While North Lake Tahoe resonates with travelers year round, our destination is exceptionally charming over the holiday season. Christmas magic prevails at every turn – from ice carving demonstrations to fireworks shows; breakfasts with Santa and gingerbread workshops; ice skating, sleigh rides, and world renowned skiing are just a few of the holiday activities for visitors and locals alike to enjoy. The scenic landscape is out of a storybook – snow-capped mountains, twinkling lights, cozy fireplaces and holiday feasts will mark family memories for years to come.
Here’s our roundup of not-to-miss Christmas week activities happening around North Lake Tahoe. Prefer to join us for New Year’s Eve celebrations? We’ve got you covered there too. Check out our top 5 recommendations for New Year’s on the North Shore…
Make Christmas Week Memorable on the Slopes
Santa will be making rounds throughout the week at various resorts. Look for him in the Village and on the slopes at Squaw Valley, Dec. 19-20. Visitors at Homewood Mountain Resort can ski with Santa Dec. 21-25. At Diamond Peak, he’ll join Penguin Pete to hand out candy canes and take photos with children on Dec. 24-25.
Family Fun Activities off the Slopes
Enjoy Merry Days & Holly Nights at Squaw Valley I Alpine Meadows from Dec. 17-31. The resort will transform into a winter wonderland with holiday decorations (don’t miss the fireworks!), visits by Santa, and ice sculpture demonstrations. Multiple days of merriment include a Holly Feet & Grinches Groove dance performance, a Merry Wonderland Ice Garden, and performances by the Reno Jazz Orchestra. Free and ticketed family events will be occurring through New Year’s Eve.
Families are invited to create a personalized gingerbread house with a Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe pastry chef Dec. 18-20 from 4-5:30 p.m. Reserve your space 48 hours in advance by calling 530-562-3000 ext. 3051.
Join Northstar California Resort for their annual Noel Night on Dec. 22. The Village at Northstar will transform into a winter wonderland, complete with horse-drawn sleigh rides, complimentary ice skating, s’mores and hot cocoa by the fire pits, special shopping and dining offers, and more. Enjoy an ice skating performance by the Sacramento Skating Group. On December 23, have breakfast with Santa between 8 and 10:30 a.m with a buffet and photo booth. Can’t make it to breakfast? Santa is visiting Northstar every day until Christmas Eve.
Celebrate North Tahoe’s rich Olympic history with Granlibakken Tahoe on Christmas Eve. They will be hosting a Christmas Torchlight Parade on Dec. 24 from 4-8 p.m., followed by hot chocolate, s’mores and pictures with Santa.
Keep it Classic with Live Musical Performances
The Reno Jazz Orchestra and The Pat Esters Gospel Choir turns Christmas jazzy on Dec. 21 when a 17-piece jazz orchestra performs soulful takes on holiday favorites, including Carol of the Bells and Little Drummer Boy.
Or, join renown vocalists and musicians from the TOCCATA-Tahoe Symphony Orchestra and Chorus on Dec. 23 as they present Handel Messiah. This elegant event will bring the holiday spirit to life. Both holiday events take place at Squaw Valley and welcome children.
The Crystal Bay Club Casino is one of our favorite music venues on the North Shore, between the Crown Room and Red Room, a wide range of artists have performed at this lively casino hotspot. Enjoy a festive event calendar that features group and solo artists, comedians and local musicians.
Indulge in Homestyle Christmas Dinners Away from Home
Chefs at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe will be creating exquisite holiday-inspired dishes to be featured in Christmas feasts Dec. 24-25. Guests can choose from an a la carte meal, or holiday buffet. Call today to book reservations at 530-562-3051.
Find your perfect dish at the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Resort, Spa and Casino on Dec. 25. The Lone Eagle Grill will be offering 12 dining stations, including carving stations, seafood, even a make-your-own cookie station. Reservations are strongly encouraged: 775-886-6899.
Spend Christmas day surrounded by your loved ones and feast on a handcrafted buffet at Granlibakken Tahoe. Hotel guests will enjoy a complimentary dinner, non-guests can purchase tickets for $65. Reserve your seat by calling 530-583-4242.
On Dec. 24 and Dec. 25, enjoy holiday banquets and buffets at Cascades Restaurant and Six Peaks Grille, located at the Resort at Squaw Creek. Call 530-581-6610 to make your reservations.