In a prior visit to Yosemite I stayed at a hotel that was about 20 minutes away from the park. This time I thought it would be cool to camp outside. I arrived to Yosemite via the Wawona entrance and directly went to the visitor's center to see for campground availability. The ranger's recommended Bridalveil Creek which is just off the road as one drives to Glacer Point. Once you have a permit it's first come, first served as to which campsite you get, though honestly there all pretty much the same.
There were two things memorable about camping outside. One was the night sky and seeing the Big Dipper, et al, with a very clear view. It may have helped that Bridalveil is actually a couple thousand feet high. The second thing was that I decided to go without a tent, and so as I slept I wondered whether or not a bear would visit. Next time I think I will bring a tent, as there were times when I thought I heard nearby footsteps!
only one thing what was strange.
we had breakfastbuffet and had to pay different prices. it depended how much you ate.
the prices of the rooms we dont know because we paid a package.
Lodging inside Yosemite National Park can be very expensive. We decided to stay in Mariposa, which is located about 45 miles to the west of Yosemite. The Comfort Inn was a nice quiet motel with a pool and spa.
Unless you must have running water and a real bathroom, I highly suggest skipping the campground in Yosemite Valley. They use to be nicer, but with the closing of some of the campgrounds after the big flood, they have crammed more and more people and campsites into smaller and less desirable areas. Get a wilderness permit and go up to Little Yosemite Valley or up Tuolumne meadows area. Out of the Valley you can pretty much camp anywhere as long as you are 100 ft away from water and preferrably at a fire ring. You are really "roughing it" and it will be a more memorable experience.
Despite being just outside the park an thus requirring a long trek to and from the hotel, this is a wonderful hotel, with the right ambience for its location, and very relaxed style. Costly but worth it.
Great Web Site.
Nice location in Mammoth Lakes if the Tioga road is open and you travel from Yosemite to Death Valley.
Nice overnight stop coming from Yosemite and going to Lake Tahoe/Reno or Death Valley/Las Vegas.
Also nice place for skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling, dogsledding, snowshoeing, sleigh rides, ice skating in winter.
Inside the valley are a few lodges in which one has the possibility to stay at night in the natural beauty of the surrounding mountains. Varieting from luxery to more motel-like lodges. The grey walls on either side have a special spooky effect in the moonshine. From here there are also many possibilities to go hiking inside the Park bounderies. Then taking a simple tent is the perfect solution.
There are a few $$$ to $$$$$ lodges within Yosemite Valley, but also a tent cabin ground ($$) and the usual campgrounds. Book all of them in advance! Tuolumne Meadows has a campground, too - and there are motels in Lee Vining which, over the past years, has developed its touristic potential.
We rented a condo for the long weekend in the town of Strawberry, about 40 minutes outside of the park. This was a good way to go, and Strawberry is a quaint, very OLD town (by California standards).
Home to the oldest drinking establishment in California! They have country western bands play each night in the bar, and the restaurant is quite good (upscale California cuisine).
There are thirteen campgrounds in Yosemite National Park. Camping reservations for up to seven of these campgrounds are available five months in advance. Wawona, Hodgdon Meadow, and two campgrounds in Yosemite Valley are open all year. Rates start from $38.00/per night.
In addition to the campgrounds, there is The Ahwahnee (a National Landmark), Yosemite Lodge (at the base of Yosemite Falls) and Curry Village (heated tent cabins). Reservations can be made by calling (559) 252-4848.
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