Tioga Pass

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Tioga Pass: Our most recommended tours and activities

San Francisco: Yosemite National Park & Giant Sequoias Hike

1. San Francisco: Yosemite National Park & Giant Sequoias Hike

Experience both the Yosemite Valley and the Giant Sequoia Walk on this day tour. See why artists and poets have been inspired for generations by the breathtaking sceneries at the national park. Since 1890, the beautiful Yosemite National Park has been the jewel of America's National Parks, possessing some of the best-known landmarks in the world, such as the tallest waterfall in North America, Yosemite Falls. You'll have 5-6 hours to explore the stunning national park, and take in the majestic natural wonders, accompanied by a complimentary audio-guided tour. Yosemite is home to the spectacular Half Dome and El Capitan, 2 of the most frequently climbed cliffs in the world. It is also home to several groves of stunning Giant Sequoia trees, the largest trees on earth. The Giant Sequoia Walk is along 1 mile (1.5 km) of paved trail with a 400 ft (120 m) incline, snow depth permitting. Experiencing Yosemite on a group tour, you will see stunning panoramas, go on walks, and even hike a little, before returning to San Francisco. Or if you prefer, you can upgrade to a private tour for your group only.

From San Francisco: Yosemite National Park Full-Day Trip

2. From San Francisco: Yosemite National Park Full-Day Trip

Spend an active, fun-filled day learning why Yosemite is one of America’s most popular national parks. Hike through the park with an experienced guide and immerse yourself in the beauty of nature on this tour. Start off by making your way east from San Francisco and heading across the Bay Bridge. Continue toward the Sierras and into the mountains. Learn about California’s rich history as you pass through some of the first settlements built during the Gold Rush. Arrive in Yosemite National Park for a 2.5-mile round-trip hike to see the Tuolumne Grove of Giant Sequoias. Be prepared for a strenuous hike, descending 400 feet into the grove, before turning around and trekking back up. Next, cruise into the famous Yosemite Valley to take in views of Bridalveil Falls, El Capitan, Half Dome, and more. Capture breathtaking photos at Tunnel View and take in the eastern expanse of Yosemite Valley. Then, enjoy 1.5 hours of free time to explore on your own. You can meander down paved paths, hike around Yosemite Falls, engage further with the park’s history at the visitor’s center, or visit the Ansel Adams Gallery. In the late afternoon, you’ll depart for San Francisco, stopping for a short break before arriving back in the city. Arrive back at your hotel in the late evening to sleep off the day’s adventures.

From San Francisco: Yosemite & Tahoe Sierras 4-Day Trip

3. From San Francisco: Yosemite & Tahoe Sierras 4-Day Trip

After departing San Francisco, head through California’s famous Gold Rush Country, high into the mountains of the Sierra Nevada. It’s time to experience the majestic views from Yosemite Valley with some of America’s tallest waterfalls and towering granite cliffs rising 4,000 feet from the valley floor. Your guide will help you find the perfect trail to take in this glacially carved valley. Relax on the banks of the Merced River and soak up the spectacular views before heading back to the rustic mountain resort to kick back, have some drinks and share the stories of your day. The next day, enjoy hiking and lunch among the Giant Sequoias before traversing Yosemite’s Tioga Pass viewing iconic sites like the reflective Tenaya Lake and Tuolumne Meadows. You'll stay overnight in beautiful Mammoth Lakes. Huge mountains, numerous lakes, and expansive valleys await you! Try your hand at mountain biking or take a scenic Gondola ride to check out one of the most stunning 360 degree views in California. In the morning you'll have the option to visit the Ansel Adams Wilderness area and Devil’s Postpile National Monument, or choose to take a short hike over to Rainbow Falls to snap a selfie! Next, you’re back on the road to Lake Tahoe, with a stop to experience a bit of Gold Rush history at the historic Bodie Ghost Town. in Tahoe you can try your luck at blackjack or the roulette wheel at The Hard Rock, Harrah's or one of South Lake Tahoe's other casinos. If you're not into gambling, try a sunset sail or a lake cruise to Emerald Bay. You’ll stay the night in a South Lake Tahoe hotel or campsite. On your final morning, get up close and personal with Lake Tahoe by kayak, stand-up paddleboard or bike, or take a gondola ride up to Heavenly Mountain resort where an array of adventure activities await. You can also keep it simple and go on a short hike with the guidance of your professional tour leader. You'll be dropped off in San Francisco by 9:00 PM.

From El Portal: Yosemite High Country Guided Hike Day Tour

4. From El Portal: Yosemite High Country Guided Hike Day Tour

Leave the crowds behind and discover pristine wilderness from 10,000 feet in elevation on this small-group tour of the Yosemite High Country. After getting picked up from Yosemite View Lodge, meet your expert guide and begin your full-day adventure.  After pickup, ascend more than 5,000 feet to the glacier-carved, the highest paved highway in California called Tioga Pass. From here, make your way to the Pothole Dome trailhead, where you will have 2 hours to hike a relatively easy 2.5 miles to the sloping granite top of Pothole Dome.  From the top of the dome, you will be greeted with stunning panoramic views of the Tuolumne River, sweeping views of the Tuolumne Meadows, and Yosemite's craggy, high-elevation peaks towards the east. In the early summer, the Tuolumne Meadows are known for their wildflowers that bloom near the end of June and the start of July. After the hike, indulge in lunch along the shores of Tenaya Lake. You will then have the choice to swim in the crystal clear waters or soak up the sun from the picnic tables along the beach. Taking a dip in the refreshing water is the perfect solution to a hot summer's day. You'll have 2 leisurely hours to swim among the polished granite domes, relax along the sandy beach or go for stroll among towering cedars. With a fraction of the people that crowd the lower elevations of Yosemite Valley, it won't be hard to find a quiet place to yourself to enjoy the pristine beauty of California's first National Park. After lunch, you'll stop at Olmstead Point, one of the most famous viewpoints in the Park, before making your way back towards El Portal for a timely drop off at Yosemite View Lodge. Enjoy seeing Half Dome from an all-new perspective as you search for black bear and mule deer along the scenic mountain road.

Yosemite: Giant Sequoias and Alpine Lakes Van Tour with Hike

5. Yosemite: Giant Sequoias and Alpine Lakes Van Tour with Hike

Experience the beauty of Yosemite National Park with an experienced guide. With daily departures from Cedar Lodge and the Yosemite View Lodge, leave your car and worries behind as you take in the views of Yosemite's high country. Meet your guide at Cedar Lodge or Yosemite View Lodge, and enjoy the views on your ride to the Tuolomne Grove trailhead. Follow your guide on the 2.5-mile round-trip path to Tuolumne Grove. Marvel at the massive Giant Sequoia trees, including the iconic Tunnel Tree. Hop back into the van and cruise along Tioga Road to Olmsted Point. Enjoy a boxed lunch with stunning views of Half Dome and Clouds Rest. After lunch, continue up in the van until you reach the gorgeous Tuolumne Meadows. Meander along the 2.5-mile to the top of Pothole Dome. Take in spectacular 360-degree views of Yosemite's tallest peaks. Cool off in the sparkling waters of Tenaya Lake before heading back down to El Portal where the guide will drop you off at your original pickup location.

From Oakhurst: Mariposa Grove Giant Sequoias Half-Day Trip

6. From Oakhurst: Mariposa Grove Giant Sequoias Half-Day Trip

Lace up your hiking shoes and explore the largest grove of Giant Sequoia trees in Yosemite National Park on a guided half-day tour from Oakhurst. Meet your guide in Oakhurst for a morning or afternoon departure, and make your way to Yosemite National Park. Witness where wildfires and wind storms have affected the area along the way. Hop on a shuttle bus from the entrance into Mariposa Grove to begin the 2-mile round-trip hike with your group. Your guide will share interesting information about the history of the area, geology, flora, and fauna, as well as about the Ahwahneechee, Yosemite's first and original residents. Keep your eyes peeled for wildflowers such as the Sierra Penstemon and the bright red Snow Plant, which grow beneath towering trees including the Ponderosa Pine, the California Black Oak, and the Incense-Cedar. Marvel at the massive Grizzly Giant, a 209ft tall Giant Sequoia, with branches over 5ft in diameter. Find the California Tunnel Tree, one of the first attractions of this area, further along the path. Be amazed as you walk through the huge archway in the trunk of the tree, originally carved in 1895 to accommodate a horse-drawn carriage. Back at the Mariposa shuttle station, take a short drive to the town of Wawona where you'll have about an hour to explore the Yosemite Pioneer History Center and take in gorgeous views of the surrounding meadow. From there, you'll be taken back to Oakhurst.

Yosemite: Valley Hiking Tour from Oakhurst

7. Yosemite: Valley Hiking Tour from Oakhurst

Witness some of the most awe-inspiring views of nature on a full-day trip through Yosemite Valley with an expert guide. See the towering and famous El Capitan, revel in the majestic Half Dome, dine under the tallest waterfall in North America — Yosemite Falls — and hike along the Mist Trail. Meet your guide before heading straight to Yosemite National Park via the south entrance. Arrive at Tunnel View to witness the most well-known views in Yosemite Valley, El Capitan and Half Dome, and be awe-struck by their sheer grandeur and height. Follow the Merced River to Curry Village, where your guide will lead you on a 3-mile (5.4-kilometer) round-trip hike on the most famous trail in the Valley, the Mist Trail, to the Vernal Falls Footbridge. After the hike, head to Yosemite Village to enjoy a boxed lunch while taking in a spectacular view of Yosemite Falls. Next, stroll along the Valley Loop Trail to the Ahwahnee Hotel. See its fascinating design and architecture of this 1927 hotel, which puts it on the list of the National Register of Historic Places. Walk back to Yosemite Village through the meadows before heading over to El Capitan Meadows for more stunning photos. Then, sit back and relax on the scenic drive back to Oakhurst.

Vegas: 4-Day Tour of Death Valley, Yosemite & San Francisco

8. Vegas: 4-Day Tour of Death Valley, Yosemite & San Francisco

Whether you decide to lodge indoors or camp outside experience an action-packed 4-day adventure leaving the bright lights of Sin City to see two remarkable National Parks. Spend a day exploring the stark beauty of Death Valley National Park. See rolling sand dunes, salt flats, colorful rocks, and tall mountains. You will even visit the hottest, driest, and lowest point in the West, the Badwater Salt Flats. Prepare to revel in the beauty of this unique landscape. Then travel north to enjoy a full day in Yosemite, home of natural wonders as Half Dome, giant sequoia groves, and waterfalls. Take advantage of one of the most beautiful National Parks with a variety of walks or hikes suitable for all abilities. Day 1: Death Valley National Park  Today you will head to Death Valley National Park for a guided tour. Enjoy wonderful photo opportunities and walks at Zabriskie Point, Artist’s Palette, Badwater Basin Salt flats, Furnace Creek Visitor Center, Devil’s Golf Course, and the Mesquite Sand Dunes. After a picnic lunch, you will drive through spectacular scenery to the old Gold Rush Historic town of Bishop for your camping night stop. Day 2: Travel over Tioga Pass or through Lake Isabella Crossing over the *Tioga Pass the next morning will astonish you with impressive views of Olmsted Point, Lake Tenaya, Tuolumne Meadows, and Mono lake en route to Yosemite Valley. Visit the Valley Visitor Center and exhibits, take a mini-tour and get ready for a full day of exploration of Yosemite tomorrow. *Weather permitting- In the event that the Tioga Pass has closed this tour will route through Lake Isabella instead of Bishop. Day 3: Yosemite National Park Spend a full day exploring the walks and trails offered in Yosemite National Park. There are countless walk and hikes ranging from easy to strenuous or opt for a guided tour with your expert Tour Guide to the premier panoramas within the park such as Bridalveil Falls, Lower Yosemite Falls, views of Half Dome and El Capitan. You can also opt for some free time just relaxing or cycling along the Merced River. Day 4: San Francisco City Tour Today the group is heading to the City by the Bay- San Francisco. Your 4-day adventure concludes with a fully guided city tour of this vibrant city. Stops include Fisherman’s Wharf, Pier 39, Haight Ashbury, and the Golden Gate Bridge. This tour ends on day 4 at approximately 5:00 PM.

Other Sightseeing Options in Tioga Pass

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What people are saying about Tioga Pass

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 546 reviews

What an AWESOME day ❤️ Thank you Denise for sharing all your knowledge with us I only had 48 hour layover in San Francisco as I am a flight attendant from Germany & taking this trip made my layover definitely one to remember Thank you & best wishes for Denise - she is an outstanding tourguide Nicole

We really enjoyed the tour! We got to see the amazing sights of Yosemite park and the tour was well organized. We also loved the great energy and knowledge of Ross, our tour guide.

We had a wonderful trip! Denise was the best tour guide! She gave us so much helpful information to enable us to have the best experience! Yosemite is amazing!

Absolutely brilliant.. so organised and our tour guide fantastic. Would recommend 100 percent. First class . Thank you

It is a must tour to do! Great tour guide (Ben), unforgettable experience that makes you appreciate the nature!