On the shore of South Lake Tahoe, Heavenly—one of the world’s biggest ski resorts—offers jaw-dropping lake views from runs as wide and bump-free as freeways. This enormous resort has absolutely everything—not just those big groomers with head-swiveling views, but also a wide range of terrain parks, mogul runs with names like Gunbarrel, and peaceful, untracked glades where the world seems to slip away into snowy bliss.
Heavenly has also bumped up the fun even if you don’t ski or board, with on-mountain zip lines, tube runs, scenic gondola rides, and a party-like atmosphere on and off the mountain, making it especially popular with international travelers who might be new to snow sports. And then there are the après-ski offerings: Join the fun at the Après at the Base gatherings, held at all three of the resort’s lodges, California, Stagecoach, and lastly Tamarack, home of the legendary late-afternoon Unbuckle parties. Each lodge creates its own distinct atmosphere—visit them all to find your favorite. Or head straight to LAT 38, a rooftop bar at the California lodge, for a posh happy hour scene complete with live acoustic bands and cozy fire pits.
For after-dark, off-the-slopes fun, Heavenly’s base village is another star attraction, with an ice-skating rink, outdoor fire pits, and a wide array of restaurants. And thanks to its location that straddles the California-Nevada border, the adjacent Stateline area offers top entertainment and gaming in high-rise casinos and splashy hotels.
Insider tip: Consider getting an Epic Pass for access to Heavenly, Northstar California, and Kirkwood; there are various options and pricings, so check to see which one could work for your vacation plans.