The Reno, Nevada, arch sign at night

Reno Guide

(Credit: Don Mammoser/Shutterstock)

Why you should visit Reno

Reno is known as “The Biggest Little City in the World” for good reason. Reno may be the baby brother of Las Vegas, but its wide collection of vintage casinos, innovative restaurants and thumping nightlife scene won’t disappoint. But the city’s small size gives it a more intimate ambiance you won’t find southeast in Sin City.

What’s more, Reno makes the perfect jumping-off point for a ski vacation thanks to its proximity to Lake Tahoe and the Sierra Mountain Range. Just a short drive from the city you’ll find 18 ski resorts, the largest concentration of ski resorts in North America

Ski Resorts Near Reno

What to do in Reno

In Reno, gambling is the main attraction but that isn’t the only reason to visit. The city is filled with things to do, from historic sites to outdoor adventures.

If you are the car fanatic you won’t want to miss the National Automobile Museum . Marvel at luxury cars owned by celebrities like Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra and John Wayne. The city is also home to the Nevada Museum of Art , an incredible four-story complex whose exhibits focus on the relationship between art and nature.

Reno is just a 25-minute drive from the Lake Tahoe region, where you can enjoy the beautiful scenic views and epic skiing. This historic ski destination is home to the 1960 Winter Olympics and some of the steepest and most epic terrain in the West Coast.

In the warmer months, Lake Tahoe is a great place to swim, boat and camp. Reno is also in close proximity to the Sierra Nevada mountain range, which features more opportunities to hike.

Where to stay in Reno

The best way to decide on a hotel in Reno is to determine what you want to do there. Will you be spending a lot of your time on the mountains, will you be spending a lot of time on the slot machines, or are you coming to Reno to simply explore the culture?

If you are planning to ski during your visit but would like to be a bit further from the city hype, Atlantis Casino Resort & Spa is a great option as the resort offers ski-and-stay packages for every budget. To be close to downtown, consider staying at either Eldorado Resort Casino , Silver Legacy or Circus Circus Reno . When staying at one of these resorts you receive discounted ski rates.

If you are strictly visiting Reno for the mountains and are looking for a non-gaming hotel, Whitney Peak Hotel is a great option. Whitney Peak is in downtown Reno and is close proximity to Diamond Peak Ski Resort and Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe.

What to eat in Reno

If you don’t get lucky at the slot machines, you can guarantee to at least hit the culinary jackpot. Reno boasts a variety of great restaurants catering to all appetites and budgets.

For brunch, come hungry to Hash House a Go Go , a restaurant at Harrah’s Casino serving up dishes bigger than your face. Sip on a B.L.T. bloody Mary while indulging in their famous chicken and waffles. Are you an upscale foodie? Trokay is where you want to go. This spot serves experimental European cuisine that will not only satisfy the palate, but will also please the eye. If you are getting lucky on the slot machines and don’t want to leave the casino, for the high roller, check out Roxy at the Eldorado Resort & Casino. Roxy is an award-winning bistro that serves up top cuts of meat, poultry and fish cooked in a specialty wood-fired oven.

Reno doesn’t slack in the sweets department as you will find dessert from frozen yogurt at KREM to pastries at Homage .

Family-friendly activities in Reno

Despite Reno’s reputation as a gambling hot spot, there are a variety of family-friendly activities to enjoy. For an educational activity, visit the University of Nevada, Reno, to catch a digital planetarium show at Fleischmann Planetarium and Science Center . Or learn about different animal species at the Animal Ark, a wildlife sanctuary.

What kid doesn’t like candy? Right in Reno you will find a candy production facility, Kimmie Candy , which offers free tours of their facility. When the sugar rush hits, get your adrenaline pumping at Fly High , a premier trampoline park where you will find foam pits and trampoline dodgeball.

Around Lake Tahoe you can spend the day hiking, biking or swimming in the summer, or skiing, tubing or snowshoeing in the winter.

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