The USA is renowned for its national parks, where the visitors can discover many natural treasures. One of the most famous parks in California and the entire western region of the USA is Yosemite Park where you can spend endless hours and days. What can you do in Yosemite National Park in one day? If you plan to make a short visit to Yosemite National Park, then this article will help you to organize your visit to the park and enjoy 8+1 wonderful locations.
The total area of the park is 3,026 square kilometres and stands out for granite rocky volumes, meadows, waterfalls, very large trees and biodiversity. In case you do not have annual pass for US national parks the cost is $35 for each car. The park’s entrance is approximately 3 hours and ten minutes from San Francisco (downtown) and 3 hours from Sacramento. You can have access via Highways 41, 120 and 140, but in the winter months it may be necessary to use crawler. The best period to visit Yosemite National Park is from May to early October. The park welcomes every year 4 million visitors and one of its most popular spots is its valley or otherwise Yosemite valley. In the park beyond the camping there are many lodges where you could stay overnight, but it would be a good idea to book your stay early cause of the hight demand.
The valley is 12 kilometres long and is surrounded by tall granite rocks such as Half Dome and El Capitan. In the lush valley visitors can make hiking in signposted trails, barbeque and camping. The main sights of the valley are:
- It offers one of the most famous and impressive views of the valley. From this point you can see the granite Rocks El Capitan and the waterfall Bridalveil with the Half Dome rock lying in the background. To stop at the point and enjoy the view there is a small parking area.
- The height of the waterfall is 620 ft and has continuous flow throughout the year (peak period in May). Bridalveil Fall is one of the first waterfalls the visitor have the oportunity to visit, when entering the valley. No special hiking is required from the parking area to the base of the waterfall (estimated time 7 minutes).El Capitan Meadow
- The meadow offers spectacular views of the El Capitan Rock and superb views of the cliffs of Cathedral rocks. It is one of the best places to stop, both in your entrance to the valley and in your exit from it.
- It is a waterfall of 317 ft and has a continuous flow throughout the year (peak period in May). There is a footpath to the waterfall, the base of which is approximately one hour and at a distance of 2.6 km.
- The lakes have not so much water almost wholly year round except in late summer. When the water is calm they offer terrible reflections of the surrounding rocks. Whether they have water or not is a good opportunity for walking through the forest. The path is 3.2 km and is estimated to be approximately one hour.
It is a waterfall with flow from November to May. It is among the world’s highest waterfalls and consists of three separate levels: Upper Yosemite (1,430 ft), the average waterfall (675 ft) and the Lower Yosemite Fall (320 ft). The waterfall is visible from all over the valley. Taking a 1.6 km path you can find yourself at the base of Lower Yosemite Fall.
Other places of interest when visiting the park
The Yosemite National Park has many other places of interest in which you can make hiking, enjoy the view and admire the nature. The points we distinguish for short stops are:
- If you want to admire huge Sequoias, thousands of years old, then it is the right choice. You won’t find many, about 10, but they are scattered in the woods composing an amazing backdrop. To get to the point where these wonderful trees are located, you have to walk 4 kilometres in total with a total time of 1.5 hours due mainly to the altitude difference of the path. At the beginning of the path there is parking area and public toilets.
Olmsted View Point
- It is on the 120 motorway (known as Tioga Road) and offers breathtaking views of the Tenaya Gorge. From this point you can see the granite rock Half Dome and take very nice photos on granite surfaces safely. Parking is available.
- It is a lake at a height of 2,484 meters with astonishing views and amazing reflections. Parking is available very close to the lake.
Yosemite National Park is definitely a unique destination that you should not miss. If you have only one day to spend in the park, here are 8 + 1 places that you should not miss. All these points of interest will be found on the map, but if you want extra tip or you wish to see our itinerary, please contact us.