Explore the architectural remains of the Pueblo people from 850 CE to 1250 CE preserved at Chaco Culture National Historical Park. Inscribed on the World Heritage List, the park is significant for its ceremonial structures and impressively advanced engineering. Marvel at the quarried sandstone blocks and hauled timber constructions, a testament to the Pueblos' sophisticated understanding. Tourists can opt to tour by foot or by bike and are welcome to partake in campfires and stargazing. The road to the park is quite rough, so expect the trip to require skilled driving. Once there, you'll find plenty of trails to hike and petroglyphs to appreciate. Come prepared with comfortable shoes for the long walks and be sure to pack food and water. Put Chaco Culture National Historical Park and other Nageezi attractions into our Nageezi trip planner , and watch your holiday take shape.
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Chaco Culture National Historical Park Reviews
The scope of the ruins at Chaco is hard to describe. But access is every bit as difficult as other reviewers have stated. We did not venture in on our intended day to visit; the washes were in full sp... more »
Plan to go early as it is a full day. Dress in layers. Take plenty of water and snacks. Lots of walking and wonderful trails. Take a Ranger tour or two. We saw elk and male bulging. A magnificent if n... more »
This is an amazing site of natural ruins but the drive was long and the dirt road bumpy, challenging yet well maintained. We saw Pueblo Bonito, Chetro Ketl and Casa Rinconada. I was on an organized to... more »
This place is absolutely amazing! No words can describe the historical and cultural value it brings. I wish I had taken more pictures! The visitor center is nice with public restrooms and a movie about Chaco Canyon. Completely worth the trip.
Before I start my review, a note on the "road conditions". I've made it down that road in a number of low clearance, 4 cylinder, barely road-worthy vehicles. It' totally doable, you just have to take it slow, but if I'm not mistaken, the speed limit is fairly low to start with. You can make it in nearly any vehicle! Don't worry! Totally worth it even if you break an axle!!!! Now, my review? Chaco Canyon should be designated one of the Wonders of the World. This site had a better infrastructure thousands of years ago than some modern cities have today. Go in the Spring or Fall (seriously, trust me), and always bring an extra 2 gallons of water PER DAY, PER PERSON. Camping here is great, but reserve spots ahead of time. For the more spiritual minded, please realize there is a HEAVY energy here that should be acknowledged and respected. For everyone else, same thing goes. Enjoy! And PICK UP AFTER YOURSELVES, please :)
Getting to this place is pretty bad when you don't have the right car. The dirt road is horrible. The place is great with all the short hiking spots and those amazing ruins. Park Rangers are nice.
This place is mind blowing! Well worth the long drive!! We drove up from the south, the road was paved until the past 20 or so miles. Last 20 was on dirt. Dirt was mostly good with a few ruts. In the park is paved. Cost is $20 per car. Potable water is available at the visitors center. There is a campground, we got there early (9:30 am) and got a walk-in spot but I would recommend a reservation. There is very little shade in the campground. The ruins are incredible, we could only stay for one day but if you have the time I would recommend atleast 2-3. The more major ruins are all short walks (basically drive ups) but if you have the time and are physically able, the back country trails lead to some super cool ruins too! We did the Wijiji Trail (3 miles rt) and the Pueblo Alto Loop (7-8 miles rt.) Take plenty of water and sunscreen - hot with little shade. The Pueblo Alto Loop was our favourite, though it should be mentioned there is some climbing through confined spaces to follow the old trail out of and back into the canyon.
No words can describe the Chaco Canyon National Monument. If you can, camp and spend at least two days there. If you don't know about the site, take a guided tour. Read up on it before you go. I took the southern route which was about 2 hours of driving out of Gallup NM with the last 20 miles being a dirt road. The countryside is spectacular on the drive and then you enter the park with nothing else around. This area is situated between the mountains so you can feel the heat and sunshine. Wear a hat, protect your skin and take water even on the shorter hikes around the pueblos. There are longer hikes and you will need to register at the beginning of each one, its easy and for your protection. Stop at the visitor center and get the brochures on each pueblo to follow the guide information. Take the short petroglyph hike and see the petroglyphs. Think about how hard life was for them yet they was able to create these magnificent structures! Enjoy!
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