San Francisco, California
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clock-o14 hours (Approx.)
TransportHotel pickup offered
ticket-oMobile ticket
commentOffered in: English and 4 more

Overview

Discover the rugged beauty of the Sierra Nevada on this full-day trip to Yosemite National Park from San Francisco. Travel aboard a comfortable van through historic Gold Rush towns to reach the park, where you’ll be amazed by supersized natural wonders like Yosemite Falls and the granite cliffs of Half Dome and El Capitan. Take a hike among ancient sequoia trees, and enjoy several hours to explore the park’s wonders on your own.
  • Full-day trip to Yosemite National Park from San Francisco
  • Drive through gold rush towns to the scenic Sierra Nevada
  • Discover the Tuolumne Grove on a 1-hour hike
  • Stop at Inspiration Point for a photo op of Half Dome
  • Choose from a range of activities at Yosemite, including walking or exploring the Valley Visitor Center
  • Hear commentary from a guide about Yosemite's natural landmarks such as El Capitan
  • Pickup and drop-off from select San Francisco hotels

Why Travelers Choose This Tour

While in San Francisco, don't miss a day trip to explore Yosemite. Visit in the late spring or summer to ensure you also get to see the magnificent Tuolumne Grove if road and trail conditions allow.
One of the most-visited parks in the United States, Yosemite National Park is famed for its wild beauty and massive natural attractions. After morning pickup at your San Francisco hotel (do not pick up at all SF hotels), cruise across the new San Francisco Bay Bridge and through historic Gold Rush towns as the urban bustle gives way to the rugged landscape of the Sierra Nevada.

When you arrive at the park, stretch your legs at Tuolumne Grove with a hike among some of the oldest and largest trees in the world (weather permitting). Crane your neck to see the top of the giant sequoia trees, including a tunneled-out tree large enough to drive a car through.

Continue on to Inspiration Point for an unbeatable view of Yosemite’s photogenic valley framed by the giant granite formations of Half Dome and El Capitan. Look for expert rock climbers trying to scale the world-class cliffs and, in springtime, watch the thundering cascade of Yosemite Falls.

Enjoy 1–1.5 hours of free time to explore the park on your own. Rent a bike and cruise along the flat paths of Yosemite Valley (not included), hike to a nearby waterfall or visit the Ansel Adams Gallery to see some of the most famous images of the park ever captured on film. Lunch options include a picnic on the Merced River or a casual meal at the Yosemite Lodge (own expense). Reconnect with your guide at the appointed time, and relax on the scenic drive back to San Francisco.

Please note: The weather in Yosemite is highly variable and includes rain and snow in winter and high temperatures in summer. The itinerary may be adapted to make the most of Yosemite during different seasons and times of the year. The giant sequoias are best visited between May and October. During the rest of the year, snow and ice conditions may prevent access to roads and trails, and other activities may be substituted.

Reviews

Viator Traveler's Reviews

4.5
1,595 Reviews
5 Star
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A
, Dec 2018

Although it took a number of hours to reach Yosemite, it was time well spent. The awe inspiring views of El Capitan and surrounding mountains were spectacular. Our guide showed good knowledge of the area, taking us to the best locations for photo opportunities.

s
, Nov 2018

14 hours trip was very long and tiring outing but Gino our driver, guide , time keeper and story teller had made it fun and interesting. He has lots of surprises for us, always keep the spirit high within the group. Excellent service from Estronomical Tour. We are blessed with very Good sunny weather and understood we are the last group to follow the normal summer route in mid November . We enjoyed every moment and would highly recommend this tour to our friends. Keep up the good service guys!

A
, Oct 2018

Denise is an amazing tour guide. She has plenty of energy, knowledge and enthusiasm that she gladly shared with our group. This trip was the highlight of my SF visit.

S
, Sep 2018

Truly spectacular! Our guide, Constantine, was delightful. He was knowledgeable and smart. Took us to see the best places and managed time wisely. Would very highly recommend him!If there was anything that could have been better, it was the bus. It shook and creeked. The seats were a tad uncomfortable as well.

d
, Sep 2018

long enjoyable day the sequoias trees were stunning and views in Yosemite park itself were breathtaking .only criticism would be the bus especially if your sitting in the back was uncomfortable as you felt every bump and braking

N
, Sep 2018

It’s amazing adventure to see giant sequoia trees, once in a lifetime experience. Long trip is worth to see this beautiful environment.

S
, Sep 2018

I find it difficult to write negative reviews because I realize that things happen and often times it's due to circumstances beyond anyone's control. But I was so thoroughly disappointed with this tour, I feel compelled to write about it. I've booked many tours through Viator over the last few years and have been very happy with them, relying heavily on the written reviews in making my choices. So, I booked this tour, one of the more expensive day tours to Yosemite, based on the many great reviews. We arrived in San Francisco on a Monday and the tour was scheduled for the following day. I called to reconfirm the trip and to double-check the pick-up time and place. The girl I spoke with was very nice and confirmed the 6am pick-up time. Although our hotel was not one on their list of hotel pickups, when I told her where we were staying, she said they did pick up from that hotel, changed our pick-up location to our hotel and I was delighted. I then asked her about our guide, she gave me two names and said they were both good. The next morning we were waiting and our driver was right on time! The first thing I noticed however, was that there was no guide, only the driver. I then learned that our driver was also the live guide promised in the description of the tour. I assumed from the description, my conversations with the tour company and my past experiences with tours, that there would be a dedicated guide aboard. For this 14 plus hour tour to be informative and enjoyable, it needed a dedicated guide and, especially on the roads we would be on, a dedicated driver focused on driving. The second thing I noticed was that we not in a van as stated in the description. It was a bus, but it looked like a vehicle that had been converted to a bus. This was confirmed when we rode in it. It was like riding in truck. We felt every bump and road surface the entire trip. The bus seemed rickety and was not quiet. The windows were very dirty, so getting clear pictures from inside was not possible. The two cup holders by our seats were broken, as was my sister's and her husband's and only some of the buses USB chargers worked. And there was no bathroom. I wasnt really expecting a bathroom, since I was expecting a van. But with a van, the driver could easily pulled over for stops and restrooms. For that length of trip, in a bus, you need a restroom on board.The tour scheduled a breakfast stop at a grocery store at 8am. We were late to stop, but delays do happen. The next scheduled stop was at Tuolumne Grove. Now, the name of this tour is Yosemite National Park and Giant Sequoias Trip. In the description it says "Take a guided hike among ancient sequoia trees", but there was no guided tour or at least not one we were made aware of. We were given approximately an hour and 15 minutes to go down the path where the largest sequoia trees were, something we specifically came to see, but the driver repeated several times that the trip back up the path from the trees location would take at least 40 minutes, walking non-stop and all uphill. He also stressed he was on a schedule and if we weren't back, he would have to leave us and where we should go to wait to be picked up on the way home. We didnt make it to see the trees. We walked down the path toward where the trees were located for about 15 to 20 minutes and then headed back up as we were too afraid of being left. To be fair, the driver was correct - the uphill return did take much longer than going down. There just wasn't enough time allowed for this part of the tour. Finally, I specifically made sure the guide was English speaking. I guess I should've asked for a guide that spoke English well. Our driver tried very hard to be informative and accommodating, even making an unscheduled stop on the way home at a previous stop, so a passenger could retrieve his coat he accidentally left. But between the bus noise and the drivers thick accent, broken English and limited English vocabulary, it was hard to hear him and when we did, very hard to understand him. And then, at the end of the tour, as is customary with tours, the driver mentioned gratuities. However, he mentioned it was customary to give 20%, and then mentioned the 20% would be about $36 per person. I did a quick calculation and multiplied the $36 times the 37 people aboard. It seems like that would be some tip! Our driver was hesitate and very nice about mentioning the gratuity and I dont blame him for this trip. I blame the tour company. The vehicle, the guide (or lack of) and the tour itself was not according to the description and was just not acceptable, especially in view of the money we paid! And this experience has, in my mind, called into question the review postings. I will be posting this review on several sites.

J
, Sep 2018

Our family has taken a few Viator trips, and this one is one of the best! Denise, our tour guidewas fantastic! She goes above and beyond with the history of the San Francisco and Yosemitearea. Lots of fun and laughs! Great trip. Would love to take another trip with Denise.

F
, Sep 2018

We had a great experience in our tour. It started in San Francisco early in the morning. Our guide , Denise, gave us a lot of informations about history of California and Yosemite. We could see El Captan very close and other beautiful landscapes.

D
, Sep 2018

First, Viator asked me to rate "this attraction." Of course, the Yosemite National Park and Giant Sequoias are a treasure. So the "high" ratings for this are somewhat deceptive. The tour was subpar. In fact, it was hands down the worst tour I have experienced anywhere. Our driver/guide, Jason, took our 36 passenger bus, careened down the highway, often without his hands on the steering wheel, so he could fix his hair or drink his coffee. When he started the speaking tour, it had little to no interesting value, after each pause, he told us to "sit back and enjoy the ride." He said this before he took our bus up and down hair pin curves on high mountain roads with no guard rails. As we drove down the mountain, he kept braking which caused the bus to lurch forward. As we headed around one curve, I saw the speed monitor on the road. It was a 20 mph zone,and he was traveling at 47 mph. I felt that he showed little concern about the safety of the passengers. He was a friendly guy, but he needs significant training before he is given the responsibility of taking another group out on the road.


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