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The Perfect Day in Yosemite

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If you only have one day in Yosemite National Park, maximize your time by exploring time in and around Yosemite Valley. In the morning, take the easy walk to the base of Yosemite Falls, then visit the Ansel Adams Gallery and the Yosemite Museum and Indian Village of the Ahwahnee before lunch at the Yosemite Valley Lodge Mountain Room. Or pack a lunch and hike from the valley floor to Vernal Fall via the Mist Trail. See if you can spot climbers on the face of El Capitan, then finish with dinner at the stunning Majestic Yosemite Dining Room.
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Yosemite Valley, California, USA
This eight-mile-long, one-mile-wide valley, sliced down the middle by the Merced River, is the heart of Yosemite and by far the most-visited area of the park. Of the three entrances to the valley, none affords a more spectacular first view than...
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Yosemite Village, CA 95389, USA
Driving into Yosemite national park is like entering the garden of Eden.
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NATIONAL PARK, 9031 Village Dr, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA
No artist is more closely associated with Yosemite than Ansel Adams, who first set foot in the park in 1916 while still pursuing his fledgling career as a concert pianist. His love of nature and the High Sierra brought him back regularly to...
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California, USA
When it was completed in 1925, the rustic, stone-and-timber Yosemite Museum was the first structure built in the National Park System to be used specifically as a museum. Today, it works to keep alive the culture, history, and artistry of the...
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Happy Isles, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA
Despite being steep, often wet, and sometimes dangerous, the Mist Trail is Yosemite’s hallmark hike, with breathtaking views of the valley and two waterfalls. Be warned, though, that it’s called the Mist Trail for a reason: Much of the...
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Yosemite National Park, 1 Ahwahnee Drive, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA
Although a very popular hike in the Yosemite Valley, the hike past Vernal Falls up the mist trail to Nevada Falls is magical in the Springtime. Personally, I think this is the best spot to stop and have lunch. However, Be sure to check the signs...
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1 Ahwahnee Drive, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA
The ambience alone is worth a splurge at the dining room of the Majestic Yosemite Hotel, the stopover of presidents, queens, celebrities, and moguls since it opened in 1927 (and, allegedly, one of Stanley Kubrick’s inspirations for the hotel...
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Northside Dr, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA
There’s no underestimating the role that El Capitan has played in the development of modern rock climbing—the 3,000-foot granite face is where the sport transformed from technical mountaineering to athletic art form. In good weather,...
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9006 Yosemite Lodge Dr, YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, CA 95389, USA
This property hits the sweet spot for Yosemite lodging—it’s conveniently located in the heart of the valley, is more affordable than the Majestic, and has better views than any other accommodation, looking directly out to Lower...
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Yosemite National Park, 1 Ahwahnee Drive, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA
Formerly the Ahwahnee Hotel, this stone-and-timber lodge—arguably the finest example of U.S. “Parkitecture”—has hosted such luminaries as John F. Kennedy, the queen of Nepal, Lucille Ball, and Brad Pitt. Its grand public...
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Cedar, 9006 Yosemite Lodge Dr, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA
The Mountain Room Restaurant at the Yosemite Valley Lodge isn’t open for breakfast or lunch, so make your dinner reservation before dark to catch the star attraction: drop-dead views of the 2,400-foot Yosemite Falls from almost...