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Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park

(4.7/5 based on 6,500+ reviews for top 20 attractions)
Things to do: nature, historic sites, trails

A Land of Giants

With mountain peaks reaching past 4,250 m (14,000 ft) and trees stretching to over 75 m (250 ft) high, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks present nature on a grand scale. These two parks sit adjacent to one another in the Sierra Nevada mountain range, so many visitors take them both in on the same trip. Sequoia is home to Mt. Whitney, which at 4,418 m (14,494 ft) stands as the highest mountain in the continental United States. However, the park's most well-known figure is the General Sherman Tree at 83.8 m (275 ft) high and 7.7 m (25 ft) wide--the largest tree in the world by volume. It's an estimated 2,300-2,700 years old. Other trees in the Giant Forest are equally impressive. The mountainous terrain of both parks makes the area popular for outdoor activities, with outstanding hiking and rock climbing in summer and fall and relatively reliable snowshoeing and backcountry skiing in winter and spring. It's common to see black bears in the park's meadows, and bighorn sheep are making a comeback here. With a vertical relief of over 3,960 m (13,000 ft), the parks' climate and ecosystems can vary a great deal from lower to higher elevations throughout the year. Find what you're looking for from your Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park holiday, by planning the whole thing with us using our handy United States itinerary maker.
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Where to stay

Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks provide plenty of lodging right inside their boundaries. Kings Canyon operates three lodges and a set of cabins, with two of the lodges and the cabins remaining open throughout the year. Of these, the John Muir Lodge sits closest to the entrance. The parks also offer more than a dozen campgrounds about equally distributed between them, with most operating on a first-come, first-served basis. Campsites fill up quickly on Friday nights in summer, but you should be able to find a place for your tent any other time during the week. Your accommodation options expand if you look along Sierra Road to the west of the parks. Motels, nature resorts, inns, bed and breakfasts, and lodges line the road, which runs alongside the North Fork Kaweah River.
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