Tahoe City, located on the northwest side of Lake Tahoe, is one of the larger destinations in the area -- but it's all relative. It's less than four square miles and has a population just around 1,500, which allows it to maintain a small-town feel. The downtown area, which features several bars, restaurants, and art galleries, is easy to explore by foot and is known for its bohemian, laid-back vibe.
Tahoe City is a popular choice among skiers, as it grants easy access to several mountains. But the crowds come back in the summertime for the farmers markets and the free concerts at Commons Beach (and the beach itself, of course). Snowshoe and cross-country skiing trails along the lake become biking trails during the warmer months. And every year, Tahoe City hosts a winter carnival and a harvest festival.
Though one of the larger spots along the lake, Tahoe City maintains a quaint, small-town vibe (which South Lake Tahoe, with its casinos, lacks). It's a good choice for skiers and it is also close to many attractions, such as Fanny Bridge, the Yacht Club, Commons Beach, and Outlet Gates, where huge masses of water flow to control the level of the lake. There are several lodging options (most of which are locally owned) so if you're looking for a name you recognize, you may consider staying in South Tahoe or Squaw Valley.