What to do near Wawona and The Redwoods

By: Jessica Bay
dog sits in suitcase
Robbins unpacking. Photo by The Redwoods In Yosemite.

Yosemite National Park covers an area roughly the size of Rhode Island. While Yosemite Valley headliners like Half Dome, El Capitan and Bridalveil Fall attract many visitors, Wawona is a lesser-traveled gem that promises one-of-a-kind experiences. The Redwoods In Yosemite calls this tiny Highway 41 town home. Tucked between the park’s south gate and Yosemite Valley, Wawona features stellar dog-friendly trails within the national park.

On-leash dogs love the 3.5-mile Wawona Meadow Loop Trail, which picks up near the Wawona Hotel. Fir trees line segments of this scenic path that winds into a wide meadow. Interested in skating? Head to the ice rink about 10 miles away at Tenaya Lodge. The Redwoods is also near seasonal ski and snowshoe routes in the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias. With more than 500 trees, it’s Yosemite’s largest sequoia grove and home to mainstays like the California Tunnel Tree and the Grizzly Giant. 

Wawona’s Yosemite History Center showcases this treasured park through interpretive displays and original structures. Swing by the Wawona Library for a true local experience. Nearby, the free Thomas Hill Studio spotlights the 19th-century artist known for Yosemite landscape paintings. These activities are minutes from The Redwoods In Yosemite. After exploring, there’s nothing better than relaxing in your vacation home with family members and four-legged friends.