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  • Address: Half Dome, Yosemite National Park, CA, USA
  • Admission: Varies
Iconic Half Dome rises 5,000 feet (1,524 meters) above the floor of Yosemite Valley. Perhaps one of the most famous hikes in Yosemite National Park, Half Dome was once considered impossible to climb. Now hundreds of park visitors reach this magnificent granite formation’s summit each day, and countless more gaze at its towering face from below.

The Basics
Spend any time at all in Yosemite, and you’re sure to catch a glimpse of postcard-perfect Half Dome. Sightseeing tours through the park—including full-day and multi-day trips from Fresno, San Francisco, and Los Angeles—offer plenty of views and photo ops of the park’s distinctive peak. For adventure travelers, climbing to the top is somewhat of a rite of passage: The intense round-trip hike is about 15 miles (24 kilometers) with a 4,800-foot (1,463-meter) elevation gain. A guided hike to the top is a full-day affair, and the spectacular panoramic views from the summit are well worth the effort.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Half Dome is a must-see for adventure travelers, outdoor enthusiasts, and photographers.
  • Hiking Half Dome requires a permit, so be sure to apply well in advance.
  • If hiking, wear sturdy and comfortable footwear suitable for walking over uneven surfaces, as well as sun protection, and bring gloves to ascend the metal cables that line the final stretch of the route.
  • Along the trail, flush toilets are located at the Vernal Fall Footbridge, and composting toilets are available at Emerald Pool (above Vernal Fall), at the top of Nevada Fall, and in Little Yosemite Valley.

How to Get There
The top of Half Dome is accessible only via a strenuous round-trip hike. If you’re not hiking to the top (or don’t have a permit), take the park shuttle to Sentinel Bridge or drive up to Glacier Point for excellent views of the peak.

When to Get There
The cables that allow visitors to summit Half Dome usually go up just before Memorial Day and come down after Columbus Day, depending on the weather. Never attempt to ascend if you see storm clouds. If you’re in the park around sunset, make your way to Sentinel Bridge to see Half Dome illuminated by the setting sun.

The Infamous Half Dome Cables
One of the most notorious parts of the hike to the top of Half Dome is the last 400 feet (122 meters), where hikers are aided by two metal cables to summit the stone face without the need for rock-climbing equipment. The predecessor to today’s modern cables were laid by George Anderson, when he successfully reached the summit in 1875.

Tours & Tickets

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Guided Half Dome Hike, Yosemite National Park, null
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Guided Half Dome Hike

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 2 Reviews

For hiking enthusiasts, the trek to Yosemite’s Half Dome is a rite of passage — one that many hikers prepare for with training. Take the strenuous challenge on ...  Read more

Location: Yosemite, California
Duration: 12 hours (approx.)

From USD $165.00
Yosemite in a Day Tour from San Francisco, San Francisco, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 2 ADMISSION : 3

Yosemite in a Day Tour from San Francisco

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 53 Reviews

Take a day trip from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park, described as the crown jewel the country's many splendid national parks. You will be guided on a ...  Read more

Location: San Francisco, California
Duration: 14 hours (approx.)

From USD $159.00
Yosemite National Park and Giant Sequoias Trip, San Francisco, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 2 ADMISSION : 5

Yosemite National Park and Giant Sequoias Trip

4.5 star rating: Recommended 1492 Reviews

Take time out for a day trip into the wild beauty of Yosemite National Park from San Francisco. You'll spend 5 – 6 hours inside the park with a combination of ...  Read more

Location: San Francisco, California
Duration: 14 hours (approx.)

From USD $171.00
Small-Group Yosemite Tour from San Francisco, San Francisco, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 2 ADMISSION : 5

Small-Group Yosemite Tour from San Francisco

4.5 star rating: Recommended 81 Reviews

Yosemite National Park is a must-visit California gem, and this day trip from San Francisco makes it easy. Leave the urban hustle-bustle behind and journey ...  Read more

Location: San Francisco, California
Duration: 15 hours (approx.)

From USD $149.00
Yosemite and Glacier Point Day Tour, Yosemite National Park, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 2 ADMISSION : 5

Yosemite and Glacier Point Day Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 29 Reviews

Departing Fresno or Oakhurst, this 9-hour tour of Yosemite National Park covers some of the Yosemite Valley's natural highlights. Capture photos of Bridalveil ...  Read more

Location: Fresno, California
Duration: Flexible

From USD $139.00
2-Day Semi-Guided Tour of Yosemite National Park from San Francisco, San Francisco, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 2 ADMISSION : 5

2-Day Semi-Guided Tour of Yosemite National Park from San Francisco

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 14 Reviews

Calling all adventurers and independent travelers! Maximize your visit to Yosemite with an overnight stay on this comprehensive 2-day tour from San Francisco. ...  Read more

Location: San Francisco, California
Duration: 2 days (approx.)

From USD $313.00
Yosemite Valley Tour, Yosemite National Park, Multi-day Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 2 ADMISSION : 5

Yosemite Valley Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 3 Reviews

The Yosemite Valley Adventure Tour is a tour of the Yosemite Valley highlighting major points of interest and visiting popular locations you will later dream ...  Read more

Location: Yosemite Valley, California
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $110.00
Yosemite National Park and Giant Sequoias Trip from San Jose, San Jose, Hiking & Camping
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 2 ADMISSION : 5

Yosemite National Park and Giant Sequoias Trip from San Jose

3 star rating: Worth doing 2 Reviews

Take time out for a day trip into the wild beauty of Yosemite National Park from San Jose. You'll spend 5 – 6 hours inside the park with a combination of ...  Read more

Location: San Jose, California
Duration: 14 hours (approx.)

From USD $205.00
Yosemite Day Hike from Glacier Point Including Panorama Trail, Yosemite National Park, Full-day ... 
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 2 ADMISSION : 5

Yosemite Day Hike from Glacier Point Including Panorama Trail

Trek alongside three major waterfalls in Yosemite National Park — Illilouette Fall, Nevada Fall and Vernal Fall — on this full-day guided hike. After a shuttle ...  Read more

Location: Yosemite, California
Duration: 9 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $140.00
Private Full Day in Yosemite National Park from San Francisco, San Francisco, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 2 ADMISSION : 5

Private Full Day in Yosemite National Park from San Francisco

This is a Private Tour up to 7 persons only! NOT A BUS TOUR ! With private luxury transport and chauffeur concierge for the day, escape from San Francisco ...  Read more

Location: San Francisco, California
Duration: 14 hours (approx.)

From USD $249.00

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