Tahoe has always been a great playground for adults but what about the little ones who come to enjoy the Jewel of the Sierras? There are many summer activities for kids in Tahoe if you know where to look. Your time in Tahoe can be a great opportunity to build even stronger connections with those little ones. Daily life can be so hectic for a family with school, work, and after school activities. Parents these days have a lot on their plate, these busy daily routines don’t afford much time for family fun. This makes being able to take some time to create lasting memories and build strong bonds that much more special. We’re going to examine some family friendly attractions around the Lake. Of course there are the obvious things like going to the beach and camping but I figured I would highlight some of my favorite attractions that set the stage for my most cherished memories from my childhood.
As a kid growing up in Tahoe I always loved going to the educational attractions around South Lake Tahoe. One of my favorites was going to Donner Memorial State Park to learn about early settlers of California like the Donner Party. Walking through historical sites where you can see how difficult it was for them makes you really grateful for how far we have come in technology and engineering. To add to this the state park is beautiful and offers everything you could ever want from the great outdoors. Another great way to learn about the history of the lake is to take a tour of one of our many mansions from the progressive era of Lake Tahoe. During the early 1900’s many wealthy people came to build amazing mansions to use as a second home during the summer. Vikingsholm is probably one of the most popular of these tours. If you haven’t been here, you should definitely take a tour. The woman who designed this beautiful tribute to her worldly travels incorporated design styles from all over the world! The Whittell Mansion and Thunderbird Lodge are another fun and educational option featuring a 600 foot tunnel leading to the boat house.
If you feel that taking a little day hike would be more your speed there are a lot of choices for you and children of all ages. Tallac Historic Site was one of my favorites when I was little. This is definitely one of the easiest hikes you can go on around Tahoe but the trail is paved in most areas and there are opportunities to learn about the past and the surrounding ecology with little informative plaques placed around the site. I remember walking in between the old cabins and skipping rocks on the lake with my little sister. We would have lunch in the gazebo over the creek and joke and laugh all day long. The leisurely pace is perfect for really small children and gives you a chance to slow down and take in all that it has to offer. Click Here for more information about easy day hikes or to search for some with a little bit of a challenge.
Movies and television have always made fishing look so idyllic. This is the part of the movie where family members learn how much they have in common and get to appreciate each other’s company. They tell stories, make jokes, and learn new things about the people they are closest to. It seems like a cliché, but those scenes are made that way because it really is happens when you go fishing! Some of my favorite memories are of fishing with family members. It’s also a great free option as children under 16 because they do not need to have a fishing license. You on the other hand might need one, here is the link to get your California Fishing licence online. Caples lake is a great option, is regularly stocked with fish, and located off of highway 88 in the Mokelumne Wilderness. Taylor creek is another good fishing spot for Fall just before the season ends. Easily one of the most popular fishing spots near the South Shore of Lake Tahoe has to be Fallen Leaf Lake. You can drive straight to the lake’s campground and there are even boat rentals if you feel so inclined.
The old adage is that children are the future so it stands to reason that we should educate and connect with them as much as possible. Tahoe is the perfect place for this as the environment provides so many opportunities for bonding and learning. I’ve always found that kids have about as much to teach us as we do them. They have a different way of viewing the world because they see it with fresh eyes and have no expectations or prior experiences to keep them from trying new things. I think that everyone could benefit from keeping that child inside themselves alive, so even if you don’t have kids these activities are great options for you as well. After all that’s what visiting Tahoe or living here is all about. South Lake Tahoe is often described as a playground and truer words have never been spoken.