Reno has the nickname ‘the biggest little city in the world,’, so it is no surprise that it has loads of tourist attractions and activities. Once only known as being a cheaper alternative to Las Vegas, Reno has grown into a destination that stands on its own and is so much more than just slot machines. There is an excellent selection of things to do in Reno catering to everyone from outdoor lovers, to foodies and history buffs. So whether you are planning a road trip through California and Nevada, a weekend getaway, or using Reno as a base for skiing at Lake Tahoe or Mount Rose, you’ll want to read.
Top Things to Do in Reno, Nevada
This northern Nevada city sits just 22 miles (35km) from Lake Tahoe and about 105 miles (170 kilometers) southeast of the city of Sacramento making Reno an easy weekend escape. This guide covers all the best things to do in Reno including where to stay. So, let’s get started.
When flying into Reno/Tahoe International Airport (RNO) take the stress out of finding a taxi and book an airport transfer. Your driver will be waiting with your nameplate to take you to your downtown Reno hotel. They track your flight so you can relax should your flight be delayed.
National Automobile Museum
Anyone who loves cars will be enthralled by this museum. Even non-car enthusiasts will appreciate the collection of more than 200 vintage cars. The exhibits range from old classics to special features, like celebrity cars, and famous race cars.
The National Automobile Museum even has favorites that have been featured in movies like Bat Man’s Batmobile and the Delorean from Back to the Future. With so much variety it is easy to see how the National Automobile Museum scores number one on our best Reno attractions list.
The interactive exhibits are also fantastic for younger visitors – making the National Automobile Museum suitable for both grown-ups and kids.
The museum spans four galleries and hosts cars from the period between 1892 and 2008. It is a wonderful indoor tourist attraction to escape the heat during the height of summer.
Reno Arch is the city’s most iconic landmark. The colossal arch stretches across Virginia St. with ‘Reno’ in giant red letters and bright lights, with ‘the biggest little city in the world’ and hundreds of little stars underneath it. The arch is a modest stab at a Las Vegas-style strip. It is more iconic amongst Instagram users than anything else.
The Reno Street Arch is most impressive at night so make sure ot visit after dark, perhaps as you are casino hopping nearby.
And, if you have some extra time, venture down to the Old Reno Arch. The Old Reno Arch is on Lake St – stretching across the road and displaying identical words. It is nice to see the historical version of the sign still standing. As a massive bonus, it should be much quieter than the new version on Virginia Street.
Looking for something different? Hop on a pedicab to explore the main drag and hidden destinations as you admire the more than 30 murals in downtown Reno. Sit back and relax as your Pineapple pedi cab driver does all the work as you enjoy some Boba Tea. Plus, if you are hungry there’s an option to stop at a secret taco shop.
Walk Virginia St
If there is one way to get to know a new place, it is on a walking tour. And if you want to do a self-guided walking tour Virginia Street is a great place to start. Virginia Street is split into North Virginia and South Virginia Street, with the Truckee River marking the border. South Virginia St is predominantly for foodies, while North Virginia St is lined by casinos and nightlife.
You can choose either depending on what you want – a nice meal or a flutter at the decks. At night, North Virginia Street lights up with beautiful, neon-bright lights and develops a real buzz of activity. Walking on this famed Reno street is a fantastic way to experience the city’s character. It feels like its two leading personalities are squeezed onto this long street.
You can also book this guided walking tour of Reno taking you to the best of Reno including the Truckee River and River Walk, the Reno Arches, The Reno Strip, and more as you learn about the history of Reno.
Rancho San Rafael Regional Park
Rancho San Rafael Regional Park is a former ranch in the north suburbs of Reno which is now a beautiful regional park spanning 570 acres. It is a fantastic attraction to visit in spring and summer when the weather allows guests to enjoy the outdoor spaces. Rancho San Rafael Park has a picnic and recreational area.
For those visiting in winter, don’t worry, Rancho San Rafael Park is also home to a museum and botanical garden. Wilbur D. May Center is a massive venue with an eclectic mix of exhibits, from natural history to African tribal masks, Polynesian carvings, and Western ranching artifacts. You can even purchase plants from its arboretum at certain times of the year. It makes the park a year-round destination – not just a warm weather hangout.
The grounds are full of stunning hikes and scenic walkways, most notably, The Rancho San Rafael Park Nature Trail which has 7 miles of lovely views.
It also has a disc golf course if you want to try your hand at something new. There are other courses around Reno as this sport is picking up steam. Besides the Ranch, Lizard Peak, and Mayor’s Park Disc Golf Course all make the cut.
Lake Tahoe Pyramid Trail
The Tahoe-Pyramid Trail is one of the more epic things to do in Reno. The trail is a multi-day mega-hike that runs alongside the Truckee River with stunning views of the rural river scene. The wooden footbridges along the way are its highlights, and you’ll also spot numerous waterfalls.
While the whole trail is 114 miles long, you can just hike a section to get a feel for one of the best hiking trails in Nevada. The Verdi to Reno section is 20 miles, so it could ambitiously be tackled in a day. Or you could head to the Californian side and hike Hirschdale to Floriston or Tahoe City to Truckee. Hiking the Tahoe-Pyramid Trail is one of the best outdoor activities near Reno.
Visit a Casino
Visiting a casino is one of the most classic things to do in Reno. In all of Nevada, Reno comes second only to Las Vegas for its casino culture. You can choose one of the more than 20 different casinos with everything from blackjack to slot machines and a smoke-free poker room or two. Whether you are passionate about cards or want a budget-friendly ‘casino’ experience that won’t break the bank, Reno is a good shout for gambling.
If slot machines aren’t your thing, there are Vegas-style casinos with shows, attractions, and a midway. Casinos not to be missed in Reno are Circus Circus Casino, Atlantis Casino, and ElDorado.
Nevada Museum of Art
The Nevada Museum of Art is conveniently located in Downtown Reno and is open from 10 am until 6 pm every day but Mondays. With over 1,000 artists displayed across the gallery, the Nevada Museum of Art is a global gallery with organizations and artists from ‘all seven continents’ working with the gallery.
Apart from its exhibits, though, the Nevada Museum of Art also takes an active role in the art world. It runs art classes and pushes research in the industry. You can book in for an oil painting, photography, or book arts class. Booking a class in advance at the Nevada Museum of Art is a beautiful way to expand your horizons and push yourself creatively.
The Nevada Museum of Art is a global gallery, is the only accredited art museum in Reno, and a gem of a tourist attraction. And if you are an art enthusiast, it is an absolute must when planning a Reno itinerary.
Pyramid Lake is a fantastic natural attraction, located just 40 minutes from downtown Reno. It is the largest natural lake in Nevada and is worth visiting to see its distinctive rock formations. It is actually a remnant of ancient Lake Lahontan, which was a massive freshwater lake that covered a large part of western Nevada during the last Ice Age.
Geographically and historically, The lake should definitely be on your Reno bucket list. Pyramid Lake is is culturally significant as it was a major stopping point for pioneers traveling to California in the 1800s and is also sacred to the Paiute People.
According to legend, the lake was filled with the tears of the Stone Mother, who was brought to floods of tears when her children were exiled. The lake is also full of endangered cui-ui fish, which have historical connections to the Paiute people.
Pyramid Lake is also famous for its tufa formations, which are calcium carbonate rock structures that have been sculpted by the wind and waves. These formations can be seen all around the lake, and many of them are located in the Anaho Island National Wildlife Refuge, which is a protected area on the lake.
The lake is open for swimming but you must have a valid tribal permit. You can easily purchase them online or at the nearest ranger station. Just factor in a bit of extra time to organize a pass. It is a 40-minute drive to reach the lake from Reno
Idlewild Park is another spot of natural beauty located right in downtown Reno, clinging to the banks of the Truckee River. Idlewild Park has a tranquil rose garden for those wanting a quiet place to sit and unwind. While for families, there are huge playgrounds and ball fields. The swimming pool and skate park are added bonuses. Idlewild Park is where you can go and easily spend a day in the blink of an eye.
Idlewild Park is totally free to enter but there are food trucks and organized activities for a cost. It is open all year round, although spring and summer are prime times.
Wingfield Park is one of the prettiest parks in Reno. The tiny park sits on an island in the Truckee River in the city center. It is accessible from the Truckee River Walk, connected to the riverbank by two wooden footbridges. Wingfield Park offers a different vibe from your standard pick of inner city parks. Its location on the Truckee River makes it much more unusual. And having the river to swim and kayak in during summer is refreshing.
Wingfield Park is right in the middle of the Riverwalk District. You can easily reach the island on foot. In fact, we recommend doing so, as it is just so scenic to get to. On a sunny day, grabbing a coffee and heading to Wingfield Park is just what you need.
The Immersium is an escape room that takes things up a few notches from your standard ‘room with clues’ vibe. The attraction has magical set designs with original soundtracks and theatrical lighting. The Immersium even has a massive pirate ship inside, dramatically surrounded by a thick fog. With a mixture of easy and difficult challenges, plus experiences catering to small and large groups, The Immersium is as close as it comes to catering to any crowd.
For those who haven’t visited an escape room, completing all the puzzles before your time runs out is the goal. The clues are hidden as part of a story – buying into the immersive experience. It is a fun, exhilarating challenge that is suitable for couples, large groups, and even families (double-check age-appropriateness beforehand). From a tourist perspective, visiting an escape room is an excellent way to have fun but take a break from classic sightseeing.
Mount Rose Ski Resort
It goes without saying that one of the best things to do in Reno is to leave the city and go skiing. After all, why base yourself in the heart of some of the best skiing districts and not take to the snow? Mount Rose Ski Resort is one of the best of all nearby resorts. The resort has 1,200 skiable acres and is hailed for the length of its continuous runs. Mount Rose has 1,800 feet of incline to enjoy, as well as stunning views and good looks. If you are visiting in winter, it is an absolute must.
You can bring ski gear with you, rent all of it out from Mount Rose Ski Resort, or just pick up the bulky necessities to lease. Mount Rose Ski Resort is really flexible. Similarly, you can take straight to the slopes if you are a seasoned skier. But if you are a newbie wanting to ski for the first or second time, there are ample opportunities for you too. You can easily book a ski lesson (private or group), and you’ll hit the slopes in no time.
Watch a Basketball Game
Reno is brilliant for many sports – basketball included. And if you fancy watching a game, there’s plenty of college basketball to spectate. The University of Nevada has a team called the Reno Wolf Pack. The team is pretty historical, and Nevada’s sports team started to play in 1899. It is safe to say that college basketball is part of the city’s furniture.
Watching a basketball game is one of the most fast-paced things to do in Reno. Having an event booked is really exciting when visiting a new city, and booking to watch the Reno Wolf Pack will be a great highlight. You can simply book tickets online. However, we would advise booking as far in advance as possible because the games are popular. The atmosphere is electric – a great first impression of the Reno community and what it is all about.
Fly High Trampoline Park
Speaking of sports, Fly High Trampoline Park is an excellent Reno family attraction. The trampoline park has a huge air cushion, separate jumping areas, and a trapeze. Fly High Trampoline Park strikes a valuable balance between indoor activity and active activity.
The park has everything from a basketball court to a foam pit and a dodgeball court. All situated on trampolines, it is a fun way to enjoy indoor sports with a twist. This novelty is why Fly High Trampoline Park made it onto our list.
While primarily aimed at children, adults don’t have to miss out entirely. Parents can book a special ‘parent pass’ and tag along. Fly High Trampoline Park is easily one of the best attractions in Reno city center.
Watch a Reno Aces Baseball Game
The Reno Aces are Reno’s baseball team.
The team’s home ground has been Greater Nevada Field since 2009. The Minor League Baseball team is a Triple-A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks. When visiting Reno, you should check to see if there is an upcoming baseball game. The major league baseball season runs from late March until early October, while the minor is slightly shorter. Each team in a minor league still plays around 70-80 games in a season, so you’ve got a good chance of catching a Reno Aces baseball game.
Book in advance if you want to catch a baseball game in Reno. The games are popular with a great atmosphere and collection of die-hard fans. It is worth checking for last-minute tickets, but safer to buy in advance when possible. Attending a Reno Aces baseball game is one of the best things to do in Reno.
National Bowling Stadium
Did you know that people bowl professionally? In case you didn’t, the National Bowling Stadium shatters any illusions. The stadium has four stories and 78 professional bowling lanes, plus a spectator seating section with a 1,100 capacity. Keep your eyes out for bowling events because watching a bowling competition is one of the most unusual sporting events to tick off your list.
In 2023, the National Bowling Stadium is running the USBC Open Championships. The championships have three divisions; regular, standard, and classified. While you can’t visit to bowl as a non-professional, watching a tournament at the National Bowling Stadium is niche enough to be a novelty attraction. We highly recommend snagging a ticket if you want to experience something new.
Reno Philharmonic Orchestra
Reno Philharmonic Orchestra is the largest performing arts organization in northern Nevada. The orchestra dates back to 1969 and has been headed by music director Laura Jackson since 2009. Comprising more than 60 musicians, catching the orchestra live is one of the best music-related events in Reno. Luckily, your chances are high as well since the orchestra plays more than 30 annual concerts. Even if you don’t catch the Reno Philharmonic Orchestra, there are numerous other choirs and youth orchestras that the program oversees. Just check the official website to see if any events align with your visit to Reno.
Watching a live orchestra is insanely memorable and easily one of the best things to do in Reno. Reno Philharmonic Orchestra often plays at the Pioneer Center for the Performing Arts (more on that later). You can always drop by there for a schedule.
Fleischmann Planetarium is a wonderful attraction located in Reno city center. It can be said that Reno is somewhat of a science center, with plenty of research undertaken at its University of Nevada. Fleischmann Planetarium is evidence of this, and the beautiful observatory has a humongous Sky Dome movie system. It isn’t just stargazing either; the Fleischmann Planetarium is full of engaging exhibits, including a 1-ton meteorite. Who knew it; judging by Fleischmann Planetarium, Reno is the perfect place to learn about space.
This attraction has a few significant draws. Firstly, it is incredible for any space enthusiast. Secondly, it is ideal for the whole family, especially for parents who want something educational but exciting for their kids. And lastly, it is an indoor attraction priced at a moderate entrance fee – perfect for a budget-friendly experience for all ages. Fleischmann Planetarium gets our vote for sure.
The Discovery – Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum
If we are on a roll with science-related things to do in Reno, why stop? The Discovery – Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum is a hands-on science center in the city center. Think of young children for this attraction, ideally under 12 years old, to get the most out of it. The 67,000-square-foot museum has a massive range of exhibits. It switches its temporary exhibitions regularly to stay thought-provoking and relevant. The museum also has a permanent collection that includes interactive sections.
From mechanic exhibits where kids can get involved to spaceships you can sit in, The Discovery is a really interaction-focused science center. Parents can relax knowing that kids aren’t just allowed to touch things but encouraged to. It is a real family bonding experience, allowing fun while educating young children about the world around them.
Great Reno Balloon Race
Reno is home to the world’s largest free hot-air ballooning event. When the event was first held, the skies were filled with just 20 balloons. Now, the Great Reno Balloon Race has up to 100 hot air balloons launched each year. Forget the balloons at Cappadocia or watch hot air balloons above Luxor; Reno is one of the most romantic spots to watch hot air balloons on mass in the US.
The Great Reno Balloon Race runs over four days in early September. If it sounds like an unmissable event for you, coincide your visit with the event. An average of 120,000 spectators attend the event each year, making it one of Reno’s largest events. Spectators gather around Rancho San Rafael Regional Park, but you’ll see balloons from all over the city. It really is a spectacle to behold.
Saint Thomas Aquinas Cathedral
Saint Thomas Aquinas Cathedral is a stunning Catholic church in the Riverwalk District. Built-in 1908, the neoclassical design cathedral was designed by the architect Frederic Joseph DeLongchamps. The exterior is grand and has two symmetrical towers adorned with crosses. Inside, the traditionally-styled building has rows and rows of wooden pews and a massive painting at the head of the cathedral. It is beautiful to visit – regardless of whether you are religious or not.
Churches and cathedrals are typically left open, allowing worshippers to come and go easily. Saint Thomas Aquinas Cathedral does not advertise specific opening times, so stop by during sociable hours, and you should be able to look inside. Saint Thomas Aquinas Cathedral is free to visit and is a beautiful example of religious architecture.
McKinley Arts & Cultural Center
Visiting McKinley Arts & Cultural Center is one of the best things to do in Reno. Why? Because it is bursting with galleries and workshops. It is somewhere to visit to embrace your creative side, and where better to get creative than a brand new city? The building was erected in 1909 but renovated entirely in 1999. Visitors can check out numerous free events McKinley Arts & Cultural Center runs, including ArtTown, which hosts free activities for children.
It isn’t just arts either; every Thursday or Saturday it runs a farmers market between 4 pm and 8 pm. McKinley Arts & Cultural Center is dedicated to preserving Reno’s historic culture and community links. Located right on the banks of the Truckee River between Dickerson and the Riverwalk District, McKinley Arts & Cultural Center is easy to squeeze into logistics.
The Way It Was Museum
The Way It Was Museum is a must-visit attraction if you have a car while staying in Reno. Just a 40-minute drive south of the city, The Way It Was Museum is a time machine to the old west. The exhibits vary from rare photos and maps to an engaging film featuring Merlin Olsen – a character from the esteemed show A Little House on the Prairie.
If you have a full day, aim to visit the other nearby museums in Virginia City. The town is packed with educational museums like the Washoe Club Museum & Saloon and the Mackay Mansion Museum. To get out of Reno and discover the more traditional regional history, visiting The Way It Was Museum should be at the top of your to-do list.
History buffs will love this immigrant trail photo tour. This private tour traces the route of the California Gold Rush History and stories of the Donner Party. Learn about the Oregon Tral, Emigrant Trail and Lake Tahoe with snacks and beverages included.
Reno Rodeo Association
It doesn’t get much ‘wild west’ than visiting the Reno Rodeo Association on the big event day. The Reno Rodeo runs in June and has over $2,000,000 in winnings. If you visit Reno at this time, you can watch barrel racing, mutton bustin’, breakaway roping, and bronc competitions. It is a real cowboy and cowgirl event – a once-in-a-lifetime experience for many. If you haven’t experienced country events like rodeos before, you’ll feel like you’ve been swept straight out of a movie.
You can purchase rodeo tickets easiest online. But if you want to purchase in person, you can head to the Rodeo Office on-site. We suggest booking in advance if you want the best seats. The event runs for just over a week, so you should get a spot with no problem if you aren’t fussy about seats. The venue is situated in northeast Reno, easily accessible from the city center by bus or on foot.
West End Beach
West End Beach is one of the most peaceful swimming spots near Reno and is easily accessible in just over an hour by car. The 10-acre recreational park has a sand beach – perfect for sunbathing in late spring and summer. With boat rentals, visitors can head out and explore Donner Lake. While those who prefer to stay onshore can enjoy the snack bar facilities. Unlike the Truckee River, West End Beach has calm waters, ideally suited to swimming. As it is nice and shallow, it is also an excellent spot to teach kids to swim. Get ready to create some really long-lasting memories.
A swimsuit and towel are a must when visiting West End Beach. However, don’t overlook the lake’s history, either. It is the spot where the Donner Party stayed before their ruin in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The group of American pioneers got stranded in heavy snow in the mountain range, and many lives were lost, coining it the title of what many believe to be the worst disaster in US overland migration.
When venturing out to West End Beach, don’t miss out on the other attractions in the Donner Memorial State Park. The Donner Memorial State Museum and Coldstream Trail are worth squeezing in if you have a full day. Take your time on the drive, too, as you’ll pass historic towns like Truckee.
Visit a Microbrewery
For the ‘biggest little city in the world’, it is probably no wonder that Reno has plenty of microbreweries. Reno has a handful of great microbreweries located in the blossoming Brewery District. The best are Schussboom Brewing Co., Great Basin Brewing Company, Slieve Brewing Company, and Pigeon Head Brewery.
Schussboom Brewing Co. is the furthest from the city center and has a restaurant vibe, where you can ask for advice and sample beers as you eat. Great Basin Brewing Company serves food and drinks, including a beer menu that you can be guided through by bartenders. Despite cool, industrial decor, Slieve Brewing Company is much more intimate and pub-styled. Pigeon Head Brewery serves traditional flights of beer that are ideal for beer tasting.
Visit the Fernando Distillery on this 1-hour Distillery tour. Named one of the top 10 new distilleries in the USA, you taste 4 spirits as you learn about the history of distilling methods and flavored alcohol. This distillery is located in the Brewery District. Make sure to grab a craft cocktail after your visit.
W.M Keck Earth Science and Mineral Engineering Museum
For earth sciences, W.M. Keck Earth Science and Mineral Engineering Museum is one of the top things to do in Reno. The museum is home to a fabulous selection of minerals, fossils, and ores. And, of course, there are numerous nods and exhibits towards the history of regional mining – the reason why all these samples are sat in the museum in the first place.
W.M. Keck Earth Science and Mineral Engineering Museum is a real niche place to visit in Reno. But if geology sparks your interest, you can’t ask for a better museum. Besides, it is so abstract compared to standard tourist attractions that it is worth visiting even for geology newbies. The museum is also located on the university campus, so it is easily accessed from the city center. Overall, W.M. Keck Earth Science and Mineral Engineering Museum can easily squeeze into a gap in your itinerary. And if you are a particular geology lover, carve out its special priority slot.
We’ve already mentioned Pioneer Center when discussing the Philharmonic Orchestra. The iconic gold-domed venue hosts numerous performing arts events – from orchestra performances to ballet shows. The building is a landmark as much as its interior performances are a draw. The vast gold dome billows up like a tarpaulin shade, pinned down at each of the four corners, and the entrance peeks out from under one of the gaps. Inside, the auditorium seats up to 1,500 people.
There is just something really special about experiencing performances in a new place. Pioneer Center is as much a cultural center as anything else. If you can bag tickets to a performance, you are onto a winner. Checking the upcoming schedule is easy on the Pioneer Center website. As of 2023, the center has Anastasia, Disney In Concert, Frozen – The Ballet, and Nevada Poetry Out Loud, to name just a few. Pioneer Center usually has at least 20 events to juggle between different dates, so you’ll definitely find something to attend.
Take a Wild Horse Tour
Taking a wild horse tour is one of the best things to do in Reno. Once you escape the bright lights of the city center, Reno is surrounded by herds of wild horses. The famed Mustang is the ultimate symbol of the old west. If you’ve never seen these wild animals, you’ll be astounded seeing them running untamed.
Sonny Boys Tours runs fantastic trips to see wild mustangs. The tours range from two to four and a half hours long. You could stop by the Paiute Reservation herd, Truckee Meadow herd, or meet the herd living on the Virginia Range.
Reno does have zoos that offer a ‘wildlife sanctuary’ experience, but nothing compares – ethically or excitement-wise – to seeing animals that have kept their freedom. Our suggestion? Give Animal Ark and Sierra Nevada Zoological Park a miss and book a wild horse tour instead.
This horseback riding tour takes you through historic trails of the Sierra Nevada Mountains including the Donner Party Camp. Follow in the footsteps of early pioneers as you trace the trails of the old west. Get out of the city to enjoy views of the Sierra Nevada Mountains and the high desert plateaus. This is a true Wild West experience.
Reno Air Races
The Reno Air Races is a multi-day event that showcases the ultimate speeds in the world of aviation. Pilots compete in a series of impressive races; any of these pilots have spent years qualifying. The fastest-ever plane was flown by Steve Hinton Jr in 2017 and reached 531.53 mph. It is safe to say that visiting Reno Air Races is an exciting thing to do in Reno.
The races attract over 150,000 people each year. Spectators have a range of ticket choices and can even pay an extra supplement to access the area where crews work on the airplanes. Reno Air Races are fast-paced and intense. Held each September, you should definitely plan to coincide your visit to Reno with the Air Races if you have an affinity with aviation.
Make sure to visit this year as 2023 will be the last National Championship Air Races at the Reno-Stead Airport. The last event takes place Sept 13 – 17, 2023.
Now that we’ve covered all the best things to do in Reno, let’s look at some common FAQs. This section will provide all the insider information to give you the best trip possible.
How to get to Reno
The easiest way to get to Reno is to fly into Reno-Tahoe International Airport. The airport is just five miles southeast of Downtown Reno, so perfect for flying in and then quickly transferring to your accommodation. For those visiting for a short period or from a distant departure place, we recommend flying to Reno.
We suggest catching the train if you are based along the Amtrak California Zephyr line connecting Emeryville to Chicago. To be honest, if you are visiting Chicago, then Reno makes a fantastic addition to your trip. The train stops once a day in Reno – right in the middle of the city’s downtown region. It is a more adventurous option and perfect for those wanting to avoid unnecessary flights.
You can use one of the many shuttle buses and long-distance coaches on a budget. Greyhound Lines have a coach depot in Reno with buses shooting off daily in all different directions. You can connect Reno exceptionally well with California. Be prepared for long travel times, but if you want to save yourself some serious money, it may well be worthwhile.
Finally, a road trip is the way forward for those wanting a more classic adventure. So long as you have plenty of time to kill (an extra week is an ideal minimum), road-tripping your way to Reno is an excellent idea. Depending on your start point, you could incorporate Tahoe National Forest, Yosemite National Park, or even San Francisco.
Getting around Reno
Getting around Reno is a breeze – even if you don’t have a car. Downtown Reno has an RTC bus service that runs services every 15 minutes. You can pay in exact cash or purchase a pass from one of the Pass Vending Machines. The bus is a fantastic way to bounce between attractions that are just too far to walk to in Reno.
Another option is a taxi or Uber. There are plenty around, and you can often order taxis in many significant venues like casinos. Of course, if you can hire or bring a car, definitely do. Reno is ideally situated for road trips, and Lake Tahoe is just a 45-minute drive away. With your own vehicle, you can get around Reno with freedom and independence.
The best time to visit Reno
The best time to visit Reno is early April. At this time, you’ll still find a few resorts open if you want to ski. However, the weather is dry, with just half the precipitation you can expect between November and February. The temperatures also started to perk up after winter, reaching averages of 62 Fahrenheit.
April is a versatile time to visit Reno. You’ll also have the shoulder ski season and the weather to enjoy outdoor activities. And, as an extra bonus, you won’t have any of the busy crowds that you find in peak winter and summer.
Where to stay in Reno
Reno has no shortage of places to stay. But what about the very best places to stay in Reno itself? These are our top choices for each budget level. We also have a complete guide on where to stay in Lake Tahoe, just 22 miles away.
Luxury: Atlantis Casino Resort Spa – AAA Four Diamond luxury just 5 minutes from Reno-Tahoe International Airport. It has a casino, spa, fun center, and indoor/outdoor pool.
Mid-Range: Whitney Peak Hotel – Located at the base of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, this is a non-smoking, non-gaming hotel located in downtown Reno next to the Arch.
Budget: Silver Legacy Reno Resort Casino at THE ROW – Located in downtown Reno it has five restaurants and is attached to 3 Casinos, the Brew Brothers Brewery, and the Midway. Rooms have views of the city and the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
Is Reno Nevada worth visiting?
Yes, Reno Nevada is worth visiting. There are so many things to do in Reno. Its proximity to Lake Tahoe and lower prices than Las Vegas make it the perfect Nevada destination for the whole family.
What is Reno best known for?
Reno is best known for its gambling and cultural attractions. It is also building a reputation as a base to enjoy Lake Tahoe.
By now, you should be well and truly inspired about things to do in Reno. Whether you check out the Rancho San Rafael Park or watch the Reno Air Races, you’ll love visiting Reno. The tiny city has that ‘big city’ atmosphere and attitude. Reno will keep you on your toes with a jam-packed itinerary.
Looking for more inspiration? Check out our guides on the 50 Best Places to Visit in the USA and 27 Best National Parks in the USA. Nevada has outstanding natural attractions, so plan a few day trips and detours. If you have long enough for an overnight trip, stop at the Valley of Fire near Las Vegas or cross the California border to see Yosemite Valley.
Reno is fantastically situated to make the most out of your Nevada getaway. Have a wonderful trip, and tick off as many tourist attractions and activities as possible.