Carson City This is the state capital of Nevada and is small compared to Reno. Carson City got its name in 1858 and was named after Kit Carson a frontier explorer. This city still has a strong flavour of Wild West history and a good place to find out more is to visit the Nevada State Museum. Here the visitor will find information from prehistoric times of the Great Basin desert right up to the heydays of the 1860's. There is also a reconstructed Ghost Town and through a tunnel you will find a full scale model of an underground mine. There is plenty to see in Carson City either by walking or driving. It features museums, churches, the State Capitol and some really good Victorian wooden houses from the 1870's.
Elko If you want to visit what is proclaimed to be the last cow-town in the West then Elko is the place to go. It is situated about 100 miles from the Utah border and if you go at the right time of year you will be in time for the annual Cowboy Poetry Gathering. This is held in January and is celebration time for all cowboys.
Las Vegas This city situated in the shimmering Nevada desert is a dynamic, spectacular city. Las Vegas is known for its gambling or gaming as it is now known and for a city that before the 20th century did not even exist but has certainly become very famous. There is no city like it and it is a city that values it visitors over its residents. It relies on tourism and has geared itself for that and only that. Visitors who come to Las Vegas are there to see the hotels and the casinos. The visitor is king in Las Vegas and you will be able to find either cheap accommodation or the most expensive depending on your taste. Unfortunately Las Vegas is not a city that caters for children, although some of the casinos have added theme parks and fun rides for the occasional times of non-gambling. If, however, you are not into gambling or the like it is still a city worth visiting just to get an idea of what all the hype is about.
Great Basin National Park Here you will find pointed peaks and high mountain meadows, which have been formed by fast-flowing streams. Also in the park is the Lehman Caves these fascinating and far-reaching limestone caves have very interesting formations and are more solidly packed than those of the Carlsbad Caverns, although not as big. There are guided tours throughout the day at a cost of $2 for 30 min or $6 for an hour. Open daily during summer from 8am 5pm and winter from 8:30am 4:30pm. The Wheeler Peak can be found 12 miles from the Lehman Caves and here you will find trails that lead past an alpine lake and although few people visit the area it is good for off-track cross-country skiing during the winter.
Cave Lake State Park Ely. This park can be found 15 miles southeast of Ely and is a 32 acres reservoir. This park is very popular for trout fishing, boating, camping and boating. There are some spectacular scenic views and the park has camping facilities as well as good picnic spots. There are plenty of hiking trails and in winter you could do sports such as ice fishing, ice skating and stoss-country skiing. The park is open all year.
Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park. The most popular area in the park is Sand Harbour which offers sandy beaches, a boat launch and picnic facilities. Further in there is Memorial Point and Hidden Beach which have great views of the lake and the shores are more secluded. Spooner Lake is very popular for hiking, mountain biking and picnicking. From Spooner Lake you can hike or mountain bike into the back country. No vehicles are allowed in the back country as it has been declared a State primitive area.
The best way to travel through Nevada is by car as there are many places to see outside of the cities themselves. However, when in the cities public transport is very good and taxis are a convenient way to get from place to place and the fares are fairly reasonable.
National festival and holidays
Cowboy poetry Gathering This festival is held in Ely every year in January. It is a time for everyone especially cowboys to get together for a celebration of folk culture. There are campfires around which stories are told, singing and keeping the dying traditions of the Wild West alive.
National Basque Festival This is celebrated each Fourth of July weekend and is a time when children of Basque heritage will dance to the music of their ancestors in colourful costumes. Everybody even non Basque gets into the spirit and enjoys the good food and you can even see how good you are at drinking wine from a bota bag.
Carson City Nevada Day This is one of the oldest ongoing parades held in the Silver City. It is a time of pageants and parades all commemorating Nevada's history.
January 1 - New Year's Day
January 19 - Martin Luther King's Day
February 16 - Washington's Birthday & President's Day
May 31 - Memorial Day
July 4 - Independence Day
September 6 - Labour Day
October 11 - Columbus Day
October 29 - Nevada Day
November 11 - Veterans's Day
November 25 - Thanksgiving
December 25 - Christmas Day
Useful Nevada Links
Carson City Convention & Visitors Bureau
Nevada tourism and vacation guide
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