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Explore 40 Wanderful Experiences

By VTC Author | 01/23/2023 | Exploring Tuolumne County

In 2023, Visit Tuolumne County is celebrating its 40th year of inviting and welcoming visitors to Tuolumne County! The VTC team is excited to share this list of 40 things to do in Tuolumne County, but this is just the tip of the iceberg. Discover all of what the county has to offer at visittuolumne.com

If you're out and about in Tuolumne County, tag us in your posts with #visittuolumnecounty.


1.    Visit one of Yosemite’s less crowded areas, Hetch Hetchy Reservoir. Enjoy spectacular scenery while hiking around the deep blue reservoir that is a water source for of San Francisco.

2.    Hike along the Tuolumne River to Carlon Falls for a picnic. The trailhead is on the Stanislaus National Forest, but the falls are in Yosemite.

3.    Hike amongst ancient trees and get floored in Yosemite National Park’s awe-inspiring Tuolumne Grove of Giant Sequoias.

4.    Road trip along Highway 120 through Yosemite to catch some Zen in Tuolumne Meadows.

5.    Live like pioneers and stay in a Conestoga wagon at Yosemite Pines RV Resort and Family Lodging.

6.    Embark on a whitewater rafting adventure on the Wild and Scenic Tuolumne River with one of several reputable outfitters. Their experienced guides will take you on a trip of a lifetime.

7.    See the Gold Country or the High Sierra the way the pioneers did, on horseback with a qualified guide. Outfitters at Kennedy Meadows, Aspen Meadow and Pine Mountain Lake run guided tours and pack trips.

8.    Take a thrilling off-road Jeep ride on the Stanislaus National Forest with Miller’s Off-Road Adventures.

9.    Rent a boat, swim, fish or hike with your furry pal at Lake Don Pedro. For a unique overnight experience with ultimate stargazing rent a well-appointed houseboat.

10.    Hike the Westside Trail is an easy trek along a historic rail line with scenic views and spectacular spring wildflower displays.

11.    Boat (boat rentals available), swim, camp, hike, fish and enjoy the mountain scenery at the popular Pinecrest Lake.

12.    Hit a round of golf at one of Tuolumne County’s lush and scenic courses, Pine Mountain Lake or Teleli Golf Club.

13.    Take in a current movie under the stars at Pinecrest Lake Amphitheater.

Hetch Hetchy Reservoir in Yosemite
Kennedy Meadows Horseback Riding. Photo by Maddie Maney
Whitewater Rafting on the Tuolumne River. Photo by Sierra Mac River Trips

14.    Learn about Tuolumne County’s old Hollywood history with a stroll along the Walk of Fame, highlighting the many movies and shows filmed in Tuolumne County, like Back to the Future III.

15.    Explore Railtown 1897 State Historic Park where the most famous movie star in the County is located. It’s not a person though, it’s a historic steam locomotive, “Sierra No. 3.” Railtown is a beautiful and small state park with a nice picnic area and grounds to walk around to take in the other sights like the movie museum, the Depot Store, and historic working roundhouse.

16.    Step back into California’s Gold Rush history in Columbia State Historic Park where you can ride an authentic stagecoach (your dog can too!), pan for gold, shop, and chat with knowledgeable and friendly townspeople dressed in period attire.

17.    Experience the arts in quaint art galleries or enjoy superior live theatre performances at Sierra Repertory Theatre or live music at outdoor summer concerts and festivals.

18.    Pay respects at the 9/11 & War on Terrorism Memorial in Tuolumne or at the Veterans Memorial Museum in the town of Tuolumne Downtown Sonora.

Railtown 1897 State Historic Park
Columbia State Historic Park
Sierra Repertory Theatre

19.    Play a round (or 2) at Twain Harte Miniature Golf, a retro, but challenging course that’s fun for the whole family.

20.    Step into another time and place to test your skills and live a real-time adventure at Motherlode Escape Rooms in Sonora.

21.    Get off the beaten path in the town of Tuolumne, where Black Oak Casino Resort offers entertainment for the whole family, and Chicken Ranch Casino offers Bingo. Both casinos offer 24-hour gaming with slots and table games.

22.    Reveal your inner lumberjack at Hatchet’s Throw House that features hatchet throwing, VR gaming, and full restaurant.

Twain Harte Miniature Golf
Chicken Ranch Casino
Hatchet's Throw House

23.    Mosey up to the bar at the longest continuously operating saloon in California, the Iron Door Saloon.

24.    Relax at Indigeny Reserve on the lush 160 acre preserve nestled in the hills of Sonora. Friendly staff serve hard ciders and spirits produced on site. The shaded picnic area and trails are surrounded by organic apple orchards.

25.    Taste craft beers at Around the Horn Brewing Company, Sonora Brewing Company, or Bear Tent Brewing Company where makers enthusiastically share their local beverage creations.

26.    Indulge in a Mile High Apple Pie from Cover’s Apple Ranch.

27.    Enjoy Gold Country wines at Inner Sanctum Cellars Basecamp & Event Center, Gianelli Vineyards, Arthur Michael Vineyard, or Hurst Ranch and hear the interesting stories of how each of these families got into the wine making business.

28.    Gather your friends and family for a lively evening at a local restaurant.

Indigeny Reserve
Cover's Apple Ranch
St. Charles Saloon

29.    Explore the local charm of historic Groveland with shopping, dining, and Groveland Yosemite Gateway Museum.

30.    Visit Jamestown where several of the town’s buildings that date back to the 1870s and 1880s are occupied by quaint historic inns, restaurants, shops, brewery, and wine tasting room.

31.    Wander the streets of Sonora’s historic downtown, home to diverse shops, restaurants, historic buildings, and fascinating museums, just to name a few things to do!

32.    Soak in the rich and diverse history of the area with a visit to the Tuolumne County History Museum housed in the County’s original jail dating back to the 1860s.

33.    Visit the town of Twain Harte, a charming mountain town boasting unique shops, and dining options.

34.    Take a scenic drive through the High Sierra along Sonora Pass featuring magnificent vistas, trails, lakes, rivers and streams.

Jamestown
Tuolumne County History Museum
Sonora Pass

35.    Treat yourself to an ionic foot soak, infrared sauna and more wellness services and amenities at Amala Detox and Tea Lounge in Downtown Sonora.

36.    Enjoy a Reiki session, massage, sound bath, mediation sessions, and other healing and rejuvenation services at Healing with Jenia and Mountain Wellness in Jamestown.

37.    Unwind at the Spa at Rush Creek Lodge, which features soothing indoor and outdoor spa elements and amenities inspired by the natural beauty and power of Yosemite.

Mountain Wellness
Amala Detox and Tea Lounge. Photo by Preethi Chandrasekhar
Rush Creek Spa. Photo by Kim Carroll

38.    Take in the thrill of tubing down a snow-covered mountain side at Leland High Sierra Snowplay where there are slopes for all ages.

39.    Enjoy skiing, riding, snow tubing at the closes snow to the San Francisco Bay Area at Dodge Ridge Mountain Resort.

40.    Take to the ice at the Long Barn Lodge Ice Skating Rink, which is a winter tradition for many families for decades.

Dodge Ridge Mountain Resort
Leland High Sierra Snowplay. Photo by Heather Duffett
Long Barn Lodge Ice Skating Rink

You’ll need a place to stay during  your visit. Pick from mountain resorts, historic inns, cozy vacation cabins (perfect for gathering the family), distinctive B&Bs, and  full-service RV parks. 

Start planning your vacation with the help of travel inspiration and information delivered directly to your mailbox. Click here to request your FREE Tuolumne County Travel Guide. 


While you're here, relive some memories from 40 years ago and listen to Favorites from 1983, VTC's 40th Anniversary Mix Tape on Spotify.




Visit Tuolumne County
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