Lake Tahoe: the perfect year-round destination

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Lake Tahoe, situated on the California-Nevada state line, is one of those fantastic year-round destinations. A snowy wonderland in winter and a water-sport lover's dream in summer, there really isn't a bad time to go. Lake Tahoe is split into the north shore and the south shore (with the massive, magnificent lake in the middle) so it's an easy area to navigate.

Here are five popular Tahoe attractions to check out, whether you're there summer or winter:

1.Heavenly Mountain Resort, south shore

Winter: Ski or snowboard - When the mountain's covered in fresh powder, it's time to hit the slopes. There are wide-open, well-groomed runs for beginners and challenging, er, less-groomed, ones for the experts.

Summer: Hike or rock climb - With no snow, this mountain's ski slopes turn into hiking trails and rock climbing opportunities. The Heavenly gondola will drop you off at the start of a number of trails.

2.Zephyr Cove, south shore

Winter: M.S. Dixie II Paddlewheeler - Okay, so technically you could take this old-fashioned boat ride in the summer, but it's just one of those rides that it doesn't need to be warm to enjoy. Whether you take the daytime scenic cruise or the sunset dinner cruise, you'll get a breathtaking 360-degree view of Lake Tahoe.

Summer: Jet ski or water ski - When you're on the Zephyr Cove beach, you won't be able to resist hiring a jet ski or a speed boat for water skiing. This is one of those things where really everyone is doing it, so you should just join in.

3. Incline Village, north shore

Winter: Ski/snowboard at Mt. Rose-Ski Tahoe Ski Resort - Not only does this mountain have some really impressive chutes, it also has the highest base in Lake Tahoe (at 8260 feet) and some of the Sierra Nevadas' best powder. Plus it's a little less crowded than other north shore ski resorts.

Summer: Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival - This popular summer cultural festival of music, theatre and art plays out in the beautiful beach setting of Sand Harbor. For just over two weeks, there is a popular Shakespearean play every night, and it's common for tourists and locals alike to pack a picnic to enjoy under the stars before watching the play.

4. Stateline, Nevada, south shore

Winter: Casinos - Tahoe actually has some really big, flashy casinos: Harveys Resort & Casino, Horizon Casino Resort, Lakeside Inn & Casino, MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa and Harrah's Lake Tahoe. But as with most major casinos, there are plenty of restaurants and shops to dip into if you want to do more than gamble.

Summer: Carriage ride - Why not explore south shore like a royal? Whether you're with your friends, family or on a romantic trip, a carriage ride is a perfect way to take in the scenery and learn about the history of Lake Tahoe.

5. Squaw Valley, north shore

Winter: Ice skating - The famous Squaw Valley ski resort, home of the 1960 Winter Olympics, has more than just skiing on offer. Rent some skates and take to the outdoor exhibition skate rink with the spectacular Sierra Nevada range for a backdrop. Warm up with a creamy hot chocolate afterwards.

Summer: Rafting/kayaking down the Truckee River - Experience thrills and chills rafting or kayaking down the thrashing white water of the Truckee River. Sierra Adventures can hook you up with a tour. If that all sounds a little too high-speed, the Squaw Valley Adventure Center can steer you towards drier activities like min-golf and bungee-trampolining.