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    Big Bend of the Colorado Day Use Reservation Only starting May 11, 2024

    Day Use Reservations will be required to enter the park between 7:00am - 11:30am. Reserve your spot now at reservenevada.com

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Sand Harbor

State Park


About Sand Harbor

The largest alpine lake in North America, Lake Tahoe is a cobalt blue lake atop the Sierra Nevada mountain range. On its eastern shores, gently sloping beaches, crystal-clear water and interesting rock formations allow for wonderfully sublime swimming, kayaking and scuba diving at Sand Harbor. Boaters, water-skiers and fisherman can easily launch from one of the park’s two ramps. Visitors who would like a peaceful retreat from surf and sun can picnic in the shade of cedars and Jeffrey pines in one of many picnic sites equipped with barbecues and tables. The park also hosts the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival every summer.

Park Detail


Please Note: There are no campgrounds at Sand Harbor.

Day Use Reservations are not required or available at this park.

Frequently Asked Questions: View a list of FAQs for Sand Harbor

Transportation: From Memorial to Labor Day Sand Harbor is very popular and experiences high visitation. Those planning to visit Sand Harbor should be prepared for park closures and have an alternate destination in mind. Parking along Highway 28 is prohibited, and walk-ins are currently not allowed. For more information, visit the FAQ page.  

Group Area/Ramada: A group use area set next to the lake has about 100 seats, and can accomodate groups of up to 200. The covered facility, equipped with electricity, water and tables, includes a large barbecue. Use is by reservation only at reservenevada.comView Ramada photos.

Weddings: Weddings are permitted within the Ramada area by reserving the Group Use Ramada. Officiants, Wedding Planners and Photographers are required to obtain commercial permits from the park office prior the wedding.  Contact the park directly.

Photography: Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park offers amazing views  and we encourage visitors to photography the natural beauty of the park. Photographers utilizing the park for commercial use (such as but not limited to: print ads, movies, wedding, engagement, family, or senior photos) are required to obtain a photography permit. Information can be obtained by contacting us at ltnsp@parks.nv.gov or by clicking here.

Picnicking/Day Use: Located in the shade of the cedars and Jeffrey pines, the picnic area offers a peaceful retreat from the busy beaches. Each site is equipped with a picnic table. Paved walkways make the area accessible to persons with disabilities. Propane grills and stoves with an on/off switch are allowed in the picnic area, charcoal and wood fires are prohibited at Sand Harbor. All fires are prohibited when a red flag warning is issued by the national weather service, including propane grills.

Boating: The boat launch includes two wave protected double ramps with docks and adjacent parking. Parking fills to capacity early on summer weekends. Watercraft inspections are required as part of the new program that is helping to protect Lake Tahoe from the threat of aquatic invasive species such as Quagga and Zebra mussels. Normal boat launch hours:

  • Boat Ramp open daily 6:00am - 4:00pm

Hours are subject to change. For more information on how mandatory watercraft inspections help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species in Lake Tahoe, visit tahoeboatinspections.com.

Kayaking/Stand-up Paddleboarding: Kayaks, sailing kayaks and stand-up paddleboards can be rented during the summer from Clearly Tahoe Rentals. Guided tours are also available.

Live webcam overlooking the Sand Harbor Boat Ramp

Hiking: The Sand Harbor to Memorial Point Trail is a short half-mile trail offers a link to Memorial Point and provides access to many secluded beaches and rock areas.

The Sand Point Nature Trail, a one-third-mile trail, is a handicap-accessible trail with interpretive signs and breathtaking views of Lake Tahoe. 

The Tahoe East Shore Trail, dubbed as “America’s Most Beautiful Bikeway” is not only a spectacular way to recreate, but also provides direct access to public beaches, coves and trails along the picturesque Nevada shoreline.This 3-mile paved trail system connects Incline Village south to Sand Harbor —one of the four Lake Tahoe Nevada State Parks.

Swimming and Scuba Diving: Gently sloping beaches, crystal-clear water and interesting rock formations allow for wonderful swimming and scuba diving. Beach Patrol is on duty from Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Winter Activities: Sand Harbor is very beautiful and scenic during the winter-time. The parking lots are kept clear of snow, the Visitor Center is open year-round and visitors may enjoy a horse-drawn sleigh ride with Sand Harbor Sleigh Rides.

Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival: During July and August, the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival at Sand Harbor offers the Bard's best plays set against the awe-inspiring backdrop of Lake Tahoe.

Visitor Center: The Sand Harbor Visitor Center and Gift Shop is available for self-guided tours with informative displays and regional information. The Kokanee Bar and Grill concession offers snacks and drinks on a relaxing, shady deck.

Programs: Information about program scheduling may be obtained from either park staff or kiosks. Upon request, special presentations can be arranged for groups.


  • Day Use Reservations are not required to visit the park.
  • No glass bottles are allowed in waterfront areas.
  • Propane grills and stoves with an on/off switch are allowed in the picnic area, charcoal and wood fires are prohibited at Sand Harbor. All fires are prohibited when a red flag warning is issued by the national weather service, including propane grills.
  • Pets are only allowed off-season from October 15 to April 15 and must be kept on a leash of not more than six feet in length.
  • Stay on trails.
  • Do your part, keep Tahoe Bears Wild.
  • No camping is allowed at Highway 28 beaches.
  • Practice Leave No Trace.
  • Removing, disturbing or damaging any historic structure, artifact, rock, plant life, fossil or other feature is prohibited. State and federal laws protect this area and its resources.
  • Litter must be properly disposed.
  • Use of drones are not authorized unless approved by the Park Supervisor per NDSP policy. Visit B4UFLY for more info.
  • Visitors are responsible for knowing all park rules and regulations in effect. Detailed rules and regulations are posted at the park or may be viewed on the Park Rules Page.
  • Those with developmental and/or physical limitations are invited to enjoy all of the recreational activities of Nevada State Parks. If you would like to request additional support or accommodations, please call the Nevada State Parks division office. We continually seek ways to provide recreational opportunities for people of all abilities and welcome any suggestions you may have.
  • View a list of frequently asked questions.


Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park is abundant and diverse in natural resources,  from high alpine mountain peaks (Snow Valley Peak, Marlette Peak) to lush meadows (Spooner Meadow), majestic forest stands to ribbons of aspen groves, sub alpine and alpine lakes, to the prominent granitic rock outcrops and sandy beaches of Lake Tahoe’s spectacular shoreline. This varied environment supports the dynamic processes that shape the habitat for a rich spectrum of vegetation, wildlife, and fisheries within the park. (READ MORE)

HISTORY OF SAND HARBOR – Established in 1958

The resources of Tahoe's east shore were prized by Native Americans long before European Americans made their discovery of the lake in 1846. The Washoe Tribe spent countless summers at Sand Harbor fishing, hunting and gathering.

By the 1870s, lumber baron Walter Scott Hobart had established operations for the Sierra Nevada Wood & Lumber Company at Sand Harbor. Trees logged around the lake were towed into the harbor behind the Steamship Niagara and then sent by rail to the company sawmill in Incline. From there, milled lumber and cordwood was taken to the Comstock Mining District by the ingenious Great Incline Tramway of 1880, and an intricate system of V-flumes. (READ MORE)

Park Fees

Day use entrance fee:  $10.00 per vehicle (Non-NV Vehicles: $15.00 per vehicle) Day Use reservations are not accepted at this park.
Boat launch:  $20.00 (Non-NV Vehicles $25.00)
Bike in:  $2.00 per bike


Photos of Sand Harbor State Park

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