Sightseeing

Scenic Wonders near Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes is the gateway to the Sierra’s natural wonders.

Mammoth Lakes is an unparalleled natural wonderland. Yosemite National Park, Devils Postpile and Rainbow Falls National Monument, Mono Lake, Bodie State Historic Park, Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest, Mt. Whitney and the Mammoth Lakes Basin are all-day trips from town. Not to mention, any activity you participate in will have jaw-dropping scenics that make you feel that you’ve caught a glimpse of the unbelievable.

Situated at the edge of one of the earth’s largest volcanic calderas—second in North America only to Yellowstone—the landscape abounds with spectacular world-class geological features: granite domes, craters, fissures, lava tubes, symmetrical columns of basalt, saline lakes, outcroppings of white quartz and pure black obsidian, warm creeks and natural hot springs pools. The cracked and jagged ribs of the great Sierra Nevada run through it all; the highest range in the Continental U.S. and one of the youngest and most tectonically active mountain ranges on the planet. Sculpted by glaciers and rivers, the flanks of these mountains are now covered in ancient forests of fir and pine. In the high valleys and basins are icy blue lakes and streams populated by frogs and wild trout, and meadows teeming with wildflowers.

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Sightseeing in Mammoth Lakes

Explore the Mammoth Lakes Basin in the Summer
Explore the Mammoth Lakes Basin in the Summer

Where to Go

Sightseeing in Mammoth Lakes

Panorama Gondola at Mammoth Mountain

Mammoth Mountain Adventure Center, 10001 Minaret Road
Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546

800-626-6684

Take in the 360-degree views of the Sierra Nevada from a gondola as you climb to the top of Mammoth Mountain at 11,053 feet (3,368 m). At the summit, you’ll explore the Eleven53 Interpretive Center with interactive displays on the area’s geologic, hydrologic and volcanic history. Learn More

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Mammoth Museum at the Hayden Cabin

5489 Sherwin Creek Road
Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546

The Mammoth Museum, located in the Hayden Cabin on the banks of Mammoth Creek, invites you to experience local history in the setting of this 1920s log cabin. Exhibits include mining implements, photos, art, intriguing memorabilia and glimpses into the lives of the people and industries that shaped Mammoth long… Learn More

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Bodie State Historic Park

State Route 270
Bridgeport, CA 93517

760-616-5040

Bodie State Historic Park is a genuine California gold-mining ghost town. Visitors can walk down the deserted streets of a town that once had a population of nearly 10,000 people. The town is named for Waterman S. Body (William Bodey), who had discovered small amounts of gold in hills north of Mono… Learn More

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Inyo Craters

Dry Creek Road Spur
Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546

888-466-2666

Six hundred years ago, a massive explosion heated rock and ground water, causing a large blast zone. Three craters were formed. Today, snow melt and rainwater create emerald green pools in the craters. Accessibility: 1.4 miles (2.25 km) round-trip uphill hiking trail. Directions: From the Mammoth Scenic Loop follow signs… Learn More

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Mammoth Lakes Basin

Lake Mary Road
Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546

888-466-2666

Glacier-carved lakes form the Mammoth Lakes Basin. Twin Lakes, Lake Mary, Lake Mamie, Lake George and Horseshoe Lake are nestled below jagged peaks and pine forests. Easily accessible by public transportation, the basin provides hiking, biking and picnicking. Accessibility: Driving tour in summer and fall. Learn More

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Yosemite National Park

Tioga Road
Lee Vining, CA 93541

209-372-0200

A spectacular day trip, Yosemite National Park is just a 45-minute drive from Mammoth Lakes. Hike through famous Tuolumne Meadows and dip your toes in Tenaya Lake. Iconic Half Dome , El Capitan and Yosemite Valley waterfalls are a scenic 1.5-hour drive through the park from Tuolumne Meadows. Check the… Learn More

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Mono Basin National Forest Scenic Area and Visitors Center

1 Visitor Center Drive, Highway 395
Lee Vining, CA 93541

760-647-3044

This saltwater lake is best known for its tufa towers which were formed with the interaction of the salt and the freshwater springs bubbling up from the bottom of the lake. The center has interactive displays that teach about many aspects of the Mono Basin’s geology, ecology, and human history…. Learn More

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Mammoth Lakes Trail System

AL

Mammothtrails.org is the all-season reference for information about the trails of the Mammoth Lakes Trail System. Operated in conjunction with the National Forest Service and the Town of Mammoth Lakes, the Mammoth Lakes Trail System website provides visitors with accurate location, terrain, and difficulty information for over 100 individual trails… Learn More

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Caldera Kayaks

AL

760-934-1691

Some of the Eastern Sierra’s most dramatic scenery can best be viewed from the water! Explore vast and ancient tufa formations at Mono Lake and kayak to Rush Creek on a guided natural history tour, or rent a kayak and head out on your own. Paddle the Long Valley Caldera… Learn More

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Minaret Vista

Minaret Road
Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546

888-466-2666

The vista offers a breathtaking view of Mammoth Lakes’ siganture skyline, the Minarets, which are part of the Ritter Range. The sharp, jutting spires of the Minarets are dramatic and unwordly. Also seen are Mount Ritter at 13,157 feet (4,010 m) and Banner Peak at 12,945 feet (3,945 m), the… Learn More

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