Reno's Cal Ave.
A fresh batch of craft breweries and sidewalk cafes makes this the biggest little neighborhood in Reno.
Beyond the neon lights and casinos of downtown Reno is a different kind of strip--one lined with indie shops, museums, restaurants, and breweries. Once a quiet pocket of Victorian homes bridging the Truckee River Arts District and Midtown, the Cal Ave neighborhood drew in a flurry of new businesses and residents a few years ago, becoming a district in its own right in 2012. Today, it's the city's hub for all things cool. Spend the day shopping for vinyl, books, and Burning Man-approved accoutrements, and pass the evening sipping cocktails on a rooftop bar--without a slot machine in sight.
8 A.M. Kick off your day at Old World Coffee Lab (old worldcoffee.co) with a nitro draft latte and a seat outdoors on the sidewalk for some people-watching.
8:30 A.M. Belly up to the counter at Peg's Glorified Ham 'n' Eggs (eat atpegs.com), a classic Nevada greasy spoon. Among the favorites: Peg's Glorified Huevos Rancheros, accompanied by warm tortillas and golden hash browns in a large skillet.
9:45 A.M. Head across the street to Sundance Books and Music (sun dancebookstore. com). The book, vinyl, and movie shop is housed inside a 1906 mansion near the Nevada Museum of Art.
10:30 A.M. Draft and build your own architectural designs at The Discovery (nvd m.org), an interactive science museum just outside the neighborhood. The 67,000 square feet of hands-on exhibits and galleries aim to appeal to your inner kid.
12:30 P.M. You've worked up an appetite, so find a table on the street-level patio of The Brewer's Cabinet (thebrewers cabinet.com). Our recommendation? Don't hold back: Pair the housemade tater tots, topped with cheese, bacon, and a fried egg, with one of their craft beers.
2 P.M. Browse Natural Selection (775/376-2282), a curiosity shop that has everything from succulents to preserved animal bones to butterflies.
2:45 P.M. Take a trip for the senses at Salty-Savory-Sweet Spices & Tea (salty-savory-sweet, com), where you can sample a wide variety of fine sugars, spices, herbs, teas, and extracts from around the world.
5 P.M. Time for a cocktail, right? The best seat at Pignic Pub & Patio (775/376-2282) is outside, where happy hour calls for a punch made with rum and fresh juices.
6:30 P.M. Tuck into small plates like bone marrow with chimichurri and queso fresco at Centra Bar & Kitchen (centroreno.com). If another drink is on the agenda, try the fig-muddled Old-Fashioned.
8:00 P.M. Walk off the evening's indulgences with a stroll just a couple of blocks north at the nearby Truckee Riverwalk (visitreno tahoe.com), a scenic path that borders Whitewater Park.
Cal Ave is 3 1/2 miles northwest of the Reno-Tahoe International Airport
Caption: Clockwise from above: Natural Selection; Nevada Museum of Art; bone marrow at Centro Bar & Kitchen. Previous page: Centro.