Nestled within the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Lake Tahoe is a haven for tourists seeking a simple nature retreat or a luxurious getaway. This lake remains unaffected by freezing temperatures and has not frozen once in its entire recorded existence.
This is mostly due to the precise location, shape, and depth of the lake. It’s fascinating to watch as the Sierra Nevada Mountains receive snow every winter and the lake remains liquid.
It might be an ideal location to unwind and be carefree, but before you set out for Lake Tahoe, purchasing
travel insurance or
visitors medical insurance
would be a good idea. It’s your safety net against any potential financial pitfalls caused by accidents, illnesses, or injuries.
Things to Do for Your Lake Tahoe Travel
Lake Tahoe sits on the border between Nevada and California and is also divided into northern and southern halves, which aren't exclusive to the two states.
We will cover both halves, but while you’re planning the trip, do take a look at the areas you want to visit. Advance preparation will help you cover more ground at Lake Tahoe in a single trip.
- Water Sports: Ample rental shops dot the lake’s coast to help you get into parasailing, paddle boarding, kayaking, and water skiing. Whatever sports you might end up choosing, ensure you take the necessary precautions before stepping into the water. Visiting this scenic location is incomplete without exploring the lake itself. Some sports will allow that, such as kayaking, boating, and rowing, but you should try fishing while you’re here, too. On-the-spot booking is available, but to beat the crowd (especially during peak travel season), it's a good idea to book any activity in advance.
- The Beaches: Don't miss visiting Hidden Beach, south of Incline Village. It has spectacular rocky alcoves, and the rocky beach merges into beautiful shallow water that you can traverse, skipping on its rock boulders. It’s dog-friendly, just like the other northern beaches - Sand Harbor and Kings Beach. The southern beaches have a higher footfall because they are lined with luxury resorts and casinos. Try beaches like Chimney Beach, Nevada Beach Lake Tahoe, Zephyr Cove, and Kiva Beach. Most are dog-friendly and offer a good day to relax from physically demanding travel.
- Brewery Tour: The California side will drench you with their warming wines. The tours generally take about six hours and are offered exclusively by Tahoe Brew Tours. They will take you through the winemaking process and stop for an hour at every brewery. There are three breweries to explore on this tour. It's a good way to kick back and relax towards the end of your trip—or if you choose to make your whole trip a laid-back, relaxing experience.
- Horseback riding: There are no border restrictions between Nevada and California, so you may visit both sides of the lake during your trip here. Horseback riding is most suitable for summers. Lake Tahoe will give you a more raw, rugged landscape to explore on horseback, as the area is strongly rooted in the Old West. The best time to go is the late afternoon that will spill over into the evening. You may hire a guide or venture out on your own on horseback.
- Winter Sports: The lake doesn't freeze, but that doesn't mean the weather doesn’t get cold. Water activities are suspended during winter, so go for a boat ride or dine at a lakefront restaurant instead. Most activities need to be booked in advance because they sell out fast. Lake Tahoe has three ski resorts that offer unparalleled views of the winter scenery. You can go snowboarding or skiing down the slopes towering over Lake Tahoe. If that doesn't sound appealing, slip on a pair of snowshoes to go hiking on the trails around the lake, or try a sleigh ride.
Key Guidelines for Travelers to Lake Tahoe
- Weather: Make sure to bundle yourself in warm clothing if you visit during winter and to pack lighter clothing during summer. The weather variation at Lake Tahoe isn’t extreme, but the Californian side is prone to wildfires during late summer. Sudden snowstorms can block roads and cause power outages, so carry extra supplies if you travel to remote locations during winter. Watch the weather, and keep an eye on the local forecast to avoid making the costly mistake of booking a trip when the weather is volatile.
- Vaccinations: It’s mandatory to update your vaccines before you travel to Lake Tahoe. Talk to your doctor if you have a pre-existing condition or if you wish to carry any prescription pills. If you're taking your pets to Lake Tahoe, have them vaccinated for rabies, as well. Given its vast stretches of wilderness, Lake Tahoe has many wild animals that can be carriers of rabies, too. Don't pick them up or try to pet them. Instead, contact animal control if you see a wild animal in distress.
- The Wilderness: Some animals might be swimming in the lake as you sunbathe. Bears have been reported to venture into the lake and on the hiking trails on a hot summer day. Don’t panic if you see them. Just steer clear of them; they are wild, after all. Protect yourself from bug bites, too. A day spent traversing forests might end with you having unwanted bug bites. Carry a first aid kit, and stay hydrated on your days out.
- Driving to Lake Tahoe: It’s a convenient way to reach the location, but traffic congestion can be an issue. Go for public transportation or hop on a bike if you want to beat the traffic. You will need to carry snow chains in your car, even if it doesn't snow when you drive to the lake. They add traction to your vehicle's tires when there's snow on the road. If you are found without them, you will need to pay a fine or pay damages for an accident if you get into one.
- The Altitude: Lake Tahoe has a high relief that can induce altitude sickness. If you have vertigo as well, you might want to prepare for the trip. Carry adequate water, food, and distractions while you're in a vehicle.
Visitors Medical Insurance for Travelers Visiting Lake Tahoe - FAQs
Incidents like falling ill from something you ate or getting severely injured from a fall while skiing cannot be predicted. Given that such risks exist, though, it's best to prepare for them as you plan your trip.
Why buy visitors medical insurance before travelling to Lake Tahoe?
You can help secure the finances for any unexpected expenses towards your health by buying visitors medical insurance.
What should I look for in my Lake Tahoe visitors medical insurance plan?
Your medical insurance should cover the most common health risks associated with your travel to Lake Tahoe. Do make sure the plans you compare include medical evacuation.
Without health insurance, the cost of paying medical bills can amount to double (if not more) the amount you would pay with insurance. Your safest bet is to buy visitors medical insurance to save unwanted expenses.
Trip Cancellation Insurance for Travelers Visiting Lake Tahoe - FAQs
Your much-awaited trip getting cancelled can't be predicted, much less the cause. You can purchase trip cancellation insurance for a better chance at recovering your non-refundable trip expenses.
Why should I get trip cancellation insurance for Lake Tahoe travel?
Trip cancellation insurance helps cover the cost of bookings and tours that aren't otherwise refundable. You can receive reimbursement for your prepaid, non-refundable travel expenses if you have to cancel for a reason explicitly covered in the policy’s certificate wording. Be sure to review the fine print before purchase for a full understanding of what situations would (and wouldn’t) be covered.
What should I look for in my Lake Tahoe trip cancellation insurance?
Trip cancellation insurance can usually cover the most common reasons for cancelling, such as work, death, illness, jury duty, and flight cancellations or delays. The list varies by company and is subject to slight variations.
You won't need to worry about emergencies if you buy travel insurance. Make sure to check your plan’s certificate wording first to see what reasons for trip cancellation are covered.
Before You Travel to Lake Tahoe, Do This
Do double-check your belongings and important documents before you head out. Carry adequate insect repellent, a first aid kit, and proper clothing for the activities and time of year of the trip.
Also, buy adequate travel insurance coverage for you and fellow travelers to enjoy your vacation without worrying about potential expenses. Enter some basic trip information, compare a wide variety of options, and select the plan that best meets your particular needs. We wish you a relaxing trip to Lake Tahoe!