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12 Best Beaches in Lake Tahoe

By | Last Updated : 22nd July 2020

Lake Tahoe, situated along the Sierra Nevada Mountains, is famous for an array of beaches encompassing it mostly on its northern and southern shores. The splashing blue waters, long belts of sand, mountainous terrain, and abundance of greenery, surrounding each of the beaches, make them an epitome of picturesque beauty. They prove to be a perfect vacation spot where one could swim, boat, play, or even bask in the bright, warm sun and cherish nature’s beauty.

Beaches in Lake Tahoe

North Lake Tahoe Beaches

1. Kings Beach

Kings Beach in North Lake Tahoe

The Kings Beach situated in Place County lies on Lake Tahoe’s north shores, remarkable for its sunny, sandy beaches. The King Beach State Recreation Area is one of its key attractions opened between 6 am and 10 pm. Picnic tables, barbeque pits, on a first-come-first-serve basis, restrooms, playground, and a basketball court are some of the amenities available here. Parking is chargeable, $ 5 from October to April, and $30 from May to September (peak season).

Dog/Pet Friendly: Yes, in the dog beach located in the park’s eastern part behind the rocky region; though their entry remain restricted on the main beach

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2. Sand Harbor Beach

Sand Harbor Beach in Lake Tahoe

The Sand Harbor Beach situated on the lake’s northeastern shore within the Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park spans around a surface area of about 55 acres (0.22 sq. km). Its main USP lies in the long stretches of sandy beaches and surrounding trails, making this spot apt for swimming, picnicking, and hiking. The beach remains open from 8 in the morning till one hour before sunset. However, this timing undergoes modification during the Memorial Day-Labor Day period. Some of the several facilities include food concessions, barbeques, kayak, and paddleboard rentals, showers, volleyball courts, and public bathrooms. Parking lots remain full during summer weekends and weekdays from July – August when the famous Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival is held. The parking fee ranges from $10 for Nevada residents and $12 for others.

Dog/ Pet Friendly: Not all-year-round, but only during off-seasons from 15th October – 15th April

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3. Commons Beach

Commons Beach in Lake Tahoe

This one is another of Lake Tahoe’s spectacular beaches on its northern shores, stretching up to 4 acres (0.016 sq. km) popular for a host of activities like swimming, picnicking, and sunbathing. The park even has a barbecue area that can accommodate 75 people on an average alongside an amphitheater for about 65 people.  The chief attraction is the Sunday-afternoon free concerts and Wednesday-night free movies hosted on the beach every summer.

Dog/ Pet Friendly: No

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4. Hidden Beach

Hidden Beach in Lake Tahoe

The Hidden Beach with an approximate length of 750 ft lies to the southern part of Nevada’s Incline Village on Highway 28. One could barely notice this beach that remains guarded by giant boulders and rocky alcoves unless they get near the guard rail adjacent to the highway. Sunbathing, swimming, and picnicking are some of the popular recreational activities.  It has no parking lot, and the best place to keep your vehicle is in the Lake Boulevard-Highway 28 intersection, half a mile away from the beach.

Dog/Pet Friendly: Yes

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South Lake Tahoe Beaches

5. Pope Beach

South Lake Tahoe Pope Beach

At Lake Tahoe’s southern shore, Pope Beach is a 3/4th mile-long sandy beach making for a beautiful swimming and picnicking spot. The spectacular sight of the Tahoe Lake and Sierra Nevada Mountains is sure to take one’s breath away. Kayak rentals, food concession, and charcoal grilling (within the grills provided) are some of the beach’s available facilities. The parking fee is $8 on regular days and $20 on the 4th of July. The shaded pine trees surrounding the place would indeed help one to relax after a tiresome day

Dog / Pet Friendly: No

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6. Chimney Beach

Chimney Beach in South Lake Tahoe

The Chimney Beach is situated on Lake Tahoe’s Nevada side, attaining its name after a chimney on its shoreline that initially supported a cabin but now stands by itself. It lacks amenities like picnic tables, campfires, or portable charcoal grills. The parking lot on Lake Tahoe–Nevada State Park’s southern edge and the starting point of the 1.1-mile trailhead to the beach, houses trash bins and portable restrooms. This trailhead studded with boulders and pine trees is a hiker’s favorite though not suited for children and elderly due to the uneven terrain.

Dog/ Pet Friendly: Yes

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7. Nevada Beach Lake Tahoe

Nevada Beach Lake Tahoe

This magnificent sandy beach lying on Lake Tahoe’s southeastern shores generates a panoramic view of the blue waters and mighty Sierra Nevada Mountains. Besides swimming, the other popular activities include kayaking and picnicking on the boat-in picnic space to the southern end of Nevada Swimming Beach. The beach provides food concession and kayak rentals, while charcoal grilling is permissible within the grills that have been given. The Nevada Beach Campground adjoins the beach, serving as a perfect location for RV and beach camping. Parking in the day-use area comes for $8 on regular days, and $ 20 on occasions like the 4th of July.

Dog /Pet Friendly: Yes

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8. Zephyr Cove

Zephyr Cove in South Lake Tahoe

The Zephyr Cove’s sandy beach stretches for a mile, being an absolute delight to those on the lookout for a perfect summer vacation. To relax and cherish the beauty around you would get beach umbrellas and chairs for rent. You can even enjoy a volleyball game in the free courts throughout the lake. Swimming in the clear blue waters alongside boating is bound to provide utmost delight. The parking charges are $8 per day, increasing to $25 on the 4th of July.

Dog/Pet Friendly: No, though not allowed on the beach, can be taken along to the cabins and campground at the Zephyr Cove Resort

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9. Baldwin Beach

Baldwin Beach in South Lake Tahoe

It is about 4 miles from the South Lake Tahoe City, situated in the northern part of Highway 50 –Highway 89 intersection. This and the Ski Beach located adjacent to it are highly sought-after holidaying spots because of their captivating beauty and serene ambiance. The beach would furnish you with picnic tables, and flush bathrooms, alongside kayak, canoe, flat board, and windsurfing rentals. The parking is chargeable. The two allotted spaces for both the beaches get filled up by 11 am; hence you need to come early to accommodate your vehicle. Since the area is not shady enough, a portable beach umbrella is advisable.

Dog/Pet Friendly: No, only allowed in the Ski Beach

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10. Kiva Beach

Kiva Beach in South Lake Tahoe

If desiring for a quiet and lonely holiday with your family and four-legged friend, then Kiva Beach would be ideal for you. This hidden beach situated about 3.5 miles to the northern part of Highway 50- Highway 89 intersection is sure to delight its visitors with the narrow stretches of sand, and eye-catching sceneries of Mt. Tallac. It has a visitor’s center at a 3-minute distance from the beach’s parking area, equipped with portable toilets, picnic tables, and a free parking lot. Swimming is fun, but certain parts might be a little rocky and deep as well.

Dog/Pet Friendly: Yes

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11. Vikingsholm, Emerald State Park

Vikingsholm Emerald State Park Lake Tahoe

The Emerald Bay State Park to the southeastern part of Lake Tahoe houses 38-room summer mansion, Vikingsholm, alongside a host of magnanimous beaches situated at its vicinity. The place has several camping areas and one could even rent a kayak and go up to the Fannette Island to relish the surrounding beauty and also see the stony remnants of the historic teahouse that once existed.  

Dog/Pet Friendly: Yes

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East Lake Tahoe Beaches

12. Secret Cove

Secret Cove Beach in East Lake Tahoe

The Secret Cove Beach situated along Highway 28 is close to the surrounding Sand Harbor and Chimney Beach. The cove embraced with the sandy shoreline and granite boulders makes for a perfect picturesque delight. This is a nude beach, not frequented by many people, making it an ideal destination for a quiet, cozy holiday.  The two parking lots located within the lake’s premises offer free parking, however camping overnight is prohibited. There are provisions for a boat ramp, restrooms, and separate beaches for boating and swimming.

Dog/ Pet Friendly: Yes

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On your visit to Lake Tahoe do keep a few of these beaches in your bucket list for a fun-filled and joyous experience.

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