Visitors to the Central Valley take advantage of Visalia’s proximity to both the mountains and the ocean by doing the “Moro Rock to Morro Rock” trip, watching the sun rise over the Sierra Nevada mountains and seeing it set into the Pacific Ocean. What better way to have a truly California experience!

From mountain peak to sea-level, Visalia offers the perfect overnight accommodations for the epic “Moro Rock to Morro Rock” trip. Climb the carved-out stairway at Moro Rock to the top of the panoramic summit in Sequoia National Park, in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Finish the experience on the coast at the famous volcanic Morro Rock in Morro Bay. 

For those adventurous enough to take this on, here’s how to do it:

Check the time the sun is due to rise over the Sierra Nevada mountains in Sequoia National Park. You are going to have get up early, so that you are at the top of Moro Rock before the sun begins to peek over the Sierras. Headlamps or flashlights are recommended to help guide your way. The park is open 24 hours a day so visitors can arrive in the pre-dawn hours and enter even if there is no ranger at the entrance station. It will take 20-30 minutes to climb the 350 or so steps to the summit of Moro Rock. Once at the top, take in the awe-inspiring view as the sun begins to stream over the Sierra Nevada mountains and enjoy panoramic vistas of the Great Western Divide and down through the canyon carved by the Middle Fork of the Kaweah River. 

After experiencing the majesty of the sunrise, make the climb back down the granite stairs and explore the wonders of this national park. Drive through iconic Tunnel Log and stroll around Crescent Meadow. See Tharp's Log, a cabin built by Hale Tharp in 1861 out of a downed sequoia tree. He was the first non-Native American to live in the Giant Forest. 

Of course, the General Sherman tree, the largest living thing on earth, is a must-see. It is just a short drive north along the General's Highway. Visit Giant Forest Museum, take in the view from Beetle Rock, or hike to Tokopah Falls for an unforgettable experience. 

At days end, return to Visalia in time for dinner in the the downtown dining and shopping district - you've earned it! There are nearly 100 restaurants to choose from that will satisfy whatever you are hungry for. Take the self-guided Walking Taco Tour or see what on tap in our Brewery District. From Food Trucks to Five Stars, you'll find it all. Then head head to your hotel for a well-deserved nights rest. 

Your adventure is only half over. At about 190 miles from Moro Rock (and just 140 miles from Visalia), is Morro Rock on the Central Coast, your next destination. An icon of the community of Morro Bay, the rock stands at almost 600 feet tall in the harbor and is an extinct volcano. It is connected to the mainland by a causeway (though climbing the rock is not legal.) Find your spot on the sand as sunset nears to watch as it sinks slowly into the ocean. 

Congratulations on taking on the Moro to Morro Challenge. From the mountains to the sea, this is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure that you can only have when you visit California. 

©2024 Visalia Convention & Visitors Bureau
P.O. Box 2734 Visalia, CA 93279
112 E Main St, Visalia, CA 93291
(800) 524-0303 : (559) 334-0141
Visitor Center Hours
Monday - Friday 8am-5pm