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Tenaya Lodge At Yosemite: Lodging As Memorable As Yosemite Valley Itself!

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The tagline of Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite says it all!

Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite: Unforgettable Lodging at Yosemite National Park!

I can heartily affirm this statement. So often, when lodging in a US national park you expect to stay in a rustic cabin or a tent. Admittedly, there is a certain charm that goes with that and I certainly enjoy those experiences. But, every now and then, a girl wants a bit of luxury after a day of hiking and keeping up with littles!

Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite provided that and so much more. In this Tenaya Lodge review you will learn why Tenaya Lodge has been voted as the Best Family Resort by Sunset Magazine.

Where should I stay when visiting Yosemite?

Certainly, the answer on where to stay in Yosemite is a subjective one and, for many, camping in Yosemite is the quintessential national park experience.

However, our visit to Yosemite National Park with the kids was part of a three week road trip through California and camping wasn’t part of the plan. In fact, after the less than pleasant accommodations we had encountered in Sequoia National Park, Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite was a welcome change!

Right from the moment you drive onto the property, you will know that Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite is a special place! When you step into the stunning lobby, you feel transported to an era when wealthy businessmen and their families went away to an elite lodge for an extended family vacation. I could almost picture the men from Downton Abbey coming here for a hunting weekend!

tenaya lodge lobby

We were immediately in awe of the beauty and grandeur of Tenaya Lodge the moment we pulled up and stepped into the lobby.  The decor is exactly what you would expect for a lodge tucked away in the Sierra Nevada mountains and it met my every expectation for a mountain getaway. Speaking of luxury weekend getaway, check out these California romantic getaway ideas.  

Lobby of Tenaya Lodge

How Far Is Fish Camp From Yosemite?

Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite is located in Fish Camp, CA on the south entrance to Yosemite National Park. One of the best things about Tenaya Lodge is its location. No need to worry that Tenaya Lodge is too far away from Yosemite.

If you know anything about Yosemite National Park, you know that getting into the park can be a long wait, especially if you don’t arrive early. It is a very quick and easy 7 minute drive from Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite. This was perfect for us! We were up and into the park BEFORE the gate was even open. I also loved coming in on the south entrance as it gave us a chance right away to visit the Pioneer Yosemite Visitor Center which proved to be a highlight of our visit to Yosemite National Park.

Pioneer Yosemite Visitor Center

What Is There To Do At Tenaya Lodge?

I know I said that the location was one of the best things about Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite, but one of the other best things about Tenaya Lodge are the numerous things to do for the whole family.

Tenaya Lodge Pools

Sadly, our time was rather short so we were unable to take advantage of most of them, but you know we didn’t miss our opportunity to check out the pools! Our room was just down the hall from the main building indoor pool.  We passed by it on our way in and out of the resort so, as you can imagine, the kids were eager to get a chance to try it out.  It was heated so even mom enjoyed it!

Tenaya Lodge Indoor Pool

The outdoor pool and hot tub were equally enjoyed on our second evening after a day exploring Yosemite. 

Tenaya Lodge Pools and Front

Tenaya Lodge Activities

If you are planning a more than just a couple of days, be sure to take advantage of all the onsite activities. This place is like a Disney Resort! Activities throughout the week include:

  • Roasting S’mores
  • Archery
  • Bike Tours
  • Guided Hiking Flashlight Hike to experience the majesty of the milky way and surrounding nature by night
  • Mountain Biking
  • Day and Evening Camps for the kids
Tenaya Lodge Activities

Tenaya Lodge Rooms

After our long drive up from Sequoia National Park, our room at Tenaya Lodge was just what we needed. When making Tenaya Lodge reservations, there are many room types to choose from. We chose a standard double bed room, but depending upon your length of stay and family size, you may wish to consider the Tenaya Lodge Cottages or the brand new Two-Bedroom Explorer Cabins.

Tenaya Lodge Premium Rooms

Tenaya Lodge Premium & Deluxe Rooms

The standard Tenaya Lodge Premium rooms are located in the main lodge and are very well appointed. Tenaya Lodge standard and deluxe rooms are convenient to the main restaurants, indoor and outdoor pools, and spa services. The standard room size starts at 350 sq. feet which I appreciated with our family size, but if you need even more room you can upgrade to a deluxe room for an additional 100 square feet.

Room types:

  • Deluxe 2 Qn 350 sq. ft
  • Premium 1 King 350 sq. ft
  • Deluxe Extended room: 2 Qn beds with sitting area, balcony, and mountain views offering 450 sq. ft

*Pet friendly rooms also available for an additional $100 per pet, per stay. Only dogs are allowed at a maximum of 2 per room.

Check rates on Tenaya Lodge Rooms

Tenaya Lodge Cottages

If you want a more rustic outdoorsy feel to your room, you might consider the Tenaya Lodge Cottages located on the lower end of the resort.  

These adorable cottages are on the lower level of the resort property and are a bit far from the outdoor pools and main restaurants.  However, there is a great pizza restaurant nearby and Tenaya Lodge shuttles will carry you from the main hotel to the cottages so it’s not really a deal breaker if you want a more spacious unit.

NOTE: Coming Summer 2019 Brand New 2 Bedroom Explorer Cabins

Tenaya Lodge Cottages
Room Size: ~335 sq. ft
2 Queen Beds with Mountain Views

Check rates on Tenaya Lodge Rooms

You might also enjoy 5 Free Things To Do in Santa Barbara, California

Tenaya Lodge Restaurants

There are four main restaurants located on Tenaya Lodge property. 

  • Sierra Restaurant- The main dining area offering a fabulous Breakfast buffet and casual dinner atmosphere
  • Jackalope’s Bar & Grill adjacent to Sierra restaurant offering pub atmosphere with sandwiches, salads, and burgers as well as a full service bar
  • Embers- For a more elegant dining experience 
  • Timberloft Pizzaria- Located near the Tenaya Lodge cottages offering brick oven pizza in a relaxed atomosphere

We dined at all of these restaurants except Embers.  Sierra restaurant breakfast is fabulous, however, our dining experience was not as pleasant.  We preferred Timberloft or Jackalope’s for dinner. 

Tenaya Lodge Restaurants
Sierra Restaurant Tenaya Lodge

Getting from Tenaya Lodge to Yosemite Valley

Located on Hwy 41, Fish Camp, is about 1 mile from the southern gate entrance into Yosemite National Park. Due to it’s rural mountainous terrain, check Fish Camp weather and road conditions if visiting Tenaya Lodge in the winter. Chains may be required to access the area.  CalTrans will have local road conditions.

Getting from Tenaya Lodge to Yosemite Valley is relatively easy by car.  You can expect about an hour from Tenaya to Glacier Point and an hour and 15 minutes on into Yosemite Valley.  However, you will enter the park within 10 minutes of leaving Tenaya Lodge.  I was pleasanty surprised by this.  Despite taking an hour to reach our final destinations within the park, that hour is met by beautiful scenery and other activities.  Read our post on visiting Glacier point for more ideas. 

Upon exiting the resort, you will head south on Hwy-41 toward Wawona road into Yosemite National Park.   Follow the directions below for Yosemite Valley.  

Tenaya Lodge to Yosemite Valley

  1. Head south 456 ft
  2. Continue straight 0.3 mi
  3. Turn right onto CA-41 N
  4. Partial toll road 2.6 mi
  5. At the traffic circle, take the 2nd exit onto Wawona Rd
  6. Toll road 26.2 mi
  7. Slight right onto Southside Dr
  8. Partial toll road 4.1 mi
  9. Turn left onto Sentinel Drive
  10. Toll road 0.3 mi
  11. Turn left onto Northside Dr
  12. Toll road 0.5 mi
  13. Arrive At Yosemite Valley

A Few Other Things To Know About Tenaya Lodge At Yosemite

Tenaya Lodge was definitely a treat for our family on our road trip through California.  The attention to detail and customer service on the whole were up there with our best Disney experiences.  However, on that note, I will add that the prices at Tenaya Lodge were also in line with our Disney experience.  They weren’t cheap!  

Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite National Park

Should you choose to splurge on this hotel for your family and need to save a bit on dining, Oakhurst is a 20 minute drive and offers your standard fast food.  However, we recommend you just bring along some extra food for your hiking and lunches and enjoy the fine breakfast at Tenaya Lodge.  You can always split a hamburger or share a big plate of chicken wings for dinner from Jackalope’s to save a bit later in the day. 

If you are looking for an extra touch of luxury during your visit to Yosemite National Park, we highly recommend Tenaya Lodge in Fish Camp, CA.  We are confident you won’t be disappointed. 

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