Our Lake Tahoe Favorite – Granlibakken Tahoe

Lake Tahoe has soooo much to see, so much to do and so many great places to stay.  ThisHive has a couple favorites around the lake……hands down our favorite on the north side of Lake Tahoe is Granlibakken Tahoe.  We try to make a trip happen at least once per year and hope for snow….this year during our stay – no snow…..but that did NOT make our trip any less awesome.  We will be making another trip soon since Mother Nature dumped some gorgeous snow, I can’t wait!

This year’s stay at Granlibakken Tahoe (click here for Granlibakken Tahoe website) was for our niece’s birthday, the past few years for my youngest son we had celebrated his birthday (also in January) in Tahoe, since usually there was snow he called it “snow hotel”.  Even though there was zero snow at lake level we still call it the snow hotel.

I am a major planner…..so I had planned out our trip around snow activities thinking there would be snow – here is a list of the snow activities I had planned:

  • Snowboard lessons for the kiddos (click here for Granlibakken ski, snowboard, sledding deets) – Granlibakken has a ski hill that is perfect for learning on and when you are staying at the resort that makes it ideal. There is a Ski Hut at the base of the ski hill where you purchase the lift tickets as well as rent equipment if needed.  I planned on hanging by the fire pit at the bottom of the ski hill to watch the kiddos, the ski hut also sells food and drinks.
  • Sledding – Granlibakken has a sledding hill and you get tickets in the Ski Hut – the admission includes the saucer, oh and for sledding resorts guests are half price, whoop!
  • Random snow play – coloring on the snow, snowball fights and build a snowman.
  • Mini Snowmobiles (click here for info on the mini snowmobiles) and tubing (click here for tubing info) – Squaw Valley SnoVentures Activity Zone, Squaw Valley is only 15-20 minutes from Granlibakken.
  • Ice Skating / Sledding (click here for Tahoe City Winter Sports Park info) – in Tahoe city, when there is enough snow they also have other activities
  • Hot tub / swimming – at Granlibakken
  • Playground (click for details/info about this little park on the lake) – located in Tahoe City right on the Lake!

A few days before we were set to head up to Granlibakken I called to verify the ski hill was open before purchasing lessons in advance, they let me know all around lake level had no snow (the rains earlier in the week took away most of the snow), the higher elevations still had snow or was making it.  So the big activity I planned was the snowboarding lessons, since no snow I changed that plan to the Tahoe Treetop Adventure Park (click here for Tahoe Treetop Adventure Park website) located at Granlibakken which is open during the winter…..I assumed it would be closed when there is snow but they said even when there is a ton of snow they still operate – I can’t wait to visit when there is snow!!!!!  Also random snow play wouldn’t be happening unless we traveled someplace else.

This is how our trip ended up – and my niece said “This was the best birthday ever!”


  • We headed up to Granlibakken after the kiddos got out of school, in Truckee (approx. 20 minutes away from the resort) we ate dinner at McDonalds, we arrived at the resort around 5pm. The lodging choice for this trip was a two bedroom townhouse with a loft – it was perfection!
  • After the kiddos ran all around the townhouse (they have a great selection of lodging options (click here for the room types) – hotel rooms, suites, 1 2 3 bedroom townhouses, some townhouses have a loft) we unloaded the truck and unpacked.
  • The original plan for Friday was to head into town (Tahoe City, CA) and have dinner, but the kiddos were having so much fun playing in the townhouse we decided to stay in, plus we already ate.


  • For all Granlibakken guests there is a breakfast in the mornings 7:30am-9am weekdays 7:30am-10am weekends/holidays. The food is always so GOOD!!!  Just delicious!!!  Each morning before heading back to the room we grabbed hot chocolate.  Our favorite mix was fill the cup ¾ with hot chocolate and the rest with rediwhip or milk – yummmmm so good!
  • On this day my husband and mother took the kiddos on a walk while I went back to the townhouse to decorate for my niece’s birthday. They walked some of the trails, played corn hole at the Ski Hut, checked out the spa and pool area, checked out the tennis courts and played in some small patches of snow found here and there.  I made a mad dash to decorate with a Pokémon theme to surprise the birthday girl.
  • I sent a text that I was all done…….the kiddos came in and they were all so excited! Mission accomplished!
  • First up – party games: Pokeball Hunt, Pokeball Launch, Pokeball Psychic and Pin the Tail on Pikachu. ****if you would like to read the Pokemon Birthday Post click Pokemon Birthday Party****
  • After all the games were completed I handed out a prize for each game winner – somehow it worked out that each child won a game – sweet!  I also handed out goody bags.
  • Next up – sing the birthday song and grub on birthday CAKE!
  • One surprise was that Granlibakken had gathered as much snow as they could find around the resort and made the sledding hill happen for the weekend! So after cake and a little play we headed to go sledding!  Resort guests receive half off the sledding cost!  We got our sled on for a long while – funny side note the kiddo who said he didn’t even want to go sledding was the last kiddo actually sledding!  The youngest in our group went down the hill a few times then called it a day…….my hubs and the other 3 kiddos kept at it for a long while……thankfully my oldest son decided to call it quits just before 3 pm – I say thankfully because the Ski Hut stops serving food/drinks at 3 pm……I was craving some nachos!  So while my oldest son and I went to the Ski Hut, grabbed some food, grabbed chairs by the fire pit my youngest (who remember didn’t want to even go sledding) and my niece kept sledding and sledding.
  • Once the kiddos sledding craving was filled we headed back to the townhouse to get ready to go swimming…….the heated pool was kinda warm…..warm enough for the kiddos to play around for a little bit then they jumped into the spa which was so warm! We also checked out the sauna – hunger started to set in so back to the townhouse for us. 
  • For dinner, we had planned on making spaghetti for the birthday dinner so we brought all the ingredients and the kitchens in the townhouses are stocked with most items you would need to make/eat meals in room.
  • After bellies were all full we grabbed movie snacks, started a fire, got cozy on the couch and started a movie – the movie of choice The Lego Movie. (I brought a basket with a selection of movies, snacks and popcorn) 
  • After the movie and a little play……bedtime.


  • Alarm set to wake up in time to make it to breakfast…..yummy breakfast and then again hot chocolate for the stroll back to the townhouse.
  • We had reservations for Tahoe Treetop Adventure Park at 1:45pm so the kiddos decided until then they just wanted to play in the townhouse, my husband brought a remote control toy so he and a few of the kiddos took a walk along some of the trails close to the townhouse.
  • For the Tahoe Treetop Adventure Park they ask you to arrive 15 minutes before your reservation – I recommend that for sure – this is the time they get you all geared up – I TOTALLY RECOMMEND THIS ACTIVTY! Sooooo fun!  Each of us had a blast – also our timeframe was the last of the day which was awesome because it seemed that everyone else who was in our timeframe left after two times through the course…….we climbed and zipped without having to wait for anyone in front of us – that was awesome!!!!  Also they said they are open when there is snow – they shovel off all the platforms and dig out tunnels where the zip line goes to the ground platforms – how cool would that be to zip line through walls of snow!!!!
  • Our plan for this evening’s dinner was the restaurant at the resort The Cedar House Pub – this worked out perfectly since they open at 5pm and the last of us got back to the townhouse after zip lining around 4:30 – so a quick clean up, change and off to dinner. The food us adults ordered was yummy – I ordered tri-tip steak and it was DELICIOUS – the hubs ordered steamed clams and he said they were great…..our niece even tried some of the clams and she loved it!  The kiddos, three of them ordered pizza – they said it was meh – and the youngest ordered mac-n-cheese which she didn’t like at all…..I tried it and I wasn’t a fan of it as well.
  • After dinner we went back to the townhouse to have desert and the kiddos wanted to watch a movie…..The Lego Movie again…..so movie snacks and a movie it was. After the movie the kiddos enjoyed one last night of playing in the townhouse.


  • Again alarm set for our last day of yummy breakfast……and our last hot chocolate
  • Then back to the townhouse to pack up and head home………

There were so many activities that I had on our list that we didn’t get to…….also many other activities I didn’t put on our list – guess we need many more trips to one of our most favorite places to visit!  This was one of the most fun trips we have taken.  Granlibakken has a good list of Tahoe City area activities on their website –

The history of Granlibakken is pretty cool and all the old pictures throughout the lodge are fun to check out – again here is their website for more information and booking.   Granlibakken Tahoe

Until next time Granlibakken, until next time!

Bye for now,

mamaBEE – join thishive and subscribe!

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