Upper and Lower Yosemite Falls, Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park, UNESCO World Heritage Site, Sierra Nevada, California, United States of America, North America

Getty Images/Robert Harding World Imagery

Yosemite Falls

Yosemite National Park

West of Yosemite Village, Yosemite Falls is considered the tallest waterfall in North America, dropping 2425ft (740m) in three tiers. A slick trail leads to the bottom or, if you prefer solitude, you can clamber up the Yosemite Falls Trail, which puts you atop the falls after a grueling 3.4 miles. The falls are usually mesmerizing, especially when the spring runoff turns them into thunderous cataracts, but are reduced to a trickle by late summer.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Yosemite National Park attractions

1. Yosemite Museum


The Yosemite Museum has Miwok and Paiute artifacts, including woven baskets, beaded buckskin dresses and dance capes made from feathers. Native American…

2. Ansel Adams Gallery

0.66 MILES

Few know about it, but original Ansel Adams photographic prints are shown at Yosemite Valley's Ansel Adams Gallery. A number of walks and classes are also…

3. Sentinel Bridge

0.73 MILES

This bridge over the Merced River has fantastic views of Half Dome and Yosemite Falls.

4. Yosemite Community Church

0.86 MILES

Built in 1879, this chapel is Yosemite’s oldest structure that still remains in use, including for weddings. In 1885, President Ulysses Grant's memorial…

5. Yosemite Conservation Heritage Center

1.29 MILES

Built by the Sierra Club in 1903, this small, rustic, granite-and-wood lodge offers a glimpse of a relatively unknown chapter of California architecture…

6. The Ahwahnee Hotel

1.31 MILES

About a quarter-mile east of Yosemite Village, The Ahwahnee is a picture of rustic elegance, dating back to 1927. You don’t need to be a…

7. Stoneman Bridge

1.51 MILES

An iconic spot, both as a perfect foreground structure for photos of Half Dome in the distance and for its simple, elegant single-arch stone design over…

8. Glacier Point

1.98 MILES

If you drove, the views from 7214ft Glacier Point might make you feel like you cheated – superstar sights present themselves without your having made…