See all the best parts of one of the most celebrated national parks in the US on one day on the Yosemite Park & Giant Sequoias Tour from San Francisco.
This excellent tour maximizes the time you spend in Yosemite National Park by starting early and traveling efficiently in a 15 passenger van or mini-bus. At the start of the day you will be picked up from your downtown San Francisco or Fisherman’s Wharf hotel by your driver/ guide.
By 7:40am you will be leaving town and travelling east. You will see the two Dutch windmills of Golden Gate Park before you descend into the San Joaquin valley and stop for a short break and a snack (payable direct).
Around 9:15am you will be on your way again. Begin the climb into the foothills and travel through Gold Country, famed for the mineral deposits and gold mines which attracted waves of immigrants during the 1849 Gold Rush. You ascend gradually into the Sierra Nevada range and arrive at Yosemite National Park around 11:00am.
Designated a World Heritage Site in 1984, Yosemite is internationally recognized for its towering granite cliffs, waterfalls, clear streams, giant sequoia groves, and rich fauna and flora. The most famous part of the national park is the awesome U-shaped Yosemite Valley, approximately 1mile wide and 7miles long and carved by vast glaciers around 1 million years ago.
From 11:00am to 1:00pm you will discover the enchantment of Yosemite during an informative narrated tour from your guide. This will include a mini-hike and plenty of photo- opportunities. You will see the park’s famous cascades such as Bridalveil Falls (620 ft, 191 m) and the stunning Yosemite Falls, the highest measured waterfall in North America (2,420 ft, 745 m).
You will also see Yosemite’s spectacular rock formations like El Capitan, a 3,000-ft (910 m) granite monolith and one of the world's favorite challenges for rock climbers, and Half Dome a granite dome that is possibly Yosemite’s most familiar feature. The crest of the dome rises more than 4,737 ft (1,444 m) above the valley floor.
You will enjoy superb views of the valley from Inspiration Point, located at 4500 ft (1385 m) above sea level.
From 1:00pm to 2:30pm you can visit the gift shops in Yosemite Village, have a relaxing hot meal, or get food ‘to go’ and take a picnic to the middle of the valley, up to the river banks, or to the foot of Yosemite Falls. (Food and drink are not included in the tour price.)
At around 2:30pm you will drive to a point close to one of the giant sequoia groves. The towering sequoias are the largest living things on the planet. They are found in one area of the world only, the western slope of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
Depending on the season and weather conditions you may choose to hike down through the evergreen forest to the giant sequoia grove, a distance of about 2 miles (1 mile each way), or kick back and relax under the pines. (The availability of this hike is dependent on snow levels and trail conditions between 01 October and 30 April.)
At around 4:00pm you will start the return trip, descending from the Sierras, and enjoying more great scenery as you follow the sun to the west. On the way you will stop for a break, a stretch, and a bite to eat (payable direct) before continuing on your way to San Francisco, enjoying views of the sunset over the East Bay hills, or the Peninsula and the city lights.
Sometime between 8:30pm and 9:00pm the Yosemite tour will end at your San Francisco hotel front door.