A stunning scenic drive, fresh mountain air, the soothing sounds of birds singing, an easygoing vibe that invites adventure – Yosemite is a spectacular gem full of opportunities to find yourself or to get lost.
We can all agree that taking time away from the hustle and bustle is just what the doctor ordered, especially during the summer when the heat wave hits California. The mountains have always called to me. I think it’s my love for that pristine quiet that inspires such a stillness in me. I haven’t been able to find it anywhere indoors, so any chance I can, I will take at least a day trip to the beach, the mountains, or to a forest trail just for a change of pace.
Forty-five minutes outside Yosemite National Park is the super fun Yosemite Bug Rustic Mountain Resort. Located in Midpines, the no frills property is part of Hosteling International, but is ideal for any type of traveler. Complete with a variety of room types, a restaurant, a full-service spa, a community kitchen, an amphitheater, and access to several hiking trails, Yosemite Bug was well worth the visit.
After getting to the property just in time for breakfast, I beelined for coffee ($2 with refills!). From the car to the doors of the June Bug Cafe, I already scoped out several serene locations where I could set up shop with my cuppa and a great book. The restaurant has a wrap around deck that has several sets of tables and chairs in glorious sunshine or in the peaceful shade, so I found a space off to the side and killed an hour before making my way to the spa.
The Yosemite Health Spa is directly on the property. I took advantage of my lack of itinerary and booked an energy wellness soak in a lovely private room. You can book a tub on your own, or for a discount, you can share the room with your travel buddy. The room has plenty of space for two tubs and the ambience is gentle and relaxing. The mineral salts poured into the bath were a combination of tangerine, lavender, and chamomile, and were the best start to the morning after the drive. The temperature was perfect for the entire hour and I even took time outside of it, sitting on the edge of the tub soaking just my legs. The time was cleansing and rejuvenating and exactly what I needed to cleanse my body and my spirit. My appointment included all day access to the sauna, hot tub, yoga room, and showers which was perfect for maximizing my intentions for a stress-free overnight. I loved the stainless-steel hot tub which uses hydrogen peroxide and UV light to cleanse and oxygenate your skin – so much better than harmful, smelly chemicals! The spa was the perfect location for enjoying my Cristina one-piece. I received so many compliments about the fit, fabric, and style, and it was so much fun chatting with other discerning campers about Hermoza’s commitment to sustainable slow fashion.
By noon, I had built up an appetite and lunch at the June Bug Café was ideal for continuing to build a restful experience. Seriously, nothing is better than having a meal prepared for me, so I planned on indulging as much as possible. The menu changes daily and has vegetarian and vegan options always available. For lunch, I had chicken pesto linguini with fire roasted tomatoes and a refreshing hibiscus lemonade mixed with iced tea – it was divine! I previewed the dinner menu and had my heart set on ordering the grilled pork chops with ginger plum chutney and mashed potatoes and broccoli. This menu was such a delightful surprise as it completely shattered my expectations for “camp food.” Their deep New York style cheesecake was so wonderful, I totally took a moment of reflection to enjoy its sweet tastiness. The café also prepares trail lunches so you can take advantage of having access to several good hikes nearby. Breakfast was delectable. I had the chef’s special which was a spinach, feta, and tomato omelet with hash browns. So yummy!
The accommodations on the property are unique and fun and appeal to a variety of adventurers. For a more comfortable experience, you could stay in a hotel style private room that is fully furnished with themed décor ranging from Victorian to rustic. There are also private rooms with shared baths, family cabins, tent cabins, and dorms. Prices are super affordable especially when considering the cost of most locations nearer the entrance to the national park. I was happy to stay in the tent cabin as I wanted to splurge more on my spa treatments, meals, and yoga instruction and really only needed a simple, clean place to sleep. The room was very basic, but comfortable with A/C and the linens that were provided. Next time, a private room might be more restful, so I won’t have to trek to and from the shared bathrooms.
My stay was so relaxing and ideal for getting more head space. The unique experience was improved by a slow, unassuming pace to the resort that even when fully booked, was not overwhelming or intrusive. The staff was chill, informative, and pleasant. The super casual vibe was awesome too because it cut back on the need to stay styled all day. I stayed in a messy bun and a head wrap the entire time I was there and found it to be completely acceptable and comfortable. Just make sure to pack an awesome dry shampoo and you’ll have an absolute blast.
Interested in communing with the best nature California has to offer? Check out this guide to camping in Yosemite that covers everything from the best campgrounds and trails to packing well.
So, Hermoza, where do you go to get away from it all? What is your go-to location for disconnecting from everything and for getting some fresh air? Send us your recommendations and reviews in the comments section below or join the conversation on social media using #hermozaswim and #beautywellsuited.