Hike the trails of this beautiful park and enjoy panoramic views of Lake Tahoe. Dip your toes in refreshingly cool water and study fascinating geology.
D.L. Bliss State Park stretches along the southwestern shores of Lake Tahoe and forms part of the rolling Sierra Nevada mountain range. Immerse yourself in abounding nature by following trails leading along the shoreline and lounging on beaches lapped by calm waters.
The park was named after Duane Leroy Bliss, a19th-century lumberman, banker and railroad owner whose descendants donated the land to the California State Park system. Prior to the Bliss family presence, Washoe Native Americans lived in this part of the Sierra Nevadas for over 10,000 years. Discover more about the heritage and natural history of the park at the informative visitor center located at the entrance. Plan your hikes, learn about plants and wildlife and examine interpretive displays. Many family-oriented activities take place in the park during the summer months including campfire chats, nature hikes and Junior Ranger programs.
Set off on one of D.L. Bliss Park’s most famous hikes, the Rubicon Trail. Begin at the beautiful white-sand Lester Beach. After a quick swim in the cool waters, hike to Rubicon Point. From here, appreciate staggering views across one of Lake Tahoe’s deepest spots, with underwater visibility beyond 50 feet (15 meters). Continue along the 4.5-mile (7-kilometer) path through dramatic scenery, past the Vikingsholm Castle built in 1929, to the trail’s end inside neighboring Emerald Bay State Park.
One of Lake Tahoe’s most astounding geological features is Balancing Rock. Follow the 0.5-mile (0.8-kilometer) self-guided trail of the same name to see the precariously balanced granite boulder teetering on a thin stone base. Be sure to take a photograph next to the geological marvel.
D.L. Bliss State Park is located 17 miles (27 kilometers) south of Tahoe City and is easily accessible from the highway during the open season from late May through September. Use parking lots at the main beaches or the Balancing Rock trailhead. These lots can get busy during peak times so arrive early to secure a spot. There is a fee to enter the park. Day visitors are allowed to enjoy the natural beauty from sunrise to sunset. Overnight camping is available.