From the breathtaking beauty of Lake Tahoe in the Sierra Nevada Mountains to the colorful festivities in and around Las Vegas, Nevada offers plenty of incredible destinations for an unforgettable Memorial Day weekend getaway. Enjoy relaxing interludes, outdoor recreational fun, absorbing entertainment, and award-winning dining venues. Book a stay at one of many Nevada vacation rentals for your upcoming getaway. Here are the best places in Nevada to spend your Memorial Day weekend.

1. Reno

Truckee River Reno
Source: Flickr/Kent Kanouse

The dynamic city of Reno lies just east of the Sierra Nevada Mountains along the Truckee River in western Nevada. The Riverwalk District in the town center is an ideal place to stroll and browse through art galleries, museums, and eclectic shops. Test your skills shooting the rapids in a kayak, canoe, raft, or inner tube at the Riverwalk District’s Truckee River Whitewater Park. Among the fascinating museums in Reno are the National Automobile Museum and the Nevada Museum of Art. The Freight House District downtown bursts with nightlife and great places to eat. Wild Island Family Adventure Park in nearby Sparks, which features a water park, go-karts, mini-golf, bowling, and 3-D laser tag, is open over Memorial Day weekend.

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2. Carson City

Nevada State Capitol
Source: Flickr/Ken Lund

Carson City, the state capital, is east of Lake Tahoe in Eagle Valley near the Carson Branch of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Pick up a bicycle at Carson Bike Rentals, and take advantage of the many convenient trails in the downtown area, along the scenic Carson River, and in the surrounding foothills. Play 18 holes at some of the Divine 9 golf courses, including the famous Eagle Valley Golf Course and Silver Oak Golf Club. Visit vast 51-acre Mills Park, and enjoy the extensive walking and horseback riding paths, picnic areas, and sports facilities. The Virginia and Truckee Railroad initiates its scenic route from Carson City to historic Virginia City on Memorial Day, and festivities include face painting for children, snacks, and live music. While you’re in Virginia City, don’t miss the Memorial Day Celebration of Heroes Parade.

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3. Crystal Bay/Incline Village, Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe landscape

The towns of Crystal Bay and Incline Village are on the north shore of the Nevada side of spectacular Lake Tahoe, in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Crystal Bay sits on the California/Nevada state line and features four casinos and the renowned Crystal Bay Steak and Lobster House. Flume Trail Mountain Bikes in Incline village rents you bikes and then takes you by shuttle to Spooner Lake to ride the Flume Trail or Tahoe Meadows to ride the Tahoe Rim Trail, both of which eventually lead you back to your bike shop base. The Incline Village Championship Golf Course is in a majestic mountain setting. Nearby Lake Tahoe – Nevada State Park at Sand Harbor has a large sandy beach that’s perfect for swimming and sunbathing.

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4. Fallon

Stillwater National Wildlife Refuge
Source: Flickr/Travel Nevada

Vacation rentals in Fallon, known as the oasis of Nevada, are in the Lahontan Valley in the west-central region of the state. Head for nearby Lahontan State Recreation Area, and enjoy boating, fishing, waterskiing, and hiking. Another beautiful natural area near Fallon is Stillwater National Wildlife Refuge, which features scenic walking trails for wildlife observation. Fort Churchill State Historic Park offers a look at the remnants of a U.S. Army frontier fort and Pony Express waystation. Enjoy some rib-sticking local cuisine at JD Slinger’s Steakhouse.

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5. Winnemucca

Winnemucca Lake wildflowers

Winnemucca, which lies along the Humboldt River in central Nevada, has numerous activities for outdoor enthusiasts. Bloody Shines Trail is a 12-mile track that rises to 1,000 feet; it’s popular for mountain biking and horseback riding. Ride ATVs over the terrain at Winnemucca Sand Dunes. The Water Canyon Recreational Area is a great place for hiking, mountain biking, and wildlife observation. For some great food and fun, try the Garden Cafe at the Winnemucca Inn Casino. Winnemucca hosts the Run-A-Mucca Motorcycle and Music Festival every year during Memorial Day weekend. Motorcycle enthusiasts travel from all over the country to attend. Events include live music, motorcycle stunts, a presentation of the Nevada National Guard of the Year award, and a memorial service at Veteran’s Memorial Park.

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6. Elko

elko lake landscape

Along the Humboldt River near the Ruby Mountains in northeastern Nevada, Elko is surrounded by opportunities for recreational activities. Fish for trout, bass, and catfish at the South Fork State Recreation Area. Hike the scenic trails at spectacular Lamoille Canyon, and observe bighorn sheep, mule deer, mountain goats, and other wildlife. The Elko region is gold mining territory, and Newmont Mining Corporation offers fascinating tours of its Long Canyon, Trend, Phoenix, and Twin Creeks mines. Head to the Spring Creek Horse Palace for entertaining horse shows and rodeos. When you’re hungry, try the Pine Lodge Dinner House for sumptuous steaks, smoked ribs, and chicken.

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7. Ely

Great Basin National Park
Source: Flickr/Frank Kovalchek

Ely, formerly a stagecoach station and copper mining town, lies in east-central Nevada at the crossroads of several state and national highways. To get a feel for the Old West as it used to be, visit the fascinating Renaissance Village. Search for precious garnets and work them loose from the rock with hammer and chisel at famous Garnet Hill. Hike the trails at nearby Great Basin National Park, and watch for wildlife such as pronghorns, elk, deer, and coyotes. While you’re at the park, tour the Lehman Caves, an amazing underground series of tunnels and rooms. In Ely, enjoy fine dining and a unique Old Western atmosphere at the Cellblock Steakhouse.

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8. Las Vegas

Las Vegas strip

The flamboyant and entertaining city of Las Vegas is in the midst of the Mohave Desert in southeastern Nevada. Visit the world-famous Las Vegas Strip, where you find miles of casinos, amusement parks, shopping malls, and entertainment venues clustered close to each other. Las Vegas Walking Tours helps you navigate the complexity of the city’s downtown area by guiding you to the most interesting places. Don’t miss the opportunity to view the scenic wonders at nearby Boulder City and Lake Mead. Numerous casinos and nightclubs line up famous celebrities for special Memorial Day performances.

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9. Laughlin

Laughlin Colorado River

Laughlin lies along the Colorado River in the extreme southeastern corner of Nevada. Rent jet skis at Best Jetz Watercraft Rentals to explore the river, or view the river at your leisure while you enjoy fine dining on a luxury cruise ship with Laughlin River Tours. Enjoy 18 holes of play at the scenic Laughlin Ranch Golf Club. The Laughlin Riverwalk area is resplendent with special festivals, beach parties, and fireworks over Memorial Day weekend.

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