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“Giant trees. deep canyon, beautiful wilderness” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park

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Fort Worth, Texas
Level Contributor
61 reviews
548 helpful votes
“Giant trees. deep canyon, beautiful wilderness”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 7, 2007

My family and I loved Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park. A beautiful wilderness wonderland highlighted by hundreds of giant Sequoias and a harrowing, beautiful drive to the bottom of Kings Canyon. We spent several days here, probably should have spent more because this is such a wonderful place. If you go, walk up to the top of Moro Rock, walk through the giant grove of Sequoias and drive to the bottom of Kings Canyon. The Sequoias are such giant, beautiful trees, but almost impossible to photograph because of their size. This Sierra Nevada wilderness is a hikers delight, hundreds of miles of trails. The park is probably the most isolated area in the lower U.S. If solitude is what you need, you won't have any problems finding it here. A great place for the family, I highly recommend it.

5 Thank randallboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marin county, CA
Level Contributor
9 reviews
91 helpful votes
“amazing trees, generally relaxing but lodgepole is mobbed”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2007

Go see this national park. It is an amazing place, especially if you like canyon views and amazing forests.

It is not as crowded as Yosemite. There are fewer sights to see but it is quite beautiful.

The lodges don't have air conditioning so be aware of stuffy warm nights in the summertime, and bring your own fan.

Grant Grove is the best place to stay. Lodgepole is mobbed. It was horribly crowded when we went. Go to Lodgepole only for the visitor center and to watch their film--we saw one on the bears of Sequoia--it was excellent. Mineral king is a major drive from Sequoia, very windy road, so don't go unless you have time to kill. However, it's supposed to be gorgeous.

Wuksachi is the nicest lodge in the park. Still, it is no Awahnee. The rooms are 3 star-type accomodations, and the lodge lobby and dining room are completely separate from the rooms (the buildings are separated by about 1/10 of a mile). There is sparse service, and you will need to carry your luggage on a long walk to get from the parking lot to your room--that was the worst part of this lodge experience.

John muir lodge is nice too, smaller than Wuksachi.

Come in to the parks on hwy 140--it's much better than the other entrance from Visalia--the road is less rickety and windy. Fill up your gas at the arco about 1/2 hour from the entrance. There is no major commercial gas in the parks and the price is expensive--you can get it at stoney creek village--best, kings lodge (rickety little place), and hume lake.

The best way to see the trees is to use the shuttle service, definitely. When we went it was mobbed and this was the only way to see them without struggling with filled parking lots and 2 miles of a trek just to see the Sherman tree.

It's a nice getaway.

Have fun!

7 Thank BayArean
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fisherville, Kentucky
Level Contributor
12 reviews
13 helpful votes
“Most beautiful forest I've ever been to”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2007

My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed our vacation in Sequoia National park this past summer. The park was very clean, the trails were awesome, and we loved the scenery. If you go, you must see General Sherman, and you must climb the 300 stairs to the top of Moro Rock. It was an unbelievable experience. We stayed the night in a very nice chalet outside the gates of the park called Sequoia Village Inn. In the morning, we backtracked to We Three Bakery for a wonderful breakfast and some tidbits of information from the friendly staff. Then we spent the rest of the day driving and hiking in the park. We were there in mid-June and the weather was perfect, and there weren't a lot of people in the park. The drive into the Giant Forest is a one of a kind experience, and you will find yourself wanting to stop at every big tree for a picture. But don't worry about missing one because there are plenty more to come ahead! We also saw a young bear on our drive up the mountain. We are already planning to go back. The only negative things that we experienced were delays from road construction in the park, and the lack of gas stations in the area. Make sure you have a full tank when you get there because it took us nearly 2 hours to get to the gas station when we left the park. I'm not sure but it may have been easier to have run out and called AAA :)

3 Thank HorseFly2007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
52 reviews
348 helpful votes
“Wonderful place”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2006

Visited Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Parks this month. Only wish had had longer! Kings Canyon is aweinspiring to drive through, all windy roads and impressive jagged skylines. Sequoia NP is one of the most amazing places i've ever been to. You really feel like you are in a giant's natural kingdom, even after having eaten all those huge american sized portions of food served everywhere on my hol! The trees are so huge and beautiful like oversized chunky cinnamon sticks. The General Sherman tree is incredible i cant believe its that big and old and still living, you can see the leaves (a very long way up !) sap coming out, squirrels and chipmunks clambering over it..Its about the size of a lighthouse no actually i reckon its bigger! I have wanted to see this wonder of nature since i was a little girl and didnt even know where it was in america so was very pleased to find out it was here when had already decided to visit this national park. Also impressed that you only pay one entry for both the parks. It was autumn and the trees were getting very pretty.
Stayed at the Kings Lodge which was lovely. It has icecream and the oldest double gravity gas pumps in USA. I'm told it was double the price for the gas, but it was still cheaper than UK prices! To an american tourist it would seem high, but i think its understandable for such a remote place. The lodge was great and a good price in fact an excellent price for such a setting. Remote, nothing else around. So quiet at night, no cars, no tv. i would recommend take a good book, go to bed early so can get up early to explore. The room was great and had our own balcony to eat on and watch the stars. One of the best places i have ever stayed in, and comfortable too! In fact, the best nights sleep i have had on my USA holiday, as comfy and quiet. I felt a bit sorry for the man running the lodge as i didnt see anyone helping him and he seemed to do everything! ie the gas (as not self service), taking bookings, cooking food, doing the icecreams.. impressive who said men couldnt multitask?!
I would recommend to take food and drinks with you as was nowhere to eat after dark (which is fine as i hate seeing natural places ruined with too many amenities..you wouldnt get that in australian national parks for example; can't people learn to be more independant and resourceful?) had to have an unhealthy dinner of some chips i'd brought with me but thats my fault for not being prepared!

6 Thank UKGirly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
6 reviews
21 helpful votes
“Once In A Lifetime Trip (Meaning I'd Only Stay Here Once)”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2006

This park has some great scenery, fall colors, fire lookouts, but very, very few amenities. We visited most lodges and restaurants in the park, and here's what we think. First choice for a return trip would be Wuksachi Lodge. The food is fantastic (make dinner reservations early), but we didn't see the accommodations since we stayed in Grant Grove. Option #2 is Grant Grove, which is a very tired place, even with its new Muir Lodge. We stayed in a rustic cabin the first night and, after half the showers didn't work and the bathroom was filthy, checked into Muir Lodge, a nice looking motel (not really a lodge). The food was mediocre at Grant Grove, so we tried Cedar Grove in the canyon. It was a cafeteria-type place that was even more frozen in the 1960s than Grant Grove (but the food was OK-ish). We walked into the famous ice cream stop between the two Groves, Kings Lodge, and were greeted by an enormous photo of President George W looming over the bar. The help was rather redneck-ish and lumbered over to ask what we wanted. We wanted to get out of there (and for a different picture).

We also hit Snowline Lodge on the way out...ick. Avoid it. It's for sale. Maybe someone will buy it and burn it down, starting over. The overall experience was OK, but the lodging was pretty shabby. Surprising for a national park...you'd think NPS would have better management of the contractors doing guest services, and make them run a tighter ship.

2 Thank JasonLA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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