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Monterey Airport to Yosemite/Back To SF

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Jupiter, FL
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Monterey Airport to Yosemite/Back To SF

We're (DH & I w/2 DD's...13 & 9) planning a mid-July trip, flying into Monterey Peninsula Airport, driving out to Yosemite (South) for a 4 night stay, possibly 1 more night on West side of Park, then 2 or 3 more nights in the SF/Monterey area to fly back out of Monterey. Does this sound do-able to anyone that's knowledgeable about the area? Or are we trying to cram too much in....we can tolerate some drives and are aware it's probably 4 hours from MRY to Yosemite, but we also don't want to feel like we've spent our vacation in the car! TIA for any advice you can offer! Nancy

California
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1. Re: Monterey Airport to Yosemite/Back To SF

It's totally doable. One year we stayed at the south gate area (Fish Camp) and then drove to Monterey for a few nights. The drive was fine. We had no problems.

Driving Yosemite to SF is fine too and it will be a nice change after the hot weather in Yosemite to get to the cooler climate of SF!!

Jupiter, FL
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2. Re: Monterey Airport to Yosemite/Back To SF

Thanks for the info, Suzie! Know anything about the Tenaya Lodge?

California
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3. Re: Monterey Airport to Yosemite/Back To SF

Oh yes! I have stayed there several times. We just love it!!!

Nice rooms, indoor pool & outdoor pool. You can rent bikes at the hotel and they have flashlight hikes in the evening too. Great little deli/cafe to pick up quick coffee or sandwich on the run or nice restaurants. In July we always dine outside since the weather is perfect.

If you are going to visit the valley or beyond, someone once provided an outstanding tip that I've always kept in mind for stays at the south gate. That is, map out or list teh sights you want to visit. On the first day, drive to the furthest place you want to visit., The next day see the places a little closer in and then the last day see all the places the closest to your lodging. This way you are not passing ALL the same sights every day!!

Salt Lake City, Utah
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4. Re: Monterey Airport to Yosemite/Back To SF

Good advice on seeing the furthest sights first. The alpine areas of Yosemite (Tuolomne Meadows,Tenaya Lake) are gorgeous. The ranger programs are high quality (Wawona would be closest to the lodge you asked about). The Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias is a 'must do'. My favorite activity, been doing it for years with my own children, is to have a supper picnic at Glacier Point. Most of the crowd leaves as soon as the shop/deli is closed. Deer come right into the area for some great photo ops. You can watch the sun/shadow set up the face of Half Dome and hear the roar of Vernal Falls. Occassionally, I partner it with the Glacier Point ranger photo walk or their star gazing program.

Going to Tuolomne Meadows/Tenaya Lake is a full day, but well worth it. And, there is a lodge area in Tuolomne Meadows where you can get food.

From Monterey, it might be easier to go through Madera and get to CA41 from there. Taking the CA140 route is beautiful, but you will have to drive through the park to get to your hotel. The trade off for the extra time is that you get to see part of Yosemite and could get' your bearings as far as what you'd like to do later.

5. Re: Monterey Airport to Yosemite/Back To SF

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