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Manitou Cliff Dwellings, Manitou Springs

3.1
#2 of 16 in Museums in El Paso County
Ruin History Museum
Learn about the ancient Anasazi people with a visit to Manitou Cliff Dwellings, where you can experience the lives of these cliff dwellers in a hands-on environment. The Anasazi lived southwest of this spot, but the reconstructed cliff dwellings were built from pieces of the original dwellings found at a collapsed Anasazi site. The materials were transported piece by piece and placed together to closely resemble the original site. Because this is a reconstruction, you are invited to touch, feel, and climb on the dwellings. Notes posted throughout provide information on the Anasazi people and how they lived, but the reason why they left remains unknown today. The museum and gift shop offer further information on the history of this group. To visit Manitou Cliff Dwellings and get the most from your holiday in Manitou Springs, create itinerary details personal to you using our Manitou Springs trip itinerary planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
1,407 reviews
Google
3.8
TripAdvisor
  • This is a great place to take the kids and give them their first view of cliff dwellings. Very interactive and hands on -- my grandson loved it. Brought his mother here years ago, and she loved it too...  more »
  • Nice place to visit if in the area. Takes about an hour to view dwellings, small museum, and large gift shop. Was fun for my 11 year old daughter. I would recommend for families.  more »
  • We found this to be very interesting with the history and the acess to touching and climbing inside the dwellings. The museums and gift shops were very nice.  more »
Google
  • It does cost some money to get in (I don't recall how much). The parking was adequate. The actual area to explore is pretty small, but the museum is interesting. There are some slopes and stairs, might not be very accessible for someone who has difficulty walking. There are several large gift shops with everything from shoes, clothes, trinkets, jewelry. It was interesting and we spent about 90 min here.
  • Fascinating awesome place. Amazing how they could do this before the invention of modern tools and machinery. Kids loved it they were 8. Challenging if you are handicap and not in wheelchair. Many stairs. The gift shop was big if you like that stuff. Did find some things you don't find somewhere else. They also have a lot of stuff made in the USA. Museum was not all in one place mixed in with the gift shop. Place was like a maze.
  • Not good for the handicapped. While you don't expect a thousands-year-old pueblo to be done for the handicapped, you would expect the modern gift shop and museums and bathroom to be handicapped-accessible, but they are not. You walk down MANY stairs and MANY staircases. When you get to the bathrooms at the end, NONE are equipped with a grab bar. I had to skip the restroom and rush home to our hotel room. I'm UTTERLY SHOCKED at the lack of handicapped access in the otherwise beautiful gift shop/museum/bathroom complex. There IS an elevator between the ground floor and floor three -- it's hidden and you have to ask for it. That got me up to floor three, but then there are probably 20 more steps, if not more, to get to the top. And I had taken many steps inside the gift shop. Also, watch your feet AND your head... I was so careful watching where I put my cane inside the pueblo that I didn't look up and whacked my head on a beam and fell down. Gratefully, a substantial-sized man was able to pick me up. The dwellings themselves are amazing and interesting, but the negative experience with the gift shop, museum, and restroom put a bad taste in my mouth.
  • It is an amazing place, very beautiful. Kids will especially have fun running around and through the dwellings. Yes, you actually walk inside them! I did find the entry fee quite steep ($10 for adults $7.50 for children) considering there isn't all that much to do in there and it can be done in under an hour, maybe a half hour. The parking lot is small, (maybe 15-20 spots?), but considering that people don't spend too long there, it rotates relatively quickly.
  • The dwellings looked remodeled and not original. It was also alot smaller than expected. The museum included 2 rooms with nice artifacts but some did not look authentic. I was only there for less than an hour. But on the plus side of things, the gift shop was REALLY nice. It was big and had lots of nice stuff for the dwellings & Colorado.

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Where to stay in Manitou Springs

The downtown area houses guests in lodges and or chain hotels. The town's 150-year-old Victorian-style hotel offers smaller rooms but provides historical charm, and it's withing walking distance to shops and restaurants. Booking a rental cottage or cabin just outside downtown puts you in touch with nature without being too far away from the activity in the town's center.
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