Photo of Lake Tahoe at Bliss State Park, CA

South Lake Tahoe

South Lake Tahoe includes dazzling coves and beaches, spectacular mountain scenery, classic resorts, casinos and ski slopes. Tourists flock to South Lake Tahoe to enjoy the mountain air, the clear, crystal lake, and to mingle with one another.

The south end of Lake Tahoe has something for everyone. Horseback riding is nearby, Heavenly Valley Ski Resort has a variety of summer activities. Several of the old historic mansions and resorts are open to tourists. Several companies offer parasailing. A number of public golf courses are found around the south end of the lake.


Lake Tahoe boaters enjoy the magnificent scenery as much as the water. Classic wooden boats are often seen cruising the lake. Water skiers, wakeboarders, and other water sport enthusiasts are seen about the lake, especially earlier in the day when the water is smooth. Fishing boats troll the deep water. Owners of smaller craft are mindful of the heavy winds that can come up quickly.


South Lake Tahoe has a number of good marinas along its shores, many with launch ramps. They offer fuel, slips, dry storage and other marine services. Most of the boat rentals are handled by separate companies, but often in partnership with a particular marina. Prices for everything tend to be higher than at most other California lakes.


Lake Tahoe fishing is done mainly from boats, although there are some good shore fishing spots scattered around the lake. Boat anglers troll for trout and kokanee salmon. The huge Mackinaw trout are a favorite of fishermen looking for trophy fish. Lunker browns are found in the lake, too, but its takes an experienced angler to land them. Rainbow trout and some brook trout also provide good sport fishing. Cutthroat trout have disappeared from the lake, gobbled up by the Mackinaws.


With three California state parks along the southwestern shore of the lake, campsites are more numerous at the south end of the lake than the north. Reservations are the only way to be sure of getting a campsite, however. Several private campgrounds such as Camp Richardson and the City of South Lake Tahoe Parks & Recreation's Campground by the Lake greatly expand the number of campsites available.


South Lake Tahoe is thick with lodging opportunities from rustic cabins to plush resorts. The Stateline casinos provide another good source of reasonably priced rooms. For anyone looking for a bargain, prices drop sharply during the fall months. Bed and Breakfasts are scattered about along with a large number of motels.


Lake Tahoe is one of the most beautiful locations in the Sierra. Its panoramic grandeur is a dazzling sight from every shore. Snow-capped peaks rise around the basin, thick pine and cedar forests blanket the lower slopes and shorelines. Lake Tahoe's amazingly clear water has been preserved over the years through careful environmental regulations.

Nearby Communities

Communities and cities are clustered all around the southern end of Lake Tahoe. South Lake Tahoe serves as the anchor city. Its neighbor Stateline, Nevada, offers entertainment and gaming. Quieter settlements are found around the west or east sides of the lake, such as at Meeks Bay and Zephyr Cove.


Lake Tahoe Facts
Lake Size: 122,200 surface acres
Maximum Depth: 1,645 feet
Length: 22 miles
Shoreline: 71 miles
Lake Custodians: Tahoe Regional Planning Agency
The UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center
Lake Elevation: 6225 feet
Average High Air Temperatures
  spring: 60 degrees
  summer: 79 degrees
  fall: 69 degrees
  winter: 41 degrees
Summer Surface Water Temperature: 70 degrees


South Lake Tahoe

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Recreation Opportunities Around
Lake Tahoe

South Lake Tahoe Bus and Trolley Transportation

Tahoe Transportation District
Stateline - Gardnerville - Minden, NV
Stateline - Carson City
Stateline - Ridge Resorts
Nifty 50 Trolley: South Lake Tahoe - Tahoma

Reno Tahoe Airport Express to South Lake Tahoe


California's Greatest Lakes

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