We have put together a great list of Nevada day trips to showcase the best things to do in the Silver State. Many of these trips are within an easy driving distance of Las Vegas or Reno. Some destinations are well off the beaten path and may require an overnight or mulit-day trip.
Southern Nevada Day Trips
Travel Time 1 hour from Las Vegas. Nelson Ghost is located in the heart of Eldorado Canyon. While there is not too much left of the town most visited travel here to come to take the Techatticup Mine Tour. The grounds of the Techatticup Mine property are scattered with hundreds of mining artifacts along with props left over from the numerous movies and videos. Wedding and events can also be held on the property.
Travel time from the Strip under one hour. Bonnie Springs Ranch is a roadside attraction located in Red Rock Canyon a few miles from the Las Vegas Strip. One of the most popular attractions at the ranch is horseback rides. Bonnie Springs also has a fun train ride, western shows, and a mock ghost town.
Travel time from Las Vegas about one hour. Close enough to Las Vegas for a day trip but far enough away to seem like another world. Hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and rock climbing are popular activities at Red Rock Canyon. A one-way 13-mile scenic drive takes you through some of the most spectacular spots.
Travel Time from Vegas about 45 minutes 34 miles – Hoover Dam is an easy day trip from Las Vegas. Many tour operators offered guided tours from the strip. If you have a car it is cheaper to drive yourself plus you are not restricted to what you can do and where you can go.
Travel time from Las Vegas 1.5 hours. Overton’s Lost City Museum is about an hours drive from Las Vegas. One of the museum’s most striking attractions is a full-size replica of Anasazi Pueblo Grande de Nevada. This is how Las Vegas looked like 2,000 years ago. Also, on display are hundreds of baskets and artifacts left behind by native Indians which once inhabited the valley.
Travel time from Las Vegas 1.5 hours. Valley of Fire is a popular day trip from Las Vegas. There are lots of things to here including taking pictures of the amazing rock formations. If you enjoy scenic drives and want to escape the busy streets of Las Vegas then Valley of Fire is the perfect destination. Highlights include Elephant Rock, Natural Arch, Fire Wave, Atlatl Rock, Seven Sisters, and White Domes.
Travel time from Las Vegas 1 hour. Goodsprings is not much more than a ghost town. The main attraction these days is the Pioneer Saloon, one of the oldest drinking establishments in Nevada. The saloon is said to be haunted, whether you believe it is or not depends on how many cold beers you indulge in. Pioneer Saloon is frequented by bikers, but all are welcome to visit Goodsprings and the Pioneer Saloon.
40 miles from Las Vegas. Mount Charleston feels a million miles away from the city. Things to do include hiking, mountain biking, camping, and sightseeing. During the winter the mountains are the perfect place to play in the snow. Fresh air and silence are what you will find atop the state’s eighth highest mountain peak.
List of fun things to do in Las Vegas. If you are on tight budget or lost all of your spending money in the casino. We have a great list of free things to do and see that won’t cost a penny.
Take the back way to Death Valley through Titus Canyon. This trip starts near the town of Beatty Nevada. The graded gravel road is one way only. Nevada to California. Highlights of this off-road adventure include Red Pass, the ghost town of Leadfield, and final miles when you travel through a narrow canyon.
Rhyolite ghost town is 4 miles west of the town of Beatty, Nevada. There is a paved road all the way to the ghost town but don’t be surprised if you are the only visitor. Most buildings are in ruins except for the train depot and a fixture of many ghost towns, the bottle house. Rhyolite is about a two-hour drive from Las Vegas.
Just across the border along the long route of the long-abandoned Tonopah and Tidewater Railroad, you will find Tecopa Hot Springs. Tecopa is not much more than a ghost town, however, this remote desert community has one attraction, numerous natural hot springs. There are several aging resorts to soak along with a couple of public pools where nude bathing is the norm.
Gold Point Nevada is located in the heart of Nevada about a one hour drive from Tonopah. Gold Point is another Nevada boom and bust mining camp. The town is mostly a tourist attraction The with about 50 buildings still standing from its previous life. For a real old west, experience guests can rent a miners cabin and stay overnight in a ghost town. Abandoned mining camps and mines are all within a short drive of town.
International Car Forest Goldfield Nevada
Goldfield’s Junk Car Forest is a unique roadside attraction made out of junk cars, buses, and motorcycles. Each vehicle is decorated with graffiti and 60s error psychedelic images. There is no too much else to see in Goldfield but if you are passing through the Junk Car Forest is defiantly worth a stop.
Beatty is about 100 miles north of Las Vegas. Most visitors to Beatty Nevada are just passing through however there are several interesting points of interest nearby. In town, there are several motels, dining establishments, a couple of small casinos and the friendliest brothel in the state of Nevada.
There are nearly 300 natural hot spring in Nevada. Our list features Nevada’s hidden warm spring pools to historic hot spring resorts.
Northern Nevada Day Trips
Things to do and see in and around Reno, Nevada. With the pine forests, alpine meadows, lakes, and flowing streams of the Sierra Nevada Mountain range to the west, to the Great Basin with its wide open spaces, dry landscapes and sagebrush plains to the east, Reno is perfectly situated for a wide range of adventures.
Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park is located about 170 miles from Reno Nevada. Along with an amazing collection of rare and unique fossils, the park has one of the best-preserved ghost towns in Nevada. Berlin was home to nearly 250 residents, including miners, who worked the Berlin Mine, which has been estimated to have produced nearly one million dollars in silver.
Virginia City is one of the most popular Nevada Attractions on this list. Located within easy day trip distance of Reno Virginia City offers board sidewalks, historic buildings and a choice of old west saloons. Virginia & Truckee Railroad runs steam trains from Carson City to Virginia City or shorter trips from Virginia City to Gold Hill and back. Virginia City is a must see for both locals and out of state visitors.
Choose from a short line or all day train excursion. Steam trains run most summer weekends from Carson City Nevada to historic Virginia City. Take a journey back in time as your train travels along the original route to the Comstock mines in the hills above the Carson Valley.
Stokes Castle overlooks the town of Austin Nevada. The castle was only occupied for a few months before being abandoned. Built as a summer vacation house for a mining baron, the castle had three floors and a rooftop viewing area.
Cathedral George Park sits at an elevation of 4,800 feet and is open year-round. Sight-seeing, camping and relaxing in the outdoors are the main activities at the park.
Thunder Mountain Monument was created by Frank Van Zant AKA Chief Rolling Mountain Thunder. This unusual collection of buildings and sculptures is dedicated to the North American Indians. Thunder Mountain is designated a Nevada State Historic Site and a National Monument. Two hours from Reno along Interstate 80 in Nevada.
Visitors to Safe Haven Wildlife Sanctuary can view African servals, African lions, tigers, various species of foxes, bobcats, cougars, coyotes, and more. Safe Haven is about a 2-hour drive from Reno Nevada.
At its peak, Belmont had over 10,000 residents. Like many other towns when the mine played out the town soon emptied out. Today there are no full-time residents in Belmont but plenty of interesting things to see including the original Nye County two-story brick courthouse. Belmont Ghost Town is 46 miles from Tonopah, Nevada.
Mormon Station State Park is about a forty mile drive from Reno Nevada. The township of Genoa, Nevada was first settled by Mormon pioneers, the area acted as a trading post called Mormon Station. Mormon State Park is home to a reconstructed fort with a fascinating museum. Genoa is also home to the Genoa Bar, one of the oldest Saloons in Nevada.
Ward Charcoal Ovens Park is at an elevation of about 7,000 feet about twenty miles from Ely Nevada. Due to the remote location of the kilns, they remain in remarkably good condition. Charcoal was only made here for a few years. After silver smelters were shut down in nearby Ward there was no need for the charcoal and the ovens were abandoned.
A typical visit to the Nevada Northern Railway Museum includes exploring the grounds of the museum and checking out the shops. Then, it is time to hop on the train for a steam-powered adventure. Excursions are offered on weekend April through January, with daily service between Memorial Day and end of September.
Fort Churchill is located along the Carson River, eight miles south of Silver Springs on US 95A. Fort Churchill ruins are kept in a state of arrested decay. Visitors can walk through the old fort and imagine what life was like back in the hay day of Fort Churchill.
Cave Lake State Park
Cave Lake State Park is situated about 20 miles from the town of Ely. The lake is not huge but big enough to hold a population of native brown and stocked rainbow trout. Boats are permitted on the lake but must adhere to speed limit, no jet skis here.