Reno’s tagline of “The Biggest Little City in the World” is spot on! We landed in this town for a day and stayed the night on the way to Lake Tahoe December of 2020. Reno is tricky because you walk in thinking it’s a small town, and then big city smacks you in the face!
How was Reno in the middle of a pandemic? Fairly empty! It looks futuristic with neon lights and flashy Vegas style buildings, and the emptiness added to the dystopian future look. Dystopian future is how I would describe 2020.
We didn’t get to do every thing, but if you have one day in Reno, here is what we would suggest:
The Riverwalk District
Unfortunately, the Riverwalk District entrance was closed for the season when we got there. There is a sidewalk you can enter into that was gated off, but you can still walk around the bridge. We did have a great time watching the ducks on the river! If you are in Reno during the summer, take a gander on the river!
The Basecamp Climbing Gym
There is a rock climbing wall on the side of a building outdoors! What a clever way to use a building wall! If you want to climb a wall with the city behind you, this is one to try!
Take a mural walk!
Reno is the closest big city next to Burning Man, so there are a lot of artistic influences here. If you’re a paint fanatic, this is the place to be! There were murals everywhere you look, but we took the following photos around S. Virginia St. and W. Taylor St.
Visit the costume shops!
There were a few interesting costume shops in Reno. I can only guess that this is where burners pick up costumes before the burn or drop off costumes after! We were only able to check out 2 costume shops, but the Junkee Clothing Exchange & Antique was memorable! Their decor is fun and unique!
Take a walk down the casinos!
By night time, it’s best to check out the casinos and be amazed at this mini-Vegas! If you gamble, why not take a chance? We were amazed by this Starbucks building! Reno is a crazy combo of old and new! It’s very difficult to describe!
Take a pic of the Reno arch!
During the pandemic, there was barely anyone around, making this a breeze! You just had to wait until traffic has died down, set your camera on the ground, hit the 10 second timer, run, and pose!
Restaurants are open in Reno during the pandemic. Nevada just wants you to make reservations first! Cafe Whitney was my favorite, and they are open late! Make sure to order the Karaage Chicken and take advantage of that dipping sauce!
So maybe I had the wrong impression of Reno before I came to visit. I was bewildered by all of it’s “big-city” vibe, and it made me wonder if this is a real phenomenon to people who are new here! Whatever it is, I would be down to come back to this “hole-in-the-wall” city for an art respite, again!