Emerald Bay California State Park

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Emerald Bay State Park

Emerald Bay State Park, on the shore of Lake Tahoe, is a popular location providing spectacular views, Sierra pine forests, fascinating geologic formations and panoramas of natural beauty.

  • Enjoy all the sights at Emerald Bay State Park
  • Located on the western shore of Lake Tahoe
  • Emerald Bay Park is accessible all year
  • Hike to Eagle Falls and take some photos
  • Boat out to Fannette Island to see the Tea House
  • Camp out at the Eagle Point Campground

Overview

Emerald Bay State Park Lake Tahoe surrounds pristine Emerald Bay, one of the most photographed spots in the United States. The bay is a little over a mile long and 2/3rds of a mile wide with a gorgeous island right in the middle. When visiting Lake Tahoe, you should make a point to stop here and see the sights.

Location & Information

Emerald Bay Park is on California Highway 89, on the western shore of Lake Tahoe, about 22 miles south of Tahoe City.

Although Lake Tahoe is accessible all year, the best time to come is in the summer, with the highs in the mid-70s and nighttime lows in the 40s.

Contact information

Emerald Bay State Park
PO Box 266
Tahoma, CA 96142
Summer: 530-541-6498
Winter: 530-525-3345
Website: http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=506

Activities

  • Eagle Falls
    To get wonderful views of the lake and the far Nevada shore, hike to the top of Eagle Falls. A series of waterfalls tumble into Emerald Bay, making a great photographic opportunity – so don’t forget to bring your camera!
  • Vikingsholm
    This marvelous 38-room mansion was built in 1928. It is said to be one of the best examples of Scandinavian architecture in the US. And it is obvious that no expense was spared to create this replica of an early Viking castle. You need to hike a steep trail for one mile to get there, but it is well worth the effort. The Vikingsholm is open from the middle of June to Labor Day.
  • Fannette Island
    This lovely island, the only island on Lake Tahoe, rises 150 feet above the surface. You can see a stone structure on its crown, a place called the Tea House. Years ago, residents and guests in the area would come here for afternoon refreshments. Take a boat out to the island and visit this unique spot.
  • Camping
    You can camp out in Emerald Bay State Park and enjoy the Sierra Nevada Mountain environment both day and night. Eagle Point Campground offers a lovely place to camp with Emerald Bay surrounding you. Boat Camp has 20 campsites where boaters can bring their boats, sleeping on them or in designated sites on shore.

Fun Facts

The property where Vickingsholm was built, including the head of Emerald Bay and Fannette Island, was purchased in 1928 for $250,000 by Mrs. Lora Josephine Knight. Two hundred workers were employed in the building of this Scandinavian mansion. They hand-carved intricate designs, forged the hinges and latches and planed the wood by hand for the inner walls. The work was completed in a single summer.