Explore Yosemite National Park

A paradise located in the heart of California, Yosemite National Park is one of the most popular places in the US. Its majestic landscapes and breathtaking scenery will compel anyone to keep exploring every mountain, bend, and trail that this park has to offer. If you want to lose yourself in the awestruck beauty of valleys and mountains, Yosemite is the place for you. With a number of trails to bike and hike, towering mountains to scale, and stunning campgrounds to relax in, it’s the perfect playground for outdoor enthusiasts. Here’s your brief guide to unending attractions and activities at the park.

Must-See Sights in Yosemite Park

Sprawled across 747,956 acres, Yosemite offers plenty of attractions to bask in. And if you have the luxury of time, you can make it a multi-day trip to make sure you visit everything that the park offers. But if you want to make the most of your time, here are some spots in Yosemite that you simply cannot miss!

Half Dome

Towering at nearly 9000 feet above sea level, the Half Dome is a favorite among climbers and hikers and offers some of the most spectacular views you will ever come across. You can also appreciate the enormity of Half Dome’s wall from Tunnel View. But the best spot to admire this beauty is from Glacier Point since you get to see how it reveals from the valley and the ways its height makes it stand out from the rest of the neighboring mountains. If you’re interested in climbing this summit, you should know that this is not your usual average hike. You can either secure permits to scale the granite dome or opt for traversing the wilderness trail hike where you might just spot some Stellar’s Jays and black bears!

Collect this limited edition fine art print of Half Dome. Click on the photo above.

Yosemite Falls

This renowned cascading waterfall is actually made of three different falls — the Upper Yosemite Fall, Lower Yosemite Fall, and Middle Yosemite Fall — that come together to form the majestic Yosemite Falls. The awe-inspiring view of the waterfalls just seems to get better and better from different angles, so you can simply spend your day just looking at the falls from different spots! The best part is you don’t even have to exert any effort to admire it. There’s a short one-mile loop (wheelchair-accessible) to reach the foot of the Lower Yosemite Fall, or you can opt for the seven-mile trail overlooking the Yosemite Valley for a view that will make you catch your breath!

El Capitan

This massive granite mountain is a legendary conquest for all climbers. The El Capitan is a 3,000-foot rock face that’s considered one of the most iconic rock formations. El Capitan had a significant popular boost in June 2017 after Alex Honnold’s free solo climb. The story of Hoonold’s three hours and 56 minutes ascent without any ropes or assistance led to Free Solo, an Academy Award-winning documentary. Spring would be the ideal time to visit this spot if you want to catch an otherworldly scene of the mountain enveloped in a lush green meadow.

Glacier Point

A must-see when visiting Yosemite National Park, Glacier Point stands more than 7,000 feet tall and provides you a bird’s eye view of Yosemite Valley from different vantage points.
This stunning overlook is also the starting point for a number of activities including hiking trails, skiing, snowboarding, and bird watching. From Yosemite Village, you have to drive one hour to reach Glacier Point, and there are mini hiking trails that you can venture on while in the area.

Yosemite Museum and Indian Village

Apart from being a haven for natural wonders, Yosemite National Park also offers a rich history. Spending the day in the Yosemite Museum and Indian Village can be an eye-opening experience where you can witness various artifacts. You will also see some bark-covered homes built as per the traditional style of the Miwok people. There are also docents on site who can guide you around and answer any questions you may have. What’s best is you can explore this area for free, and it is accessible from the Yosemite Village.

Where to Stay in Yosemite National Park

If you are planning on staying for several days in Yosemite, you’re in luck — there are numerous beautiful Yosemite national park lodging options to choose from. The area has a wide selection of luxury hotels, budget-friendly accommodations, and campgrounds.

Ahwahnee Hotel

Previously known as the Majestic Yosemite Hotel, the Ahwahnee is a man-made luxury accommodation and is an attraction in its own right, thanks to its impressive architecture and ambiance. The hotel offers can gorgeous views of Yosemite Falls, Half Dome, and Glacier Point.

Yosemite Valley Lodge

Closest to the Yosemite Falls, the Yosemite Valley Lodge is perfect for families, outdoor enthusiasts, and tourists who appreciate a rustic experience in a classic American lodge.  The price and location are two of the main reasons why this place is popular among tourists.

Curry Village

With its trademark rows of tent cabins, Curry Village is another option you can consider when staying in Mariposa County. Apart from the relaxed accommodations, you can rent bikes and rafts to explore the area around.

AutoCamp Yosemite

For a genuine outdoor experience, book your stay at AutoCamp Yosemite. Camping in Yosemite with luxury canvas tents can make you feel closer to the natural beauty around you.  Tucked 30 minutes away from the park’s entrance, this is a dream accommodation for many!

Where to Eat in Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park is not just for outdoor enthusiasts; it also provides the perfect setting for foodies looking for a gastronomical experience. There are dining areas inside and outside the park — whatever suits your mood for the day.

Inside the Yosemite National Park

If you like an elegant dining setting, visit the Majestic Yosemite Hotel to sample their menu favorites of Roasted Rack of Lamb Provencal with Roasted Cauliflower Mash, Glazed Carrots, and Lamb Jus. After an adrenaline-filled day, enjoy the Mountain Room at Yosemite Valley Lodge’s pasta, seafood, and steak while basking in the natural backdrop. With a Victorian vibe, the outdoor veranda and eating area of Big Trees Lodge Dining Room sets the mood for some hearty meals to fuel you for the day.

Outside the Yosemite National Park

There’s always room for pizza and sandwiches, and the meals offered at Mariposa Take ‘N’ Bake are perfect if you want to have some takeaway to enjoy at your cottage or campsite later. Offering good food and an equally great view, the Blue Heron is another restaurant worth visiting in Yosemite National Park. Enjoy the live bands and free concerts during summers — a chilled way to end your day.

Final Thoughts

Yosemite National Park is a destination that needs to be included on everyone’s bucket list. Every day can be a new adventure here, with each peak a memorable conquest.


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