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Yosemite with a 7 year old

Tampa, Florida
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Yosemite with a 7 year old

We are planning our first trip to CA in June. We may be flying into San Fran but will rent a car and probably spend a night or two near Yosemite.

We want to visit Yosemite but would like some ideas of things for kids to do at the park. We also need some help on accomodations near the park.

Saint Germain...
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1. Re: Yosemite with a 7 year old

For in-park accommodations you can check the official website at www.YosemitePark.com for outside the park there are a number of options. Along highway 120 there are a number of family friendly options. Evergreen Lodge sponsors lots of free kids activiities. You can find details online from http://www.StayNearYosemite.com.

This recent thread has a bunch of information on things to do with kids including the junion ranger program:


Have a wonderful holiday!

Salt Lake City, Utah
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2. Re: Yosemite with a 7 year old

What a wonderful opportunity! 7 is a great age to experience Yosemite!

Many people make a reservation at whatever valley location they can find and check back frequently for different lodging. Remember, staying 'near' Yosemite means a drive of at least half an hour to get into the valley, using time that could be used seeing the place.

There's the junior ranger program. There are short hikes to waterfalls in the valley. There's the hike out to Mirror Lake. There's the hike up the Nevada/Vernal Falls. There's the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias. There's Happy Isles Nature Center. There's the pioneer village near Wawona. There are ranger programs. There's Glacier Point.

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3. Re: Yosemite with a 7 year old

I guess it depends on your 7 year old. Does he/she like to walk and explore? There is a lot to see in Yosemite and I would think they would find it rather interesting. The Jr. Ranger program would be a good start, a hike to Vernal and/or Nevada Falls, Glacier Point, Taft Point, and Mariposa Grove are all great places to check out.

Oakland, California
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for Yosemite National Park
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4. Re: Yosemite with a 7 year old

We loved taking our kids to Yosemite when they were little. Does your 7 year old ride a bike? You can rent both adult and kids bikes at either Curry Village or Yosemite Lodge and follow the flat, paved bike trail around the valley floor. Pack a picnic and you have a real treat!

If you are visiting late enough in June that Glacier Point road is open, my other favorite hike with young ones is to the top of Sentinel Dome. It's a relatively easy hike even for little ones, and they can see where they're headed- to the top of a granite dome that looms in front of them- and when you get there you will have a spectacular 360 degree view.

Northern California
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5. Re: Yosemite with a 7 year old

I've been taking my kids to Yosemite every year since they were 3. They *LOVE* this park. Things we like to do:

Short hikes -- Mirror Lake, Vernal Falls. We always get a post-hike ice cream at either the Ahwanhee or Curry Village. My daughter got up to the top of Vernal falls at age 5 with a little help so it can be done.

Biking around the valley -- you can rent them

Beaches -- there are numerous beaches along the Merced River throughout the valley. Many you can bike to or walk from a shuttle stop. Fun just to hang out, throw rocks and wade in the stream.

Shuttle Bus -- They love just riding around taking in the sites on Yosemite's great free shuttle system.

Lemonade on the Ahwanee veranda -- great post-hike spot.

If Tioga Road is open, definitely plan a day up in Tuolumne Meadows. The hiking is easier (flat), the scene is stunning and there will be far fewer people. Tenaya Lake, Lembert Dome, Dog Lake, Tuolumne Meadows are all great choices.

We've literally stayed in every accommodation in Yosemite over the years. My kids most like renting a house (Yosemite West, The Redwoods near Wawona) and staying in tent cabins (especially White Wolf and Tuolumne Lodge).

Have a great time!

Mountain View...
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6. Re: Yosemite with a 7 year old

We have just returned from Yosemite with our 7 year old. She has loved it everytime we have been, in fact this weekend she chose to go to Yosemite over other locations.

This weekend we hiked to the top of Vernal Falls, she did really well with this and didn't encounter any problems despite her being small for her age.

Hiked to Mirror Lake, this is very flat and good after a strenuos day.

She also has a take along nature book for 'woods', this shows animals, plants, insects, trees... She loves to look up what things are.

When we have been and the waterfalls haven't been flowing as strong as at this time of year, she loves to climb on the rocks at Yosemite Falls.

We also saw a horse walk from the stables in the park this time which looked great, they take kids from 7 years of age.

There is loads for kids to do, its us parents who have trouble keeping up.

Have a great time

Salt Lake City, Utah
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7. Re: Yosemite with a 7 year old

That reminds me ... especially if the munchkin won't be done with their school year yet ...

take photos and have the little one 'tell'; about their Yosemite experience - make it an educational trip without compromising all the fun. Definately do the Junior Ranger booklet.

I've been doing the national park thing since my kidlets were little. One time, a booklet they did of Death Valley was so good, the teacher was able to use it as curriculum for other students.

New Orleans...
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8. Re: Yosemite with a 7 year old

We took our kids, ages 5 and 9 at the time, to Yosemite last July. Their favorite things we did- Rafting the Merced river, Wee Wild Ones Programs at Camp Curry, hike to Lower Yosemite Falls, beach at Housekeeping Camp, the museum and Indian village at Yosemite Village, and the Happy Isles Nature Center. Junior Ranger/Junior Cub program is very good- if you bring the completed book to any visitor center the rangers there will "swear in" your child as a junior ranger, very cool.

9. Re: Yosemite with a 7 year old

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