Swim, hike, scuba dive, go boating or simply lounge on the shore and enjoy the stunning views at this stretch of sandy beaches.
Sand Harbor offers quiet coves for lazing on the beach and stunning nature that will inspire you to get active in the outdoors. Either way, you’ll be surrounded by some of Lake Tahoe’s most spectacular scenery.
This area has an interesting Native American history and was the headquarters for a timber company in the 1880s. The wealthy George Whittell Jr. acquired the area along with other lakeside locations in the 1930s and built the still-standing Thunderbird Lodge at Sand Harbor. This bay became part of the Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park in the 1960s.
Start at the Sand Harbor Visitor Center to get information about the area and maps. Sand Harbor has numerous trails through the pine and cedar forest, including the Memorial Point Trail. This short walk takes you to picturesque Memorial Point, with stops at peaceful beaches along the way. To get a good view of Lake Tahoe, try the easy Sand Point Nature Trail with interpretive signs. In summer, cool off with a swim or, if you brought scuba gear, a shore dive in the crystal-clear water. Afterwards, enjoy a picnic lunch while taking in the views of the lake and mountain backdrop.
The area is quieter in winter but equally beautiful. Explore the park during a free guided hike with a ranger. Sand Harbor is also home to the world-renowned Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival, held annually in July and August. This is your chance to enjoy classic theater in an incredible setting.
Sandy Harbor is located in North Tahoe near Incline Village on the Nevada side of the lake. Come early on weekends and during the height of summer, as parking spots can be hard to come by as it gets later. There are two boat ramps, a gift shop and a snack bar. Lifeguards are on patrol during the peak summer season. No bottles are allowed in waterfront areas. The park closes at night.