Yosemite History Center

Horse drawn stage coming through covered bridge with passengers
Horse drawn stage coming through the Wawona Covered Bridge with passengers

Quick Facts

Historical/Interpretive Information/Exhibits, Recycling, Scenic View/Photo Spot, Trash/Litter Receptacles

Go back to a time of horse-drawn wagons, a covered bridge, and rustic cabins. The Yosemite History Center is a collection of historic buildings where outdoor interpretive signs tell the stories of people who moved here from around the world and shaped the park’s development. During the summer, visit exhibits inside the Chinese Laundry and the Acting Superintendent's Office, take a ride on our horse-drawn wagon, or watch blacksmiths forge iron tools on a coal forge! Check the Yosemite Guide for details.

Many of the buildings that make up the Yosemite History Center were moved to Wawona in the 1950s and '60s from various locations throughout the park. These buildings were moved to make way for more modern park facilities and to create an area to interpret Yosemite's history. The History Center commemorates the efforts of people, the events they experienced, and the issues they faced during the establishment of Yosemite as a national park.



The Yosemite History Center is always open and informational signs are found in front of each building.

Getting Here

Access the complex by parking in the Wawona Store and Pioneer Gift Shop parking lot, located on the Wawona Road (continuation of Highway 41), near the Wawona Hotel.


Paths within the complex have a dirt surface. An accessible restroom is located near the parking lot. There is no designated accessible parking. Parking near the Wawona Store and Pioneer Gift Shop provides the best access; the paved route includes a portion with an 8.1% slope.

Yosemite National Park

Last updated: January 12, 2024