Named after Genoa, Italy, but pronounced juh-NO-ah, unlike its Italian namesake, the Nevadan town of Genoa epitomizes the American West. Founded in 1851, Genoa is Nevada’s oldest settlement, and it has the distinction of having had Nevada’s first court, hotel, newspaper, and even its first ‘thirst parlor.’
Like nearby Virginia City, which offers similar wild west charm, Genoa, Nevada has also played host to famous personalities such as Mark Twain. Twain is said to have thrown back a drink in Genoa’s thirst parlor, an establishment which is still in operation today. In more recent times, the town served as the set for the film, Misery.
Shawn and I included Genoa and Lake Tahoe on a day-trip itinerary from Reno. As we took to Genoa’s daffodil-trimmed sidewalks, we saw a motorcyclist in black-leather chaps, classic American roadsters taking a break from meandering along backroads, and locals and visitors enjoying a cool beverage al fresco at the Genoa Bar & Saloon.
Vintage outhouses, wobbly old wagons, and lacy white gables on a flamingo-pink house also caught our eye.
Video of this Experience:
Where in the World?
- Located about 40 miles (70 km.), or an hour south from Reno, Genoa makes a nice day trip. Lake Tahoe is approximately 20 miles (30 km.) east of Genoa. Learn more about Genoa via the town’s website.
- Though I haven’t had the chance to attend Genoa’s annual Candy Dance Art & Crafts Faire, I’ve heard locals say it’s a fun late-September event.
- Looking for more things to do in and around Reno? We’ve also enjoyed exploring the 7,000-year-old petroglyphs at the Grimes Point Archaeological Area, as well as historic Virginia City, and Pyramid Lake.
Photography & text © Tricia A. Mitchell. All Rights Reserved. Video footage is a creation of my husband, Shawn.