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With an average of 300 days of sunshine a year, featuring some of the world’s best ski resorts and beaches, Lake Tahoe is a quintessential family vacation destination.
Visitors who crave adventure will never run out of things to do—and that includes skiing, biking, hiking, golfing and more water activities than one could imagine. Tahoe is divided into two distinct regions: North Lake Tahoe spans two states (California and Nevada), and Tahoe South is where you’ll find Lake Tahoe (the largest alpine lake in North America) surrounded by the majestic Sierra Nevada Mountains. Nationally recognized Lake Tahoe events such as music festivals, concerts, food pairings and sporting events take place in every season.
Here are the best hotels for the perfect family vacation:
Ridge Tahoe Resort
Not unlike a huge cruise ship, Ridge Tahoe Resort offers activities for guests of all ages—including indoor racquetball, a movie theater with daily screenings, indoor/outdoor swimming pools, a sports complex with basketball, a hiking trailhead for the Tahoe Rim Trail, three outdoor tennis courts, miniature golf and putting greens. In addition to all that, each building has either an indoor or outdoor hot tub available to guests.
Mourelatos Lakeshore Resort
As a family-owned and operated business for more 30 years, Mourelatos Lakeshore Resort emphasizes sharing quality time with kids. It’s one of the reasons why generations of families return to this Lake Tahoe resort. Both children and their parents often make a beeline to the Cable Car Ice Cream Shop across the street—so it’s a superb idea to sample a super scoop (or sundae) before heading to the beach. Check out the Tahoe Treetop Adventure Park, which is conveniently located nearby. Or test your skills at Kings Beach miniature golf. Each suite features scenic views of Lake Tahoe, and there’s plenty of room to escape the hustle and bustle of the outside world.
This family-friendly resort sprawls across acres of forested meadow and features both hotel rooms and cabin-style lodges. After indulging in the property’s complimentary continental breakfast, guests can traverse the Tahoe Treetop Aerial Adventure Park, enjoy access to many trails, sled (or ski) down the beginner-friendly snow hill or head to the nearby beach. Located behind Granlibakken Tahoe in Tahoe City, the Tahoe City Treetop Park offers 97 tree platforms within a secluded forest with large pine trees and old growth cedars. The Tahoe City location offer 27 zip lines and 60 bridges—in addition to events that accommodate young ones 5 years of age and older.
Cedar Glen Lodge
Located in the forest on the West Shore, Cedar Glen Lodge features cozy cottages and lodge suites that offer a classic Tahoe feel. Studios, one- and two-bedroom units with fireplaces and kitchens, are perfect for families. The array of activities include swimming, snorkeling, diving, boating, water skiing, windsurfing, para-sailing, biking and rock climbing. The Lodge also has three designated pet-friendly rooms, a lawn area with picnic tables and chairs, and a large heated outdoor swimming pool during the summer months.
Forest Suites Resort
Guests of Forest Suites Resort can take advantage of the nearby winter activities in Lake Tahoe such as ice skating, snowmobiling, sleigh rides, sledding, tubing and cross-country skiing. In the summer, enjoy the unlimited fun offered on the lake. (Think boating, kayaking, paddle boarding, swimming and fishing.) The resort provides a combination of guest rooms, spacious suites and specialty suites. Ranging from 650 to 850 square feet, the one- and two-bedroom suites are perfect for those looking for some extra room—and they offer many of the comforts of home, complemented by a fully-equipped kitchen.
Zephyr Cove Resort
Ideal for large groups, Zephyr Cove Resort offers a delightful natural setting in South Lake Tahoe with 28 cabins (along with guest rooms) and is only a short walk to the beach, marina, lake cruises and restaurants. All cabins have been renovated and offer private bathrooms, fully-equipped kitchens and gas fireplaces. Select cabins feature wonderful lake vistas. And four of the Lodge’s guest rooms can accommodate up to six guests.
Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel
Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel, the area’s only all-suite lodging option, is moments away from dining, ice skating, golfing, shopping, hiking, biking and other activities. Check out the property’s special deals for midweek savings, value suites and all-season specials. (Also: Children under 17 stay for free.) Other inviting features include game tables in the downstairs atrium, a cool koi pond and a full breakfast buffet.