Yosemite National Park is one of America’s great natural wonders – with many using San Francisco as a base for exploring its vast expanse.
Perched among California’s Sierra Nevada mountain range, Yosemite National Park is home to distinctive granite cliffs, ancient sequoia trees and dramatic waterfalls that draw travellers from across the globe. Many visitors choose to stay in San Francisco, from which a large number of organised tours to the Yosemites are available. We scoured around to find four of the best.
Yosemite Park Small Group Tour
Hosted by California company Incredible Adventures, this full-day guided tour invites you to escape the crowds of San Francisco and soak up the majesty of Yosemite National Park. After an early morning pick up by coach, you’ll head east, enjoying views of Alcatraz Island and the Golden Gate Bridge. En route you’ll stop in Central Valley for some local fruit and nuts, before entering the rolling foothills of the Sierra Nevadas. On arrival at the legendary park, a narrated coach tour of Yosemite’s glaciated valley introduces you to waterfalls, rock formations, and more. Afterwards, you’ll stop near the base of Yosemite Falls for a picnic. You’ll then get to enjoy free time to explore the valley as you choose – be it visiting an art gallery, renting a cruiser bike or hiking – before your return journey. From $169 per person.
3-Day Yosemite Camping Adventure
On this 3-day camping tour, you’ll visit Yosemite National Park with an experienced guide, spending two nights in a tent at a campsite. Enjoy the park’s stunning landmarks, such as Yosemite Falls and Half Dome, go hiking amid giant sequoia trees, and bath in mountain lakes. With both guided portions and free time to explore the park, this tour is a great way to experience one of America’s most iconic natural attractions. Three meals a day, camping equipment (except sleeping bags), camp fees and round-trip transport are all included in the tour price. Previous camping experience is not required. From $537 per person
One-Day Yosemite Tour
This 5-star tour from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park takes you to the awe-inspiring monuments of Half Dome and El Capitan. Bridalveil, Horsetail and Yosemite Falls make dramatic appearances during most seasons. Unlike other Yosemite tours, you may hike among giant Yosemite trees and to the Swinging Bridge on the Meadow Loop Trail. From $191 per person.
Yosemite Full-Day Private Tour
Discover the mesmerising beauty of Yosemite National Park at your own pace on this private full-day tour. Avoiding all the hassles of an organised bus tour, you’ll be picked up from your hotel by private car before making the scenic journey to the park. Here you’ll get up close to the ancient sequoias in their staggering groves, gasp at the vertical rock formation of El Capitán, enjoy a commanding view of the Yosemite Valley from Glacier Point, and plenty more. On your return you’ll arrive back in San Francisco in time to see the eye-catching Bay Bridge Lights light sculpture and art installation in all its glory. From $1,356 per person.
6-Day Excursion of Southwestern United States
For those with more time to spare, this 6-day excursion includes visits to several illustrious California landmarks and attractions. Your first day will begin with an exploration of San Francisco, including a cruise in the bay and a visit to the Golden Gate Bridge. Day two takes you to Yosemite National Park and its wonderland of forests, lakes and waterfalls. Here you’ll also get to admire such renowned sites as the highest waterfall in North America, El Capitan, and the Half Dome. Next up you’ll head south towards Las Vegas, followed by the Grand Canyon, Lake Powell, Bryce Canyon, and finally Zion National Park. Included in the tour price is 5 night’s accommodation, transportation, professional tour guide, entrance to the four national parks, and the San Fran Bay cruise. From $1,148 per person.