The stunning scenery around Lake Tahoe makes this area a great vacation destination whatever the season. You can enjoy hiking and water sports in the summer, and skiing and snowboarding during the winter. If you're looking for a less strenuous activity, a gentle stroll along the shore offers up some spectacular views across the water to high mountain peaks. At the lake's northern end, Tahoe City is a laid-back resort town, while the southern part is home to lively South Lake Tahoe, where you can try your luck at the casinos just across the Nevada state line.

Where to stay around Lake Tahoe

Whether you're coming here for winter sports or summer sunshine, the shores of Lake Tahoe are home to dozens of sandy beaches and several small towns and resorts. Take your pick from from relaxed Tahoe City on the north-west shore, or lively South Lake Tahoe with its many bars, restaurants, and casinos. Offering miles of 4-season hiking trails, the slopes rising up around the lake cater to skiers in the winter and mountain bikers in the summer. You can stay in a vacation rental by the lake itself, or venture into the surrounding mountains for cabins with a more secluded feel.

Cabins in North Lake Tahoe

The northern end of Lake Tahoe is generally quieter than the south, with Tahoe City at its heart. Here, you can wander around the shops and cafes, laze on the beaches, or set sail from one of the boat marinas. The shoreline has miles of paved walkways offering views across the water and snack bars where you can stop for refreshments. Ski resorts like Northstar, Olympic Valley, and Diamond Peak are within a few miles' drive, while in summer, the mountains around here offer some high-altitude trails for energetic walkers.

South Lake Tahoe vacation rentals

For eating, shopping, and bustling nightlife, South Lake Tahoe is the place to be. Several small towns here have gradually merged into one, and the area known as Stateline is particularly lively—it's where California meets Nevada, and you'll find a row of casinos as you cross the border. For a more tranquil time, the rural delights of Van Sickle Bi-State Park and Emerald Bay State Park are close by, offering miles of forest trails and some of the best views of Lake Tahoe.

Heavenly Mountain Resort getaway cabins

Close to South Lake Tahoe is the skiers' paradise of Heavenly Mountain Resort, which is one of the largest winter sports areas in the region and also the highest in terms of altitude. Gondola lifts up to the pistes actually start in South Lake Tahoe, so you can stay in a cabin close to the lake and still walk out to ski or snowboard. Heavenly is especially renowned for its soft snow and plentiful choices of intermediate slopes. The season here runs from mid-Novemeber to mid-April.

The types of Lake Tahoe cabin rentals you can expect

Many Lake Tahoe cabin rentals are fitted with all the creature comforts you'll need, from well-stocked kitchens where you can prepare meals for the whole family, to cozy living areas with flat-screen TVs and fireplaces. It's also easy to find Lake Tahoe cabins with spacious outdoor decks, where you can sit back with a beer or relax in a hot tub while relishing the natural scenery. Up the ante by choosing cabin rentals in enviable lakeside and beachfront settings, where water activities are quite literally right outside your door.

Tahoe cabin rentals on the lakeshore

For up-close views of Lake Tahoe from the comfort of your getaway cabin, there's nothing quite like a place right on the lakeshore. All around the lake are cabins that look directly out onto the water—some might have big windows providing lake and mountain views, or private outdoor decks with barbecue grills and even hot tubs. Whether you want to be in the heart of Tahoe City or Stateline, or somewhere quieter with your own jetty, the popularity of Lake Tahoe over the years means there are dozens of cabin rentals right on the water.

Beachfront Lake Tahoe cabins

Lake Tahoe is great for a beach vacation minus the sea, as dozens of swimming beaches dot its shoreline between the cliffs and rocky outcrops. There are plenty of cabin rentals that are set right on the beach, so you can step straight from your living room and onto the sand. From the family-friendly delights of Baldwin Beach, with its half-mile stretch of sand, to the more daring charms of Secret Cove—a favorite among naturists—there's always somewhere close by where you can enjoy a dip in the clear, fresh waters.