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Merced National Wildlife Refuge, Merced

(4.5/5 based on 50+ reviews on the web)
Merced National Wildlife Refuge is located in Merced. Plan to see Merced National Wildlife Refuge and other attractions that appeal to you using our Merced vacation trip planner.
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16 days in United States BY A USER FROM SLOVENIA June, teens, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: June, teens, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 1 day in Merced BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES April, popular PREFERENCES: April ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 1 day in Merced BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, popular PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 23 days in United States BY A USER FROM BELGIUM September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 23 days in United States BY A USER FROM BELGIUM September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 23 days in United States BY A USER FROM ITALY August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 19 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES January, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: January, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 3 days in Yosemite National Park & Merced BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, popular PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 20 days in United States & Vancouver BY A USER FROM CANADA August, fast-paced, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Fast-paced 5 days in Los Angeles, Merced & Modesto BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 10 days in Los Angeles, San Francisco & Merced BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM September, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 10 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM September, hidden gems PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • We arrived at 6:30am in time for the 7:05am sunrise. The sky was bright orange with the rising sun; Spoonies, Pintails, Coots, Snow Geese, Ross Geese, lots of bunnies, Redwing Blackbirds, Great Egrets...  more »
  • Short loop drive and great opportunity for kids to learn nature photography and observe birds and animals.  more »
  • In the appropriate season and time of day, Merced NWR is full of birds. The driving loops are well done and the refuge headquarters is quite interesting. We plane to return in the spring.  more »
Google
  • I visited this place in early February of 2016 as part of a bird watching group from South Bay. It was my most memorable birding experience in the bay area. There were thousands of geese, swans and sandhill cranes migrating to the north. This place has an outdoor restroom with no running water and had a great auto tour route along the lake. You are sure to see lots of shore birds, Hawks, ducks etc.
  • An amazing sight - in the winter. That is when all the cranes, snow geese and swans come by. An easy drive around makes birding comfortable and convenient. Just remember to come in the right time of year. Check out the gov website for birding lists.
  • On a recent trip to California, I had the misfortune of stopping by Merced National Wildlife Refuge as a stop on the way out of Yosemite National Park. I was under the impression that wildlife was supposed to refuge in a National Wildlife Refuge, that it would be some special habitat for rare California creatures. Unfortunately, there was very little wildlife refuging in the Merced National Wildlife Refuge, because it was mostly brown and dead and dried out just like the rest of the San Joaquin Valley. The only exception at the refuge was two water pits, or "swamps". There were, I don't know, ten Common Snipe in the water pits. That was it. There were also cows grazing on the brown dead grass. Coming from Yosemite, it is a travesty that this wildlife refuge gets the "National" in its name like Yosemite, because quite frankly it just seems like a poorly managed waste of government money. As an aside, "California IS IN A DROUGHT," as I got scolded for washing my hands too long in a public restroom recently. The water for the water pits could go to a much better place than Merced National Wildlife Refuge. And that reminds me, you reading this review could also go to a much better place than Merced National Wildlife Refuge. Don't waste your time there.
  • Fantastic views and really well maintained
  • Nice place for bird watching. Be cautious about when it rains becuase it get really muddy out.