Wine and dine
Christy Hill ($$$$; closed Mon; 115 Grove St., Tahoe City, CA; 530/583-8551) serves a killer chile relleno with an equally killer lake view. The deck at Sunnyside Resort ($$$; 1850 W. Lake Blvd./State 89, 2 miles south of Tahoe City, CA; 530/583-7200) has a party scene and the best Hula Pie this side of Hawaii. Or make your own lake dinner menu.
Hang with the locals
Built in 1859, Chambers Landing Bar and Restaurant is set at the end of a pier. Arrive by boat or car, but if you're the designated driver, steer clear of the Chambers Punch. $; 6400 W. Lake Blvd./State 89, Homewood, CA; 530/525-9190.
Stay in a cabin
Carved wooden bears are everywhere at the woodsy Cottage Inn. From $158, including breakfast; just south of Tahoe City, CA; 800/581-4073.
Splurge on a room
Book a suite at the West Shore Cafe & Inn, then wait for a bald eagle to fly past your window. Rooms from $350, restaurant $$$$; Homewood, CA; 530/525-5200.
Pitch a tent
Easy swimming access and hot showers make for blissful family camping at D.L. Bliss State Park (from $25; reserveamerica.com or 800/444-7275). For views, the best sites are 148, 149, 151, 153, and 156. If Bliss is full, try Nevada Beach Campground, on the east side (from $28; recreation.gov or 877/ 444-6777).
–Ann Marie Brown
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