Beaches, walking along the beach and boardwalk.
No pets allowed.
This was our first time visiting Lake Tahoe and Sand Harbor turned out to be a perfect choice for our young family (4 kids ages 8 and under). From the visitors center (facing the lake) you can go to the beach on the left or the right. The beach on the left goes to a huge stretch of beach that opens into the lake and would be great for boating. The beach on the right is just a little cove where the water is very shallow. That was perfect for us! My kids could wade in the water and even climb on huge boulders that surrounded the little cove. The water was freezing but since it was so shallow it wasn't really a big deal. We brought sand toys and lunch and were able to spend about 4-5 hours out on the beach. There is not much shade so I would suggest bringing an umbrella. And make sure your food is safely in a cooler. I had our in a canvas bag and squirrels chewed through it! I would also suggest walking around the boardwalk for beautiful views of the lake.
Sand Harbor is beautiful, but be aware that it is packed in the summer. You will have to walk some distance in the sand to find a spot, so strollers are not really practical. There is a fee to park, and the lot fills up quickly on weekends. Permits are purchased upon entry to individual parks at a standard entrance fee of $7 to $12 per day with a $2.00 discount to Nevada residents.
If you want to view Sand Harbor in the evening, check out the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival. They perform in July and August right on the beach. It can be a very romantic night out sans the children! During the day, Young Shakespeare offers performances on the beach for kids for a very affordable rate. Make sure you reserve your tickets in advance (http://laketahoeshakespeare.com/education/young_shakespeare.)
The view and surroundings at Sand Harbor Beach is nothing short of spectacular. Just a short 45ish minute drive from the Reno area, it is around $10 to enter the park for in state vehicles (Nevada) and a couple of dollars more for out of state vehicles. The beach itself is beyond beautiful. This is clearest water you will find in any lake- you can actually be pretty far out and still see the bottom. There are snow capped mountains in front of you, and a forest around and behind you. Like I said, spectacular!
The water can be chilly, but as the day starts to heat up it can feel good. Tahoe is typically chillier then the Reno area. There is not shade, and you are at a high elevation, so bringing an umbrella is a good idea. The park itself does fill up, and they do close it for a few hours (as in they won't let any new cars in), but it then reopens later in the day. We have always headed there first thing in the morning to stake out a good spot in the sand, literally right at the water's edge.
There is a gift shop and I believe a little restaurant, and there are restrooms on the beach. I have heard wonderful things about the Shakespeare in the Park production they do overlooking the lake in the summer evenings. Will have to check that out one day as well!
I really cannot say enough good things about this beach- it is literally magical!
My in-laws live in the Tahoe area and every summer we make time to go to Sand Harbor Beach. It is our favorite beach. The area is enclosed enough and shallow enough the the water is warm enough to swim in. Bring an unbrella because there isn't shade.
We visited this beach last summer on vacation and it's perfect for kids! The water is so clear you can actually be out quite far in the water and still see your feet in the sand. Oh and the sand isn't that gravely kind of rock like on other Tahoe beaches...it's very soft white sand.
There's not a lot of shade on the actual beach so we brought an umbrella which worked well. Also brought a cooler to keep our lunch and snacks in.
We're going back to Tahoe in a couple weeks and will definitely be visiting this beach again!
lake tahoe in the summer was a stop on one of our cross country drives. I was honestly content to just sit and stare at the snow capped mountains from the comfort of the pool. be very careful about the sun because you will not get hot but you are probably getting burnt. I had the worst sunburn ever here and I was wearing 50 spf sport sunscreen. Bring card games and drawing items to occupy kids. Not much to do other than enjoy beauty or go to casino.
I haven't really found an area of Lake Tahoe that we dont love. This is a good picnic beach and a good area for little ones to play in the water. Its nice and warm not a lot of shade on the lakeshore but enough in the picnic area. My kids had a lot of fun here and we would go back again.
I love to walk with my kid and watch the beach and sea shore. people come and go where they want to see. I can have a picnic with my family on the beach and find that my children are playing with their ball. i warmed them not to play every lose to the sea shore.
This is a gorgeous beach, with clear Tahoe water. There is a boardwalk path area with views of Lake Tahoe. You can sunbathe on the main beach or on the boat launch area. There is a large group area available by reservation. A somewhat pricey snack bar is there if you didn't bring a picnic lunch. This, along with Emerald Bay, is the most photographed spot in Lake Tahoe. Life guards are on duty on the main beach. Bathrooms are clean and plentiful. Arrive early to get a parking spot - during the summer months it can be closed as early as 10am!
This park is also home to the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival.