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Teach Kids about Conscientious Travel in North Lake Tahoe

by Eugenia Lazaris

Jun 19, 2024

© UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center and ECO-CLEAN Solutions

Destinations / North America

Lake Tahoe and the towns surrounding it have long been a popular tourist destination for family travelers. But that popularity has taken its toll, with excessive pollution damaging the delicate ecosystem and causing great concern for the future of this beautiful lake.


While some believe the situation is cause to halt tourism, nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, many businesses in the towns surrounding the lake depend on tourists for survival, so halting tourism could potentially have an even more devastating effect on the community. But tourists can do their part by helping protect the lake, which creates an excellent opportunity to teach kids to be conscientious travelers who respect and care for the destinations they visit.


North Lake Tahoe, a collection of small towns along the north shore of the lake, embraced tourism as a means of healing the lake with great programs and activities promoting stewardship and encouraging visitors to learn and participate in the lake’s conservation.


North Lake Tahoe

© UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center and ECO-CLEAN Solutions

Interactive exhibits at UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center, located in Nevada’s Incline Village, are designed to teach guests about the lake, landscape, and the plants and wildlife that call the area home. The facility features kid-centric exhibits and activities, along with education and outreach programs that foster awareness about environmental impacts on the area, specifically the lake, and encourage action from visitors to the region. The facility is open year-round and offers guided and self-guided tours.


In Tahoe City, the Visitor Center partnered with TERC to feature exhibits that teach about the lake and the specific environmental struggles it faces, such as the watershed and the presence of microplastics in the water.


In addition to teaching and raising awareness, North Lake Tahoe welcomes direct action. Locals and visitors alike have the chance to make a difference firsthand by participating in Community Cleanup Days. The Keep Tahoe Red, White and Blue Beach Cleanup is scheduled for July 5, so after enjoying a day of Fourth of July celebrations, visitors can help clean up the lake’s beaches at Kiva Beach, Kings Beach, Nevada Beach, Lakeview Commons, Commons Beach (Tahoe City) and Zephyr Cove. If you’ll be in the area on Sept. 28, there will be another opportunity to participate with another Cleanup Day in Kings Beach, Tahoe Vista, Carnelian Bay and Crystal Bay.


These attractions and events create an excellent opportunity for ecotourism, especially for little ones so they can take what they learn and make a difference, thus encouraging future generations of conscientious travelers.


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