Tunnel View is one of the most popular and iconic viewpoints in Yosemite; the historic site provides expansive views of Yosemite Valley, El Capitan, Bridalveil Fall, and Half Dome. It has been described as “the most spectacular view in all of Yosemite National Park”, and it is one of the best views you’ll get without undertaking the many Yosemite hiking trails.
Tunnel View provides one of the most famous views of Yosemite Valley, showcasing the immensity of the granite walls that surround Yosemite Valley and providing a classic view of El Capitan, Half Dome, Sentinel Rock, Cathedral Rocks, and Bridalveil Fall. It is spectacular at sunset or after the clearing of a storm.National Parks Service (NPS)
The lookout is at the eastern end of the Wawona Tunnel, which was completed in April 1933 and dedicated on 10 June 1933 after taking two years to construct, with 230 tons of dynamite being usefd to bore through solid granite. Having a length of 4,233 feet (1.29km), it’s the longest highway tunnel in California. Both the Wawona Tunnel and Tunnel View were listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1986 based on their exemplary design that helped initiate the National Park Service “rustic design style.”
Hiking trails from Tunnel View
A few trails start from the large carpark:
- Inspiration Point – 3.4km (AllTrails map) – also known as the Artists Point Trail.
- Dewey Point via the Pohono Trail – 9.3 miles / 15km (AllTrails map)
Getting to Tunnel View
The viewpoint is located at the east end of the Wawona Tunnel along the Wawona Road (Highway 41), and has accessible parking spaces, interpretative signage and toilets. There is a parking area on both sides of the road, so you can access the viewpoint when driving in either direction along the highway.
- National Parks Service (NPS) – Scenic Vistas: Tunnel View Overlook Project