Merced is the county seat of Merced County and has a growing population due to an abundance of affordable housing and close access to the San Francisco Bay Area which offers plenty of work opportunities. Merced was established in 1872 with the arrival of the Central Pacific Railroad which helped to distribute crops grown in the rich land. Known as one of California's top agriculture regions, Merced farmers grow a variety of crops that are exported around the world.
Named after the Merced River that runs near the city, Merced is a charming town that is close to San Francisco, the Monterey Bay, and the Sierra Nevada Mountain range. With so many exciting sights to see and activities to partake in, it is important that you have the right hotel to make your stay in Merced comfortable and convenient.
What is the best time of year to visit Merced, CA?
One of the beautiful things about Merced is that all four seasons offer something special to visitors. Summer is the best time of year for fishing and floating on the lower Merced River. Day trips to Yosemite National Park are fun in the summer as there is so much to see and do in the park.
Because summer is high season in Yosemite, rates for accommodations in the park are quite high and people often have to make reservations well in advance to stay right in Yosemite Valley. By staying in Merced, which is a short distance from the park, you can find affordable hotel rooms that are close enough to Yosemite for day trips.
Spring brings abundant wildflower blooms after the winter rains and is a lovely time to visit the area to see the green hills popping with colorful flowers. The Merced River waterway is along the pathway of migratory waterfowl and songbirds and you can see these birds by the thousands. If you enjoy hunting, waterfowl hunting season begins in fall in the nearby Merced National Wildlife Refuge. Rates are low in the spring and fall so you have a good chance of finding great deals on rooms.
Winter is cold, rainy, and foggy in Merced. However, if you enjoy skiing, you can swish down the slopes at Dodge Ridge Ski Resort, which is just under two hours away and is the closest ski resort to the San Francisco Bay Area. There are also numerous other ski resorts nearby. Choosing to stay in Merced will save you money as hotel rates in Merced are the lowest during the winter months and hotels book up quickly close to the ski resorts.
Below is a chart of the current pricing seasonality of hotels and motels in Merced, CA:
Merced by Star Rating
Below are 3 charts demonstrating mean nightly cost trends by star rating class in Merced, CA. You can use these charts to determine the most cost effective dates to stay in Merced during the year.
What are the best hotels in the Merced area?
If you are planning on a longer stay while visiting Merced or are looking for a bit more of an upscale hotel, you will be able to find several lodging options that offer the features you are looking for.
Located right off the Yosemite Parkway and close to the University of California Merced, Travelodge by Wyndham Merced Yosemite is a comfortable choice. You can enjoy relaxing in your room and utilizing the free Wi-Fi. Each room offers a refrigerator and microwave, and you can read the newspaper over a cup of coffee or while eating a complimentary continental breakfast. For a special occasion or just to indulge yourself, book a room with a whirlpool hot tub.
For a small and intimate hotel, choose the Fairbridge Inn & Suites Merced/Gateway to Yosemite. Sleep in comfort in one of the 24 smoke-free rooms. You can rest well with the blackout drapes closed and have sweet dreams snoozing on premium bedding. Each room has free Wi-Fi, flat-screen television, refrigerator, and microwave. If you want to try your hand at a little gambling, there is a casino right on-site.
Enjoy select rooms with a full kitchen when you stay at the TownePlace Suites Merced. The property offers an outside barbecue and picnic area, on-site coin-operated laundry, and you can keep your valuables in the safe deposit boxes available at the front desk. The flat-screen television offers cable and satellite channels as well as pay-per-view movies and free Wi-Fi. Before you head out to explore, enjoy a free hot breakfast.
Does Merced have budget hotel options?
3 Star Average Prices: $111.84
If you are looking for affordable budget hotels in Merced, you will find plenty of options in the city. The Motel 6 Merced North is the perfect place to stay while on a budget. The motel is close to the freeways for easy access and pets can stay for free.
Standard rooms come with or without a refrigerator, the deluxe suites offer a refrigerator and microwave, and some rooms even come with a fully equipped kitchen. During the warm summer months, cool off in the outdoor swimming pool. Wi-Fi is unlimited for a small daily fee.
For a very affordable stay while in Merced, choose The Budget Inn which offers free Wi-Fi, free cable television, and a newspaper that you can read while eating your complimentary breakfast. The rooms are modest but do offer tea and coffee-making facilities and the hotel is pet-friendly.
2 Star Average Prices: $76.53
Do Merced, CA hotels offer discounts?
Would you like to save a bit more money while visiting Merced? You can by taking advantage of discounts offered by certain hotels. The Best Western Inn Merced offers special discounts to AAA members as well as those serving in the military or government. Enjoy free Wi-Fi in your room while sipping on a cup of coffee. Each room has a microwave and you can watch free cable on the flat-screen television. In the morning, fill up on the free hot breakfast and in the afternoon cool off in the outdoor swimming pool.
The Rodeway Inn gives discounts to AAA and AARP members as well as for government employees and those in the military. You can make popcorn in the microwave while watching premium cable on the television. Cruise the internet with free Wi-Fi and take advantage of the complimentary breakfast. Take a dip in the outdoor swimming pool and refresh yourself with a cold beverage from the refrigerator in your room.
What value options are in Merced, CA?
Merced has plenty of hotels that give you extra value for your money. The Holiday Inn Express & Suites Merced is the perfect place to stay with your family as everyone can enjoy a free hot breakfast. Get a good workout in at the on-site fitness center or soak your muscles in the Jacuzzi. Each room has free Wi-Fi, refrigerator, microwave, and you can sleep comfortably with plush bedding and mattresses. Sleep in when you draw the blackout drapes or relax watching HD channels on the 32-inch flat-screen television.
The Quality Inn Merced offers a complimentary hot breakfast to fuel you up for the day. When you return to your room after a fun day, you can swim in the outdoor pool or relax in the hot tub or sauna. Your room has premium free Wi-Fi, a flat-screen television, and a coffee maker. When you are ready for lunch and dinner, enjoy the convenience of the on-site restaurant.
How do you find the top things to do around Merced, CA?
Merced is a nature lover's paradise. From exploring the amazing beauty and grandeur of Yosemite National Park to floating and swimming on the Merced River, you will be able to find the perfect outdoor activity for everyone.
However, if you just wanted to stay close to Merced, there are plenty of fun and exciting sights to see close by. Take in a bit of history of the Great Central Valley by stopping at the opulent and gorgeous Merced County Courthouse Museum. For a fuller experience, speak with the docent about a special tour of the building.
For the military aviation buff, stop by the Castle Air Museum to see over 70 vintage and present-day military aircraft that have been carefully restored. You can also view the museum's collection of wartime memorabilia, historic photos, and personal artifacts from various military operations.
You will want to stop by the Merced Fruit Barn to sample some of California's finest produce grown right in the heart of the Central Valley and Merced. You can buy gorgeous gift baskets and trays, different varieties of dried fruits and nuts, and specialty and gourmet items such as honey and jams. Grab a sandwich from the deli and stroll around the barnyard to see the fun animals that live there. You can see a tortoise, peacocks with feathers the colors of rainbows, emus, rabbits, ducks, and even a furry llama.
There is so much to see and do in Merced and no matter whether you are staying for the night, the weekend, or for an extended time, you will find a nice variety of hotels, from budget-friendly to more upscale. Enjoy planning your trip to Merced, California, and have fun visiting this charming city.
FAQs about hotels in Merced
How much does a cheap hotel in Merced cost per night?
In the last year, a 2 star hotel in Merced can be as cheap as $76.53 per night. (based on HotelPlanner prices)
How much does a 3 star hotel in Merced cost per night?
In the last year, the average 3 star hotel in Merced has been $111.84 per night. (based on HotelPlanner prices)
Recent traveler guest reviews of Merced, CA
Below are reviews of the city of Merced, CA from an actual visitor's perspective.
"Amazing Wildlife Refuges in Area"
5.0 / 5
The wildlife refuges in the area are amazing and worth a visit for all birders.
4.0 / 5
Merced is an older town. Lots of vintage architecture. Has a very laid back feel. Went to several excellent and inexpensive restaurants. Would like to visit again to see more.
The average traveler rating of the city of Merced, CA shown above is
4.5 out of 5 based on 2 reviews