Carson City Tourist Information and Tourism

(Carson City, Nevada - NV, USA)

Often overlooked in favour of nearby Lake Tahoe and Nevada's larger cities, such as Reno (roughly 45 minutes to the north), fast-expanding Carson City does deserve some attention and is remembered for once being an important stop on the old Virginia and Truckee Railroad. There are attractive streets lined with mature trees and a number of imposing historical buildings gracing the downtown district, with the Nevada State Capitol forming the proud centerpiece.

Nevada's state capital gained its name from the Carson River, which runs in a southwesterly direction from Douglas County and was in turn named after the famous frontiersman of the region - Kit Carson. Following the discovery of both gold and silver in the late 1850s, Carson City officially became a US state capital in 1864, when Nevada gained its statehood.

Carson Street (Highway US-395) serves as the principal thoroughfare and is where you will locate the tourist information center. This outlet is worth visiting to gain an understanding of the tourism offerings available around the city. Worth picking up here is the map detailing self-guided walking tours of the main historical sights. Also on this street is the Carson Ranger District Office, which is a sensible stop-off for those interested in camping in this part of Nevada.

Carson City Tourist Information and Tourism: Top Sights

A holiday in Carson City will often be made all the more enjoyable by simply having your own set of wheels in the form of a hire car. This will enable you not only to explore every aspect of this city, but also to make the most of its setting and proximity to Lake Tahoe. A number of truly sumptuous beaches are just 30 minutes away by car and directly to the west, such as Sand Harbor, which reliably draws crowds of tourists during the sunny summer months. Also within comfortable driving distance of Carson City are the beaches of Agate Bay, Carnelian Bay, Crystal Bay, Deadman Point, Glenbrook Bay, Secret Harbor and Skunk Harbor, amongst others.

Within Carson City itself, the principal attractions include the Governors Field sporting complex (baseball diamonds and football pitches), the astronomy exhibits at the Jack C. Davis Observatory, and the various events staged within the Brewery Arts Center, at resident venues such as the Maizie Harris Jesse Black Box Theater and the 1864 Grand Ballroom. Those with a taste for gambling will find that Nevada's capital boasts a number of large casinos with slot machines featuring statewide jackpots of literally millions. The Carson Nugget Casino ranks as one of the city's biggest and best, with other popular casinos including Cactus Jack's, Gold Dust West, the Horseshoe Club and the Fandango. More information about Carson City Tourist Attractions.

Located on North Carson Street, the Nevada State Capitol certainly serves as a magnet for tourists on holiday in Carson City and features free admission, self-guided tours and some very opulent rooms to investigate. Roughly a ten-minute walk away from the Capitol is the historic Nevada Governor's Mansion, which is the official residence of the state governor and stands on North Mountain Street, where it was built in the first decade of the 1900s. Other significant sights suiting holiday makers in the city include the Abraham Curry House, the Brougher Mansion, the Olcovich-Meyers House, and the Virginia and Truckee Railroad Depot, all of which are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Providing an imposing backdrop, the neighboring Snow Valley Peak offers plenty of seasonal fun, with its Tahoe Rim Trail being reached via the Spooner Lake Trailhead. More information about Carson City Landmarks and Monuments.

Even though Carson City is not a particularly big capital, it does have a rather extensive assortment of museums, covering subject matters such as history, railroad information, aviation and science. The Nevada State Museum on North Carson Street is a good place to start and has become famous for its enormous Columbian mammoth specimen. There is also much information here about the Native American Indians who once called the Great Basin area their home, as well as the opportunity to check out an underground mine and see some native desert reptiles. A couple of miles directly to the south is the Nevada State Railroad Museum, where you can learn all about the achievements of the Virginia and Truckee Railroad Company, and how the old railways opened up much of Nevada for business. The Foreman Roberts House and the Bowers Mansion both offer an insight into bygone days, while the Children's Museum of North Nevada is the ideal indoor family attraction, whatever the weather. More information about Carson City Museums and Carson City Art Galleries.

Carson City is the perfect place to base yourself if you intend to travel around western Nevada, exploring the nearby deserts and mountains, or possibly hopping over the border, into California. Lake Tahoe is the most obvious excursion for tourists, with its appealing lakeside towns and villages, such as Incline Village to the northwest, which actually belongs to the Reno-Sparks Metropolitan Statistical Area. The bright lights of Reno and Sparks lie directly to the north, via Interstate I-580, with Reno's attractions including large casinos, plenty of hotels and a slew of wedding chapels, although nothing quite like the scale and quantity of those in Las Vegas, the gaming capital of Nevada (roughly 430 miles / 690 km to the southeast). In the summer, scenic trips to Virginia City along the V&T Railroad are recommended, and during the wintertime, the ski slopes of the Heavenly Mountain Resort, to the southwest, may well beckon to those with a sporty inclination. More information about Carson City Attractions Nearby.

More Carson City Information / Fast Facts and Orientation