Nevada is a wonderful place to live and visit. It’s home to a few larger cities such as Las Vegas and Reno, but it’s also home to many smaller towns that are definitely worth visiting. Listed below are 10 of the most charming small towns in Nevada.
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
Just 25 miles east of Lake Tahoe and one hour south of Reno, you'll stumble across the charming town of Genoa. Genoa's natural beauty and historic charm is what attracts visitors year-round. A couple of Genoa's main attractions include Morman Station Memorial Park and Genoa Courthouse Museum. Genoa has approximately 250 residents.
2. Virginia City
In 1859, Virginia City originated as a boomtown with the discovery of the Comstock Lode - the first major silver deposit discovery in the U.S. In Virginia City, you'll find several Old West saloons, shops, museums and restaurants. To explore the city, be sure to take a ride on a trolley, stage coach, horse-drawn carriage or a V&T Railroad steam engine. During its early mining days, Virginia City had as many as 25,000 residents. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, Virginia City only had 855 residents.
Minden, established in 1906, is a quiet town located in the heart of Carson Valley. It's also the seat of Douglas County. This charming town was named after Minden, Germany and it's a great place to raise a family. Minden has approximately 3,000 residents.
Ely is the county seat of White Pine County. With a population of 4,255 (in 2010,) it's also the largest city within the county. Ely was founded as a stage coach station along the Pony Express and Central Overland Route, and its mining boom came in 1906--with the discovery of copper. Ely is home to the Nevada Railroad Museum and it's also located near the Great Basin National Park.
Lovelock, known as the "Banana Belt," was established in 1868 and incorporated in 1917. This charming Nevada town is located about 90 miles east of Reno and is only 2 square miles in size. A major draw in Lovelock is the Lovers Lock Plaza (pictured) near the court house. At Lovers Lock Plaza, couples have the opportunity to symbolize their love by attaching a padlock to an endless chain. Lovelock has approximately 2,400 residents.
Winnemucca is the only incorporated city in Humboldt County, making it also the county seat. This charming Nevada town was named after a local 19th-century Paiute who lived in the area at the time. Winnemucca is home to the Buckaroo Hall of Fame and Heritage Museum. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, Winnemucca had a population of 7,396.
In 1899, Gardnerville, which is located south of Genoa, became a center of commerce in the Carson Valley. In 1918, several Basques opened inns that flourished during the Prohibition, and Basque dining is still popular in Gardnerville today. Gardnerville's Main Street offers many shops, hotels and saloons. This charming Nevada town continues to serve the needs of its residents, ranchers, businessmen and travelers, and it has approximately 6,000 residents.
Eureka is the largest community in Eureka County, and it's also the county seat. Attractions in Eureka include the Eureka Opera House, Raine's Market and Wildlife Museum, the Jackson House Hotel and the Eureka Sentinel Museum. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, Eureka had 610 residents.
Located halfway between Las Vegas and Reno, you'll find the charming town of Tonopah. Tonopah offers many historic shops for its visitors and locals. Some of the main attractions in Tonopah include the Historic Mining Park, Central Nevada Museum, and the famous Clown Motel. Tonopah has approximately 2,500 residents.
Founded in 1901, Caliente, formerly known as Culverwell and Calientes, is located in Lincoln County. The town's name originated from the nearby hot springs. (After all, "Caliente" is the Spanish word for "hot.") Caliente once had more than 5,000 residents, but according to the 2010 U.S. Census, it only had 1,130 residents.
Have you been to any of these towns? Are you currently a resident of one? Let me know in the comments below!