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Yosemite travel plan from San Francisco

Memphis, Tennessee
4 posts
Yosemite travel plan from San Francisco

We will be traveling to the Yosemite area from San Francisco on Tuesday, July 3rd. I hope to leave SF by 8:00 or so in the morning. We will be staying one night at Yosemite View Lodge in El Portal. On Wednesday, July 4th, we would like to be back in SF to see fireworks that evening. While in Yosemite, we would like to go to the Mariposa Grove and do a short hike. We would also like to drive to Glacier Point and then see all the other major landmarks in Yosemite near the valley. We might like to do a couple of short hikes, like the walk to the lower Yosemite Falls but nothing major. Since we don't really have alot of time in Yosemite and I know its going to be crowded, what order should we see these things so that we aren't wasting alot of time driving back and forth?

2 replies to this topic
Washington State
Destination Expert
for Yosemite National Park
Level Contributor
70,724 posts
123 reviews
1. Re: Yosemite travel plan from San Francisco

Hmmm. Busy holiday, limited time. Hmmmm.

Maybe head to Mariposa Grove first. Stop in Oakhurst for a picnic lunch. I don't know how crowded the new Mariposa Grove parking is going to be as it is not even open yet. Expect some delays.

Then head north on Wawona Road and try to go to Glacier Point. Again, holiday + daytime will make this tough. You may need to wait until the traffic ranger says there is enough room at the Glacier Point parking lot for you to fit. Consider stopping at the Sentinel Dome shortcut parking, if you are able to hike. Then drive on to Glacier Point.

By this point, it's close to the end of the day. Drive down Glacier Point Road and head toward the Valley. Expect traffic. Maybe stop at Tunnel View for an end of the day view. Parking will be on your right after the tunnel. Continue down, go into the Valley just a bit, and immediately exit via Southside Drive to El Portal.

On the 4th, head into Yosemite Valley very early in the morning. Visit Tunnel View now, even if you visited the previous day. Stop at Bridalveil Fall. Then drive to Yosemite Falls parking (not another lot ... that one.) Use the free shuttle to get around. Expect crowds. Return to your car and exit (that parking lot is the easiest to exit.)

Open the full TripAdvisor website and look at the Top Questions on the right. Look at the maps. Read Trip Reports. Read former TripLists. Read about Glacier Point & Sentinel Dome. Read about Yosemite Valley.

San Francisco, Ca
Level Contributor
21,215 posts
76 reviews
2. Re: Yosemite travel plan from San Francisco

>>On Wednesday, July 4th, we would like to be back in SF to see fireworks that evening.<<

Considering the possibility (likelihood?) that the SF fireworks will be at least partially obscured by fog, I'd think about spending another night in Yosemite (if you can find a room). It would be really disappointing to rush back from Yosemite only to see a display of colored fog...

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