Saturday, February 4, 2023

Best Hotel To Stay In Yosemite

Yosemite Valley In Winter

Yosemite HOTELS – Camping, Glamping and Lodging in the Yosemite Valley

Yosemite Valley stretches between some of the most famous and opulent granite mountains in the world, and is home to many picturesque waterfalls. Driving in Yosemite Valley is a 7 mile one-way loop that takes you past lots of viewpoints, waterfalls, and tiny villages and camping areas.

If you are entering Yosemite Valley from the north you will drive about 30-45 minutes from the entrance to get to Yosemite Valley. Once you enter the one-way loop, you will first want to make a right turn and drive up the hill to take in the most famous and easily acessible view of the Valley: Tunnel View.

These Yosemite winter points of interest are listed in order around the one-way loop circuit. You can always split them up or do them a bit differently!

Tunnel View Viewpoint

This view will be the first of many times your breath is swept away! If its your first trip to Yosemite as it was mine, and if you have been dreaming of visiting for quite some time, this view might make you feel some type of way .

Tunnel View is the classic Yosemite viewpoint and will visually set out for you the drive you are about to take. You can see all the way down the valley, from El Capitan and Bridalveil waterfall all the way back to Half Dome. This is the classic photo spot as well, but if you are visiting Yosemite National Park in winter you might be spared of the millions of tour busses crowding the area! We even had it all to ourselves a few times.

Bridalveil Falls Viewing Point

Cathedral Beach

Apartments In Yosemite West

Another perfect place to stay in Yosemite is in one of the private apartments in Yosemite West, a few minutes from the valley. The prices of these villas and apartments in Yosemite are usually high, but if youre traveling in a group, it can be an exciting option.

Some of the best are:

If none of the above hotels are available for your dates, I recommend taking a look at the following best places to sleep near Yosemite.

Mariposa Coolest Place To Stay Near Yosemite

Surrounding the Merced River, Mariposa is another great destination for getting to know the locals! The accommodation here is well priced too, and you get to stay only a short drive from the entrance to Yosemite National Park. Mariposa has an understated charm that is infectious from the minute you set foot in the town.

The Merced River is the main hive of activity in the area, so make sure to check out the various activities on offer! In the summer, you will find some interesting markets and art stalls around the town centre. Mariposa is a little creative haven just outside a beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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Romantic Escape In El Portal: Clouds Rest Cabin

Just outside of El Portal is Clouds Rest a stunning area of natural beauty with jaw-dropping views towards Yosemite Valley. This one-bedroom cabin appears out of nowhere in a clearing, giving it an old-timey romance kind of vibe. Cosy up by the fire in winter, or head out on an adventurous hike to Yosemite Valley in the summer.

Hotels Near Yosemite South Entrance

Majestic Yosemite Hotel, formerly Ahwahnee Hotel. This AAA ...

If you visit Yosemite from Los Angeles or Las Vegas , youll enter through the South Entrance. This entrance is further from the valley, but its best if you want to visit Mariposa Grove.

In addition, its a fascinating place to stay in Yosemite, as there are many accommodation options, especially in the towns of Fish Camp and Oakhurst. These are some of the best quality hotels:

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Gorgeous Hotel In Yosemite Valley: Yosemite Valley Lodge

Yosemite Valley Lodge is one of the most popular hotels in the region and with a location this great, its easy to see why! Their on-site restaurant offers locally sourced cuisine, and the bar has an excellent wine menu. Active traveller? They offer complimentary bike hire for guests, and there are three hiking trails nearby. This is our top pick for those that want the convenience of a hotel.

Yosemites Arch Rock Entrance

The iconic Arch Rock Entrance makes for one of the most dramatic entrances to the park, through a precariously balanced rock arch that feels like a portal to a mysterious valley. Its the closest entrance to the Yosemite Valley and all of its amenities, like Curry Village, the Ahwahnee, the Visitors Center, several campgrounds and trailhead entrances, and many of the best views in the park. Many visitors choose to stay in this area as it has the most amenities and the El Portal gate leads directly into the Yosemite Valley.

Entering the park through Arch Rock will take you along the clear, glacial waters of the Merced River before meeting up with the main loop inside Yosemite Valley. The short, scenic drive means you can hit the most popular trails before the crowds arrive.

Outside the El Portal/Arch Rock entrance are several small towns. The largest town on this side is . It has a small western town downtown area with some souvenir shops as well as a few restaurants and bars, though most close by 9 or 10 pm.

Here are a few yummy spots to eat and drink in Mariposa worth a stop:

  • Head to Sugar Pine Cafe for breakfast or brunch. This classic little diner serves up comfort food like fluffy biscuits and sausage gravy, cheese grits, and buttermilk pancakes. Plus, you can get a Root Beer Float or a Malt and pretend its the 50s. Its perfect for pre-activity fueling .
  • Thirsty? After dinner, stop by The Alley Lounge to try a few of the 16 rotating craft beers on tap. Yum.
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    Yosemite Via 140 And Mariposa/midpines/el Portal: Arch Rock Entrance

    The closest park entry to the Yosemite Valley, the Arch Rock entrance welcomes visitors coming from all directions. The town of Mariposa is the first indication of your arrival near Yosemite and the most developed, but a beautiful, winding road along the Merced River keeps you company through the tiny towns and hamlets of Midpines and El Portal before you arrive. You can get gas along the road between Mariposa and the park, but not much else.

    The Merced River Recreation Area and Briceburg Bridge area is a worthwhile stop for a quick swim or picnic in summer and offers a sense of the power of the river that carved the valley in winter. For a longer detour, head down Briceburg Road and pull over for views and swimming holes. Zephyr Whitewater Exhibitions offers Merced River trips on this side of the park if you arent in a rush to get to the valley. Highway 140 winds its way slowly to this main park entrance, and varied lodging opportunities give you the experience you seek.

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    Yosemite 5 Best Places To Stay

    Yosemite is one of the most diverse national parks in the country, so it makes sense that the towns and villages nearby are just as diverse in what they offer. Keep reading to learn about the five best places to stay in Yosemite, our top accommodation picks for each, and some unforgettable activities to try out on your trip.

    Big Oak Flat Entrance

    Driving from the Bay Area? Big Oak Flat is your entrance. Go east on I-580, I-205, and Highway 120 via Manteca, California to Groveland. Hang your hat in this small town and visit Iron Door Saloon, Californias oldest continuously operating saloonâcirca 1852. Big Oak Flat Entrance is open year-round and just 30 minutes from town. From here, youre close to Tuolumne River whitewater expeditions, hiking, biking, horseback riding, and golfing.

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    Where To Stay In Yosemite National Park In Winter: Rush Creek Lodge 100%

    Before I get to the best things to do in Yosemite in winter, I just have to tell you about the absolute dream of a lodge I stayed at, Rush Creek Lodge. I researched quite a few Yosemite winter lodging options before going, and this one really caught my interest. Rush Creek provides more of an experience than just a stay, and really includes all the different aspects you could possibly want in Yosemite national park accommodation.

    Its far more affordable in the winter months, too from less than $200/night to less than $130 ! This is truly a steal as it goes up to over $400 in the summer. Get the experience while you can!

    Gathered around a central pool and spa area, Rush Creeks spacious rooms and buildings all have the cozy feel of a remote log cabin high in the mountains, maybe with a fire going and a warm cup of tea. Our room had a furnace that we burned each night to warm ourselves up after a long day of hiking! It was awesome for a crisp winter day in Yosemite.

    Review: Rush Creek Lodge At Yosemite National Park

    Best Places to Stay in Yosemite

    Out of all the options on our list, we have one favorite option that we highly recommend: Rush Creek Lodge near the Big Oak Flat entrance of Yosemite National Park, on the west side. Weve included a full review below.

    Rush Creek Lodge is located a hop, skip and a jump away from the entrance of Yosemite National Park. Its literally like a 5 minute drive from the entrance on Highway 120. Which means its pretty much the closest you can get to the park without actually staying INSIDE Yosemite. Weve done both, for what its worth. We still recommend Rush Creek Lodge. Just sayin.

    The lodge itself is actually brand new, and is the first lodge near Yosemite to open in over 25 years. Its also a sister property to the older and more established Evergreen Lodge.

    Rush Creek Lodge has the aesthetic of every lodge Ive ever loved: everything is wood, pine, burlap, and plaid. There are mirrors in decorative wood slice frames. There is wood trim on EVERYTHING, which makes the entire lodge just smell like wood and Christmas and forest and heaven.

    During our visit in December, the lodge was decorated like a lumberjack Christmas playland. The grounds were decorated with twinkling Christmas lights and giant hanging wooden carved snowflakes.

    It made me want to wear flannel and skip around chopping down trees and hugging stumps, or whatever lumberjacks do. FWIW, I did not chop down any trees during our time at Rush Creek Lodge, but I did wear a LOT of flannel.

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    Best Times To Go Yosemite National Park

    Springtime is when many people visit Yosemite so it makes sense to go during spring or fall if you have time constraints. Summer brings crowds and heat which may make some activities difficult.

    Winter is great for skiing and other winter sports but not everyone wants to brave freezing temperatures. The best time to visit Yosemite depends entirely on what you plan to do.

    If you want to see waterfalls then summer would be your best bet since they tend to flow better in warmer months. However, if you prefer hiking trails and wildlife viewing then autumn might be the perfect time to travel.

    If you like camping then late September through October will give you plenty of opportunities to pitch a tent without worrying about rain.

    Jamestown For Budget Travelers

    As Yosemite is a very popular place to visit, accommodation prices can be very high. Jamestown is a very good alternative for those who are traveling on a budget. You will be able to find reasonably cheaper places to stay here. From Jamestown to the South Entrance, it will take about a 2 hours drive, but when you compare the accommodation prices with nearby Yosemite towns and Jamestown, you will see that it is worth the extra drive, and the road view is beautifully scenic too!

    In 1897 Jamestown became popular with the discovery of the first gold in the county. It is an interesting historic town which is also great for families. There are many preserved buildings and historical sites devoted to steam trains where you can have a fun time with kids discovering these attractions. Of course, outdoor activities such as hiking and fishing are available too.

    Jamestown is very ideal for budget travelers who would like to enjoy the comfort of town with a good value of money and still be able to access beautiful nature.

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    Hotels Near Tioga Pass Entrance

    The Tioga Road is only open during the summer months and shortens the way from Death Valley to Yosemite Valley.

    We had the opportunity to go through it at the end of August, and it was one of those places that surprised me the most during our 10-day West Coast trip. In summer, its a magical place away from the masses of tourists in the valley. Wildlife also abounds here, so if you want to increase your chances of seeing wildlife, such as bears in Yosemite, its probably your best option.

    Where to sleep near Yosemite National Park

    My suggestion is to stay at Lee Vining, , or Mammoth Lakes, close to the east entrance of Tioga Pass. These are some of the best accommodations near Yosemite Tioga Pass:

    Lodging Options At Yosemite National Park

    Best Western Plus Yosemite Gateway Inn Hotel in Oakhurst California *Close to Yosemite & Bass Lake*

    Looking for a place to stay in Yosemite National Park? There are tons of options when it comes to lodging and Yosemite reservations. Read more…

    From tent cabins to renting a vacation home to staying in a luxury lodge, youre bound to be comfortable and at ease during your visit to the park. The Ahwahnee , for example, is a stunning building with granite facade, log-beamed ceilings and rich Native American artwork strewn about the hotel. Built-in 1927 near the base of Half Dome and Glacier Point, The Ahwahnee is a National Historic Landmark and one of the most distinctive resort hotels in North America.Other Yosemite lodging includes Cedar Lodge which offers private beach access on the Merced River, Curry Village where visitors have the option of sleeping in a tent cabin, and Yosemite Valley Lodge , a rustic lodge just a short walk away from the Yosemite Falls. Consider your budget, party size, the kind of view you want and what in Yosemite youd like to be closest to–youre sure to find something that offers you everything you want for a price you can feel comfortable with.

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    Yosemite National Park At

    Heres a bite-sized snapshot of everything you need to know to plan your trip!

    • When to Go: Summer is most popular, and most crowded. Visit during fall and winter to see a quieter side of Yosemite!
    • Where to Stay:Rush Creek Lodge is our recommendation for where to stay near Yosemite National Park, just minutes from the Big Oak Flat entrance.
    • How to Get Around: You can get to and around Yosemite on public transit, but we recommend having your own car . Use Kayak to snag rental car deals.
    • Top 3 Highlights: When its warm, watching the sunset at Glacier Point, hiking around the perimeter of Yosemite Valley, and taking a dip in Mirror Lake this guide has more. When its snowy, ice skating in Curry Village, snow shoeing, and the Bracebridge dinner visit our Yosemite in winter guide for more.This tour is an excellent introduction to Yosemite, and this tour hits all the major landmarks and departs from El Portal or Oakhurst.
    • Before You Go: Book your accommodation well in advance our where to stay in Yosemite guide will help. We also recommend picking up a Annual Parks Pass. And if youre low-key morbid, read this book on Deaths in Yosemite to know what NOT to do during your trip!

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    Reserving Hotels In Yosemite And In All National Parks For That Matter Is Tricky The Land In The Park Is Protected Which Means It Is Not A Place A Four Seasons Can Pop Up Overnight

    The accommodations properties that are in the park are already grandfathered in, and its hard to convince a national park system to destroy land for more hotel rooms. So what high-end hotels do you choose when booking your luxury tour to Yosemite? How do you know what hotels are decent and which are not?

    Begin with convenience and quality, namely the famous property which is closest to the action:

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    Things To See And Do In Mariposa


    • Enjoy a cup of locally roasted coffee while interacting with live farm animals in this unique experience just outside Mariposa.
    • Learn a little about local history while harking back to the Gold Rush era in this fun gold panning and sifting experience down by the river.
    • The Merced River is the main hive of activity swimming is popular in summer, and you can hire kayaks and whitewater rafts.
    • Castillos Mexican Restaurant offers the best tacos you will taste in the entire region totally worth the drive even if you arent staying in Mariposa.
    • Want to mingle with locals? Head down to Sugar Pine Café, a popular meeting spot that serves alcohol in the evenings.

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