During our Californian road trip it felt like everywhere we visited was building up to our visit to Yosemite National Park. When we finally arrived Yosemite was very impressive, it was by far the highlight of our California road trip! From the moment we arrived in the Yosemite area the whole experience felt surreal, there was outstanding beauty at every corner and striking backdrops all around. I couldn’t help myself, I took hundreds of pictures over the two days and nights, but everywhere is postcard perfect so it would have been rude not to!
To get to Yosemite we drove for around 4 hours from Santa Cruz to where we were staying Tenaya Lodge in Fish Camp, Yosemite – with a couple of stops in let’s say some interesting neighbourhoods along the way! We hired a gorgeous BMW 4 series convertible and as I wasn’t driving I used this time to put the roof down, top up my tan and play DJ. Unfortunately it wasn’t a particularly picturesque drive but as we got closer to Yosemite this changed as we started to climb in height and drive very close to the edge of the mountains. I’m not a great passenger at the best of times so this was quite a stressful part of the drive for me. Even though I was nervous of the drive I was so excited to get checked in to our lodge & visit Yosemite National Park the next day.
When visiting Yosemite it’s quite common to camp or hire RV’s to sleep in overnight, this isn’t something we considered for this trip and we booked into Tenaya Lodge. Accomodation in Yosemite gets booked up very quickly and by the time we booked there were only around 3 or 4 places that we chose from. Tenaya is located in Fish Camp, and although it’s still quite a drive to the entrance of Yosemite itself it was an impressive lodge and had everything we were looking for as well as indoor spa and an outdoor swimming pool. It certainly wasn’t cheap at just under $800 for 2 nights but we both really enjoyed the whole experience of staying in a lodge and if we went back to Yosemite we would happily stay here again.
On the first night we were both really tired from the long drive and headed to relax in the indoor spa. One tip from a couple we met at the spa was to get up and drive to Yosemite early in the morning as there can be lots of traffic and trouble parking. We got an early night and set off early the next morning. We only had one full day in Yosemite National Park and we wanted to make the most of it! This tip is worth keeping in mind if you do visit Yosemite as we found a parking space easily and started hiking before the crowds arrived.
We started off by hiking the lower Yosemite Falls which is a really popular route & from there we decided to walk to Mirror Lake which was absolutely breathtaking. We also walked through some of the Mist trail which was a lot harder but with some spectacular views. What’s great about Yosemite is there is such a vast amount of trails that suit all levels of fitness and I’m sure you could visit every year and still not seen everything. It was really hard to choose only a selection of my images to share with you – I hope you enjoy them.
My only regret about Yosemite is that we didn’t stay for longer. If you’re planning on visiting the area then my advise would be to stay for at least 3 nights with 2 full days in Yosemite National Park itself. If you do visit please let me know – I’d love to hear about your travels!