Yosemite is the perfect vacation destination for any family. There are many things for parents to do with their children while visiting the Park, ranging from mild hiking and sightseeing to thrilling white water rafting or zip lining through the pines! Horseback riding, walking tours, and even a historic Railroad Museum make for a vacation filled with history and wonder.
Take a Hike
Gather up the family and friends and go for a walk along one of the many trails Yosemite has to offer! Most trails offer easy to moderate walking, making burning youthful energy a breeze!
Tip for extra fulfillment: Bring your lunch with you on your hike and make a family picnic out of it!
Become Junior Rangers
Your children, that is. At Yosemite, there are two self-guided “junior ranger” programs for children. Those ages 3 to 6 have the opportunity to become “Little Cubs” and earn an official button by completing various activities throughout the park—these activities are set out in The Little Cub Handbook, found in the Visitor Centers throughout the Park.Those ages 7 to 13 have the opportunity to become “Junior Rangers” after completing the program and receiving a certificate and patch.
Tip for extra fulfillment: Have your child come up with his or her own “Ranger Motto” (maybe it’s about safety or nature) that the whole family can say, sing or live by during the course of your vacation!
Enjoy a Bike Ride
Yosemite Valley offers families the best park bicycle riding opportunities. If you don’t bring your own bicycle to Yosemite, there are locations to rent bicycles at Yosemite Lodge or Curry Village.
Tip for extra fulfillment: Bike to a new place in Yosemite Park that you’ve never been before and experience something new!
Visit Happy Isles
The Nature Center at Happy Isles in Yosemite Valley is devoted to children, displaying exhibits, nightlife, and a number of presentations. There are books for sale on a variety of topics to explore and enjoy!
Tip for extra fulfillment: Check out an “Explorer Pack” and have your child share some of their newfound knowledge to you like a true Park Ranger would!
Take a Bus Tour
Take a bus and go on a Yosemite tour. There are guided bus and tram tours through most of the spring, summer and fall, covering a variety of destinations throughout the Park.
Both the Merced River and Tuolumne River offer rafting trips ranging from mild to strenuous. Guides will help you determine you and your families level, to ensure a safe but exhiliarating experience.
An exciting 4-mile railroad excursion at Yosemite National Park’s South Gateway along Hwy 41. Ride back into history when powerful locomotives once hauled massive log trains through the Sierras. (559) 683-7273