Yosemite

Among the most popular national parks is California’s crown jewel, Yosemite. Besides the magnificent valley views, there are miles of trails for hiking and biking that cover the valley and rise up into the surrounding walls. The biggest problem is getting there — it’s a four-hour drive from the Bay Area on a good day. During the winter months, access to Yosemite is limited to vehicles with snow tires, and the driving may be very slow indeed.

GGH has a great 1-day solution: we fly you to Mariposa airport in the morning, where you’ll travel in style on a beautiful 5-hour sightseeing drive through Yosemite Valley. Along the way you’ll see Yosemite’s most famous views, including Inspiration Point, Bridalveil Fall, El Capitan, the Merced River and a view of Yosemite Falls from the meadows, the Stoneman Bridge, the grand Ahwahnee Hotel, and then a walk to the base of Yosemite Falls before returning to the airport for the flight home.

Of course we’re happy to make overnight reservations for you as well, drop you off and return later to pick you up. Yosemite has several types of accommodations, everything from the High Sierra tent camps to the luxury of the historic Ahwahnee Hotel.

What to do once you’re there: Sightseeing by limo if your time is limited. If you’re staying overnight, enjoy hiking, horseback riding, bird-watching, backpacking, Ranger & interpretative programs, rock-climbing (technical climbing requires a permit in advance), river rafting, biking (rentals available), wildflower and nature walks, and great photo ops.

Seasonal and special activities: Higher trails and some accommodations are closed during the winter months, although the Valley is open year-round. Check the National Park’s website for the activities calendar.

Thanks to John Yewell, a friend of the company, for the stunning late-winter photo of Halfdome on this page.