Lake Tahoe, California
Coordinates: 39.0968° N, 120.0324° W
Distance from Baton Rouge: 2,098 miles
Flying Time: 7 hours
Driving Time: 31 hours
Did you know Lake Tahoe, one of the deepest freshwater lakes in the US, is more than 2 million years old? That means you can get up close and personal with millions of years of history while visiting this iconic vacation destination. While you’re at it, you can dive into (or hike around) the lake at Emerald Bay State Park, get a bird’s eye view from a hot-air balloon, and dine at some locally renowned restaurants. From high in the sky to deep in the clear, blue water, there are endless ways to explore the beautiful Lake Tahoe.
WHERE TO STAY
Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel is the only place with all-suite lodging in the South Lake Tahoe area, and it’s also the best place to stay during your getaway. Your spacious suite will include a bedroom, a kitchenette area, a living room, and a bathroom. There’s even a family suite available if you need the extra space. Hotel amenities feature a pool, a jacuzzi, a fitness center, a restaurant, and a cafe for you to visit in case you need to grab a quick bite to eat before heading out.
WHERE TO EAT
Artemis Lakefront Cafe
Artemis Lakefront Cafe has tasty Greek and Mediterranean-style food plus a beautiful view of Lake Tahoe. Whether you want pancakes or Baklava French Toast, the Cafe has quite the breakfast menu for families embarking on their adventures early. Or, if you want to make a pit(a) stop, you can stop by for lunch and try the Chicken Gyros or the Falafel Pita Wrap. Dinner will be best started off with some roasted red pepper hummus and pita bread, and, of course, don’t forget to order some Baklava for dessert.
The Getaway Cafe
If you’re looking for some homemade comfort food, The Getaway Cafe is the perfect spot. Just about everything on the menu is made from scratch, so your Bacon and Egg Sandwich or Maple Bacon Glazed French Toast will be extra tasty. Local favorites include the Pastrami Sandwich, the Parmesan-Crusted Grilled Cheese, and the Barbecued Beef Sandwich.
Base Camp Pizza Co.
The best gourmet pizza in the Lake Tahoe area is at Base Camp Pizza Co. The restaurant is located in Heavenly Village, which makes it a great stop after you spend the day shopping, skiing, or mini golfing. Start with the garlic cheese bread before you try to choose from an impressive menu of pizzas. But If you aren’t in the mood for pizza, they have pastas and salads, too. Maybe the Italian Herb Shrimp Penne with The Greek Salad on the side is more your taste. Whatever you order, you’re going to want a fresh Out The Oven Chocolate Chip Cookie topped with vanilla ice cream for dessert.
WHAT TO DO
With its striking emerald green and turquoise blue features, Emerald Bay State Park is the number-one place to visit in Lake Tahoe. The park is home to Lake Tahoe’s only island, Fannette Island, and Vikingsholm Castle. You can take a boat or a kayak to the island and take in the stunning 11th century-style Swedish architecture of Vikingsholm Castle, and you can also hike one of the many trails to immerse yourself in Lake Tahoe’s beauty. Emerald Bay has an Underwater State Park, too. By taking the right precautions, you can go scuba diving in Lake Tahoe and see sunken, historical artifacts.
Your views of Lake Tahoe don’t have to be limited to ground level. Lake Tahoe Balloons will let you have amazing, panoramic views of Lake Tahoe and its mountainous backdrop–all while you float above the clear, blue water in a hot air balloon. While the flights take off shortly after sunrise, even non-morning people won’t want to miss such an opportunity.
There’s tons of entertainment all in one place at the Heavenly Village in Lake Tahoe. You can take a gondola down to the village where you can grab a bite to eat, shop for souvenirs, watch a movie, go ice skating, play mini golf, and even see some magic tricks in The Loft Theatre. Needless to say, the Heavenly Village is called Lake Tahoe’s entertainment hub for a reason.