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“Impressive for a short visit” 4 of 5 stars
Review of La Ventana Natural Arch

La Ventana Natural Arch
Grants, NM
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Ranked #6 of 10 Attractions in Grants
Type: Geologic Formations, Outdoors
Attraction details
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Impressive for a short visit”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2013

The La Ventana natural arch is huge and awe inspiring, but that's all there is to see there. There is good parking, restrooms, and a smoothly graveled path up to the base of the arch. To prevent damage, visitors are not allowed to get too close to the arch, so all you can do is look up at it and take photos. To make the most of the trip, plan to also stop at the ranger station to talk to the ranger, view their exhibits, and learn about other things you can do in the area.

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23 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Top Contributor
126 reviews 126 reviews
27 attraction reviews
Reviews in 92 cities Reviews in 92 cities
111 helpful votes 111 helpful votes
“Consider taking the narrows rim trail to see the arch”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2013

La Ventana is the second longest arch in NM (the longest is Snake Bridge in San Juan county). There is a highway turnoff that is about a 100 yard walk to the arch. The arch can also be seen by taking a hike on the "narrows rim trail." The hike is described in the book "60 Hikes Within 60 Miles: Albuquerque." It's a beautiful hike on a mesa that is 7.8 miles round trip. The El Malpais visitor center, which is about 10 miles north of the arch on highway 117, has brochures describing the hike.

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
10 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Beautiful natural treasure”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2013

The arch is beautiful and a simple walk from the highway. Truly spectacular, but not quite as dramatic as some of the arches you may see in a park such as arches in Utah, as it is a single structure. Should definitely stop on your way down to lava falls.

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rio Rancho, New Mexico
Top Contributor
125 reviews 125 reviews
39 attraction reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
73 helpful votes 73 helpful votes
“On the road again-”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

El Malpais National Monument

The government shutdown continues but on this 13th day of the shutdown there are still things to do in New Mexico. In addition to the government shutdown and like all holiday activities, the Albuquerque Balloon Festival was winding down and the need for a mental diversion was at hand. A past time from childhood this daytrip from Albuquerque is just the thing for those "Shutdown Blues!" Get out of the house and get on the road-especially when accompanied by the local BMW Car Club. Located just off of I-40 Southwest of Grants, New Mexico on Highway 117 is one of those national parks which while this date is not open fully does provide excellent scenery for a day drive.

New Mexico has a long and varied history with its landscape a very large part of that history. El Malpais is a minor national park location as compared to others found in New Mexico. El Malpais is Spanish for "badlands" and the sand and lime stone cliffs have recorded their share of tragedies as well as providing divergent colors and beauty. Geologically, the "badlands" set at the intersection of the Rio Grande Rift Basin and the Jemez Lineament, lets just say it is volcanic. Volcanoes often leave a reminder of their existence and so if one is into caving they will certainly be entertained here cave-spelunking the ancient lava tubes. How about ice caves? Ice Caves can be found near-by in addition to the spectacular hiking and biking above ground.

The destination this day was the La Ventana Natural Arch, an natural arch eroded from the sandstone setting atop of one the bluffs. Total time for the drive from Albuquerque to the arch was about an hour and thirty minutes which included an exercise stop. During rainy days the arch is enhanced by a waterfall spewing from an opening on the wall behind the arch. Though the rains had visited recently the waterfall had ceased running. As stated previously, Park Headquarters was not open but they do offer many excellent handouts and maps that fully describe this sight seeing adventure- I highly recommend this activity while visiting Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Visited October 2013
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Albuquerque, New Mexico
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Wow!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2013

jBeautiful short detour off of I40. Scenic drive through vast lava beds. Short walk to Arch. Ample parking and clean restrooms. Besure and take the short drive to the Sandstone overlook viewing point. You would swear you were in Hawaii.

Visited July 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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