Yosemite is one of the most beautiful national parks in the world, located 200 miles east of San Francisco (around a 3 1/2 hour drive). This fully guided tour will take you through the highlights from the park all in one day.
After a scenic drive through the East Bay, the tour heads up into the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. It was here, in 1848, that the discovery of gold by James Marshall started the California gold rush. We will pass through one of the original gold towns before arriving in Yosemite National Park late in the morning, where your tour director will narrate your journey by some of the wonders.
Once inside the park, you will be provided a few hours to wander around on your own. There are quite a few short and easy hikes in the Yosemite Valley, such as the Lower Yosemite Fall Trail, Cook's Meadow Loop, and Mirror Lake Loop. There are also many restaurants and food outlets in the valley, so it's the perfect place to purchase lunch and refuel your body.
Yosemite is home to North America's five highest waterfalls. This includes Yosemite Falls, which at 2450 ft is the highest in North America and 3rd highest in the world. There's also Sentinel Falls at 2000 ft and Ribbon Falls at 1612 ft. In addition, the tour will make stops at the famous cliffs of Half Dome, Cathedral Rocks and the 3500ft El Capitan where we will watch the climbers on their 4-7 day journey.
The small groups with 14 people or fewer allow much greater flexibility for sightseeing and various options inside the park. The Yosemite tour lasts between 12 and 15 hours and allows 3–4 hours inside the park before returning to San Francisco.