With amazing views of Lake Tahoe, Heavenly is picture perfect for family fun.
Heavenly Mountain Resort feels like a beach vacation while skiing. It boasts 4,800 skiable acres - the most in the Tahoe area - with amazing views of majestic Lake Tahoe. You can ski across two states - California and Nevada - on a mix of beginner and advanced runs. The area also has two terrain parks and three gates for extremists who want to conquer the backcountry. Heavenly offers ski lessons for kids starting at 3 years old and daycare options for those under 3.
What to do besides skiing?
Lace up your skates and take to the ice at the ice skating rink in the center of Heavenly Village. Or you can strap into the bungee jump trampoline right next to the rink. Check out several of the stores nearby to book snowmobile tours and dinner trips. For those who want to see the mountain but not ski, you can ride the scenic gondola to the top of the mountain, where you can grab lunch at the Tamarack Lodge or go tubing.
Where to eat?
Driftwood Café serves up breakfast and lunch and is a hot spot among locals. Situated on the edge of Heavenly Village, the cafe offers up creative dishes, plus eggs and sandwiches that are sure to please every appetite. My daughter loved the loaded waffles! You can sit down for breakfast before heading up the gondola or grab a burrito to go.
Where to stay?
The Grand Residences by Marriott is just steps from the Heavenly gondola. The hotel accommodates all family sizes by offering everything from studios to one- and two-bedroom units; each has a fully-equipped kitchen. The hotel also has free Wi-Fi, a spa, a fitness center and a heated outdoor pool. Rooms for four start at around $140/night.
KidTripster Tip: It may not seem like a family choice but consider staying at one of the casinos. Some offer discounted or even free rooms, if you join their rewards club. And they do have family-friendly options. Harvey’s and Harrah’s Lake Tahoe Hotels, for instance, have an outdoor pool, hot tub, and arcade.
Heavenly is an easy 1-1/2-hour drive from the Reno-Tahoe International Airport. There is a shuttle that will take you from the airport to the main hotels in South Lake Tahoe for about $30 for adults and $17 for kids (one-way price). You can also check with your hotel to see if they offer free or reduced-rate transportation.
Amy Sward lives in Denver with her husband and her 2-year-old ski bunny.