Overview: Yosemite National Park is one of the most popular parks in America, visited by more than 3.5 million tourists every year who experience the beautiful scenery, waterfalls and steep cliffs of this place. Although the park stretches over a vast area of 1,189 square miles, the most popular stretch of tourists is the 7 square miles of Yosemite Valley. The park is extremely famous for climbers on the 3500-foot vertical granite wall of El Capitan. The park has a lot to offer, including rafting on the Merced River, hiking, professional photography, cycling, horseback riding, skiing and snowmobiling at Badger Pass and camping. Yosemite National Park is located about 200 miles east of San Francisco (SFO), about 3 to 4 hours by car.
Yosemite Valley is located in the central part of the High Sierra and is a visited section of the park. The Yosemite Valley begins to experience most visitors from early spring to early summer (February to May) as the waterfalls are in full intensity. Summer time is June to September, overcrowded, especially on weekends, since during the summer school holidays are moving and many parents bring their children during this time. The entrance fee to the park is $ 20 per car, valid for 7 days. You have the ability to move around, but to maintain the natural beauty of the park and keep its area free of pollution, the park uses free shuttles to most popular places. High traffic is common, especially at the entrance, but it's worth seeing the beauty that lies ahead. The Yosemite Valley is the only place in Yosemite where you can buy food inside the park. Although all major roads are maintained well plowed during the snowy season, the National Park Service requires drivers of private vehicles to wear tire chains. Below are some useful phone numbers
For general information about the park, current weather and travel conditions, call: 209-372-0200 (Recorded Information). In the summer, trail information is available at: 209-372-0308, Accommodation reservations: 559-252-4848, Camping reservations: 518-885-3639
Reaching the Yosemite Valley: Along the road Take the Oakland Bay Bridge to Highway 80 East, take Highway 580 East and follow Tracey / Stockton signboards to Highway 20, Highway 205 to Highway 120, and Yosemite National Park. It takes about an hour from the entrance of the park to the valley and village of Yosemite.
AMTRAK operates San Diego, Los Angeles, Fresno, San Jose, San Francisco and Sacramento to and from Merced / Riverbank and connects with VIA bus services for direct service to the Yosemite Valley. Call 800-872-7245 for more information.
Point Point Glacier: Road Glacier Point is about 30 miles by car from the Visitor Center. It opens in late May and closes in November. This time offers one of the most spectacular views from the elevation. People make short stops, take photos and walk.
Thioga Pass: The Tioga Pass is about 9,950 feet high and offers incredible views of the park. It is only available in the summer around June-July, as the area is high in the altitude and rains heavily in winter. You can also see some beautiful wildflowers and redwoods.
Mariposa Grove: Mariposa Forest is the largest forest of giant redwoods in Yosemite. The largest tree, the Grizzly Giant, is about 1800 years old.
Semi-Fulfilled: Half Dome is a granite dome in Yosemite National Park, located at the eastern end of the Yosemite Valley, probably Yosemite's most famous sight. The granite ridge rises over 4,737 feet above the valley floor.
Useful websites for information about Yosemite National Park are: http://www.travelandtourisminfo.com, nps.gov/yose/, yosemite.org
Beware: Yosemite has a large population of black bears living in Yosemite and it is recommended that the food be packaged so that the bears cannot smell. Mountain lions are sometimes noticed. Fill the gas tank with gas before entering the park as it is expensive inside the park and only available in the distance. Accommodation is available, but expensive if made at the last minute, so book in advance and shop. If you want budget accommodation, you can always stay a few miles from the park.