Emblazoned across a street in downtown Reno are the famous words “The Biggest Little City in the World.” The slogan was coined in 1929, but it’s still an apt description of this desert city, which has outgrown its reputation as a gambling hot spot and come of age. With cultural, dining and retail precincts continually expanding, Reno is enjoying an urban renaissance.
As well as slot machines, Reno has many family-friendly attractions, such as museums, animal parks and a science center. Cafés, restaurants and galleries line the streets in the Truckee River Arts District and one of the world’s more impressive displays of cars is at the National Automobile Museum.
Sitting high in the desert, in the shadows of the snow-peaked Nevada Mountains, Reno is also a gateway to outdoor adventure. There are 18 ski resorts close by, including the Squaw Valley Ski Resort, which hosted the 1960 Winter Olympics. In summer, locals pack their deck chairs, kayaks and fishing gear and head to Lake Tahoe and the Truckee River. Even closer to the city, Sparks Marina Park and Wild Island Family Adventure Park are the perfect places to escape the desert heat.
Join locals in one of their favourite sports: bowling. The city is the home of the the National Bowling Stadium, the only one of its kind in the world. Reno also has the world’s first full-dome movie theater at the Fleischmann Planetarium and Science Center.
Explore the city’s ranching, mining and gambling heritage at the Wilber D. May Center and Nevada Historical Society. Put your gambling knowledge to the test and try your luck at the tables. The Peppermill, Altantis and Grand Sierra resorts offer fabulous nightlife and dining options.
Reno hosts several major events throughout the year. Marvel at the sight of the Great Reno Balloon Race, head to the Hot August Nights car convention or indulge at the Best of the West BBQ Cook-off.