Yosemite National Park: Recommendations & Photo Journal

It's safe to say that Yosemite National Park is one of the premier National Parks in the United States.  Each visit has me shaking my head in awe and wonder (insert heart-eyed emoji).  I'll never tire of it.  

It's basically a theater for nature - God (or whatever higher power you believe in) shows off with his perfectly sculpted mountains, waterfalls, clouds, and perfect smelling trees.  In the winter, the peaks are dusted with feet of snow, and in the fall, the trees are glittering with multi-colored leaves.

Like pretty much any National Park, do yourself a favor and hit the trails - away from the crowds and into the serenity of the mountains and the forest.

My recommendations

When to Go:

The best time to go to Yosemite is ASAP!  Get in your car and go!  If that's not possible, then here are some tips.  If you're looking to avoid the crowds then your best bet will be late fall, winter, and early spring.  Each season comes with minor setbacks.  Here's a mini overview:

  • Spring: Flowing waterfalls, great temperatures, beautiful plant/tree/vegetation life
  • Summer: Lots and lots of crowds, flowing waterfalls, did I mention crowds?
  • Fall: Camping temps get chilly, no waterfalls, the leaves turn beautiful colors, gorgeous alpine glow on Half Dome at sunset 
  • Winter: Glacier Point Road & Tioga Pass are closed, beautiful snow on the mountains, snowshoe/ski/snowboard opportunities, low lingering clouds, flowing waterfalls

Great Hikes:

Easy:

 
 

Long/Challenging:

 
 

Make sure to also check out my post for great winter vista spots!

Other Places to Explore:

 
 

Camping:

For central locations and ease of access, these are a few of my favorite campgrounds.  Keep in mind that some of them are walk-in only and others are reservation only.

on my to-do list

I definitely can't claim I've done everything at Yosemite.  It would probably take a lifetime and more to do so.  But here are some other things on my radar that I'd like to eventually cross off my bucket list (and hopefully recommend to you!)

photo journal

I've been to Yosemite many times, so this is less of a photo journal and more of an assortment of my favorite photos I've taken there over the years.

Phew, that was a lot of photos!  Can you tell that Half Dome is my muse? :)

If you have a question about planning your trip to Yosemite, let me know in the comments & I'd be happy to help!  Do you have any other recommendations or activities you think I should try at Yosemite?  Let me know in the comments!