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How to Spend 1 Day in Yosemite National Park

How to Spend 1 Day in Yosemite National Park

Soaring peaks, waterfalls, and sheer cliffs make Yosemite National Park a scenic wonderland. The valley's compact size means you can take in key highlights even in limited time; opt for express hiking or sightseeing tours to cover more sights in less time. Here’s how best to spend 24 hours in Yosemite. 

 

Morning: Gaze at Glacier Point

The view from Glacier Point is the classic Yosemite calendar shot and is not to be missed. On typical Yosemite sightseeing tours, this is the first stop as the viewpoint offers you the chance to capture dramatic photos of the landscape. A paved, wheelchair accessible trail continues from the Glacier Point parking area to the viewpoint while the steeper Four Mile Trail links Glacier Point with the Yosemite Valley; some tours offer the option to complete the popular hike and meet your tour vehicle at the bottom.

Afternoon: Into Yosemite Valley

Carved by glaciers and immortalized by photographer Ansel Adams, Yosemite Valley is home to some of the park’s most recognizable sights, which include Half Dome, El Capitan, Yosemite Falls, and Bridalveil Fall. Spend the afternoon exploring Yosemite Valley on a guided or independent hike, a photography tour, or a scientist-led nature walk. Hiking tours range from leisurely strolls to steep hikes up the sides of the valley, and ensure you don’t lose you way. Among the less-strenuous options are Bridalveil Fall, Lower Yosemite Falls, and the Vernal Fall Footbridge; if you’re looking for a bigger challenge, try the Mist Trail, Nevada Fall, or Yosemite Falls Trail.

Evening: Half-Dome Sunset Shots

Late-evening light works colorful magic on Yosemite’s rock faces, with Half Dome looking especially dramatic. Plan ahead to position yourself for photographing the landmark; among the best places for shooting Yosemite at sunset are Glacier Point, Lower Yosemite Falls trailhead, Sentinel Bridge, and Curry Village. If you’re determined to capture the perfect shot, photography tours ensure you get the perfect position, choose the right lens, and find the best light for each destination. Tours typically include hotel pickup and drop-off to save you finding you way back in the dark. 

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18 Tours and Activities

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Full-Day Small Group Yosemite & Glacier Point Tour Including Hotel Pickup

Full-Day Small Group Yosemite & Glacier Point Tour Including Hotel Pickup

star-4.5
180
Get acquainted with the landmarks and highlights of Yosemite National Park during this 9-hour day tour from Fresno or Oakhurst. Travel into the Yosemite Valley through the Southgate, then spend the day viewing and photographing some of the valley's best features such as Bridalveil Falls, Half Dome, Yosemite Falls and Yosemite’s high country.  Hike down the 4-Mile Trail (during the spring to fall) or choose to remain on the bus. Lunch will be provided and can be eaten along the trail. National Park entrance fees included.
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$159.00
From
$159.00

Private Family Hike in Yosemite

Private Family Hike in Yosemite

star-5
20
Experience the monumental scenery of Yosemite on a guided, half-day hike designed especially for families. Choose from a beginning or moderate hike to suit your family’s experience level, and embark on a series of trails that wind through the famous natural attractions of either Yosemite Valley or the High Country. Enjoy spectacular views of one of America’s favorite national parks, and stop for a scenic picnic near a stream, lake or meadow.
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  • 4 to 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$166.67
From
$166.67

Private Guided Hiking Tour in Yosemite

Private Guided Hiking Tour in Yosemite

star-4.5
58
Walk to soaring cliffs and alpine meadows on a private, guided hiking tour of Yosemite National Park. Tailor this 5- or 6-hour trip to your interests and ability, then find your perfect trail into the wilderness. Learn about the history and ecology of the High Sierra as you walk alongside your guide, and find uncrowded paths in the heart of the park. Enjoy a backcountry picnic and discover stunning views of the Yosemite Valley or High Country, or challenge yourself to take on a longer hike with more elevation gain.
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  • 4 to 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$250.00
Price varies by group size
From
$250.00
Price varies by group size

Yosemite Valley Private Hiking Tour

Yosemite Valley Private Hiking Tour

star-5
40
Spend the day immersed in nature on a full-day hiking tour of Yosemite National Park. See the dramatic slopes of Half Dome and North Dome, experience the force of Yosemite Falls, and hike a variety trails to see Mirror Lake, and Spider Caves. Opt for a tour of an old Pioneer village and cemetery if you want. Guides carry water purification and first aid equipment and all profits form this tour support Yosemite youth summer camp programs.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$117.00
Price varies by group size
From
$117.00
Price varies by group size

Guided Yosemite Hiking Excursion

Guided Yosemite Hiking Excursion

star-4.5
61
Explore the stunning trails of Yosemite National Park on this guided hiking excursion. Select a specific hike for your skill level, with options ranging from beginner to strenuous, and enjoy the views from Glacier Point, Sentinel Dome, El Capitan, Half Dome and more. Immerse yourself in the natural wonders of this renowned landscape as you hike in the fresh air. An experienced guide will provide insightful commentary along the way.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$175.00
Price varies by group size
From
$175.00
Price varies by group size

Yosemite Valley Private Winter Hiking Tour

Yosemite Valley Private Winter Hiking Tour

star-4.5
5
While Yosemite is at its most popular during the warm summer months, the beloved National Park is equally in the winter months, with fewer crowds and beautiful snowfall on many of the valley's surrounding peaks. With this customizable winter tour, you'll get to experience Yosemite in a way that interests you, with a wide option of activities running from hikes to museum tours.
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  • 4 to 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$234.00
Price varies by group size
From
$234.00
Price varies by group size

Private Guided Snowshoe Hike in Yosemite

Private Guided Snowshoe Hike in Yosemite

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5
Discover the stunning winter scenery of Yosemite National Park on a guided snowshoe hike that goes deep into the frozen landscape. Embark on a beginner trail or take on an extended option for this 4- or 6- hour adventure, and watch for the tracks that deer, coyote, bobcats and bears leave in the pristine snow. See the Yosemite Valley or the High Country, take in views of soaring rocks with an icy glaze, and experience the remarkable tranquility of this park’s quietest season.
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  • 4 to 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$250.00
Price varies by group size
From
$250.00
Price varies by group size

Experience Yosemite: Beginner or Advanced Photography Lesson

Experience Yosemite: Beginner or Advanced Photography Lesson

star-5
5
Capture unforgettable images of Yosemite National Park with a 4-hour photography lesson for beginners or advanced photographers. Bring your camera and learn new techniques from an expert instructor, and watch the afternoon light transform the soaring cliffs, alpine rivers and high meadows of this remarkable landscape. Set up at a series of shooting locations that include iconic views and lesser-known sites as you follow in the footsteps of Ansel Adams, Carlton Watkins and Edward Weston in California’s most iconic national park.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$575.00
From
$575.00

Yosemite Valley Tour with Transport from Oakhurst

Yosemite Valley Tour with Transport from Oakhurst

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6
Visit Yosemite National Park on a full-day tour from Oakhurst that starts early to beat the crowds, with time to see the very best of the spectacular Yosemite Valley. Take in Bridalveil Fall, El Capitan, and Half Dome, then eat lunch at the base of Yosemite Falls and spot rock climbers from the El Capitan Meadows. This full-day Yosemite tour includes pickup and drop-off from hotels in Oakhurst, national park entrance fees, and a packed lunch.
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  • 4 to 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$130.19
From
$130.19

Semi Private Yosemite Tour with Ahwahnee Lunch - with Hotel Pickup !

Semi Private Yosemite Tour with Ahwahnee Lunch - with Hotel Pickup !

star-4.5
21
Skip the impersonal, large-group bus tours on this full-day trip to Yosemite National Park, with lunch and round-trip transport included. In addition to navigating the park’s vast size for you, your guide provides stories and facts often unheard by visitors. Options for the day’s itinerary include a short hike, sweeping views of El Capitan, and a drive along the Merced River.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$231.67
From
$231.67

Private Hummer 4 X 4 Tour of Yosemite Including Hotel Pickup

Private Hummer 4 X 4 Tour of Yosemite Including Hotel Pickup

star-4.5
11
Explore Yosemite National Park on a private tour in a 4X4 Hummer. Create your own itinerary with options to get out and hike, or stay in the Hummer for a scenic ride. Stop for a picnic lunch, and learn how John Muir convinced President Roosevelt to create the park during a 3-night camping trip. End the tour with a visit to The Pioneer Village History Center. This tour is ideal for visitors looking for an exclusive experience away from crowds.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$1,268.00
per group
From
$1,268.00
per group

Jeep 4 X 4 Yosemite Park Tour with Hotel Pickup

Jeep 4 X 4 Yosemite Park Tour with Hotel Pickup

star-5
11
If you just have one day to experience all the wonders of Yosemite, make the most of it with a full-day private Jeep tour that showcases the park’s supersized attractions and amazing ecosystems. Vehicle passes and parking can be tough to come by, so let a guide handle all the driving and logistics while you enjoy the rugged ride—top down optional. Whether you’re into photography, climbing, or wildlife, the itinerary is expertly planned just for your group.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$1,228.00
per group
From
$1,228.00
per group

San Francisco to Yosemite One-Way Transfer

San Francisco to Yosemite One-Way Transfer

If you're visiting San Francisco and want to spend a day or more in Yosemite, enjoy a flexible way to get to the park, with the option to return the same day or later. Skip the hassle of renting a car and trying to get park passes that often sell out, and simply enjoy the ride to Yosemite Valley. See the giant sequoias at Tuolumne Grove, then enjoy the rest of the day to hike and explore on your own. (Please note: return transport and hotel stays are not included and must be booked separately.)
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  • 8 to 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$109.00
From
$109.00

1 day Yosemite and Giant Sequoia Tour from Groveland

1 day Yosemite and Giant Sequoia Tour from Groveland

star-4
23
On this full-day tour of Yosemite from Groveland, you can spend a relaxed day inside the park without the stress of traffic jams, shuttles, or endless searching for a parking spot. After convenient hotel pickup, head straight for highlights like the giant sequoias at Tuolumne Grove, Yosemite Valley, El Capitan, and the Merced River. Listen to insightful commentary about the park in between stops where you can get out and explore Yosemite’s natural wonders.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$119.00
From
$119.00

Yosemite Valley Small Group Orientation Tour

Yosemite Valley Small Group Orientation Tour

star-4
8
Knowing where to go in supersized Yosemite National Park can be daunting, but this small-group orientation makes it easy to get into the park and set off for a day of hiking. Avoid jockeying for park passes that often sell out and parking spots that fill up early, and relax on the ride from your hotel in Groveland or El Portal. Get tips on the best trails to explore, and get dropped off at either Curry Village or Yosemite Falls, where your driver will be waiting at the end of the day.
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  • 7 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$79.00
Price varies by group size
From
$79.00
Price varies by group size

Best of Yosemite Small Group Tour: Giant Sequoias & Glacier Point

Best of Yosemite Small Group Tour: Giant Sequoias & Glacier Point

star-4.5
28
Explore the best of Yosemite National Park without the hassle of logistics or a crowded shuttle on this small-group tour that makes it easy to explore park highlights like Glacier Point, El Capitan, Tunnel View, and the giant sequoias of Tuolomne Grove. Take in the views while a driver handles the winding roads, and stop for an included picnic lunch at beautiful Cathedral Beach.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$149.00
Price varies by group size
From
$149.00
Price varies by group size

Yosemite Sunset & Champagne Tour

Yosemite Sunset & Champagne Tour

star-5
3
Watch an unforgettable sunset from atop one of Yosemite's best viewpoints on this afternoon tour that’s equal parts romantic and athletic. Scale 3,200 feet (975 meters) to the Sentinel Dome summit, where panoramic views of Half Dome and surrounding cliffs create the perfect backdrop for a champagne toast. Watch the golden light wash over the cliffs and re-energize with small bites before the hike back down.
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  • 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$135.00
From
$135.00

One Day In Yosemite Private Tour:Yosemite Valley, Glacier Point & Giant Sequoias

One Day In Yosemite Private Tour:Yosemite Valley, Glacier Point & Giant Sequoias

star-5
16
See what Yosemite has to offer on this packed private sightseeing hike and tour. You’ll get an overview of Yosemite in one day, from Giant Sequoias to Glacier Point and Bridalveil Falls. Stop for hikes, photo ops of iconic landmarks, and swims underneath waterfalls. You’ll hike between 2-6 miles (3.2-6.7 kilometers) with the activity level adjusted based on the preferences of your group.
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  • 10 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$307.70
From
$307.70