Genoa on a fall day — Photo courtesy of Christina Nellemann
If you're in the Lake Tahoe area, take an afternoon and head down Kingsbury Grade on the east side of the lake down to the tiny hamlet of Genoa. This town is the oldest settlement in Nevada and is home to historic Victorian homes, antique shops, a country store, the oldest "thirst parlor" in Nevada and Walley's 1862 Hot Springs.
Genoa Antiques — Photo courtesy of Christina Nellemann
After a sandwich lunch at the Genoa Country Store (where they sometimes have live music), take a walk through the Mormon Station park where you'll learn more about the history of the area and do some shopping at the several antique shops that dot the main road in town.
The Cobweb Palace and the jam-packed antiques shop next door are crammed full of fun antiques with a Western spin. The owner of the Cobweb Palace also gives historical and ghost tours of the area. Also right next door is the Genoa Trading Company and the Genoa Bar, the "oldest thirst parlor" in Nevada.
Genoa Trading Post — Photo courtesy of Christina Nellemann
Once you've gotten your fill of shopping, head down the road about two miles to Walley's 1862 Hot Springs Resort. The resort was established in the mid-1800s around a natural hot spring and is currently being renovated, but is still a great place to hang out and soak in their various hot pools or rest in the lounge chairs while looking at the surrounding mountains and wildlife sanctuary.The main swimming pool is about 90 degrees and is perfect for children. The hottest pool is about 110 degrees and you'll come out a little pink.
Sunset at Walley's 1862 Hot Springs — Photo courtesy of Christina Nellemann
For dinner, walk just a few feet from the hot pools and indulge in some excellent food at the 1862 Restaurant & Bar. They have a large wine selection and great desserts. Their roast chicken with marscapone polenta and asparagus is divine.
Another place for a great dinner is the famous, La Ferme. This tiny French restaurant is located in a small guesthouse built in 1904 and is located on a small farm. You can spend the first part of your evening enjoying a glass of wine in the bar or in the garden with the local farm animals, and then indulge in some of the best French food outside of Provence. Dinner items include escargot with garlic butter and salad, maple leaf wild duck confit and honey jus and escalope of wild king salmon with jus poulette and choux de savoie.