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San Fransisco, Yosemite, and?

Old Jan 20th, 2007, 09:28 AM
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San Fransisco, Yosemite, and?

Hi, I've already discussed a 10 or 11 day trip to California in August. We are starting in San Fran for 4 days, then oovernight to Yosemite, then towards the coast, but where? We want to see Hearst Castle, Monterey, etc., and end in L.A. From Yosemite, where should we stop. Thanks so much, Singer
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 05:09 AM
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ttt
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 09:53 AM
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I would head straight to Monterey from Yosemite and then go south from there. I'd spend a night (or two) in Monterey, then head south through Big Sur. The Cambria/Morro Bay/San Luis Obispo area makes a nice stop for the next night. If you want to explore the Big Sur coast more, there are lodging options there as well. Just depends on what you want to do.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 11:33 AM
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I second Monterey and would also recommend Santa Barbara after.

Village of Solvang near Santa Barbara...beautiful.

8-)
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 04:29 PM
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Thank you so much for your help. Has any one ever stayed at the Tenaya Lodge in Yosemite?
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 04:33 PM
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You do know that Tenaya Lodge is not IN Yosemite? It is 2 miles outside the park entrance.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 04:41 PM
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I did not know that. Is that a bad thing?
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 04:46 PM
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Not necessarily, depending on your plans and what you want to get out of your Yosemite visit. I like to stay right in the Valley, where I can just step outside and gaze up at those incredible cliffs and waterfalls. But the Tenaya Lodge is much nicer than any of the accomodations in the valley. So you have to decide what you want.

It just annoys me a bit that they don't make it clear on their website that they are not "in" Yosemite, and are actually quite a few miles away from the valley. I'm not sure how long the drive takes---I'm sure someone else can tell you.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 05:09 PM
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You really do not have enough time in this vacation to see all you want to see. If you start with four days in San Francisco you are only left with 6 days to see Yosemite and the coast and Los Angeles. It will take close to 5 hours to drive from San Francisco to Yosemite and about the same time to get back to the coast. You will need at least a full day to just see some of the high points of Yosemite. Traffic tends to be bad in Yosemite in August so getting around takes time. The Tenaya lodge is nice but it is 45 minutes to an hour from the valley. You will need 2 nights in Yosemite. This leaves you with 4 days to get back to the coast and spend 1 night in Carmel/Monterey than drive down Big Sur. Stop for another night for Hearst Castle, than stop in Santa Barbara. This leaves you with less than 2 days to see Los Angeles. I would strongly suggest you cut out LA for another trip.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 05:37 PM
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I have been on trips in Yosemite, whhere I've been in the valley for from just 4 hours to 4 full days. All stays were great, and even an overnight would be okay.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 06:00 PM
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The yosemite lodge was reccommended to me, I will see if I could get a reservation. That is in the valley, right?
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 06:09 PM
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We had a similar trip a couple years ago. We went straight to Monterey from Yosemite and stayed there 2 nights at the Monterey Bay Resort and took a drive down only as far as Big Sur.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 06:17 PM
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If you want to head back to the coast, I preferred Carmel to Monterrey.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 10:43 PM
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Yes, the Yosemite Lodge is in the valley. In fact, it's right next to Yosemite Falls - great location. However, if you're going in August, good luck on getting a reservation. August is Yosemite's busiest month. The park will be very crowded.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2007, 01:02 AM
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If not able to find lodging on the Valley Floor, don't give up. You can have great luck most esp. one week before, when people need to cancel. (but often far in advance of that too...just depends when people cancel, if the night is all full at this point in time)

But you're still early. I think you might have luck. Yosemite Lodge is very central to everything. The accomodations are plain...but to be right on the Valley floor should be your goal, at least for Night #1. Just make sure you allow for 5 hrs from SF so you don't arrive in the dark. If you think that's not possible, then can stay outside gate & make Night #2 in the area on the Valley Floor.

Otherwise, if you can get there by nightfall... at the latest...stay on valley floor, and then spend full day in the Valley. If wanting to get partially 'on your way', then, stay Night #2 at the Tenaya Lodge, just outside the south gate.

Wait a second. Others will have to help here...I'm not positive which gate to go out of, to best reach Monterey/Carmel area, but if it's the south gate...Tenaya makes sense that night.

Actually there are threads here discussing this routing you're considering. That should tell you which hwy to take from Yosemite Valley. (and subsequently which 'gateway community' to stay in if needing one, one night. Good luck!
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Old Jan 22nd, 2007, 01:04 AM
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Another vote for Santa Barbara, btw, for an overnight on your trip. (and I'd also skip Los Angeles for sure,
if making choices) Just isn't all that distinct really, for squishing your time too much in other far more unique areas.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2007, 10:10 AM
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With only 1 night, I would stay in the valley if at all possible to maximize your time there. The Tenaya Lodge is nice, but as others have said, the distance from the valley is an issue.

From Yosemite to Monterey, either Hwy 41 or 140 will do fine. I think 41 is a little longer because you have to head south before you head west.

For the Monterey area itself, Monterey, Pacific Grove, and Carmel are all very close, so you can visit all 3 towns regardless of where you stay. Everyone has their preference. My recommendation is to do a little reading to see which town appeals to you most. I like Pacific Grove the best because it has great architecture, a beautiful coastline and a nice main street. Others like Carmel better because it is more upscale and has shopping and nice restaurants. Others like Monterey because it is bigger, has the wharf, etc. Just a matter of taste.
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Old Jan 23rd, 2007, 01:12 PM
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Thank you all for your input; I really appreciate it. I will let you know how it worked.
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