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Road Trip Day 2: South Lake Tahoe

Road Trip Day 2: South Lake Tahoe

When the average traveler thinks of visiting California in summer, South Lake Tahoe generally isn’t one of the first destinations considered. After our recent experiences though, we definitely think it should be up there with San Francisco, Los Angeles and Hollywood as a must-visit.

On Day 1 of our Road Trip we stayed at the MontBleu Resort Pool Party until the early hours of the morning which made getting up for a day full of activities on Day 2 quite the challenge. However, South Lake Tahoe had turned on some beautiful weather for us and with several adventures on the lake awaiting our arrival, we quickly got ready and jumped in our car to get the day started.

Stand-Up Paddleboarding with South Tahoe Standup Paddle

South Tahoe Standup Paddle

South Tahoe Standup Paddle.

The first item on our schedule was stand-up paddleboarding with South Tahoe Standup Paddle. Despite our late arrival to the shop, they were totally flexible and didn’t have a problem with us taking the boards out a little later than first intended. All we needed to do was wait for the owner Chris to get back from the beach!

While we waited for Chris to return, Michelle gave us plenty of great advice for the rest of our journey around the United States. It’s always great to meet a fellow traveler, particularly one who’s been to all but two of the US states!

Once Chris got back, he loaded up our paddleboards onto a 1959 Ford Truck (very cool!) and drove us to the nearby Regan Beach. After a quick mini-lesson on the beach, we were let loose onto the stunning crystal clear waters of Lake Tahoe and it didn’t take very long to get the hang of stand-up paddleboarding.

Amy stand-up paddleboarding on the beautiful Lake Tahoe

Amy stand-up paddleboarding on the beautiful Lake Tahoe.

After experiencing stand-up paddleboarding for the first time, it’s simple to see why it is the fastest growing water sport in the world. It’s fun, it’s easy and you don’t even need to get wet! This is as close as you’re going to get to walking on water so if you have the chance to try out stand-up paddleboarding, go for it – you’ll have a fantastic time!

Emerald Bay Cruise

The Tahoe Queen

The Tahoe Queen.

After a quick lunch the next thing on our to-do list was a daytime scenic cruise of Emerald Bay on-board the Tahoe Queen, Tahoe’s only authentic Mississippi paddlewheeler. For those who haven’t heard of it, Emerald Bay is a flooded glacial valley that was carved during the Ice Age and was designated as a National Natural Landmark in 1969. According to reports, it is the second most photographed location in North America.

So rather than us keep talking about it, here are our best photos from the 2.5 hour cruise:

The Captain of the Tahoe Queen

The Captain of the Tahoe Queen.

The stunning waters of Lake Tahoe

The stunning waters of Lake Tahoe.

The entrance to Emerald Bay.

The entrance to Emerald Bay.

The only island in Lake Tahoe, Fannette Island

The only island in Lake Tahoe, Fannette Island.

Mount Tallac

Mount Tallac.

The paddle wheels on the Tahoe Queen

The paddle wheels on the Tahoe Queen.

As you can see, the photo opportunities on-board the Tahoe Queen were indeed fabulous and “magazine-worthy” as promised.

But if you’re looking to do a boat cruise while in Lake Tahoe, we would recommend the Sierra Sunset Dinner Dance Cruise. It only costs slightly more and you’ll get to see a Lake Tahoe sunset, enjoy local cuisine and listen to live music. The next time we return to Lake Tahoe, this is one of the things we will be sure to include in our itinerary.

We’re currently road tripping through California thanks to the generous help of Fox Rent A Car. Our time in South Lake Tahoe was made possible by the South Lake Tahoe Visitors AuthorityMontBleu Resort Casino & SpaSouth Tahoe Standup Paddle and Lake Tahoe Cruises. As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own.

10 Comments

  1. Posted August 27, 2011 at 12:48 am | Permalink

    Yay, paddleboarding! We haven’t had the chance to paddleboard again since our first time in Key West, but we’ve got the itch.

    And South Lake Tahoe is gorgeous – so glad you’re enjoying it. My entire extended family has a family reunion there every other summer, so I’m a big fan. :)

    • Posted August 27, 2011 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

      Paddleboarding was so much fun! We can’t wait to do it again – might have to give it a try when we’re in Florida!

      We really did love Lake Tahoe, would love to go back very soon!

  2. Posted August 27, 2011 at 5:49 am | Permalink

    Beautiful lake pictures! You really made the paddle boarding sound like a lot of fun. I’ll definitely give it a try if I’ve got a chance some day

    • Posted August 27, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

      It really is a lot of fun… we thought it was going to be difficult to learn but it really wasn’t. Definitely give it a try when you can! :)

  3. Posted August 27, 2011 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    Tahoe’s so gorgeous and fun all year – definitely not just for skiing!

  4. Posted August 31, 2011 at 7:00 am | Permalink

    I just stumbled across your blog while searching for South Lake Tahoe content on Twitter.

    The company I work for, Noble Studios, is redesigning the http://www.tahoesouth.com Website – the official visitors site for South Lake Tahoe.

    This post about your visit to South Shore would be perfect on our site. Would you be comfortable sharing some or all of this on our site with a link back to your blog?

    Let me know if you’re interested.
    We’re launching the new site in November, but accepting content now.

    I look forward to hearing from you!
    Vanessa
    @VanessaVancour
    775.771.5879

  5. Posted September 4, 2011 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    I so wish that we could have gone to Lake Tahoe when we were in California. It is truly one of the most beautiful places in the state I think! Looks like you guys had a great time, and I find it funny that you say paddle boarding was easy, I always thought it would be hard to balance!

  6. Posted September 7, 2011 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    Glad to hear you’re enjoying so many of the attractions up here… There’s so many things to do up here you’ll wind up coming here again and again.

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