The North Shore of Lake Tahoe is comprised of several communities, between Tahoe City and Kings Beach, including Dollar Point, Carnelian Bay, Cedar Flat, and Tahoe Vista. Both Tahoe City and Kings Beach have popular downtown areas with shops, restaurants, and community beaches. Tahoe City, which calls itself “the heart and soul of Lake Tahoe,” sits above Commons Beach, home to a popular playground and the Foothills Farmers Market in the summer. A brand new bike bath connects Commons Beach to the east end of town that goes all the way to Dollar Hill or follow it south towards the West Shore all the way to Sugar Pine State Park.
A vacation rental or ski lease in Tahoe City or Kings Beach (or any area in between) lets you easily explore all of the North Shore and puts you within minutes of recreational activities and shopping and dining. The area ski resorts of Squaw Valley, Alpine Meadows, and Northstar are all within a 10-15 minute drive.
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North Shore Tahoe - Summer Activities
There are so many North Shore activities to choose from in the summer it can make your head spin! But, getting on the Lake is a MUST. Rent a kayak or stand up paddleboard from Lake Tahoe Waterman in Carnelian Bay, which also offers lessons. OR book a Rafting Tour or Kayak Tour from Tahoe Whitewater Tours.
For something fun to do with the kids, play a round of miniature golf at Magic Carpet Golf across the street. If you really want to test your balance, try a stand up paddleboard yoga class with Mountain Lotus in Tahoe City. For hikers, the Tahoe Rim Trail, a 165-mile trail that travels along the ridges of the Tahoe Basin, can be accessed from several locations on the North Shore for great hiking and mountain biking with panoramic views of the lake. The North Shore has two nine-hole golf courses: Kings Beach’s Old Brockway Golf Course, home of the first Bing Crosby Golf Tournament in 1934, and the Tahoe City Golf Course, established in 1917.
Summer highlights include the Fourth of July fireworks in either Tahoe City or Kings Beach. In August, Carnelian Bay is the site of the popular Concours d’ Elegance Wooden Boat Show. Fall is also a great time to be in Tahoe City – during the two week-long Harvest Festival, the popular Scarecrows-on-Parade decorate the downtown corridor. Don’t miss the Tahoe City Wine Walk – wine and food festival in June!
North Shore Tahoe - Winter Activities
Have you ever skate skied? It’s an amazing workout, and fun. Take a free lesson at Tahoe Cross Country (also called the Nordic Center) off of Dollar Hill on Wednesdays and weekend mornings. The center has 65 kilometers of trails that travel through beautiful Ponderosa pine and white fir forests with stunning views of Lake Tahoe. There are two trailside-warming huts and the lodge’s cozy Freel Heel Café will keep you fueled up. The North Tahoe Regional Park in Tahoe Vista sits on 124 acres and has a groomed sledding hill and cross-country ski trails for some inexpensive family fun. Ride your snowmobile to the top of Mount Watson on the Fiberboard Freeway off of Highway 267 in Kings Beach.
North Shore Tahoe - Dining
In Kings Beach, Jason’s and Steamer’s are two local favorite spots for lakefront dining. Lanza’s, a Kings Beach staple, is a family-friendly Italian restaurant. For more upscale dining, try Spindleshanks in Tahoe Vista, an American bistro in it's brand new location at the Brockway Golf Course. The North Shore also has some great breakfast spots – Rosie’s Café in Tahoe City, the Old Post Office in Carnelian Bay, and the Log Cabin in Kings Beach. For a quick bite to eat or food to go, try Syd’s Bagelry or Fat Cat Deli in Tahoe City. Zia Lina Ristorante, serving Italian fare, is a new addition to Tahoe City and worth a visit!
North Shore Tahoe - Services
Tahoe City: There are two major grocery stores at each end of town, Safeway and Save Mart. CVS, in the Lighthouse Center, has a pharmacy. The post office is also in the Lighthouse Center. There are four banks – Bank of America (405 North Lake Blvd.), Plumas Bank (243 North Lake Blvd.), US Bank (705 North Lake Blvd.), and El Dorado Savings Bank (740 North Lake Blvd.). The Truckee Tahoe Medical Group is at 925 North Lake Blvd. Burton Creek Veterinary Clinic is in Lake Forest, between Tahoe City and Dollar Hill, at 2933 Lake Forest Rd.
Kings Beach: Safeway is the only major grocery store in Kings Beach. It has a pharmacy; there is also Rite Aid down the street. There is a post office in Carnelian Bay (5075 North Lake Blvd.), Tahoe Vista (7005 North Lake Blvd.), and Kings Beach (8633 Salmon Ave.). There are two banks in Kings Beach: Plumas Bank (8475 North Lake Blvd.) and Bank of the West (200 Bear St.). The closest doctors are in Tahoe City or Truckee.
North Shore Tahoe - Staff Suggestions
- Summer: Don’t miss free lakefront concerts every Sunday at Common’s Beach and family movie nights on Wednesdays at dusk. Fine dine at Wolfdale’s or Christy Hill in Tahoe City, and snack on frozen yogurt and homemade waffles at Poppy’s in Tahoe City.
- Winter: For ALL your winter gear and ski rental needs visit Dave’s Ski and Board Shop. With 4 locations along the North Shore too! Just ask US how to get 10% off your enitre rental order!!!! Enjoy all things “SnowFest,” Tahoe’s annual winter festival in March!