Mesa Verde National Park protects some thousands of archaeological sites in southwest Colorado, including some of the most striking and best-preserved structures made by the Ancestral Pueblo people (formerly known as the Anasazi). Guided tours of several large cliff dwellings and interpretive hikes allow visitors to see the structures up close, and a museum and scenic drive are also available.
The park offers a unique mixture of geological and manmade splendor, with multi-story native buildings blending with natural sandstone shelters. Three sites at Mesa Verde have over a hundred rooms, and a wide variety of smaller and older ruins, some dating back 1500 years, are spread throughout the area. The park also offers breathtaking views of the Four Corners region and the nearby San Juan Mountains.
Mesa Verde is located off Highway 160 in southwestern Colorado, about 35 miles west of Durango or a short drive east from Cortez. The park is open year-round, but only limited services are available in winter.
For more information on Mesa Verde National Park, select a topic of interest from the left-hand column.