Is It Safe To Stay In Hotels
At this time, the CDC states that domestic travel is safe if you are fully vaccinated. While the vaccination rates vary by location, the unvaccinated should continue to take extra precautions.
It is advisable that all travelers continue to follow CDC and local guidelines such as wearing masks, social distancing, and using hand sanitizer.
All of the hotels we included have cleaning and safety protocols in place for guest rooms and public spaces to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
Tips For A Successful Visit To Yosemite
- Plan ahead. Lodging and camping can book up months in advance if you have your sights set on a specific type of accommodation, book as soon as youre able. You may miss your chance if you wait!
- Become an early bird. Hiking, climbing, swimming, drivingall of these activities will become more enjoyable the earlier you get started, before the crowds accumulate.
- Avoid driving between 9am and 5pm. If you need to get around, use the free shuttle service instead. You may not find a parking spot during peak hours.
- The entry fee for 1 vehicle is $35. Cash, credit cards, debit cards, checks, and travelers checks are all accepted.
- Let wildlife be wild. Never feed or approach any wild animals inside the park, ESPECIALLY bears. Although they might not harm you, they may get too comfortable with humans over time, and begin venturing into populated areas more frequently. This will result in the bears being euthanized by park rangers.
Housekeeping Camp: Best Place To Stay In Yosemite For Easy Camping
Housekeeping camp is located along the Merced River, in a lovely spot with stunning views of Yosemite.
The accommodation here is basic but you get a deck and a BBQ pit which means you can cook for yourself.
Make sure you store your food properly and never in the tent or the car as bears will get to it!
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Other Lodging Inside Yosemite Park Boundary To Consider
Housekeeping Camp Similar to glamping, you can stay in three sided concrete rooms with canvas roof in bunk bed style accommodation. On site camp store provides food for you to cook at night and location in the valley is prime time. Great in Summer. More information.
White Wolf Lodge 30 miles from Yosemite Valley, along Tioga road is White Wolf Lodge. 24 canvas tent cabins and 4 traditional cabins open between June and September. More information.
Tuolumne Meadows 60 miles away from the valley and 30 miles further along Tioga road towards Yosemite east entrance is Tuolumne Meadows Lodge. You will find 69 canvas tent cabins open between June and September. More information.
Lodging Options At Yosemite National Park
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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Big Trees Lodge The Best Hotel In Yosemite For Historical Charm
Located 27 miles from Yosemite Valley, close to the stunning Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias, Big Trees Lodge welcomes visitors in a Victorian-era lodge dating back to 1856.
The hotel has facilities such as restaurant , golf course and swimming pool.
In winter it also offers opportunities to go snowshoeing and cross-country skiing in winter.
Wawona is a bit of a drive to the valley, about 45 minutes, but it is lovely and family-friendly.
I stayed here during my first time in Yosemite and felt it was one of the best places to stay in Yosemite with kids: we had 3 in our group and everyone loved it.
Where To Stay Near Yosemite By Park Entrance
Weve selected a few options depending on which entrance you want to be closest to, so you can pick the perfect place to enter the park. Keep in mind that driving in between park entrances in Yosemite can take quite a while so factor in whats close or far from your entrance when figuring out your itinerary!
Although there are a lot of options, if you want to save some time we have a recommendation for what we consider the best place to stay near Yosemite: Rush Creek Lodge, near the Big Flat Oak entrance. Weve included a full review of Rush Creek at the end of this post!
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Lodging On Highway 41
If you’re coming from Los Angeles or the Fresno Yosemite Airport, Highway 41 is the most direct way to enter the park. The town of Fish Camp is just 3 miles from Yosemite’s south entrance and the Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias. However, it’s still about an hour’s drive from the Yosemite Valley, although you’ll have access to a food market, gas station, and some restaurants.
Since Fish Camp is one of the closest towns to Yosemite, there are a variety of lodging options that are much more affordable than sleeping in the valley. Tenaya Lodge is a privately-owned hotel with a main lodge as well as cabins in case you want something more intimate. It’s one of the biggest options in Fish Camp and offers amenities like a spa, fitness center, and restaurants. Tin Lizzie is a quaint bed and breakfast in an old Victorian-style home that’s nestled in the pine trees.
If you want the conveniences of a bigger town, Oakhurst is the biggest city along Highway 41 and just an hour and 30 minutes outside of the valley. It has a major supermarket as well as a number of familiar motel chains, like Best Western and Comfort Inn. The locally-owned Queen’s Inn by the River isn’t just a scenic place to sleep, but also a working winery and beer garden open to the whole community.
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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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 & most crowded. Visit during fall and winter to see a much quieter side of Yosemite!
- Where to Stay:Rush Creek Lodge is our #1 pick 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 browse rental car deals, or rent an RV on RVShare.
- Top 3 Highlights: Watching the sunset at Glacier Point, hiking around the perimeter of Yosemite Valley, and taking a dip in Mirror Lake. This tour is an excellent introduction to Yosemite, and this tour hits all the major landmarks and highlights and departs from El Portal or Oakhurst.
- Before You Go: Be sure to book your day use pass in advance. We also recommend the 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!
Where To Camp In Yosemite Valley
Upper Pines, Lower Pines, and North Pines are all near each other in the park. Each lot in the campgrounds has different requirements as to what is allowed. Some are wheelchair accessible, some can only accommodate smaller RVs/trailors, so check out the link above for more information!
Camp 4 works a bit differently. It has 35 tent-only lots, no showers nearby, is not wheelchair accessible, and is ran on self-registration. Click the link above for more details. If you are looking for bare-minimum and the cheapest when staying in Yosemite, this is your best option.
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Lighter Crowds Are A Breath Of Fresh Air At Yosemite In October
Yosemite is one of the most famous and beloved landscapes in the entire US national park system. And that means it is also one of the most visited.
In 2019 , Yosemite welcomed 4.4 million hikers, photographers and sightseers. Thats 400 thousand more visitors than Yellowstone for perspective.
Almost 1.5 million of those 4.4 million visit Yosemite in peak Summer months of July and August. That is an enormous amount of people vying for campgrounds and nearby lodging, hiking trails, photography locations and parking spots.
Where To Stay Between Sequoia And Yosemite
Here are tips are for those who want to travel to Yosemite from the south , the southeast or the Pacific coast . More specifically, we are speaking to those who want to visit both Yosemite and Sequoia, not only if they are visiting Yosemite in the winter, when Tioga Road is closed, but also during the rest of the year. In all of these scenarios, you will find yourself passing through Yosemiteâs South Gate.
The small community of Fish Camp is a few minutes away from the southern entrance, and very close to the giant sequoias of Yosemite . The famous Tenaya Lodge is a grand hotel with rustic and modern architecture. It offers a full range of services and amenities, including some recreational activities and adventures. If you are looking for a unique experience, I recommend staying at the Tin Lizzie Inn Fish Camp, a charming old-fashioned bed and breakfast with all amenities included.
A little further south, about 30 minutes from the entrance to Yosemite Park, you will find Oakhurst, a town with more hotels and restaurants than Fish Camp. There are more choices for accommodations, but that doesnât mean you can delay booking â the best rooms go very fast.
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Fairytale Chalet In Yosemite West: Storybook Yosemite
Visiting as a large group? This secluded chalet can sleep up to ten people and is well priced, given the capacity. Surrounded by Giant Sequoia Trees, it is a true paradise among the verdant nature of Yosemite National Park. There is a wood stove in the living room for a cosy vibe during the winter, but they also have full gas central heating.
Modern Cabin Near Yosemite Valley: Yosemite Hilltop Cabins
Over in nearby Foresta, these cabins give you gorgeous views of the Yosemite Valley from the top of a hill. This cabin, in particular, has rustic interiors, including a log burner and exposed beams to give you a cosy countryside vibe. It can sleep up to four people with one private bedroom, making it a great budget pick for families.
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Mammoth Lakes Best Area Near Yosemite For Winter Sports
Although there is a small ski area inside the park itself, if you want to combine your Yosemite trip with a proper ski trip, Mammoth Lake is a great option!
Located in the Eastern Sierra with a high altitude of 7,880 feet, Mammoth Mountain is the biggest ski area close to Yosemite!
The ski season is usually from December to April but note that since Mammoth Lakes is east of Yosemite National Park, the closest entrance is closed in winter due to snowy conditions. This means if you are planning to hit the slopes at Mammoth, as well as see the national park, its best to spend a couple of nights in each location due to the fact you will have to take the long way round to enter Yosemite, so you dont have to rush.
You can still enjoy plenty of other activities in Mammoth Lakes in other seasons, as well as the shorter 45-minute drive to Yosemite. Youll find amazing, scenic hiking trails, 75 miles of mountain bike trails, and opportunities for kayaking or SUP on Mono Lake. Get ready to discover wildlife, waterfalls, and hot springs!
|Our Mountain Getaway|
Private Cabins In Yosemite
Redwoods in Yosemite and Yosemite WestYosemite has two areas of private in-holdings where private homes and cabins are rented through centralized reservation services. These are particularly suited to families and extended families who prize being able to cook and entertain. One is called Redwoods in Yosemite, located in the Wawona part of the park. The other is Yosemite West, located near Chinquapin Junction, just off Wawona Road near the start of Glacier Point Road.
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Luxury Home In Yosemite: Forest Park Lane
If youve read some of our other guides, youll know that we love the stylish interiors and exceptional guest service that come with Airbnb Plus properties. Youll have to fork out some extra cash, but its totally worth it to live like a king for a few days. This charming bungalow brings the outside in, creating a calming and serene atmosphere. Wed even go as far as claiming this to be one of the best Airbnbs in Yosemite no matter if youre here for adventure, exploring or relaxing!
Practical Information About Rush Creek Lodge
- Address: 34001 CA-120, Groveland, CA 95321
- Travel Tip: We also recommend this excellent introduction to Yosemite tour which departs from Rush Creek Lodge. Youll be able to leave your car and spend a day in the park getting your bearings and seeing all the top sights in Yosemite Valley, with 5 hours of free time to go on a hike or bike ride or swim in the Merced River.
Where did you decide to stay near Yosemite National Park? Did you book Rush Creek just for the unlimited smores? Drop us a comment below!
Hey, while youre in the San Francisco Bay Area, why not check out some of our other posts?
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Important Note About Weather In Autumn
It gets seriously cold at night in Yosemite Valley during October.
We spent one night in a yurt right outside the park and one night in North Pines campground right in Yosemite Valley, and both nights we were freezing cold.
Average high temperatures in October are around 74 f , down from a significantly warmer 84 f in September. That results in more comfortable hiking conditions throughout the day than Summer, a big plus for Fall.
However, average lows hover around a chilly 38 f in October. So, if you plan to be out exploring early or late, you need to take plenty of warmer gear. More on packing a little later.
Northern Yosemite/tioga Road Area
The White Wolf Lodge, near Lukens Lake, has four traditional cabins with private baths and 24 tent cabins that share baths. The wooden cabins have electricity, propane heat, and maid service. The tent cabins lack these amenities but do have wood stoves they cost around $140/night. All cabins sleep up to four people. There’s also a small restaurant here.
The Tuolumne Meadows Lodge, near Tuolumne Meadows, has about 70 tent cabins, each sleeping up to four people. The tent cabins don’t have electricity or private baths. They cost around $140 per night.
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Bonus: Best Campgrounds And Rv Parks In Yosemite National Park
Of course, after talking a lot about the landscapes, it is not possible to forget camp-lover travelers. There are more than 200 different campsites in Yosemite National Park but here I am going to give information about my 7 top pics. You can have more information about these camps opening seasons, prices, and road conditions at the national parks website.
1. The Pines Campground Near Curry Village, North Pines, Lower Pines, and Upper Pines are a group of campgrounds situated in Yosemite Valley. The site offers perspectives of the famous El Capitan. If you are visiting Yosemite for the first time, it is an ideal decision as this campground has a very nice location!
NOTE: it is critical to make a booking months in advance.
- Upper Pines Campground is the biggest of the three and the only one open all year round. It has 238 camping sites.
- In North Pines, the camping areas are widely spread and more separated, making it calmer than Upper Pines for the most part, plus it has a beautiful riverside view. It is open from March to October, and like many camping areas in Yosemite, you should book your campground around 5 months in advance.
All campgrounds include toilets, washrooms with drinking water, and showers. If you need to buy some food, markets are available in Curry Village.
As many campgrounds can be fully booked months before, this one might be a great alternative with a nice location. Wawona Campground is open year-round but requires reservations from April October.