California, Destination, USA

South Lake Tahoe Winter Guide

South Lake Tahoe Winter Guide

Picture this: snow-covered landscapes, twinkling lights, and the laughter of your little one echoing through the crisp mountain air. South Lake Tahoe in winter is a magical wonderland for families seeking snowy delights. As a mom who recently embarked on a snowy escapade in South lake Tahoe with my toddler, I’m here to spill the beans on our unforgettable adventure. This is your guide to all things South Lake Tahoe during the winter months, especially when traveling with kids.

South Lake Tahoe Winter Guide for Families

Getting There:

South Tahoe Airporter ShuttleNavigating through the snowflakes with a toddler in tow can be an adventure in itself, but fret not! We opted for the stress-free route by taking advantage of the South Tahoe Airporter Shuttle. The journey from Reno-Tahoe International Airport to South Lake Tahoe became a part of the excitement as we witnessed the snowy landscapes unfold, creating a picturesque scene right from the start.

The convenience begins with the straightforward booking process. South Tahoe Airporter Shuttle offers an easy online reservation system where travelers can book their seats in advance. With a few clicks, you can secure your spot on the shuttle, eliminating the need for last-minute arrangements.

The shuttle service is known for its punctuality and reliability. Scheduled departures are designed to align with flight arrivals at Reno-Tahoe International Airport, ensuring a smooth transition from the airport to South Lake Tahoe.

Once on board, passengers can relax in spacious and comfortable shuttles equipped with amenities to make the journey enjoyable. Comfortable seating and ample legroom contribute to a pleasant ride, setting the tone for a positive travel experience. In the winter, chains on the tires and an experienced driver put me at ease.

South Tahoe Airporter Shuttle caters to various accommodations in South Lake Tahoe, providing passengers with convenient drop-off points. Whether you’re staying at a hotel, vacation rental, or another lodging option, the shuttle service strives to make your arrival seamless. We were staying at Basecamp Hotel and the shuttle dropped us off directly across the street. Within a few feet, we were safely at our accommodations.

In addition to its convenience, the South Tahoe Airporter Shuttle is a cost-effective transportation option. Compared to other modes of transportation, such as private car services or rental cars, the shuttle provides an affordable way to travel without compromising on comfort or convenience.

Family-Friendly Activities:

Tahoe Snowmobiles South Lake Tahoe, CaliforniaSouth Lake Tahoe offers tons of family-friendly activities that even the tiniest adventurers can enjoy. From snowman building to tubing hills, we found activities suitable for every age.

Tahoe Snowmobiles Snow Tubing provides an exhilarating adventure as families zoom through the snow-covered landscapes on snowmobiles or enjoy the thrill of tubing down snowy slopes. For those seeking the joys of skiing, Heavenly Ski Resort is a must-visit destination with its diverse slopes catering to all skill levels. Edgewood on Ice, located on the picturesque shores of Lake Tahoe, provides a magical ice-skating experience for families, surrounded by stunning views. To add a touch of uniqueness, Flatstick Pub offers mini golf in a winter wonderland setting, allowing families to engage in friendly competitions amidst the snowy backdrop. South Lake Tahoe truly becomes a winter playground for families, offering unforgettable moments of fun and bonding.

Getting Around the Village:

Family Fun in South Lake TahoeNavigating the village in the winter with a toddler can be a workout, but there are options. Most areas are stroller-friendly and there are tons of activities within walking distance.

There is a free micro-transit system called Lake Link, but be prepared for a wait of at least an hour. You can download the Lake Link app from the App Store or Google Play store and follow the simple signup steps. You simply book a ride, enter your pickup and drop-off locations and choose the ride option that works for you. I only used Lake Link once during our entire stay because of the crazy wait times. If you book in advance, it is an option though.

Additionally, Uber and taxis are available. The prices are quite high in the village, but they are reliable and quick.


Basecamp Hotel South Lake Tahoe Choosing the right place to stay is crucial for a smooth family vacation. We opted for two unique hotels in the heart of the village – Station House Inn and Basecamp Tahoe South.

Station House Inn:

Station House Inn exudes a warm and inviting atmosphere, making guests feel right at home. The rustic yet modern decor creates a cozy ambiance, perfect for those seeking a retreat from the hustle and bustle of daily life. The lobby area offers games and books for families to enjoy while soaking up the warmth of the giant fireplace, and from 4-6 is a free happy hour for parents if they’d like a glass of wine or beer. There is a restaurant onsite with child-friendly options and it’s only  short walk from restaurants and activities in the village center.

Basecamp Tahoe South:

Basecamp Tahoe South is strategically located, making it a perfect base for exploring the nearby trails, lakes, and ski resorts. Basecamp embraces a modern, outdoorsy aesthetic with family bunk-bed rooms. The hotel is committed to sustainable practices, making it an excellent choice for eco-conscious travelers who want to minimize their environmental footprint.

The Courtyard and Beer Garden include fire pits to lounge and meet others while toasting S’mores and enjoying live music, as well as table tennis, Corn Hole Bean Bag Toss and other games for fun to be had by all.

Trailfolk Coffee Co. is available in the lobby offering to go breakfast options, unique bites and daily specials from 7am-2pm daily.

Dining Delights:

Base Camp Pizza Co.Now, let’s talk about food – a topic close to every parent’s heart. South Lake Tahoe boasts a variety of dining options suitable for the pickiest of eaters. We discovered everything from charming cafes like Driftwood Cafe to fine dining with a view at The Bistro Edgewood.

Driftwood Cafe, nestled in Heavenly Village, is a breakfast haven known for its delectable dishes like the Crab Cake Benedict and Banana Nutella Stuffed French Toast. The Bistro at Edgewood entices with its elegant lakeside setting and a menu featuring innovative American cuisine. For pizza aficionados, Base Camp Pizza Co stands out with its gourmet pizza options, crafted with fresh ingredients, and a cozy mountain lodge ambiance. McP’s Taphouse Grill boasts a lively atmosphere, offering a vast selection of craft beers and pub fare, making it a favorite among locals and visitors alike. Meanwhile, Flatstick Pub combines the love for golf and craft beer, offering a unique experience with its indoor mini-golf course and an extensive beer selection, creating a playful and enjoyable environment for patrons. Whether craving breakfast, fine dining, pizza, pub fare, or a quirky combination of golf and beer, South Lake Tahoe’s culinary scene has something to satisfy every palate.

Pro tip: Pack some snacks for those unexpected snow-filled hunger emergencies!

Advice for Fellow Parents:

Reima's Winter GearLayers, Layers, Layers: Dressing in layers is the key to a comfortable snowy adventure. You can always peel off or add on as needed.

Snack Attack Preparedness: Pack a variety of snacks because a hungry toddler can turn into a snow monster real quick.

Snow Play Essentials: Bring along small toys for building mini snow castles or driving trucks in the snow. It’s a great way to keep the little ones entertained.


Making a snowman in South lake TahoeOur South Lake Tahoe winter escapade was filled with laughter, snowflakes, and unforgettable memories. Traveling with a toddler might have its challenges, but the magical moments far outweigh the occasional snow-induced chaos. So, fellow parents, gear up and get ready for a snowy family adventure like no other in South Lake Tahoe!

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