Indian Village of the Ahwahnee – Yosemite National Park, California - Atlas Obscura

Indian Village of the Ahwahnee

A glimpse into the lives of the the Miwok and Paiute people in Yosemite National Park. 


Behind the Visitor Center near the Yosemite Museum, you can follow a trail that leads to a place  lost in time, and swallowed by American history. 

The reconstructed Miwok Village of Ahwahnee is meant to depict life for the Native American village as it was in the 1870s, a village that used to exist in the same spot its doppleganger now sits. A village of around 200-300 inhabitants, it was the largest Miwok village in the Yosemite Valley. The replica contains several structures which would have been familiar to the Ahwahnee people, including unusual bark teepees, acorn silos, and a sweat lodge.

Markers lining the path educate on the history of the structures and native plants in the area, and seasonally the staff present demonstrations on basket weaving, beadwork and other culturally significant activities. The attraction is free to visit. 

A house is still occasionally in use (and thus off limits to non tribe members) by remaining members of the Ahwahnee tribe, some of whom still live in Yosemite Valley.

Know Before You Go

not easy to locate - aim for the (itself hard to find) visitors center, then locate the museum nearby and walk through to the back.