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Ready for an epic summer vacation? Look no further than beautiful Lake Tahoe. Whether you’re a nature lover, thrill seeker, or foodie, this vibrant area has something for everyone. In this article, we’ll give you the rundown on the best things to do in Lake Tahoe in summer. From swimming and hiking to exploring and dining, we’ve got you covered. By the end of this, you’ll know why visiting Lake Tahoe is so popular!


As you make your way to Lake Tahoe, swing by the Embarc dispensary. This state-of-the-art facility offers a wide selection of cannabis products and helpful and knowledgeable staff who can answer all your questions. Once you’ve grabbed your favorite products, you’ll be ready to explore everything Lake Tahoe offers.

What’s the Summer Weather Like in Lake Tahoe?

It’s perfect, thanks for asking. The summer fun kicks off around June when the Sierra snow cap has melted in that glorious Cali sunshine. Daytime temps hang in the balmy 70’s. But remember, Tahoe is in the mountains, and you can catch a chill when that sun goes down. Nighttime lows may hit the 40s, so pack some warm stuff!

Top 15 Things to Do in Lake Tahoe in Summer

While there are so many great things to do in the Lake Tahoe region year-round, there’s something extra special about summertime in Tahoe. From swimming and hiking to biking and climbing, here are our top picks for Lake Tahoe summer activities. No matter how you spend your days during a Lake Tahoe summer vacation, there’s something for everyone.

Hit the Lake Tahoe Beaches

The beaches in Lake Tahoe give Malibu a run for its money. Lake Tahoe is the area’s largest alpine lake with 72 miles of shoreline between North Lake Tahoe and South Lake Tahoe, meaning lots of AMAZING BEACHES. The hardest part will be picking one! However, we’ve got a few of our favorites:

still waters overlooking snow-covered mountains during day

Kings Beach State Recreation Area

In North Lake Tahoe in summer, Kings Beach is the crown jewel. It’s supersized and sandy, with plenty of space to spread out with the fam or friends. This beach sits in the town of Kings Beach, making it easy to grab a bite at a local restaurant or visit an outfitter for water sports equipment.

Baldwin Beach

In South Lake Tahoe, Baldwin Beach is beautiful. You’ll find it between the stunning Emerald Bay and South Lake Tahoe. Baldwin is a large, sandy beach with one of the best features: shallow water! The parking lot has easy access to the beach, so pack up whatever you need to have a fun day. You can also rent kayaks here if you want to explore the area.

Lester Beach

Head to D.L. Bliss State Park and hit Lester Beach. Uncrowded and gorgeous, it’s a haven for water sports — you can launch kayaks, paddleboards, and small boats here. And if you’re camping, this is your beach! The only downside here is no dogs are allowed (sorry furry friends).

Honorable mentions go out to:

Chamber’s Landing

This is home to Chamber’s Landing Bar & Grill, the oldest bar in Lake Tahoe (Opened in 1875).

Meek’s Bay

This is another gem adjacent to the Meeks’ Bay campground and resort. Meeks Bay is owned by the Washoe Tribe, the original inhabitants of Lake Tahoe. 

Zephyr Cove

Zephyr Cove on the East Shore is your beach if you like to party. This is a full-service resort with a restaurant, beach bar and grill, and beach volleyball courts. East Shore is also where the M.S. Dixie ll Paddlewheeler docks. Climb aboard and take a cruise to Emerald Bay!

Round Hill Pines Beach Resort

All-inclusive, there’s really nothing you can’t do here. Rent everything from kayaks to paddleboards to jet skis, grab lunch or cocktails at the bar and grill, and take a cruise on a yacht if you want to go really big.

Take a Trek on the Hiking Trails

If there’s a better place for hiking, we haven’t seen it. Lake Tahoe is tucked right in the middle of the Sierra Nevada mountains. The stunning vistas of endless pine forests, snow-capped mountains, and alpine lakes are postcard perfect. 

There are almost too many amazing trails in Tahoe, but here are a few that top the list:

still waters overlooking snow-covered mountains during day

Rubicon Trail

If you can make one hike in Lake Tahoe, the Rubicon Trail is the one. This 9 miles is like a grand tour of everything that makes Lake Tahoe a unique and special place. 

The hike begins in DL Bliss State Park in granite, pine-topped cliffs. It drops down to Lake Tahoe, with breathtaking views the whole way down. 

Then the Rubicon skirts the shore, passing hidden cove after hidden cove, each a perfect spot for a dip. Pass through meadows blanketed by wildflowers and end at Vikingsholm, a beautiful Norwegian-style castle. 

Emerald Point Trail

This trail is 5.5 miles of amazing views that trace the northern shore of Emerald Bay in Emerald Bay State Park. The Point Trail is mostly flat, but if you want to make it all the way to The Point when visiting Emerald Bay, a little venture off-trail may be required.

Eagle Lake Trail

This 1.9 miler is short on distance but big on views. The trail starts near beautiful Emerald Bay by Emerald Bay State Park. Hike past lower Eagle Falls, past Eagle Falls, to Eagle Lake at the base of Maggie’s Peak. 

Go Boating

The water in Lake Tahoe in summer calls to you. Crystal clear and a beautiful blue, it simply beckons. Good news: There are a ton of boat outfitters all over the lake happy to help you answer Tahoe’s call. 

You can cruise the shoreline, drop anchor in a secluded cove and swim, or even venture out onto the open water for some fishing, a favorite way to enjoy Lake Tahoe. Plenty of outfitters will hook you up with everything you need, from boats to SUPs (stand-up paddleboards) to kayaks. And if you don’t want to do the boating yourself, plenty of companies offer cruises that show you the best of Tahoe from the water.

Here’s a list of our favorite water activities:

still waters overlooking snow-covered mountains during day

Charter a sailboat

Ahoy! Charter a sailboat at Sunnyside Marina, just 2 miles south of Tahoe City, and glide across the pristine waters of lake Tahoe. 

Rent a power boat

See Tahoe Sport in South Lake Tahoe for the hookup and cruise from cove to cove in luxury and style.

Rent a jetski

Jet Skiing has been the pinnacle of cool since the early 80s. Rent a jet ski at Tahoe Sports in South Lake Tahoe. Mullet not included. 

Rent kayaks, canoes, or paddleboards

There’s something special about being close to the water. Try Tahoe City Kayak if you’re staying on the north end of Lake Tahoe. In South Lake Tahoe, hit up SUP Tahoe. They offer “extreme stability” boards for people who want to share a board or for singles who are…a bit balance challenged.

Rent a double-decker pontoon with a waterslide

Can it get more fun than this? Go see Lake Tahoe’s favorite Tahoe Wakebusters for this party on pontoons!

Any of these options will give you a fantastic day on the water.

Visit a Lake Tahoe Area Brewery

You can work up quite a thirst with all that Lake Tahoe adventure. It’s a good thing Lake Tahoe brews some of the best beer on earth!

FiftyFifty Brewing

This Truckee Pub made its name with beers like the Donner Party Porter and Tahoe Pilz.

Alibi Ale

Alibi brews all its offerings with Lake Tahoe Lake water. What’s more local than that?

The Good Wolf Brewing

This place is all rustic, woodsy charm. Its beers are “forest inspired.” Try Dirty Candy, a foraged mushroom ale.

South Lake Brewing

Their spacious beer garden is a great spot to try their Marlette Sunrise Blood Orange Blonde with honey malt and flaked wheat.


A cold beer is always a good idea, but these are some of the best spots to enjoy one in the Lake Tahoe area.

Visit Vikingsholm Castle

Way back in the 1860s, the stagecoach entrepreneur (think uber but with horses) Ben Holiday built the first resort in Lake Tahoe. Josephine Knight bought the property 60 years later, in 1928, to build the ultimate ode to her ego: Vikingsholm.

Vikingsholm is styled like a Norwegian-esque “castle.” It’s like something straight out of a fairy tale. Apparently, Lake Tahoe reminded Josephine of the fjords of Scandinavia, so she built a Norwegian castle to match. She also built a tea house on Fannette Island in Emerald Bay that has since fallen to vandalism and disrepair.

Fun Fact

Before the Teahouse, Fannette Island was home to Captain Dick “Them’s My Toes” Barter. Many believe that the island is now haunted by his ghost. Curious? Well, you’ll have to visit Vikingsholm and hear the legend yourself. Just don’t spend the night, or the Captain might show you his toes!

Take a Heavenly Mountain Gondola Ride

Many of Lake Tahoe’s ski resorts stay open in the summer, offering a fantastic way to get up in the mountains for a bird’s eye view of the lake.

At Heavenly Ski Resort in South Lake Tahoe, you can get that bird’s eye view in the Heavenly Mountain Gondola that will take you straight to the summit. The ride is just one continuous breathtaking view of Lake Tahoe (please, please, please visit Embarc before this ride, people). 

You can grab a bite at the top, but If you’re up for more adventure, hit one of the multiple hiking trails and work your way back down the mountain. And if you just want to go fast, hop on the Alpine Coaster and blast down the mountain through Tahoe’s epic scenery.

Mountain Bike the Sierras

Northstar Resort is another excellent reason to visit lake Tahoe. It offers Tahoe’s only lift-serviced bike park. It’s all a downhill thrill mountain biking without the grueling pedal up. You can buy a pass for the day or the season, and they offer bike rentals if you don’t have your own.

With over 100 trails ranging from beginner to double black diamond, there is something for everyone. The mountain terrain will give you a workout as you navigate through forests of pine and aspen trees. You might even spot a black bear or two!

Try a Via Ferrata Climbing Adventure

Squaw Valley has summer activities that include Tahoe’s only Via Ferrata course. Via Ferrata blends hiking with rock climbing for those that like a thrill. Learn from professional guides, and don’t worry, you’ll be safely anchored the entire time.

You’ll hike and climb your way up to the top of High Sierra ridges for some of the most incredible views in Tahoe. This is a great activity for groups or families, as it can be tailored to accommodate any skill level.

Visit Tahoe National Forest

Tahoe National Forest stretches from the Sierra Crest down to the Carson Range. With over 850,000 acres of forest, there is no shortage of things to do.

Multiple campgrounds and picnic areas are perfect for a summer day trip. You can also hike or bike on any of the 800 miles of trails. If you’re feeling adventurous, try your hand at fishing or rafting in one of the many rivers and streams.

And if you want to get away from it all, plenty of secluded lakes are perfect for a day of relaxation. Just don’t forget your bear can!

Explore Glen Alpine Falls

Glen Alpine Falls is one of the most popular hikes in Lake Tahoe. The trailhead starts at Emerald Bay, so you can combine this hike with a visit to Vikingsholm Castle.

The trail is only about a mile long, but it’s a moderate hike with some steep sections. The reward at the end is a series of waterfalls and pools perfect for a summer swim.

Float The Truckee River

This float starts in Tahoe City, a charming mountain town, and goes to Truckee. It’s about 5 miles long and super chill. Depending on how many stops you make, it takes about 3 hours. You can do it with a guide or on your own. 

Truckee River Raft Co. is a great option for a guided float. Park your car at the end, and they will bus you to the starting point.

Bring your floats and two cars if you decide to be your own guide. One to drop you at the start and one at the end to take you back to Tahoe.

Attend Lake Tahoe Summer Festivals

Lake Tahoe has some of the best summer festivals, and they come in every flavor, from Shakespear to BlueGrass and Beer Fest!

Soak In The Hot Springs

Sierra Hot Springs has several natural pools with some more secluded areas protected by beautiful trees. You can get a massage here, and the restaurant serves vegetarian food. Clothing is optional.

Grover Hot Springs is hidden south of Lake Tahoe on the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada. There are two hot spring pools at Grover. Both have incredible alpine vistas of granite peaks and wildflower meadows that make Lake Tahoe worth visiting.

Explore The Lake Donner Scenic Outlooks

At Donner Lake Vista Point and historic Donner Summit Bridge, you can see Donner Lake from above. Donner Pass runs parallel to Highway I-80, so you just take a little detour on Donner Pass Road, and you’ll pass several scenic outlooks with stunning views. Eventually, you’ll hit I-80 again. But that doesn’t mean there’s not more Donner to see. Check out Donner Memorial State Park, and hear the tale of the stranded pioneers.

Visit an Old Western Town

Virginia City is an old western town North of Lake Tahoe. One of the best ways to experience this American classic is with Virginia City Tours. You travel from South Lake and follow the Pony Express Trail. You’ll learn about the silver mining pioneers that settled the area, explore the old western town, and ride on the historic Virginia and Truckee Railroad.

Endless Summer Fun in Lake Tahoe

These are just a few of the many things to do on your Lake Tahoe summer getaway. From exploring castles, riding the Tahoe rim trail, or jet skiing at El Dorado beach, you’ll find endless summer fun in this mountain oasis. So what are you waiting for? Start planning your Lake Tahoe summer adventure today!

And don’t forget to stop by Embarc Dispensary for all your cannabis needs. We’ll help make your experience seamless from start to finish. View our online menu and make us your first stop!