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Emerald Bay State Park
Emerald Bay State Park

Emerald Bay State Park

Open daily
7360 West Lake Boulevard, Tahoma

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.

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Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe
Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe
star-4.5
$110.00 per adult
Traveler Favorite
Great tour! 👍
This was a magical experience, even though it was only 10 minutes the tour was worth it! If you come to Lake Tahoe you must do this tour!
Monica_P, Jan 2022

Recent reviews from experiences in Lake Tahoe

star-5
Fun and smooth
Shiwaani_P, Dec 2021
Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe
The helicopter pilot was very friendly and the ride was really good, we really enjoyed every bit of it and will definitely recommend to my family and friends. Can’t wait to get another trip soon 😊
star-5
Great experience!
Joshua_R, Nov 2021
Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe
We had never ridden in a helicopter before and the pilot was very smooth and made us feel comfortable. Views were breathtaking!
star-5
Do this trip
Marlene_O, Aug 2021
Emerald Bay Sunset Boat Charter - Romance on the Lake
This was a family celebration. Worth every penny. Bryan is a great caption and full of interesting Tahoe stories.
star-5
Great trip!
Angela_F, Nov 2021
Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe
This was a surprise trip for my husbands 40th birthday. We both had an amazing time! Our guide Matt was friendly and professional. We learned about all the lakes and spots we went over. This was definitely money well spent! We can’t wait to take our kids on a ride!!
star-5
Wonderful captain and experience for our whole family!
Jennifer_O, Aug 2021
Private Boat Charter Emerald Bay
Captain Bryan was incredible. He was punctual, knowledgeable about the lake and surrounding area, and welcoming to our multi-generational group ranging in ages from 8 to 73 years old. My family completely enjoyed our private tour on his immaculate vessel and I would definitely recommend the experience to friends and family. 🚤
star-5
Highly recommend for couples
Denny_B, Aug 2021
Sunset Wine & Cheese Emerald Bay Boat Charter
We loved the trip, beautiful lake and Bryan was entertaining as well. We did for our anniversary. He showed us around Emerald Bay and we got off to look at Vikingsholm.
star-5
Highly Recommend
Laura_L, Jul 2021
Private Boat Charter Emerald Bay
Bryan was awesome. Very knowledgeable and accommodating. I highly recommend. His boat was very clean , as well as comfortable.
star-5
Bird in the sky
Amanda_L, Oct 2021
Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe
Beautiful area and getting to have a new experience with family! The lake is beautiful and the small island in the bay is magical.
star-5
Fun fun fun
Pablo_D, Sep 2021
Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe
It was an excellent experience! Loved every second of it!! It was fun the whole ride. Would totally do it again!
star-5
Best
YunSung_C, Aug 2021
Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe
Riding the helcopter itself was a new experience and it was amazing for all my family. But the time is so short.
star-5
Beautiful ride around the lake
Kathy_N, Aug 2020
Private Boat Charter Emerald Bay
Nice people, great communication. Beautiful ride. Go early for smooth water. Great outdoor activity during COVID
star-5
Best day ever
Doug_N, Oct 2020
Sunset Wine & Cheese Emerald Bay Boat Charter
This is a must, to do if in this area! Brian was awesome and helped me with details for a marriage proposal. It went off perfect and will forever be a great memory and time for us. We will definitely do this again!

Things to Know Before You Go

  • Emerald Bay is a must-visit for outdoorsy travelers.

  • TheM.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.

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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.

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Trip ideas

Lake Tahoe Ski Resort Guide

Lake Tahoe Ski Resort Guide

Top Hiking Trails in Tahoe

Top Hiking Trails in Tahoe


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.

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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.

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