Top Places to Visit in Reno: Discover Fun Attractions & More

Places to visit in Reno

Welcome to Reno, the Biggest Little City in the World! Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a longer vacation, Reno has something for everyone. From historic landmarks to scenic walks and wildlife encounters, this city offers a variety of fun attractions that will make your trip unforgettable.

In this article, we’ll introduce you to the top places to visit in Reno. Get ready to discover hidden gems, iconic landmarks, and exciting events that will make your visit to Reno truly special.

Key Takeaways

  • Reno offers a variety of fun attractions for visitors
  • The city is home to iconic landmarks like the Reno Arch
  • Explore the National Automobile Museum and its impressive collection of classic cars
  • Take a stroll along the scenic Riverwalk District and enjoy the charming shops and dining establishments
  • Discover the diverse collection of artwork at the Nevada Museum of Art
  • Get up close with wildlife at the Animal Ark
  • Relive the Old West history in Virginia City
  • Witness the vibrant hot air balloons taking flight at the Great Reno Balloon Race
  • Experience the fun atmosphere of a Reno Aces minor league baseball game at Greater Nevada Field
  • Take a day trip to Lake Tahoe and enjoy its natural beauty
  • Explore the vibrant arts and dining scene in the Midtown District

Reno Arch: Iconic Entryway to the Biggest Little City

The Reno Arch, located at the intersection of Virginia Street and Commercial Row, is a symbol of Reno’s history and culture. The original arch was built in the 1920s to welcome visitors to the city, while the current version was erected in 1987 as part of a beautification project. Today, the Reno Arch is one of the most famous landmarks in Reno and a must-see attraction for visitors.

The arch spans across Virginia Street and features the words “The Biggest Little City in the World” in large, colorful letters. Visitors can take photos with the arch as a backdrop, capturing the spirit of Reno and its lively atmosphere. The arch is also illuminated at night, providing a stunning sight for those walking or driving through downtown Reno.

Fun Fact:

In 2010, the Reno Arch underwent a major renovation that included the installation of over 2,000 LED lights, making it even more impressive and energy-efficient.

National Automobile Museum: A Gearhead’s Paradise

The National Automobile Museum in Reno is a must-visit attraction for any car enthusiast. This museum boasts a vast collection of classic and vintage cars that will transport visitors back in time.

Visitors to the museum will be amazed by the range of exhibits, which showcase over 200 cars from different eras and countries. The museum houses iconic vehicles from across the decades, including classics such as the 1907 Thomas Flyer and the 1912 Cadillac.

The museum is more than just a place to view cars. It is also a hub for automotive education, with interactive exhibits that give visitors a deeper understanding of the history of cars and their impact on society. Visitors can learn about the evolution of car design, the development of the automobile industry, and the forces that shaped the automotive landscape.

One of the most popular exhibits is the “One of a Kind” collection, which showcases unique and experimental vehicles that were ahead of their time. Visitors can marvel at vehicles such as the 1948 Tucker and the 1953 General Motors Firebird 1 concept car.

Overall, the National Automobile Museum is a fascinating and educational experience for visitors, providing a glimpse into the history and evolution of the automobile. Whether you are a serious car enthusiast or simply looking for an interesting and educational outing, this museum is not to be missed.

Riverwalk District: Stroll Along the Scenic Riverfront

The Riverwalk District is a must-visit attraction in Reno, where locals and tourists alike can enjoy scenic walks along the Truckee River. The area is known for its picturesque views, charming shops, and dining establishments.

Walking or biking along the riverfront can be a relaxing escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Visitors can also stop to enjoy public art installations and sculptures along the way.

The Best of Riverwalk

The Riverwalk District has plenty of exciting activities to offer, from shopping to dining to outdoor adventures. The following are some of the must-visit spots:

Attraction Details
West Street Market A vibrant marketplace with local vendors and eateries offering diverse cuisine.
Wingfield Park Amphitheater A popular outdoor venue for concerts, festivals, and cultural events.
The Eddy A riverfront bar and restaurant serving craft cocktails, beer, and American cuisine.
Truckee River Whitewater Park A park with kayak and rafting courses for outdoor enthusiasts.

The Riverwalk District is also a great place to explore the local culture and history of Reno. Visitors can stop by the historic Riverside Hotel, built in 1927 and now a senior living community, or learn about the city’s cultural heritage at the Nevada Museum of Art.

Whether you’re looking to enjoy a relaxing stroll or want to indulge in some shopping and dining, the Riverwalk District is a perfect destination to add to your Reno itinerary.

Nevada Museum of Art: A Journey Through Visual Arts

At the Nevada Museum of Art, visitors embark on a journey through visual arts. The museum features a diverse collection of contemporary and traditional artwork, with a focus on the American West and its surrounding landscapes and cultures.

The museum is located in downtown Reno, making it easily accessible for tourists and locals alike. Visitors can explore a range of exhibitions, from paintings to sculptures, photography to video installations. Notable exhibits include the works of renowned artists such as Georgia O’Keeffe and Ansel Adams.

In addition to its permanent collection, the museum also hosts several rotating exhibitions throughout the year. These exhibitions often feature contemporary artists pushing the boundaries of traditional art forms, providing visitors with fresh and exciting perspectives.

The Nevada Museum of Art is more than just a showcase for artwork – it is also a space for cultural education and discourse. The museum hosts lectures, workshops, and other events that encourage visitors to engage with artwork in a deeper, more meaningful way.

Whether you are an art enthusiast or simply looking for a unique cultural experience, the Nevada Museum of Art is a must-visit attraction in Reno.

Animal Ark: Get Up Close with Wildlife

Animal Ark is a must-visit destination for animal lovers. Located just 25 miles north of Reno, this wildlife sanctuary is dedicated to providing a safe haven for injured, orphaned, and non-releasable wild animals. The park is situated on a 38-acre property and is home to over 200 animals representing 40 different species.

Get up close and personal with a variety of wildlife at Animal Ark. Visitors can see big cats, bears, wolves, foxes, and birds of prey in their natural habitats. The park offers a unique opportunity to watch animals as they roam in large, natural enclosures, and learn about their individual stories and behavior.

In addition to providing a sanctuary for animals, Animal Ark also offers educational programs and special events. Visitors can participate in guided tours, animal encounters, and photography workshops. The park also hosts summer camps and educational programs for children, giving them the chance to explore and learn about the natural world.

Animal Encounters and Exhibits

Species Description
Big Cats See lions, tigers, leopards, and more up close, with a chance to witness them playing, napping, or interacting with their caretakers.
Bears Observe black bears and grizzlies enjoying their habitats, with opportunities to learn about their behavior and natural history.
Wolves and Foxes Watch packs of wolves and playful foxes roam and interact in their spacious enclosures, while learning about their social behavior and habitat needs.
Birds of Prey See majestic birds of prey like eagles, hawks, owls, and falcons in flight, with the chance to witness their incredible hunting abilities up close.

Animal Ark is open seasonally, from April to November, and admission fees go towards the care and well-being of the animals. Visitors are encouraged to wear comfortable shoes, bring water, and use sunscreen, as much of the park is outside. Plan your visit to Animal Ark and discover the beauty and wonder of wildlife in a natural setting.

Virginia City: Relive the Wild West History

Just a short drive from Reno, Virginia City is a historic town that will transport you back in time to the height of the Wild West. Founded in 1859, this charming town is known for its preserved architecture and rich mining history.

One of the most iconic attractions of Virginia City is the Virginia & Truckee Railroad, also known as the V&T. This historic train takes passengers on a scenic journey through the mountains, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape.

Attraction Description
Comstock History Center The Comstock History Center is a museum and research facility dedicated to preserving the history of Virginia City and the surrounding area. Visitors can learn about the town’s rich mining history and view artifacts from the 19th century.
The Way It Was Museum The Way It Was Museum is another must-see attraction in Virginia City. Here visitors can explore exhibits that showcase the town’s history, including its role in the Wild West and the impact of the mining industry.
Old West-style Saloons No trip to Virginia City is complete without visiting one of the town’s old west-style saloons. Step back in time as you enjoy a drink in a rustic, western-themed setting.

There are also several annual events that take place in Virginia City, including the Virginia City Camel Races and the International Chili Cookoff. These events are a great way to experience the town’s lively atmosphere and Wild West spirit.

Overall, Virginia City is a charming destination that offers a glimpse into the past and is a must-visit for history enthusiasts.

Great Reno Balloon Race: A Colorful Spectacle

One of the most anticipated annual events in Reno is the Great Reno Balloon Race. Taking place every September, this colorful event attracts thousands of visitors to witness the spectacular sight of hundreds of hot air balloons taking flight.

The Great Reno Balloon Race offers a unique experience that cannot be missed. Imagine waking up early to the sounds of hot air balloons being inflated, while the sky transforms into a stunning display of vibrant colors and shapes.

There are many great viewing spots to enjoy the event, such as Rancho San Rafael Regional Park, which offers a prime location to watch the balloons ascend. Visitors can also experience the Balloon Glow, where balloons light up the night sky in a magical display of colors and shapes.

Aside from the balloon event itself, there are various activities and events that take place during the weekend, such as music performances, food vendors, and merchandise booths.

Attending the Great Reno Balloon Race is a truly unforgettable experience that offers something for everyone, both young and old. Make sure to mark your calendar and join in the fun!

Reno Aces: Home Run Fun at Greater Nevada Field

For baseball enthusiasts, the Reno Aces are a must-see attraction when visiting Reno. This minor league team, affiliated with the Arizona Diamondbacks, has made a name for itself with its talented players and lively games. Attending a game at Greater Nevada Field, the team’s home field, is an experience that shouldn’t be missed.

The atmosphere at Greater Nevada Field is electric, with fans cheering on their home team and enjoying the beautiful views of the surrounding mountains. The stadium boasts modern amenities, including a video board, luxury suites, and various food and drink options, all designed to enhance the game experience.

But it’s not just the game itself that draws visitors to Greater Nevada Field. Throughout the season, the Reno Aces offer various promotions and events, such as fireworks shows and themed nights, making each game unique and entertaining.

Whether you’re a die-hard baseball fan or just looking for a fun outing with family and friends, the Reno Aces and Greater Nevada Field are sure to hit a home run with visitors of all ages.

Lake Tahoe: A Natural Wonderland Just a Short Drive Away

Lake Tahoe, located just a short drive from Reno, is a breathtaking natural wonder that draws visitors year-round. With crystal-clear waters and stunning mountain scenery, Lake Tahoe offers an array of outdoor activities for nature lovers and adventure seekers alike.

During the summer months, visitors can enjoy hiking, biking, and water sports such as kayaking, paddleboarding, and boating. In the winter, skiing and snowboarding are popular activities, with multiple world-class ski resorts in the area.

One of the most popular spots at Lake Tahoe is Emerald Bay State Park, known for its picturesque views and hiking trails. Visitors can also explore the quaint towns surrounding the lake, such as South Lake Tahoe and Tahoe City, which offer charming boutiques and restaurants.

Whether you’re looking for a day trip or a longer stay, Lake Tahoe is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to the Reno area.

Midtown District: Vibrant Arts and Dining Scene

Located just south of downtown Reno, the Midtown District is a must-visit for anyone looking for a unique and lively atmosphere. This neighborhood is known for its vibrant arts scene, featuring murals and galleries that showcase local artists’ work.

Alongside the arts scene, the district also boasts a diverse range of dining options, from upscale restaurants to food trucks and everything in between. Whether you’re looking for a romantic night out or a casual lunch with friends, there’s something for everyone in Midtown.

One of the main draws of the district is the numerous independent boutiques and shops, offering everything from vintage clothing to handmade crafts. It’s the perfect place to find a one-of-a-kind souvenir or gift.

The district also hosts numerous events throughout the year, including the popular Midtown Art Walk, which takes place on the first Thursday of every month. During this event, visitors can stroll through the district and view the latest art exhibits while enjoying live music and food and drink specials.

Overall, the Midtown District is a vibrant and creative hub that’s not to be missed. Whether you’re an art lover, foodie, or just looking for a unique experience, this neighborhood has it all.


Reno, the Biggest Little City in the World, boasts an array of exciting attractions and hidden gems that are waiting to be discovered. From the iconic Reno Arch to the beautiful scenery of Lake Tahoe, there is something for everyone in this vibrant city. Visitors can explore the historic Virginia City, stroll along the scenic Riverwalk District, or indulge in the arts and dining scene of the Midtown District. Wildlife enthusiasts can get up close with animals at the Animal Ark, while car enthusiasts can admire classic cars at the National Automobile Museum. Sports lovers can catch a Reno Aces game at Greater Nevada Field, while hot air balloon enthusiasts can witness the colorful spectacle of the Great Reno Balloon Race.

With its diverse range of attractions, Reno is a destination that will not disappoint. So start planning your trip today and experience all that Reno has to offer!


Q: Are these the only top places to visit in Reno?

A: No, these are just some of the top attractions in Reno. There are many more places to explore and discover in the Biggest Little City.

Q: Can I visit all these attractions in one day?

A: It may be challenging to visit all of them in one day, especially if you want to fully experience each attraction. It’s recommended to plan your itinerary accordingly and allocate enough time for each place.

Q: Are these attractions suitable for families with children?

A: Yes, many of these attractions are suitable for families with children. However, it’s always a good idea to check specific attraction websites or contact them directly to confirm age recommendations or any special activities for children.

Q: Are these attractions wheelchair accessible?

A: Most of the attractions mentioned are wheelchair accessible. However, it’s always advisable to check the accessibility information on the attraction’s website or contact them directly for any specific accessibility needs.

Q: Are there any discounts or special offers available for these attractions?

A: Some attractions may offer discounts for students, seniors, or military personnel. It’s recommended to check the websites or inquire directly with the attractions for any available discounts or special offers.

Q: Can I take photographs at these attractions?

A: Generally, photography is allowed at these attractions. However, some attractions may have certain restrictions, such as flash photography or professional equipment. It’s best to check with each attraction regarding their photography policies.

Q: Is there parking available at these attractions?

A: Yes, most of these attractions have parking available. Some may have free parking, while others may charge a fee. It’s advisable to check the attraction’s website or contact them directly for parking information.

Q: Can I bring food or drinks inside these attractions?

A: Each attraction may have different policies regarding outside food or drinks. It’s recommended to check the attraction’s website or contact them directly for their specific policies on bringing food or drinks.

Q: Are there guided tours available at these attractions?

A: Some of these attractions may offer guided tours. It’s best to check the attraction’s website or contact them directly to inquire about guided tour availability, schedules, and any additional fees.

Q: Are pets allowed at these attractions?

A: Pets may not be allowed inside these attractions due to safety or hygiene reasons. It’s advisable to check the attraction’s website or contact them directly for their pet policies.

Q: Is there public transportation available to these attractions?

A: Public transportation options may vary for each attraction. Some may be accessible by public buses, while others may require alternative transportation methods. It’s recommended to check the attraction’s website or contact them directly for transportation information.