Lake Tahoe, California

Emma Savage on 28 September 2012
Lake Tahoe is situated in a beautiful, mountainous part of California, and is best known for being a premiere ski destination but it can also be a perfect choice for a spring or summer break too. Its closest airport is Reno and the lake is located around an hour from there. It's an easy drive with scenery which will take your breath away. For me, one of the most spectacular things I discovered is the clarity of the water - it's 99% pure and a white dinner plate can be seen to a depth of 70ft. It's is so big that it contains enough water to cover the entire state of California to a depth of 14 inches - amazing don't you think?!

As I said, this area is well known as a premiere ski destination and one of the reasons for this is the amazingly long ski season. You can ski here from as early as October to as late as July but conditions are best in February, March and April. Another reason it is so popular is the location of the Lake to other attractions - it's just a few hours from here to San Francisco, the Napa Valley and other destinations along the coast, so makes for a brilliant touring holiday. If you fancy a bit of sun and snow, why not spend a few days skiing in Lake Tahoe then finish up on a beach in the south of the state - sun and snow in one trip! Or twin it with a few nights in Las Vegas - it's all very do-able.

In North Lake Tahoe I stayed at Squaw Village. This is a small upmarket village complete with condos and quality restaurants and bars. It’s completely self-contained so you wouldn't need to venture far for anything. You could spend an exhilarating day on the slopes or hiking the mountains in the summer and return to spend the evening dining in one of the lovely restaurants. Rooms are really well equipped and so comfortable it's like a home from home.

I also visited The Resort at Squaw Creek which is a luxury hotel. Everything has been thought of from the spa facilities to luxury boutique shops, plus a beautiful pool area overlooking the valley complete with children's section and mini 'beach' for them to play in. Amazingly, the walkways around the outside of the hotel have under floor heating!

I also ventured over to the nearby resort of North Star. If you are travelling with a family and looking for the best accommodation then, without exception, this one is perfect. The accommodation here is all well-furnished but some of the condos really do have the 'wow factor' and offer the highest level of comfort in luxurious accommodation complete with fabulous kitchens, bathrooms and beautifully decorated rooms with expensive furnishings. Again, there is a village like community with upmarket accommodation but there are so many family friendly features. Not only do they have children’s ski schools and beginner’s slopes but they also offer babysitting too and a 'minor’s camp' for the 2-6 year olds, allowing mum and dad some time out to relax. There's an ice skating rink in the heart of the village and there's regular, quality entertainment to keep everyone amused throughout their stay.

For hotel style accommodation rather than a village setting, look no further than the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe. I was lucky enough to have dinner here it was superb. The setting was sensational with a private beach. There was a butler service for drinks, food which was divine and wonderful comfort at the hotel. All of it was the most wonderful experience and I would recommend it to anyone.

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