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On The Way to Bass Lake, Don’t Miss the Madera Wine Trail Wineries

Posted by on Aug 31, 2020 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

Central California’s Madera County is the largest rural county in the state and home to the Madera Wine Trail. The landscape stretches from productive farmlands to rolling foothills and upward into the High Sierra. It’s no mystery why this countryside has been winemaking since the 1800s, the weather is warm, the skies are clear and the snowcapped mountain tops nourish the foothills and central valley. “Visitors from across the state are taking notice of the amazing adventures they can find in the heart of California. People don’t have far to travel to find outdoor options that give plenty of space for social distancing. Plus, we have sunshine more than 300 days of the year,” says Rhonda Salisbury, CEO, Visit Yosemite | Madera County. “Not only can people play here year-round, but excellent wine grapes grow here, too. Maximizing a...

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Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad is Back with The Moonlight Special

Posted by on Jun 18, 2020 in Events, Featured, Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad is back riding the narrow gauge rails through the Sierra Nevada, just four miles from the south gate of Yosemite National Park. With daily rides departing at 9:00 A.M and 11:30 A.M., and weekend excursions at 1:00 P.M. and 2:30 P.M. Young and old alike will enjoy wind-in-your-hair moments through the tall pine trees and sweet-smelling bear clover. And now, another fan favorite returns for the season: The Moonlight Special Every Wednesday and Saturday at 6:30 P.M.​​​​ Seating is very limited and reservations are required. The night begins with a barbeque dinner served on the socially distanced outdoor picnic tables. Live musical entertainment at the station, an evening steam train ride, a sing-a-long at a roaring campfire located at the halfway point in the forest, and ends with a ride back to the station...

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Summer Fun at Tenaya Lodge

Posted by on Aug 1, 2017 in Kia, Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Tenaya Lodge is our favorite place to create family memories. We have visited many times during the winter months and had yet to visit during the summer until recently. While on a weekend getaway to Yosemite, we drove our Kia Sorento to Tenaya Lodge to enjoy some of their fun summer activities. We started our day at Tenaya by having lunch and swimming in their large pool. Tenaya has a beautiful pool area complete with a family pool, adult pool, and toddler pool. It is nice and spread out so that families don’t feel cramped when visiting during the peak summer months. After getting settled in our cabana for the day, the server came over to take our lunch order. There are a wide variety of drink and food options at...

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Lunch at the Majestic Yosemite Hotel

Posted by on Jan 6, 2017 in Dining, Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We dined as a guest of the venue For as long as I can remember, I have dreamed of having the opportunity to dine at the Majestic Yosemite Hotel (previously Ahwahnee) and during my recent trip to Yosemite, my dream came true. When making reservations for our tour of Yosemite National Park with Discover Yosemite, we were able to include lunch at the Majestic. When we arrived at the Majestic Yosemite Hotel for lunch, there was a red carpet waiting for us. We walked the red carpet and into the dining room. The dining room was truly “majestic, ” and it felt like we were dining in a castle. We had pre-ordered our lunch when booking our tour, so everything was taken care of when we arrived. My daughter and I sipped on an ice tea and talked about...

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Yosemite Guided Snowshoe Hike

Posted by on Jan 4, 2017 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We stayed as a guest of Tenaya One thing that I have always been wanting to try is a snowshoe hike. When I was visiting Tenaya Lodge in Yosemite this year, I made reservations at the hotel concierge to take my daughter with me on a snowshoe hike. We met our tour guide in the lobby, and she brought us to a closet to be fitted for our snow shoes. Since there was not enough snow on the ground to wear traditional snowshoes, we ended up doing the hike with “spiked” snow shoes. The snowshoe wrapped around our snow boots, and we were ready to start our hike. The tour guide took us on a beautiful hike that starts right at the Tenaya Lodge parking lot. The trail leads to a magnificent creek that is adorned with ice crystals....

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Jackalope’s Bar & Grill at Tenaya Lodge

Posted by on Jan 1, 2017 in Dining, Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We dined as a guest of the venue There are so many dining options when staying at Tenaya Lodge in Yosemite, and one of my favorite places to have lunch when staying at the resort is at Jackalope’s Bar & Grill. The restaurant has a wide variety of dining options and has a family-friendly ambiance. On one of the days when I was staying at Tenaya Lodge, my daughter and I went on an adventurous snowshoe hike. We got to look at trees and make snow angels while embracing the beauty that surrounds Yosemite National Park. After our hike, we had worked up quite a big appetite, so we went for an early lunch at Jackalope’s Bar & Grill. They had a lot of healthy dining suggestions on their menu, and our server recommended that I try the taco...

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Discover Yosemite Tour

Posted by on Dec 28, 2016 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We visited as a guest Yosemite is a beautiful place to visit in the winter, but many families get nervous about driving around in the National Park when there is snow and ice on the ground. When I went to Tenaya Lodge on a Mother/Daughter weekend getaway, I didn’t want to drive around Yosemite in the snow alone with my daughter, so we made reservations with the hotel concierge to have a tour of Yosemite National Park with Discover Yosemite Tours. The morning of our tour, my daughter started the day with a relaxing yoga class at Ascent Spa, and then we met our driver for the day, Glenn. Glenn greeted all the children on our tour with coloring books and provided the adults with a map of Yosemite. He told us a little bit about himself and then...

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Skates and S’mores at Tenaya Lodge

Posted by on Dec 21, 2016 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

  I love making s’mores, and I also love ice skating. Here in Southern California where we live, it doesn’t get cold enough to build a fire to make s’mores, and it rarely ever gets cold enough to the point where you want to go ice skating. When my mom showed me the itinerary for our trip together to Tenaya Lodge, and I saw s’more making and ice skating on our schedule, and I got so excited. Whenever we travel somewhere cold, my brothers and I almost always try to go ice skating. We also love making s’mores. The only thing that I was sad about was that I didn’t have my brothers to go ice skating with, but when we arrived at the resort, there were other kids that I had the chance to get to know and...

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Best Yosemite Hiking Trail for Young Children

Posted by on Dec 17, 2016 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of Tenaya Yosemite is one of the most beautiful places that I have visited in the world. After coming back from a mother/daughter getaway to Yosemite, I have been getting a lot of questions about whether or not there are hiking trails fit for younger children. In the past, I have always recommended the Mirror Lake trail because it is mostly paved (good for strollers) but on this trip, I discovered my new favorite trail for younger children, Lower Yosemite Falls Hiking Trail. I wish that I could take credit for discovering this awesome Yosemite trail, but it is all thanks to our incredible tour guide with Discover Yosemite Tours, Glenn. Glenn knows every detail about Yosemite National Park, and since we had a lot of young families with small children on our tour,...

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Southgate Brewing Company Beer Tasting Dinner

Posted by on Dec 15, 2016 in Dining, Family, Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We dined as a guest of the resort After a fun day exploring Yosemite National Park, we returned to Tenaya Lodge to have a beer tasting dinner featuring beers from the popular Brewery, Southgate Brewing Company. Southgate Brewing Company is located near Yosemite in Oakhurst and is a favorite dining spot for locals and visitors of the area. They are known for making the best brews in the area along with delicious bites. I am not a big beer drinker, but I fell in love with all the beers I tasted during the tasting with the Tenaya Red IPA being my all-time favorite. The tasting dinner began with coconut shrimp with a cucumber cilantro sauce paired with the Gold Diggin Blonde beer. The shrimp had the perfect amount of crisp and the beer brought out the flavors of the...

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Creating Holiday Memories at Tenaya Lodge

Posted by on Dec 13, 2016 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Tenaya Lodge is the perfect place for your family to relax, reconnect and get into the holiday spirit. The first night that we arrived at Tenaya, we enjoyed an intimate wine tasting in the lobby with exquisite wines from Idle Hour Winery and then we had a festive Mix and Mingle dinner with Kris Kringle. The minute that we stepped foot into the room, we were transported into a magical world filled with the Christmas spirit. There was live music playing, a large variety of culinary options and Kris Kringle himself. We savored the culinary creations made by the chefs at Tenaya while listening to the beautiful music. Once my daughter was done enjoying her dinner, she sat on Santa’s lap and told him everything on her Christmas wish list. Once...

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Morning Yoga at Tenaya Lodge

Posted by on Dec 12, 2016 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We stayed as a guest of the venue During my stay at Tenaya Lodge, I woke up early and got to take a morning yoga class. There is literally no better way to start the day than with relaxing your body. Yoga is something that I really enjoy doing to calm my senses and forget about all of the chaos of the real world. When my mom told me I was going to be doing yoga while in Yosemite, I couldn’t wait! When I got up in the morning, I put on my yoga pants and headed down to Ascent Spa. When I was at the spa, I went to a mat and started doing some easy yoga poses. Once the class had begun, I was in my own little world of yoga. The instructor had us doing basic...

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Idle Hour Winery Tasting in Yosemite

Posted by on Dec 12, 2016 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue After driving from Orange County to Yosemite, I was ready to spend the evening relaxing. We checked into our room at Tenaya Lodge and then joined our friends for some small bites and sips of wine from the popular Idle Hour Winery in Oakhurst. While the adults were tasting the different wines crafted by one of the most talented winemakers in the region, Anna Marie dos Remedios, the kids enjoyed cups of warm hot cocoa with mini marshmallows. Idle Hour Winery is owned and operated by Anna Marie dos Remedios and Deb Payne who started the winery focusing on these traditional methods: native yeast fermentation, gravity flow racking and the use of neutral French Oak. The wines boasted rich flavors, and the tasting was the perfect start to our vacation in...

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The World’s Largest Treehouse at Bravo Farms

Posted by on Feb 18, 2016 in Cool Places, Road Trips, Yosemite | 1 comment

While on our way to Yosemite National Park, we had to make many stops along the way. While on one of our stops along the freeway, we discovered the world famous seven story treehouse at Bravo Farms in Traver. It was one of the most exciting discoveries while on our adventure, and one of the neatest places to explore while on your way to visiting Yosemite. We could have spent all day at Bravo Farms, and had trouble getting the kids to leave. There are nicknacks galore and so many neat little things to discover. The world’s tallest treehouse is the highlight of visiting Bravo Farms. It is seven stories, and I even had fun climbing up the small wooden staircase to the top of the massive treehouse. Playing in the treehouse is free, however, a donation is greatly...

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Best Lunch Spot in Yosemite Valley: Degnan’s Deli

Posted by on Jan 22, 2016 in Dining, Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

There was so much to see while visiting the Yosemite National Park, and we didn’t want to stop exploring to sit down and eat lunch, but we had to get some nutrition to keep fueling our adventure. Since we didn’t want to waste too much time sitting down to eat, we went to the small Degnan’s Deli when ended up being one of the best lunch spots in Yosemite Valley. The line to order a sandwich was horrible. It wrapped around the entire deli, and my kids had a couple of meltdowns while we waited to get to the front and order our sandwiches. Once we placed our sandwich order, they were made within just a few minutes. The prices were high, but that was to be expected when ordering lunch inside of a National Park. Once we took...

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Sierra Club Memorial LeConte Lodge in Yosemite

Posted by on Jan 21, 2016 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

One of the things that I couldn’t wait to see while in Yosemite was the Sierra Club Memorial LeConte Lodge. I’ve been a long time supporter of the Sierra Club and visiting the LeConte Lodge has been on my bucket list for most of life. Unfortunately, the day that we were visiting Yosemite, the lodge was closed, but that didn’t stop me from walking around the historical landmark and capturing some pictures from my visit. The LeConte Memorial Lodge in the Yosemite National Park was built by the Sierra Club in 1903. The location has been the valley’s first public information center since 1898. It is a place where guests visiting the park can learn about the Sierra Club, take advantage of public programs and visit the beautiful library. The lodge was styled by its founders, in the traditional...

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Majestic Mirror Lake Trail at Yosemite National Park

Posted by on Jan 20, 2016 in Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

Our last stop when exploring the Yosemite National Park was to Mirror Lake. It was getting late, and we needed to get back to the car to head back to the Tenaya Lodge, but I couldn’t leave the National Park without seeing this lake that I have heard so much about over the years. We had parked in Curry Village and took the complimentary shuttle that took us to the start of the Mirror Lake Trail. The trail was paved and wide, so we didn’t feel crowded at all. There were restrooms located at the beginning of the trail, 1/2 and the lake. If you are bringing small children, there are plenty of places for them to stop. The trail took about 45 minutes one way to reach the opening of the lake. The trail does continue after first...

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See Yosemite Falls from The Swinging Bridge Trail in Yosemite National Park

Posted by on Jan 18, 2016 in Travel, Yosemite | 1 comment

When our family was planning a visit to the Yosemite National Park, we were struggling with finding information about hiking trails that were geared towards younger children. We wanted to see Yosemite Falls from a kid-friendly trail in Yosemite. We didn’t want to have to walk miles with complaining children to see the majestic falls, and we were lucky to have a local recommend seeing Yosemite Falls from The Swinging Bridge Trail. The swinging bridge trail was easy to spot while driving through the Yosemite National Park. There was a small parking lot on the side of the road, and parking was a little bit of a challenge. We had to take our time waiting for a parking spot, but finally, we got a spot. You can’t miss it – just look for the giant bridge along the side...

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Yosemite Lewis Creek Trail to Corlieu Falls

Posted by on Dec 26, 2015 in Kia, Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

Yosemite is beautiful beyond measure. The only downside is that it can be challenging to find a “child-friendly” trail that is not crowded, and you need to be able to hike a longer distance to enjoy the beauty of the National Park without the crowds. While we were talking to some locals that were visiting Tenaya Lodge for the holiday tree lighting, they had recommended that we stop at Lewis Creek Trail on our way home to see Corlieu Falls. The trail was at a lower elevation, so we didn’t have to worry about there being too much ice on the trail, and there was plenty of parking at the turn-out. We parked the 2016 Kia Sorento that we drove to Yosemite, and embarked on our favorite hike of our visit to Yosemite National Park. The beginning of the...

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Winter Magic at the Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad

Posted by on Dec 10, 2015 in Featured, Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

It is the most magical time of the year to visit Yosemite National Park. While visiting over Thanksgiving weekend, we were surprised to have arrived the day following a major snowfall. The entire park was covered with a blanket of fresh white snow, and the Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad kept running throughout the weekend. Thanksgiving weekend was the final weekend of the season for the Yosemite family attraction, and it was magical to ride the train while snowflakes were falling from the sky. When we first arrived at the train station, we kept warm from the cold winter air by walking around their gift shop. The kids were able to pick out a small souvenir while sipping on a cup of hot cocoa. Once our train tickets were purchased, we walked over to the Thornberry Museum where the...

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Bridalveil Fall Trail in Yosemite National Park

Posted by on Dec 9, 2015 in Travel, Yosemite | 3 comments

After getting a good nights sleep at the Tenaya Lodge, we woke up early to drive into Yosemite National Park. We slowly made our way into the park on the snow covered roads, and made our first stop at the Bridalveil Fall Trail. There was a wait to find a parking spot as families from all over the National Park were eager to see this natural wonder. Once we were able to get a parking spot, the kids used the onsite restrooms before embarking on our journey along the popular trail. Since it has just snowed about two days before visiting the trail, it was very icy. There were people slipping, sliding and falling all along the trail, so we took it very (very) slow. The trail is short and only took us about 10-15 minutes to reach the...

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