YOLO! Your Can’t-Miss Trip in Nevada’s Capital City
Creating memories that will stick with you is an essential part of travel. Nevada’s capital city has a variety of chances for you to embody the “you only live once” motto!
From spotting bald eagles and wild horses to experiencing the history of the American West and the Comstock Lode, to outdoor recreation that will get your heart pumping, Carson City, Nevada offers plenty of can’t-miss activities for adventurers of all ages.
Make memories on the trail – the aquatic trail!
The Carson River Aquatic Trail is a 12.6-mile stretch of the Carson River that takes visitors through a scenic canyon and past historic relics of the Comstock mining era. Visitors can explore the river in canoes, kayaks or small rafts; various sections of the river offer different levels of difficulty. Watercraft rentals are available at Blue Zone Sports’ location in Carson City.
Ideal for beginner-level explorers, the 3.5-mile Upper River Class I-II takes 1.5 hours to float, beginning at Carson River Park and ending at Morgan Mill Road River Access. The can’t-miss and iconic scenery of this section are the giant cottonwoods lining the shores – it’s full of photo-worthy moments. More advanced rafters can also book whitewater rafting tours on the East Fork Carson River, which offers challenging Class II-III sections for exciting and memorable thrills.
Visitors also often catch glimpses of wild horses, bald eagles, turtles, hawks, owls, and other wildlife. The wildlife sightings can create memories that last a lifetime! Find maps and more information on the Carson River Aquatic Trail here.
Travel through 150 years of history by rail
The V&T Railway offers rides for visitors by train and railbike. The V&T Railroad is 150 years old and takes riders through a once-in-a-lifetime experience and an immersive history lesson you won’t forget.
The railway was constructed to transport heavy ore from the Comstock mines to the mills along the Carson River for refining. Take a train ride aboard a restored 1914 Pullman coach from Carson City to Virginia City to meander through tunnels, canyons, and mining towns. The Carson Canyon Railbike Tour gives explorers the opportunity to see the beauty of the Carson River Canyon in a whole new way. The railbikes are safe, easy-to-pedal, and a whole lot of fun.
Slow down so you don’t miss a thing
Exploration through the capital city can be done at any pace, but often, you can see and experience more by getting out of the car and slowing down.
Victorian architecture is sprinkled throughout the capital city, especially along the Kit Carson Trail. With nearly 50 historic landmarks, this trail boasts stops you won’t want to speed past such as the house Mark Twain often visited, a clock tower still wound by hand, and more. Walk the trail to ensure you’re taking in as many of the sights as possible and listen to the interactive audio tour to get a full, immersive experience.
And with over 250 days of sunshine per year, the area’s weather also allows for cycling nearly year-round. The recreational routes along the scenic Carson River and the advanced mountain biking trails give explorers the YOLO thrill of getting outdoors!
Or, take a hike – with a pack goat. Yes, you can explore the area’s scenic trails with a goat by your side on an unforgettable, guided hiking experience.
Take in the view of the Sierra Nevada from natural hot springs
Nevada’s landscape is dotted with natural hot springs and Carson Hot Springs is located near the northern edge of town.
Offering four outdoor pools, Carson Hot Springs visitors can take a soak and enjoy views of the Sierra Nevada, or enjoy a private, indoor mini-spa. Natural mineral water flows out of the ground at 121 degrees Fahrenheit and the pools’ waters are maintained at 93-96 degrees in the summer and 98-100 degrees in the winter so you can enjoy the hot springs year-round.
There aren’t many places on this earth where you can enjoy nature’s spa with a view of some of the most stunning peaks in the country. Carson Hot Springs is a stop you won’t want to miss.
Check out all the things to do in Carson City and plan your can’t-miss trip.