We flew economy with Air New Zealand. I found the seats quite good for economy and the service was good too.
Our first stop was Mariposa, we stayed at the Mariposa Lodge. It is just outside Yosemite. A good location to travel into the National Park and spend the day exploring. A dated hotel but clean and comfortable with all basic amenities needed.
We spent the day at Yosemite, did a bus tour of the iconic sights, had lunch and also checked out the Ahwahnee Hotel. It is located right inside Yosemite. A beautiful hotel with everything needed to have a special getaway right in the heart of the National Park.
The next stop was Tenaya Lodge. In the mountains practically in Yosemite National Park. We stayed in the Explorer Cabins. These were fantastic. Brand new and very well appointed. Amazing facilities and great service. Would definitely recommend for anyone wanted to explore and stay near Yosemite. Great for families too.
They have a daily happy hour by the large fire pit. It was a lot of fun and good opportunity to socialise with other guests. We loved making S’mores around the fire, these were supplied by the hotel too.
We continued on to South Lake Tahoe. We stayed 3 nights at Tahoe Lakeshore Lodge & Spa. This was the best location for the area if you want to be on Lake Tahoe. All rooms have great lake views. Again the property is dated but great service and amenities for any length of stay. Also popular for families and close to shopping, beaches and many other tourist attractions.
While in Tahoe we did a hike to see Emerald Bay, then a 2 hour cruise to see the lake and Emerald Bay from the water.
We visited Taylor Creek and saw the abundance of salmon. Looked at for bears but did not spy one.
Lots of night life too. If you are wanting to venture across the state line to Nevada there are a few big casinos just minutes away.
We went to the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. A great hotel with great food and entertainment.
Lake Tahoe is a popular year round destination. Lots of beaches for summer fun and in winter it is buzzing with the snow skiing enthusiasts making their way to Heavenly Ski Resort. The Heavenly Village was good to visit and would be great to see during the snow season.
Our last day we traveled to San Francisco to spend a few hours at Fisherman’s Wharf. It was a lot of fun. Some great attractions. I definitely recommend the 7D Experience and The Flyer – both virtual rides and good fun.
Then it was onto the airport to fly home. All in all and good first USA road trip!