100 Things To Do In South Lake Tahoe

Restaurants | Bars | Experiences

Clean air, a great food and drinks scene, plenty of activities to do, and an airport — South Lake Tahoe is the perfect place for a weekend trip. We searched Yelp to find all the highest rated restaurants, bars, and things to do; here’s what we found:

BLUE LAKE TAVERN

We have gone in and eaten in the bar and restaurant and have also done takeout. The food is awesome as is everyone that works there! Pizza, wings, sandwiches, fried pickles, salads…. everything is great! We had an instance with takeout where they forgot our sauces for our food and we felt some wings were missing in our order but they were quick to make it right and were so helpful. Highly recommend this hidden gem!!

CAVE ROCK

I really love this park! Beautiful views of lake tahoe and the Sierra Nevada range! The Park staff are rad! And you can even go clear kayaking if you prebook a tour with one of the outfits at the park!

TAHOE JACK’S ADVENTURE AUTHORITY

I stumbled upon Tahoe Jack’s online as I was googling for ATV adventures in Lake Tahoe. They don’t do ATV but I found many other activities that they offer that I was interested in. Over the weekend, I did their 4 hour Dawn Patrol Kayak Tour. As I am typing this, I am sunburnt with sore arms & shoulders but the memories and fun I had was all worth it!

LAKE TAHOE TIKI BOAT

I honestly cannot say enough good things about this boat and Ian. If you haven’t booked them yet, you’re going to want to do it ASAP.

LAKE TAHOE BALOONS

What an unbelievable experience. Super professional operation delivers a one-of-a-kind experience. This is the only place in the world where you can take off and land on a boat – it’s designated as an aircraft carrier. The views are absolutely breath-taking. Our pilot was Sheldon, and he was outstanding.

MOUNTAIN HIGH SANDWICH CO

Went to Mountain High this past weekend to pick up lunch to enjoy at the lake. The ordering process was easy and safe with a touchless interaction. We had the House Smoked Tri-tip, Turkey Pesto Avocado, and the Give Thanks. They were all exactly as advertised, well put together, and flavorful. An absolute solid performance by these folks and will be on our short list whenever we are in the area.

HIMMEL HAUS

Why shouldn’t it be a delicious and clean Oktoberfest everyday!

Dependable, Covid adhered to, friendly service, delicious dishes and German forward beer selection of a restaurant. It has it all. Large in and outdoor seating.

LAM WATAH TRAIL TO NV BEACH

This has been one of my favorite trails for years for running whenever I’m in South Lake Tahoe. It’s also great for walking and taking in beautiful views of the meadow, trees, mountains, and occassional chipmunk! A lot of locals walk their dogs here (so it’s good to be mindful of where you step at times!), and it’s obvious our furry friends love this trail as much as us humans!

CASCADE FALLS

One of the nicest hikes I’ve ever been on. Unbelievable views and variety in terrain. Starts out kind of woody at the Bayview Trailhead, then gets rockier as you go up. There are many trees, one was fallen that we had to traverse on the way. The apex of hike takes you to the waterfall which is truly spectacular overlooking Cascade Lake and Lake Tahoe in the background. I could’ve sat there all day and admired the view. I drank right out of the stream, some of the cleanest water you’ll find in the country. I would describe the hike as fairly easy, about two miles there and back. There are some steep points that require careful footing and strength.

Truly a gem, I recommend it highly. We need to preserve places like this. I live in LA and it made me want to move to Tahoe. Nature at its finest.

EMPANASH

I can’t say enough good things about Empanash! I’m not only thankful for the plentiful veggie friendly options (I got the Namaste and Cornfed and loved both of them), but also grateful for incredible customer service and just plain, kindness.

MY THAI & NOODLE

My favorite place to eat at when I’m in Tahoe. The flavors are just right and so delicious! It was my first time trying the noodles and it was good! Keep in mind for all you spicy lovers. When you ask for medium hot it’s HOT! I didn’t post the beef noodle soup. The broth was so savory. Definitely recommend especially on a cold day.

LAKE TAHOE ALEWORX

Love this place. The best pizza I’ve ever had. It’s wood fire pizzas with this buttery crust. Oh man, I had the artichoke chicken pizza and I ate the entire pizza with my girl. Good beer options, a bomb ass DJ and sound system and they stay on top of their COVID restrictions. My favorite spot in Tahoe.

PRETTY ODD WIENERS

Took a ride to So. Lake Tahoe just to break up our LONG sheltering spell with a parking lot visit with a relative (properly social distanced & masked, of course!). Happened to see the Hot Dog stand on the way back , and it was lunch time. The service was great! The food (bison & boar sausages w/garlic fries & lemonade) was great, delicious and fun! What a great find! Glad they were there for our first outing.

BIJOU COMMUNITY PARK

Super fun FREE bike park! My hubby and our sons had a blast on the tracks. Just show up and ride. The other bikers were courteous and helpful. Not a lot shaded places to sit and watch/wait but besides that great place to dined the afternoon.

TOIYABE GOLF CLUB

I’ve had the opportunity to enjoy Toiyabe on a number of occasions over the years, including when it operated as Lightning W. I’ve golfed, attended banquets for political parties and Wells Fargo, and enjoyed meals in the restaurant.

I have to say I am impressed with the current management team. Savannah’s F&B team and Kiana with cart service are consistently helpful, friendly, and attentive.

As for golf, the course is in great shape. The greens keepers clearly have a passion for what they do. If you can stand the windy afternoons, you’ll be rewarded with excellent greens (generally 12/13), and a top notch marshal crew who keep the course on quick pace.

SPROUTS NATURAL FOODS CAFE

I have been going to Sprouts for years. It’s a must stop every time I visit. I always get the Tuna burrito and instead of chips I opt for the side salad. It’s safe for me to say Sprouts is my favorite restaurant…ever. I can’t get enough of the bold flavors and fresh ingredients. The nachos are out of this world and near impossible to finish because they are so filling.

THE OYSTER BAR

I came here Tuesday night, waitress was amazing and so were our cooks! We ordered 2 dozen oysters, a house boil, clam fettuccine, and peal shrimp. All AMAZING!!

THE HANGAR

Great hangout spot in South Lake Tahoe to enjoy a variety of beers. The tables are spaced well apart, and you’re free to bring your own food. Just remember food purchase here is required (Covid-19 times). When we went, there was a taco truck that offered tacos, nachos, and bacon wrapped hot dogs. We ordered some food there and brought our own for a more wholesome meal.

Service is great. Overall, an awesome spot to relax and unwind.

THE IDLE HOUR

Can’t find a better place to have a glass of wine and watch the sunset in SLT. They do a great job following COVID guidelines with plenty of space. The cheeseboard is good, the rest of the food isn’t anything to write home about but it wasn’t a food spot pre-pandemic but adjusted for COVID guidelines to open. Wines great, servers are helpful and you can’t beat the views after a day on the lake or on the slopes.

EMBARC TAHOE

Embarc is the cutest new joint! Not only are the owners the best, but the entire staff was so helpful and pleasant. They are respecting Covid-19 measures and the place is very clean and aesthetically pleasing. Definitely the new go to spot for any cannabis needs.

MOUNT TALLAC TRAIL

Mount Tallac has been on my bucket list for at least three years and I’m so happy I got the opportunity to do it this year!

LOWER GLEN ALPINE FALLS

This place is so beautiful! We went during the summer and it was an adventurous ride down the one lane road next to a lake… but well worth the sight! If you’re looking for a nice little adventure to get away from busy stateline- this is a great option! Definitely have a car with good tires because the road can be bumpy…

KIVA BEACH

We love this beach just to chill out with the family and dog. The sand area is very narrow and not wide or as beachy as other areas but the shade affords lots of privacy and the swimming is great here. The parking lot is free. This summer has been crazy packed in Tahoe so get here early before 10 am on the weekends or go on a weekday to get a spot.

TEN CROWS BBQ

Best BBQ in Tahoe! My favorite is the sweet tea fried chicken sandwich and my husband loves the nacho fries with pulled pork. The outdoor grass area is so cool at night and is a nice change of pace from the insanity of the village across the street.

CLASSIC CUE

With the Coronavirus pandemic in full swing these guys are valiantly holding on to keep all employees employed.
We called in the order and 10 minutes later they brought it out to the car.
We had the bacon and cheese burger and the Big Cobb salad. Yum yum!!
They deserve your support!!

HARUMI SUSHI

Very glad to have tried this place, it was very busy so the wait times are a little more than usual. But they take great precautions during this pandemic. Good customer spacing and all staff had a mask on. Our waitress Holly was absolutely awesome and very nice. All of the staff were, our order came out about 1 dish at a time but it was nice and just gave us more time to eat. Our waitress and another gentleman both checked to make sure we got everything we ordered. They’re very friendly here.

BASECAMP BEER GARDEN

Love this place. The best pizza I’ve ever had. It’s wood fire pizzas with this buttery crust. Oh man, I had the artichoke chicken pizza and I ate the entire pizza with my girl. Good beer options, a bomb ass DJ and sound system and they stay on top of their COVID restrictions. My favorite spot in Tahoe.

CLEARLY TAHOE

Such a fun experience! We couldn’t decide on which tour to do, so we ended up booking both the nighttime LED kayak tour as well as the extended shoreline tour. Ryan was our guide for the nighttime one and he as great! It was a little spooky being out on the lake in the dark but Ryan made it fun and comfortable. He had tons of interesting facts about the lake and was always making sure everyone felt safe.

THE TAHOE EXPERIENCE

Wow what an AMAZING experience.
Bret is an amazing guy, took us on the lake with all the activities you can just think about and to the most amazing spots you can imagine. I have no words to describe the most fun time that we had.

HEAVENLY MOUNTAIN RESORT

We spent the whole day and every penny was worth it!
We took the gondola and coaster combo ticket.
We did other activities aside from the gondola and coaster. We hiked around the trails and did the lift too. Zip line next time!

THE FLUME TRAIL

I can’t describe the high I got at the top of the trail. When I got to Monkey Rock, I felt liberation as the world shelters in place. Swinging above Tahoe has to be one of the best feelings to date. The incline to get to the top had me gasping for air and a water break a few times, but it was worth every step. Ended up saving a dog on the way down and finishing with a mimosa at the cafe. If you are in Tahoe and want to feed your soul with a hike that all walks of life and shape can do, take your time and embrace the beauty of this hike- you won’t be sorry.

VAN SICKLE BI-STATE PARK

I am always looking for dog-friendly hikes near Lake Tahoe. After discovering this new-to-us park with its various trails, it has become one of my favorites!

TAHOE RIM TRAIL

Beautiful Tahoe Rim Trail so stunning are the views. This is a 165 Mile hike around the Tahoe basin with elevation of 10,300 feet. We did a very small portion of this hike about 5 miles in and 5 mile journey out that connects to the Van Sickle connector hike which is 3.4 Miles. The views are breath taking and we encountered 5 small beautiful waterfalls on our journeys.

LUCKY BEAVER BAR & GRILL

I don’t know what took me so long to go here. Service and food were phenomenal! Felt very safe during COVID as they space everyone out and have dividers at the bar. The wings were some of the best I have ever had. We got them beaver style. My burger and tots were absolutely amazing as well. Definitely a place to check out in South Lake!

IVANO’S ITALIAN RESTAURANT

I found Ivano’s on Yelp when I was looking for a great place to get Gnocchi for dinner. Wow – so happy I found them, because their homemade gnocchi is delicious and I love supporting local business owners. I ordered their homemade gnocchi with homemade pesto cream and oh.my.god. did it hit the spot!

GORDON RAMSAY HELL’S KITCHEN LAKE TAHOE

While in South Lake Tahoe, we dipped into my fav Chef, Gordon Ramsay’s Hells Kitchen. Amazing service, people, drinks and food.
We had the ‘Mac n Cheese’ (bc I’ve watched Gordon make it a hundred times on TV) & the ‘Pumpkin Soup’ (bc ’tis the season.. It’s November)
All I can say is the soup was smooth, creamy and delicious. Just the right amount of pumpkin taste.
The Mac n Cheese was cheesy but not over bearing and served hot af. Crushed bacon and chives on top. Yumm!
All around good experience
Place was packed, even on a Tuesday night.

CURRY & GRILL

We are visiting Lake tahoe and this is the best indian takeout restaurant. We ordered paneer tikka masala, kadhai paneer, dal tadka and baingan bhartha. They gave us free papad and gulab jamun as complimentary dishes. Everything was delicious.

EVAN’S AMERICAN GOURMET CAFE

Evan’s was absolutely amazing! It is small and intimate with breathtaking food. I had the halibut with arugula salad and risotto, scallop on orzo salad, savory cheesecake, and blackberry creme brule. The halibut had a crust that was to die for, the salad had a perfect tanginess that complimented the cheesy risotto…
The scallops were perfectly cooked on top of a lemony sauce…
The savory cheesecake is to die for…. it is the first time I have ever eaten a cheesecake that was not sweet… it was amazing.
The black berry chocolate creme brule had soooo many flavors, it all danced perfectly on the palate.

Evan’s staff Steven and Lauri were so kind, upbeat, and warm hearted.

Everything about this restaurant is 5 stars

INCLINE VILLAGE CHAMPIONSHIP GOLF COURSE

A beautiful place to be anytime, but especially during Covid. Such a lovely, well-maintained course. The pro shop has a wide selection of men’s and women’s clothing. Friendly staff!

GENOA LAKES GOLF COURSE

Had a great time on this course today. 90 degrees with a breeze was nice. Great service in the pro shop, the bar and the cart return. Hope to be back in the next few months.

SOUTH OF NORTH BREWING

South of North Brewing Company is a quirky and fun little beer spot nestled right along the state line, making them either the first or last brewery in California, depending on which way you’re traveling.

POKE ROK

A great spot for some sushi and rice bowls right in South Lake Tahoe — I was drawn to it because it has vegan and vegetarian options, which was nice! The staff was super nice and followed all social distancing procedures.

SIDELLIS LAKE TAHOE

Our group of hungry campers (lids included) chose Sidellis, sight unseen, as our eatery of choice in South Lake Tahoe while on a weekend excursion in the area. I have no idea how they operate during “normal” times (written during COVID-19), but we found their back patio to be a fantastic hangout complete with incredible eats and drinks.

COLD WATER BREWERY AND GRILL

Great menu options to choose from. Fried chicken sandwich was delicious and the waffle fries were the best side option.
Highly recommend getting one of their cocktails – I got the Thyme beverage and it was quite refreshing
The Bavarian pretzel is so gosh darn good – make sure to get it. It comes with a beer cheese fondue and mustard and they’re both delicious.
Staff is friendly and everyone is abiding by COVID policies.

SOL CANNABIS

Immaculate environment. Welcoming. Well trained staff. Great product. Knowledgeable. Has curbside pick up.

MACDUFF’S PUB

MacDuff’s was wonderful. I didn’t expect to love it so much! Due to COVID-19, we had to eat outdoors but the staff was very accommodating in moving umbrellas around to block out the sun for my family. The food portions were large and tasty! My 6 year old nearly devoured an entire adult-sized serving of fish and chips and declared that it was “food from the gods, better than ice cream.” The rest of my family was similarly happy with their choices.

GLEN ALPINE TRAILHEAD

The drive to the falls is beautiful ! Going along Fallen Leaf Lake is a sight to see. The road can get a little rough with holes in some parts and narrow so be careful as you drive on it and pass other cars. No phone reception so make sure the gps is already going. Once you drive by the fire station you are almost there.

CLICHÉ LOUNGE

Great place to have a smoke and drink after an amazing dinner at Friday’s Station! Bartender was amazing…….makes the hell out of an Old Fashioned!

COMMUNITY SPEAKEASY

This is such a cool place to visit. Should absolutely be on your list of places to visit. The staff is amazing. Drinks are amazing. Will definitely not disappoint. You will be so glad you came. Ask for Leo! He will certainly take care of you!

CAPISCE?

We were first time customers and had a wonderful meal. The clams and mussel appetizer was amazing. My husband had the trio of pastas, the spicy pasta was mind blowing. I don’t care for raviolis normally but the original rava was to die for. Amazing place. Amazing tastes. I almost forgot the sausage and kale soup that we share and fought over. Love this place

TOAST TAHOE

This place is AMAZING! Great service! Great prices! And even better food!!! What a local find!! I’ll be coming back! I ordered a lunch plate for curbside pick-up and WOW! Presentation was outstanding and so much food for the price!! If you haven’t checked this place out yet you need to!! Thanks Toast!

LOGAN SHOALS VISTA POINT

This is a spectacular view spot! You can walk down the hill to the water, but I did not do that. Instead we stopped to watch the autumn wind blowing in over Lake Tahoe, with crisp blue skies and white horse tail wisp clouds on a contrast of emerald evergreen trees.

FULL ACCESS TAHOE

We would do this again in a hot minute! Not only was this experience super fun for the whole family (Mom, Dad & 2 kids 10yr & 12 yr) but the Full Access Tahoe experience was top notch! Jenoa met us at the entrance and had a great demeanor as he checked us in and explained how the vehicle worked! He was available via text the whole time, not only if we had vehicle questions but also for directions if we were unsure about a turn. Kiddos wished they were 16 so they could drive but loved the ride! The views were amazing – so glad we made the short little hike up to the tower (Genoa Peak) for the “Top of the World” panoramic view!

CASTLE ROCK TRAILHEAD

A nice fun hike on a trailhead with ample parking easily marked signs, that takes about 1 hour, is not too difficult for beginners, and ends with a nice view of the Lake. This will be one of the highlights of your visit to Lake Tahoe. Highly recommended.

TAHOE MOUNTAIN TAPAS

This past weekend I celebrated my wedding day that consisted of 9 guest a intimate dinner due Covid regulations. Miranda and Eric’s appetizer, salad, and filet mignon were amazing! The best Filet I have ever had. I last min planned an elopement and decided to have a intimate dinner Miranda answered every question I had, offered to bring a extra chair for a guest in case the air b n b did not have one. My family were so pleased with Miranda and Eric as our chef and I would recommend them to family and friends that are in the Tahoe area any day!

GENOA LOOP TRAIL

Beautiful hike, spectacular views with a waterfall, this hike offers up rewarding treasures that only Genoa can deliver. We set off on this trail that starts in the historic town of Genoa at the end of Carson Street which is north of Main Street (same side as the Genoa Bar – look for the Orchard House). You will see a gravel parking lot and the Genoa Loop Trail sign at the start of the trail.

SPOONER SUMMIT

We had just finished tubing earlier and we were looking for a quiet place just to play in the snow. Spooner Summit has perfectly fresh powdery snow and wasn’t really packed with anyone. We didn’t hike much we just stayed close to the front. Parking is limited but free so it’s a great place to pull off with little ones. There was even a small slope someone had made that was icy enough for us to slide down without sleds.

HANSEN’S TUBE & SAUCER HILL

We came early on a Monday and had the place to ourselves for awhile before it got busy which was nice. The owner was an absolute pleasure to speak to. It was early in the season so snow wasn’t that deep, but it was half melted so the first runs were smoking fast. Tons of fun! My family really enjoyed it and will definitely be back.

BASE CAMP PIZZA

I never go to Tahoe without getting basecamp, and that wasn’t different over COVID! I did a quick order online and picked it up right from outside their door. The communication was great and my order was HOT when I received it.

CHART HOUSE

Great selection of food & drinks for Happy Hour, price is right, Firecraker Shrimp is good, & the Mango Mojito is fantastic, not too sweet!

THE GETAWAY CAFE

We ventured out on a Sunday after 1pm and were about to wait for an outside table as they were BUSY but I asked if we could sit inside….and we could and we were the ONLY booth seated inside because everyone wanted to sit outside in the glorious sun!

TASTE OF EUROPE

This place was fantastic! Best schnitzel I’ve had in years! Their other dish that’s amazing is called Jagerschnitzel with mushroom gravy.

The atmosphere, ambience was perfect for two or for a family. They’ve got great outdoor seating due to COVID-19 which is really helpful. You guys rock!!

VERDE MEXICAN ROTISSERIE

Been a big fan of this place the last three years. Their food is both healthy and delicious, in the way that makes you feel rewarded and happy after an outdoor adventure, but also replenished for your next one. Always good interactions with the staff as well. Big fan of the burritos, both for breakfast and lunch.

EDGEWOOD TAHOE GOLF COURSE

I have walked Edgewood before as a patron for the Celebrity Golf Classic so playing the course has been on my bucket list for a while. I finally got the chance to play this past weekend and it was unreal. Perfect weather, great course condition and the views are indescribable. Greens fees are a bit pricey but you are paying for what you get– access to the only lakeside course and it is so worth it.

OLD BROCKWAY GOLF COURSE

Fun 9-hole course!
It’s hardly what I would call a muni….. it’s much nicer.
Of course, that could be because it is set in the mountains and all the trees and wildflowers make it looks so enchanting.

LITTLE PHILLY CHEESESTEAKS

Such a good Philly! Bread was so soft. The meat, bell peppers, & onions were cooked perfectly. Read that it was good hangover food, definitely true.
Got the bacon cheese fries, had them only put cheese on half they were good too! Large promotions great to share.
The staff is so kind and helpful. Will definitely be back!

THE LAKE HOUSE

Had the opportunity to dine at The Lake House last night – wow! The food, ambiance, and service were all amazing. We ordered the mushroom risotto as an appetizer –10 out of 10. My husband had the filet mignon, and it was also incredible. I don’t typically prefer red meat, but I had one bite and kept going back for more. I ordered the hamachi ceviche for my meal even though it’s technically an appetizer. The fish was fresh and the portion size was definitely sufficient. We had great service from Clay. He was working on his own without a host and did an amazing job making sure everyone was taken care of. This was the first and only time that my husband and I have dined in anywhere during COVID, and it definitely felt like a safe and clean environment. Thanks for the great experience!

SOUTH LAKE BREWING COMPANY

This is such an awesome local’s spot that is great for visitors as well. They have so many different options and all are great! Owned and run by locals. Great food truck options as well. This is a must visit if you are vacationing in Tahoe and will become your hangout if you’re new to town.

They’re even doing take out beer during this crisis!

BLACK BEAR LODGE BAR

We loved this place! Our waiter was so friendly and very good about giving us suggestions about the menu. Their muffins were the bomb

GASTROMANIAC HOMEMADE PASTA & PIZZA

TLDR; your place to go if you’re craving some homemade pizzas and pastas! It takes some time to make your order (since it’s made fresh), so be sure to allot some time for sightseeing!

FALLEN LEAF LAKE

If you’re visiting Lake Tahoe, you need to stop by this lake, period. They have a campground here and its an easy 10min walk, barely a hike. The views are amazing, we went during the winter season and it was very quiet, not many people so it was really fun to spend some time there. This is definitely a must visit on your way to Lake Tahoe!

DESOLATION WILDERNESS

Desolation wilderness definitely exceeded my expectations! Prior to arrival, we thought there was going to be a little bit of snow which might be a little bit hard to hike in. There was no snow and sunny the whole day! The views, scenery were breathtaking, something out of a book. Pictures don’t do justice! We parked at the trail head at Lower Echo Lake and got here around 8 am. You need to get a permit to hike here. There is limited parking there so try to get there early. The hike was about 8-9 miles. Honestly, I couldn’t ask for a better day! clear perfect blue skies, the sun out and a cool breeze!

AZUL LATIN KITCHEN

On our drive to our hotel, I noticed a crowd of people practically swarming this place. That’s when I knew I where I wanted to go for dinner that night.

SONNEY’S BBQ SHACK BAR & GRILL

We came here after reviewing so many different bbq joints around South Lake Tahoe and I definitely did not regret my choice on coming here. We ordered the smoked chicken wings, brisket salad with sriracha ranch and their highly rated brisket tacos! OMG!!! I throughly enjoyed everything we ordered, especially the brisket tacos! Those were to die for!! The brisket was so juicy and flavorful and it went great with their homemade salsa. If you ever come out to Sonney’s, don’t forget to order some brisket tacos, you will NOT be disappointed!

The Best Places to Eat & Drink in South Lake Tahoe
The Best Things to See & Do in South Lake Tahoe
The Best Places to Stay in South Lake Tahoe

INSTAGRAM FAVORITES

WELCOME TO THE SMOKING CHAIR

Food, Football, News and The World's Most Beautiful Women.

This site contains content and advertisements that may contain or reference alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, and/or sexual content, and other content that is explicitly for adults.

are you over 21?