drive and the bus driver narration excellent knowledge !!! The train ride was ok !! Wish it was longer but beautiful and fun ! The time in town was perfect and rode back just in time to prepare for dinner
The company that booked...
Hilda_W, Sep 2021
The company that booked our trip told us that it was a 7 hour ride on an air conditioned train and it was not.
Great trip
Tracy_R, Aug 2021
It was hot and smoky around the Lake Tahoe area. We loved it. We would do it again. And would recommend it
Great day!
Mary_G, Aug 2021
It was a beautiful day for seeing the views. Our driver and the guide on the train were very friendly and informative. We had a great day wandering Virginia City.
Uncomfortable & Expensive
Jennifer_F, Jun 2021
The train ride was nice, but honestly we thought it was going to be longer and less shuttle and some kind of drink or something for 144 a couple!!! The shuttle was informative, but everyone was bursting (needing to use the restroom). There should have been a bathroom stop along the way!!
Response from Host, Jul 2021
The train ride is a 7 mile round trip which is disclosed on every site and is a small portion of the tour. Most guests that sign up for this tour, do it because they love the history of mining and the Wild West and enjoy the narration part from the driver. We will definitely consider a restroom stop.
Wild West Tour
Arlene_G, Sep 2020
The knowledge of our driver/historian is very commendable. I learned a lot in that short period of time. Thank you!
Nevada Charmer
Barbara_C, Aug 2020
I would have given this (5) stars, but on the day before our scheduled train tour, I received a text saying the train wouldn’t be running!! Reason, wouldn’t be making enough money during the week!! They decided to run it during the weekend!! How disappointing this was!! The bus tour guide was GREAT 👍🏻 & Virginia City was charming!!!
Train not running
Barbara_B, Aug 2020
The bus driver was very informative and nice. Virginia City was also fun for my grandkids and myself. Only down fall was apparently the train is only running on the weekends. The day before my schedule to take it, someone called and said the train was not running and asked if we still wanted to go. I said yes, but the driver of my bus/van part of the tour told me it only runs on the weekends. So you might want be sure on your dates if it runs or not.
Jacqueline_P, Jul 2020
The tour was excellent!! Although we were disappointed not to get the train ride. Our driver was very knowledgable and entertaining. Our driver took extra time to share with us views and stops. He was great!!
Wild wild west
JWB, Jul 2020
Guide/driver very knowledgeable and considerate. Dont miss the underground mine tour. We even saw wild mustangs. .
Nothing Special
Liz L, Oct 2019
The place seemed kind of run down; it was disappointing. I was expecting something nicer with more character. But if you're looking to spend a few hours and have lunch, it's OK. The train ride was simply 3 miles one way and back again. If you're interested in mining history the train is fine, but other than that I would recommend taking the trolley instead--you get to see more.
Not your normal locomotive
Annette_S, Sep 2019
This 35 minute train ride was both educational and informational. It takes place high atop one of the the mountains of the Sierra Nevadas. Quite a bit of mining history and scenic views. This tour allows over two hours of free time to explore the eats ,treats, and unique shops along Main Street. Our tour guide was friendly, knowledgeable and suggested places to explore and where to have lunch.