(Last Updated On: March 15, 2023)

people kayaking on the lake at Sand Harbor State Park

Located on the fringes of Lake Tahoe’s northeastern shore, just 30 minutes from Carson City, Sand Harbor State Park is a wonderful place to rest and relax.

Covering an area of 55 acres, the park is renowned for its crystal-clear waters, sandy beaches, and picturesque landscapes.

These sandy beaches are perfect for sunbathing and picnicking, while the clear waters of Lake Tahoe are ideal for swimming, fishing, snorkeling, and paddleboarding.

This Nevada state park is also a popular destination for hiking and nature lovers, with a network of trails winding through its diverse landscapes. The park’s rocky outcroppings and granite boulders offer breathtaking views of the lake and surrounding mountains.

In addition to its natural beauty and recreational opportunities, Sand Harbor State Park is also home to the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival, which takes place annually in the park’s outdoor amphitheater.

The festival features world-class theater performances, live music, and other cultural events, making Sand Harbor State Park a must-visit destination for culture and nature lovers alike.

Activities

Guests are able to enjoy a wide range of outdoor recreational pursuits when they visit Sand Harbor State Park.

Presented below is a brief overview of some of the main activities you can partake in during your time.

Boating at Sand Harbor State Park

Boating is a popular activity at Sand Harbor State Park, thanks to its location on the shores of Lake Tahoe. The park offers a boat launch and rentals for a variety of watercraft, including motorized boats, kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards.

Lake Tahoe’s calm waters and stunning scenery make it an ideal spot for leisurely boating, while the park’s proximity to hidden coves and bays offers opportunities for exploration and adventure.

Visitors should be aware that sometimes boating is not permitted due to low water levels. So it is worth contacting the park’s main office to check on it prior to your visit.

Swimming at Sand Harbor State Park

Many people come to the park, especially in the summer, specifically for its swimming opportunities.

The park’s crystal-clear waters and sandy beaches make it an ideal spot for a refreshing dip on a hot summer day.

Visitors can swim in designated areas along the beach, which are monitored by lifeguards during peak season. However, they should be aware that water temperatures in Lake Tahoe can be chilly, even during the summer months.

If you don’t fancy going for a swim, the park’s sandy beaches also offer plenty of space for sunbathing and relaxing.

Fishing at Sand Harbor State Park

The waters of Lake Tahoe are known for their abundant trout populations. So you might want to bring your rods and reels with you to the park.

Visitors can fish from the park’s sandy beaches or take a boat out onto the lake for a more extensive fishing experience.

Wherever you cast a line, you should be able to catch plenty of rainbow, brown, and lake trout, as well as kokanee salmon and smallmouth bass. Just be sure you have a valid Nevada State fishing license before you do so.

Hiking at Sand Harbor State Park

The park offers a range of hiking trails that wind through its diverse landscapes, providing visitors with stunning views of Lake Tahoe and the surrounding mountains. These trails range from easy to moderate, providing options for all skill levels.

One of the park’s most popular trails is the Sand Point Nature Trail, a one-mile loop that offers panoramic views of the lake and leads hikers through a dense forest of Jeffrey pines. The Memorial Point Trail is a regularly tackled path that offers a slightly more challenging hike. But it does provide you with rewarding views of the lake and surrounding mountains.

Regardless of which trail you hit, before setting off, visitors should be prepared with appropriate footwear, sun protection, and plenty of water, as some trails can be steep and rocky.

Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival at Sand Harbor State Park

The Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival is an annual event held at Sand Harbor State Park every summer. It features professional theater performances set against the stunning backdrop of Lake Tahoe.

The festival runs for several weeks each summer and includes a variety of Shakespearean plays and other theatrical productions, as well as live music, food, and drink vendors.

It has been a popular summer tradition in the Lake Tahoe area since 1972, attracting visitors from around the world to enjoy the unique blend of theater and natural beauty.

Typically, it takes place in a specially built amphitheater within the park, with seating available both on the shore and on the water, for a truly immersive theatrical experience.

Pets

Pets are allowed in designated areas of Sand Harbor State Park, but there are some restrictions in place to ensure the safety and enjoyment of all park visitors.

Dogs are permitted in certain areas of the park, including the main beach area, but must be kept on a leash at all times and under the control of their owner.

Your furry friends are also not allowed on the park’s trails or in the water, except for service animals.

Camping

While there are no campgrounds within Sand Harbor State Park, there are several options for camping in the surrounding area.

One popular option is the Nevada Beach Campground, which is located about five miles from Sand Harbor. It offers tent and RV camping sites with access to showers, restrooms, and fire pits.

Another option is the Zephyr Cove Resort & Campground, which is located about six miles from Sand Harbor. This venue also has a range of camping options, including tent and RV sites, as well as cabin rentals. In addition, the campground presents several amenities, including laundry facilities, showers, and a general store.

Other nearby campgrounds include the Fallen Leaf Lake Campground and the Meeks Bay Resort & Marina Campground.

Park Location

Sand Harbor State Park
2005 NV-28
Incline Village, NV 89452
Phone: 775.831.0494

Park Website

Map

Video

Here is a short YouTube video showcasing several attractions at Sand Harbor State Park: