Looking to fill a weekend with a quick trip before the snow sets in and the roads become precarious? Whether stepping into an alpine forest, strolling big city streets or going country, options abound for autumn adventures that are a quick drive from Reno.


Nestled in the High Sierra of Plumas County, this charming town is just an hour's drive from Reno. Here you’ll find endless ways to enjoy the great outdoors and country charm including camping, hiking, horseback riding, golfing, shopping and dining. Plus, the many lakes and waterways in the area are absolutely stunning this time of year with vibrant leaf-peeping delight.

Hotel hotspot: Visit the Lodge at Whitehawk Ranch for the full woodland experience. They have quaint log cabins, a whole slew of country amenities and some nice recreational options.

Dine like a local: Longboards Bar and Grill at Plumas Pines Golf Resort is one of the best spots in town. With a menu filled with small plates, main dishes and delicious salads, this is one to beat. Try their seared scallop risotto for a tasty treat.

Apple Hill

Fall is the season for stone fruit and Apple Hill is just the place to get it! With several ranches offering individual experiences, this is the perfect outing for a romantic couples retreat or fun for the whole family — especially one that likes to bake apple pies! Be sure to visit a fruit farm or two, but also plan some time to relax at the spa, enjoy the late blooms at several flower gardens, and sip a nice red at renowned El Dorado County vineyards.

Hotel hotspot: Opening its doors in 1857, the Cary House has hosted the likes of Billy the Kid, Mark Twain and Elvis Presley. If you’re an antique furniture buff, you’ll love the adornments in every room. Not to worry, they have all the modern amenities, too.

Dine like a local: Looking for a great scone and cup of coffee? Head to Blondie's Coffee House for fresh baked goodies to go along with all the great produce you’ll collect on your Apple Hill adventure.

San Francisco

As the crowds begin to thin and the crisp ocean air hits the shoreline of California, this time of year in San Francisco is a treat. Grab a sourdough roll and crab legs at Fisherman’s Wharf, look for something eclectic in Haight Ashbury, stroll the quaint shops inside the Ferry Building, ride the cable car on Nob Hill, join fellow sports fans on Union Square, explore Alcatraz, and take a jaunt across the Golden Gate Bridge. Gotta love the city by the bay.

Hotel hotspot: With seemingly endless options for a good night stay, we have to pick one that was once the world’s largest and most luxurious hotels. The iconic Palace Hotel may have been knocked down during the 1906 earthquake, but it came back with a vengeance. To get the full experience, be sure to enjoy afternoon tea under the glass ceiling in the Garden Court.

Dine like a local: You can’t go to San Francisco and not enjoy some serious seafood. Head to Sea Forager Seafood for a healthy portion of the good stuff!


Head east for a taste of the Wild West in Elko. This booming mining town has everything you might look for to get a taste of yesteryear — real cowboys, delicious Basque food, abandoned mine tours, rockhounding and more. Just over the hill lies Lamoille Canyon with serene silence, breathtaking views and trails for miles.

Hotel hotspot: Filled with historic hotels, the newest on the block is the Hampton Inn. Super comfy beds and a friendly staff welcome passersby. They also have a great complimentary breakfast spread.

Dine like a local: Come hungry and ready to share to The Star. This traditional Basque restaurant is known for the heavy helpings and delicious fare. And, don’t forget to order a picon punch.

Whether it’s a busy metropolitan adventure or relaxing rural escape, there are plenty of options close by for a memorable vacay. Send us a postcard! 

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