The 10 Best Places to Take the Kids in Yosemite
Yosemite National Park offers excitement for the whole family. There are many gorgeous places to visit and plenty of room for adventure. Check out some of the best places to visit.
A family vacation to Yosemite can be very rewarding. The park offers hikes, outdoor adventures, places to relax, and interactive learning. Whether you’re planning a summer or winter vacation, visiting the country’s second-oldest national park is always a good idea.
Check out some of the coolest places you can visit to make the most of your trip and to avoid boring your children.
1. Sequoia Groves
The sequoia groves are some of the best places for kids in Yosemite. The trails offer amazing hikes and the sight of the massive trees is sure to impress anyone. It’s a nice opportunity for kids to see unique woodland landscapes and learn.
All three sequoia groves in Yosemite have rather flat trails, making them easy to get to on foot with kids in tow. But, you can also take a shuttle to the grove trailhead.
2. Tenaya Lake
If you’re visiting Yosemite with kids, Tenaya Lake makes for a great destination. The lake is at an altitude of 8,200 feet. And during the summer, you can swim in the lake and enjoy a picnic on the shore.
The sandy beach can also provide tons of fun for kids. There’s even an amazing viewpoint that gives a nice overview of the granite in the area.
3. Bridalveil and Yosemite Falls
The park’s waterfalls are also among the best places for kids in Yosemite. The scenic route is something that adults can appreciate and the waterfalls provide good entertainment for the kids.
What’s even better is that you can reach both Yosemite Falls and Bridalveil on paved paths. This means that you can safely take toddlers on the trip.
4. Yosemite Ski and Snowboard Area
Skiing with kids in Yosemite is a very popular family activity. The ski season runs from December to March. Although the amount of snow can vary a lot each year, you’re bound to have lots of fun if you visit the park during the winter.
Whenever the kids get tired of the famous Yosemite hikes, skiing and snowboarding can offer a nice change of pace. Fortunately, most of the slopes are beginner-friendly and suitable for small children.
You can also pay for group lessons or private lessons if the kids don’t have skiing experience.
5. Glacier Point
Glacier Point is one of Yosemite’s most breathtaking viewpoints. It sits well above the valley floor and features protective ledges. From this spot, you can see a U-shaped curve of pristine forests previously carved by a glacier.
The view is spectacular and guaranteed to impress even kids. You can also spot four of the park’s waterfalls from the area. Fortunately, you can reach Glacier Point by car or on foot.
Keep in mind that it’s one of the busiest areas in the summer.
6. Kids Adventure Course
Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite offers the Kids Adventure Course. Located near the main lodge, this is one of the most exciting obstacle courses around. It features bridges, rope challenges, and swinging logs.
If you have outdoorsy kids, they can spend the better part of a day on the course and try out different challenges. It’s also where you can rent sleds in the winter and bikes in the summer.
You can even teach your children how to play a good old’ fashion game of horseshoe.
7. Yosemite Museum
There’s a lot to explore on your own in Yosemite. But a trip to the museum is also worth it when traveling with kids. It’s a great place for them to learn about local history and culture.
The interactive exhibits keep the young ones engaged. There’s also a replica Miwok village on the premises that’s very interesting to explore.
What’s even better is that there are quite a few discounts for specific age groups. It’s a nice perk if you want to save a few bucks on your family vacation.
8. Merced River
The Merced River is a quiet and gentle river that flows right through the valley. It’s one of the most popular tourist hotspots during the summer. The water is great for wading, swimming, and even rafting.
The river offers many calm swimming holes with shallow water that are ideal for kids. While you sit on the sandy banks, your children can enjoy some water activities against the picturesque backdrop. It’s not only one of the best places for kids in Yosemite but it’s also a free family activity.
9. Half Dome
Half Dome is one of the best areas in Yosemite for kids to see the local wildlife. Different species of deer are prevalent there, and you can even spot them by the dozens in the evening. You can also see primroses bloom here.
The area is gorgeous and makes for an ideal spot for a quiet family evening. You can also take the kids for some ice cream in the nearby Half Dome Village.
Half Dome also offers an outdoor ice rink. That’s why during the winter, skating is one of the easiest things to do in Yosemite with kids.
10. Happy Isles
Happy Isles houses the Nature Center. It’s one of the coolest places to visit with the entire family. And it offers both indoor and outdoor exhibits, as well as guided tours.
If the kids want to learn more about the local wildlife and the native Yosemite ecosystem, this is the place to visit.
Reconnect with Nature at Yosemite National Park
Spending time in the great outdoors is a good way to detach from the day-to-day struggles. It also serves kids well, as they can take a break from the constraints of the digital world.
Yosemite spans a massive area and you’ll never run out of places to explore. But any one of these 10 places can offer a rewarding experience to both kids and adults. The fact that there’s a lot to do in both summer and winter makes Yosemite an even better vacation destination.
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