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Emerald Bay State Park Tours and Activities

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491 Reviews
Emerald Bay State Park
Emerald Bay is the jewel of Lake Tahoe’s natural sights—and not just because of its name. Its waters are a bright turquoise color, owing both to the clarity of the lake and the shallowness of the bay. Emerald Bay is also home to the lake’s only islet, Fannette Island. This scenic patch of land surrounded by water is what gives the bay its jewel-like shape and name. Visitors flock to the area in summer for boating, swimming, and hiking opportunities.

The Basics
You can view Emerald Bay from overlooks and hiking trails on land, by air on a helicopter tour, or by water on a Lake Tahoe cruise. All offer different perspectives to take in breathtaking views of the picturesque spot. Sunset is a particularly beautiful time to visit, so book sunset dinner cruises and sunset helicopter tours in advance. Other not-to-be-missed sights include Vikingsholm, a 38-room mansion that is one of the finest examples of Scandinavian architecture in the United States, and Eagle Falls, a beautiful waterfall accessible by short hike.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Emerald Bay is a must-visit for outdoorsy travelers.
  • The M.S. Dixie II, a historic paddle-wheel boat, departs daily from Zephyr Cove and is wheelchair-accessible.
  • Be sure to dress for the season, especially if heading out onto the water for a boat tour.
  • The park is kid-friendly.

How to Get There
Lake Tahoe lies on the border of California and Nevada. Emerald Bay is on the California side of the lake, on the western edge of the south shore. To get to the park, take Highway 89 to the southwest shore of the lake. It is about a 4-hour drive from San Francisco, and eight hours from Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

When to Get There
Emerald Bay is stunning in all seasons. Summer is the best time to visit, as temperatures are fairly mild. In winter, however, temperatures often remain below freezing and access to hiking trails is limited. You can pick up trail maps from the Lake Tahoe Visitor Center in summer or from the park’s headquarters in South Lake Tahoe year-round.

Popular Lake Tahoe Activities Nearby
Many visitors come to beautiful Lake Tahoe for the scenery alone, but there’s plenty of outdoor adventure to be had as well. In the summer, hiking, biking, and water sports are widely available, while the winter opens world-class ski runs at the many nearby resorts. Photographers will appreciate the landscape photo opportunities, including the surrounding, often-snow-capped Sierra mountain range.
Address: 7360 West Lake Boulevard, Tahoma, California, USA
Hours: Open daily
Admission: Free
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20 Tours and Activities to Experience Emerald Bay State Park

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Free Cancellation:Get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance on most experiences.See Details
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Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay Cruise on M.S. Dixie II

Lake Tahoe's Emerald Bay Cruise on M.S. Dixie II

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361
Take a boat tour on Lake Tahoe to soak up the alpine beauty of Emerald Bay, one of the lake’s most scenic spots. As you glide across the water on the M.S. Dixie II, admire the surrounding Sierra Nevadas, and cruise past Emerald Bay’s Fannete Island, the lake’s only island, as well as Vikingsholm Castle, a unique home on the shore. Plus, watch a video on board about the interesting underwater features of the lake.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$69.75
From
$69.75
Taking safety measures

M.S Dixie II Sunset Dinner Cruise

M.S Dixie II Sunset Dinner Cruise

star-4
273
Watch the sun slip behind the mountains on a Lake Tahoe dinner cruise aboard the M.S. Dixie II, and enjoy champagne, live music and an elegant dinner on the water. Dance to tunes from the local Steve Walker Band, see a spectacular Sierra sunset, then sit down for a freshly prepared meal. Enjoy selections like grass-fed beef or trout, organic greens, and vegetables. Finish the evening with fresh berries and cake as the first stars appear above the peaks, and Lake Tahoe’s scenic shoreline is illuminated.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$99.00
From
$99.00
Taking safety measures

Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe

Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe

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43
Showcasing beautiful Fallen Leaf lake, Cascade Lake, Taylor Creek, and Pope Beach, this tour heads to breathtaking Emerald Bay. Surrounded by granite cathedrals and fed by Eagle falls, the lake's only true bay is named for its emerald green waters.
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  • 10 to 12 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$94.00
From
$94.00
Taking safety measures

Lake Tahoe Ultimate Photography Scenic Half-Day Tour in Small-Group

Lake Tahoe Ultimate Photography Scenic Half-Day Tour in Small-Group

star-5
557
Tahoe photographic tours offer a unique way to enjoy Lake Tahoe’s natural wonders and receive photography tips as you are led by an experienced photo guide who provides tips and shares information about the area. Whether you’re looking to snap a poster-worthy shot of snow-covered mountains, towering trees, wild flowers or the glassy lake itself, you’ll learn how to shoot in the great outdoors and see some of Lake Tahoe’s most beautiful natural sights, including Emerald Bay. Select either a half-day or full-day tour.
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  • 5 to 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$179.00
From
$179.00
Taking safety measures

Full-Day Lake Tahoe Circle Tour including Squaw Valley

Full-Day Lake Tahoe Circle Tour including Squaw Valley

star-4.5
50
Travel all the way around scenic Lake Tahoe in a comfortable shuttle on this 7-hour tour. Led by a local guide, you’ll cover close to 70 miles (110km), making stops at the beautiful vistas of Sand Harbor and Emerald Bay. You’ll also visit a charming village at Squaw Valley Ski Resort, and explore Tahoe City on the lake’s north shore, stopping to purchase lunch. As you go, your guide will provide rich historical context for the beautiful landscape surrounding you.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$61.54
From
$61.54
Taking safety measures

Emerald Bay Sunset Boat Charter - Romance on the Lake

Emerald Bay Sunset Boat Charter - Romance on the Lake

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8
Sit back and leave the driving to us while you enjoy beautiful Lake Tahoe in comfort and style aboard the luxurious Grateful Red. She is a 27- foot Mariah Z250 Limited Shabah, one of only two boats crafted in this stye. Includes Captain, guide, all gas, equipment and fun! This is the Ferrari of Lake Tahoe and has power and a smooth ride. This is the best way to see Emerald Bay up close and personal.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$650.00
per group
From
$650.00
per group

Private Boat Charter Emerald Bay for 6 guests

Private Boat Charter Emerald Bay for 6 guests

star-5
8
All inclusive price for gas, 6 guests and captain! Sit back and leave the driving to us while you enjoy beautiful Lake Tahoe in comfort and style aboard the luxurious Grateful Red. She is a 27- foot Mariah Z250 Limited Shabah, one of only two boats crafted in this style. Guests can bring aboard snacks, food, beverages, (except Red wine) and enjoy! Bring up to five passengers. Includes Captain, guide, all gas, equipment and fun! This is the Ferrari of Lake Tahoe and has power and a smooth ride. This is the best way to see Emerald Bay up close and personal.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$666.67
per group
From
$666.67
per group

Private Boat Charter on Lake Tahoe with Captain Half Day

Private Boat Charter on Lake Tahoe with Captain Half Day

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6
This is an all inclusive price! Bring up to 6 guests on your private charter. Includes all gas, equipment and your own licensed Captain to drive you around the lake! If you love cruising the lake and visiting the famous and beautiful beaches of Tahoe... this is for you! Cruise Lake Tahoe with your own private boat captain and relax and enjoy on the beautiful, elegant boat, the Grateful Red. This is one of only two Mariah z250 Limited Shabah boats ever built in this style. It is definitely a head turner! Sun, Sand, Swim. Option to bring a picnic lunch, or we'll stop at one of the Lakeside lunch venues.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$1,100.00
per group
From
$1,100.00
per group

Private Boat Charter for 5 with Captain. Lake Tahoe with Kids! Boating & Ecology

Private Boat Charter for 5 with Captain. Lake Tahoe with Kids! Boating & Ecology

Lake Tahoe is the perfect outdoor classroom for both kids and parents to experience and learn about nature, ecology and history of Lake Tahoe. Your guide, Karen is a former CA credentialed licensed school teacher and Mom of four, and Bryan is a USCG licensed Captain and 10 year Lake Tahoe expert. We ensure a morning or afternoon of learning and most of all, fun! This is a chance for families to experience Emerald Bay, DL Bliss and spend time on the beach and lake swimming, sunning and enjoying arts & crafts. On the beach, we provide watercolors and all supplies as well as instruction on making a gnome house out of natural materials from the area. As parents, we know how meaningful it is to share fun and unique experiences specifically designed for families to enjoy together. On the lake, parents can relax on board the luxurious Grateful Red, also known as the "Ferrari of Lake Tahoe." Kids will have the time of their life swimming, playing and learning.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$193.85
From
$193.85

Private Boat Charter - 4 Hours with Captain on Lake Tahoe

Private Boat Charter - 4 Hours with Captain on Lake Tahoe

This is an all inclusive price for 5 guests, private charter, all gas, equipment and your own licensed Captain to drive you around the lake! If you love cruising the lake and visiting the famous and beautiful beaches of Tahoe... this is for you! Cruise Lake Tahoe with your own private boat captain and relax and enjoy on the beautiful, elegant boat, the Grateful Red. This is one of only two Mariah z250 Limited Shabah boats ever built in this style. It is definitely a head turner! Sun, Sand, Swim. Option to bring a picnic lunch, or we'll stop at one of the Lakeside lunch venues.
More
  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$204.11
From
$204.11

Emerald Bay - 2 Hour Private Boat Charter with Captain for 5 guests

Emerald Bay - 2 Hour Private Boat Charter with Captain for 5 guests

All inclusive price for gas, 5 guests and captain! Sit back and leave the driving to us while you enjoy beautiful Lake Tahoe in comfort and style aboard the luxurious Grateful Red. She is a 27- foot Mariah Z250 Limited Shabah, one of only two boats crafted in this style. Guests can bring aboard snacks, food, beverages, (except Red wine) and enjoy! Bring up to five passengers. Includes Captain, guide, all gas, equipment and fun! This is the Ferrari of Lake Tahoe and has power and a smooth ride. This is the best way to see Emerald Bay up close and personal.
More
  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$97.44
From
$97.44

Romantic Lake Tahoe Private Boat Charter

Romantic Lake Tahoe Private Boat Charter

This is the perfect, relaxing way to enjoy Lake Tahoe in the Fall on the luxurious Ferrari of Lake Tahoe, 'The Grateful Red' a 27-foot deluxe power boat. On board, you will experience the beauty of the lake while your USCG Captain drives the boat to the very best sights to see. This 3 hour sightseeing tour includes Emerald Bay, West Shore, Rubicon, Sunnyside, the Famous "Godfather" mansion and we'll even pass Mark Zuckerberg's $50 million estate. View some of Tahoe's most beautiful and famous homes which are only visible from the lake. You can add personalized catering, wine and cheese or anything else to make this your special day. This is a private charter and you can have up to six guests on board. Don't miss the chance to enjoy Lake Tahoe at it's best!
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$1,230.77
per group
From
$1,230.77
per group
Taking safety measures

Elope on a Boat - Lake Tahoe

Elope on a Boat - Lake Tahoe

Ready to tie the knot? Why not Elope on a Boat? Not just any boat, but the luxurious Grateful Red, a Mariah Z250 Limited Shabah. We provide the Captain, officiant, music selection, sparkling wine and you provide the love!
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$1,282.06
per group
From
$1,282.06
per group

Lake Tahoe Boating & Camping Overnight Adventure!

Lake Tahoe Boating & Camping Overnight Adventure!

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1
This is truly the most amazing overnight, romantic adventure to experience boat camping on the shores of Lake Tahoe. You arrive by beautiful boat to a quiet and remote beach, accessible only by boat in the evening. There are restrooms and we provide everything you need to camp: tent, sleeping bags, blankets, flashlights, lanterns and accessories. We even provide a picnic dinner and continental breakfast. Enjoy privacy and romance as you are left to camp while the boat, the Grateful Red, returns in the morning. This is the only way to truly experience star gazing at its finest. Romantic, off-the-beaten-path, fun and memorable!
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  • 1 day
  • Free Cancellation
From
$666.67
per group
From
$666.67
per group

Lake Tahoe Historical Tour on Private Boat Charter & Lunch

Lake Tahoe Historical Tour on Private Boat Charter & Lunch

This is Lake Tahoe's only boat charter historical tour visiting these iconic Lake Tahoe homes and grounds. In addition you’ll enjoy time on Lake Tahoe seen the most beautiful homes from the lake and cruising into Emerald Bay. Our friendly guides are passionate about will share insights into the history of Lake Tahoe as well as what it's like today living as a local. The tour also includes a stop at the Beacon at historic Camp Richardson will you have a chance to enjoy lunch or a rum runner.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$1,200.00
per group
From
$1,200.00
per group
Taking safety measures

Elope to Lake Tahoe on the Grateful Red - Safe, Private & Fun

Elope to Lake Tahoe on the Grateful Red - Safe, Private & Fun

This is the perfect way to get married by eloping on a boat. You and your love will board the elegant and luxurious Grateful Red, a 27-foot powerboat. On board you will find appetizers and wine while you enjoy a two hour tour of the best of Lake Tahoe - Emerald Bay, DL Bliss, Rubicon and more. After touring, we power down to a private beach where your wedding officiant is waiting. As you exchange vows lakeside watching the sunset. After the wedding a gourmet catered dinner for two is waiting at the beach. Eloping on a boat offers social distance, privacy, safety and a beautiful way to start your life together. Engaged couples who want to forgo the big wedding, can tie the knot safely and with all the romance of Lake Tahoe.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$1,846.16
per group
From
$1,846.16
per group
Taking safety measures

Social distance Lake Tahoe on Luxury Power Boat

Social distance Lake Tahoe on Luxury Power Boat

Get some fresh air with your family or housemates and see the best of Lake Tahoe on the luxurious Grateful Red. Bring up to 6 guests on your private charter. Includes all gas, equipment and your own licensed Captain to drive you around the lake! If you love cruising the lake and visiting the famous and beautiful beaches of Tahoe... this is for you! Relax and enjoy on the beautiful, elegant boat, the Grateful Red. This is one of only two Mariah z250 Limited Shabah boats ever built in this style. It is definitely a head turner! Sun, Sand, Swim. Option to bring a picnic lunch and beverages.
More
  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$179.49
From
$179.49
Taking safety measures

4-Hour Power Boat Charter Lake Tahoe

4-Hour Power Boat Charter Lake Tahoe

This is an all inclusive price! Bring up to 6 guests on your private charter. Includes all gas, equipment and your own licensed Captain to drive you around the lake! If you love cruising the lake and visiting the famous and beautiful beaches of Tahoe... this is for you! Cruise Lake Tahoe with your own private boat captain and relax and enjoy on the beautiful, elegant boat, the Grateful Red. This is one of only two Mariah z250 Limited Shabah boats ever built in this style. It is definitely a head turner! Sun, Sand, Swim. Option to bring a picnic lunch, or we'll stop at one of the Lakeside lunch venues.
More
  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$1,100.00
per group
From
$1,100.00
per group
Taking safety measures

All Inclusive - 4 Hours Lake Tahoe Private Boat Charter with Captain - 4 guests

All Inclusive - 4 Hours Lake Tahoe Private Boat Charter with Captain - 4 guests

This is an all inclusive price for 4 guests, private charter, all gas, equipment and your own licensed Captain to drive you around the lake! If you love cruising the lake and visiting the famous and beautiful beaches of Tahoe... this is for you! Cruise Lake Tahoe with your own private boat captain and relax and enjoy on the beautiful, elegant boat, the Grateful Red. This is one of only two Mariah z250 Limited Shabah boats ever built in this style. It is definitely a head turner! Sun, Sand, Swim. Option to bring a picnic lunch, or we'll stop at one of the Lakeside lunch venues.
More
  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$1,100.00
per group
From
$1,100.00
per group

Family Boat Charter - History & Ecology of Lake Tahoe

Family Boat Charter - History & Ecology of Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe is the perfect outdoor classroom for both kids and parents to experience and learn about nature, ecology and history of Lake Tahoe. This is a chance for families to experience Emerald Bay, DL Bliss and spend time visiting the Tallac Historical site as well as time for swimming in the lake. Parents can relax on board the luxurious Grateful Red, also known as the "Ferrari of Lake Tahoe," while kids learn about Lake Tahoe.
More
  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$1,100.00
per group
From
$1,100.00
per group
Taking safety measures

Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are Emerald Bay State Park hours of operation?
A:
Emerald Bay State Park hours of operation: Open daily. Buy tickets in advance on Viator. If you book with Viator, you can cancel at least 24 hours before the start date of your tour for a full refund.
Q:
What's the best way to experience Emerald Bay State Park?

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