5 Ideas for Adventurous Elopement Activities in Lake Tahoe

Aug 31, 2021

Elopement Resources

elopement activities in lake tahoe - ruthanne z - lake tahoe elopement photographer_0004.jpg


5 Ideas for Adventurous Elopement Activities in Lake Tahoe

If you’ve been around for a bit, you know one of my absolute favorite places in the world is Lake Tahoe! As a born and raised local, I’ve experienced Tahoe through many different lenses – and I’ve had the pleasure of photographing many Lake Tahoe elopements. Each one has been a wonderful experience! If you’ve decided to hold your elopement near this beautiful gem of nature, you’re in for a treat. In this post, I’ll help you take a look at some of the best elopement activity ideas in the area. We’ll cover everything from the most popular options to more lesser-known activities – as a Tahoe native I’m equipped with all the best ideas!


Tahoe Sailing Charters

Tahoe Sailing Charters is one of the best options for getting out on the lake in style. They’ve been Lake Tahoe’s premier sailing charter operation since 1998! Their 50’ sailboat is a common sight on the water and will hold 32 people comfortably, SUCH a fun experience to share with your close friends and family who are in town for your elopement! Also in their fleet is a 36’ motor yacht, which hosts about 12 people. Booking options range from 2 hours to full-day rentals, and they offer special wedding packages too. The company will take care of many details including catering, letting you and your partner relax. Cruising the lake is something you’ll treasure the memory of for the rest of your life, and your guests will love the experience as well! 


sailing charters on lake tahoe


Beach Day at the East Shore

Amazing beaches are one of the other gems you can find at Lake Tahoe! Along the eastern shore is Sand Harbor, a secluded sandy beach that only requires a short hike down to reach. You’ll love how the pines grow right down to the waterline, and the small bays are perfect for swimming. Scattered across the beach are tons of boulders to climb on, making for some great photo opportunities. A fun beach day is a perfect activity for a Lake Tahoe elopement! Just keep in mind – the private nature of Sand Harbor means there are no facilities, so be prepared to haul out anything you take in. You can learn more about Lake Tahoe’s beaches here!


married couple enjoying a day at lake tahoe before their elopement


Canoeing at Sunrise

If you are an adventurous couple, canoeing at sunrise will be an unforgettable moment. I love the sunrises and sunsets at Lake Tahoe, they are so special to me and they make for the most stunning lighting for portraits. Kayaking and canoeing are the perfect elopement day activity because you and your partner get the feeling of exploring the lake for yourself. If you don’t have your own watercraft and equipment, Here are a few rental and tour companies to choose from!

Tahoe Adventure Company

Take a paddleboard or kayak out on a guided tour that includes paddling instruction and lunch on the beach! Choose from many different destinations and landmarks to visit. Most tours last two to five hours and aren’t physically difficult.

Clearly Tahoe

Rent a clear double kayak with your partner and get an amazing view of the lake below! Clear kayaks give you the experience of snorkeling without having to get in the water. They also offer a LED night tour with lit-up kayaks, how cool is that?!

Adrift Tahoe

If you’d rather avoid a tour and explore the lake on your own, Adrift Tahoe has a wide variety of rentable watercraft. Choose a paddleboard, kayak, canoe, or outrigger and set off on a unique adventure!


couple sailing in a canoe at lake tahoe on their elopement day


The Tram at Palisades Tahoe

For amazing photos overseeing Lake Tahoe, the aerial tram at Squaw Valley offers the best views of the water and surrounding mountains. A cable car takes you on a ten-minute journey 2,000 feet up to Palisades Tahoe’s High Camp – where you can relax with your partner and enjoy the scenery as long as you want. Tickets can be purchased in advance online, and include free admission to the Olympic Museum. This is a great activity you could fit in with almost any elopement day timeline, since it can be as long or as short as you want it to be!


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Skiing at Homewood

What’s not to love about skiing and snowboarding? The wind whips past as you glide down the snowy runs and become one with the mountain. Lake Tahoe is home to one of the most beautiful and unique ski resorts in the nation – the bottom of the resort is only 280 steps from the shore of the lake! If you and your partner enjoy snow sports and are eloping during the winter, you can’t miss this opportunity. You could even look into their wedding packages for a mountaintop ceremony, customized catering, or site tours. Trust me, you’ll love every moment of skiing on Homewood Mountain, from the views high up on the lift to the adrenaline rush of the slopes. 


couple skiing at Homewood at Lake Tahoe for their elopement day activity


In my opinion, Lake Tahoe is one of nature’s most magical destinations. There’s no shortage of activities to plan before or after your elopement ceremony! Hopefully this post gave you some ideas about things you and your partner could enjoy together to celebrate this new chapter of your lives together. If you need help planning your elopement day timeline, check out Elopement Planning 101: How To Create a Kickass Timeline on the blog!

As your photographer, I’ll be there every step of the way to capture beautiful moments and give you the information you need to make your Lake Tahoe elopement a lifetime memory. Head to my contact page to book your adventure!

Ruthanne is an Elopement Photographer & Expert based in Lake Tahoe, California. She specializes in elopements inspired by the beautify and elegance of the High Sierra mountains, but you can find her all over the west at any time. She lives in Truckee, California where she was born & raised, with her husband Demetri & Australian Shepherd, Sasha. 


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