Do the local scene.
1. CostaLivos Mountain Gold Olive Oil Tasting Room and Gift Shop
Why go: Family-run by Don and Kim Costa, this tasting room in Mariposa serves and sells locally made olive oils and vinegars. The shop is a favorite of foodies and a great experience for those who have never done an olive oil tasting.
Tip: Try the jalapeño olive oil and the blackberry balsamic vinegar.
2. California State Mining and Mineral Museum
Why go: Discover the stories behind California’s mineral wealth. You’ll see more than 13,000 gems in this interactive museum.
Tip: Don’t miss the Fricot Nugget that weighs a whopping 13.8 pounds. It’s the largest remaining intact mass of crystalline gold dating to the California Gold Rush. Back in the day, nuggets this size were melted down right away.
3. Epic Alpacas
Why go: This downtown store sells sweaters and other goods made from alpaca wool from the state's largest alpaca farm, which is east of Mariposa.
Tip: Even in the heat of the summer, consider purchasing a sweater, which may be the softest item you ever wear.
4. 1850 Restaurant + Brewing Co.
Why go: Entrepreneurs Jake and Hanna Wackerman opened this Mariposa restaurant in 2013. It serves hand-cut steaks, burgers, locally sourced veggies and craft brews.
Tip: Order a burger as this restaurant has won the “best burger in the county” award.
5. Airbornn Aviation Services
Why go: Soar over El Capitan and Half Dome far above the crowds in a Cessna.
Tip: Plan ahead since tours can accommodate a maximum of three passengers per flight. Tours start at $199/passenger and take off from the Mariposa/Yosemite Airport several miles from Mariposa.
6. John Muir Geo Tourism Center
Why go: Housed in the historic Gazzolo building in the tiny town of Coulterville, this center honors the legacy of John Muir while educating visitors about Coulterville's culture and activities.
Tip: Walk Coulterville’s main street that is lined by historic buildings and feels like a step back in time.
7. Tenaya Lodge
Why go: Close to Yosemite’s South Entrance, the four-star Tenaya Lodge in Fish Camp, Calif., offers a full resort experience for those looking for an upscale vacation, including a spa, pool, a range of dining options and local guides who'll show you the best of the park.
Tip: Take a dip in the resort’s gorgeous pool.
8. Yosemite Ziplines & Adventure Ranch
Why go: Get your adrenaline flowing in this two-hour, guide-led zipline tour in Mariposa.
Tip: Participants must weigh over 60 pounds and less than 250 to do the zipline. Other activities include gold panning and a ropes course.
For more information:
Yosemite Mariposa Tourism Bureau
(866) HALF-DOME or (866) 425-3366
5320 State Hwy. 49 North, Mariposa, CA 95338