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Chaco Culture National Historical Park

692 Reviews
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Chaco Culture National Historical Park

692 Reviews
Sorry, there are no tours or activities available to book online for the date(s) you selected. Please choose a different date.
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Mike H wrote a review Nov 2
Phoenix, Arizona1,789 contributions235 helpful votes
i have been wanting to see this for a very long time. My aunt visited here in the 60s and showed me photos. So in the back of my mind it was a place or enchantment. This is indeed enchanting. Take time to visit the places and walk around the ruins. We saw many people whip through and take a few camera photos and leave. Not a bright think to do when you have to travel on a 16 + mile dirt road for the experience. If you are going to do that got to Sedona and Flagstaff ruins and save the time. The dirt road in is not bad if you have travelled dirt roads if not you will probably think it is horrendous. A bit washboard and times but not dramatic. The end of the road is this site and it is a big reward that awaits you. There are 5 major areas of ruins and pictographs in the area. Plan to be here for 4 to 5 hours
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Date of experience: October 2020
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Marcia K wrote a review Oct 2020
Estes Park, Colorado16 contributions9 helpful votes
Chaco is one of the most important archaeological sites in the US. Many of the ruins in Chaco are in good condition and there are fewer visitors due to the conditions of the access roads.
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Date of experience: October 2020
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Marie5466 wrote a review May 2020
Canada916 contributions385 helpful votes
Thanks to Covid-19 and the closure of many park’s visitor centers and overnight camping we were nearly the only people in Chaco Canyon for the day (not there on a weekend). What an absolute treat! We didn’t have to elbow our way around people. We were able to take pictures of the various sites absent of any other humans. We were able to take our time enjoying, seeing, taking in the scenery, the history, and the echoes of this ancient culture. Just before the entrance, we were greeted by two elks and a hare. The sight of elks is probably rare when the place is full of people. Even without the presence of kivas and 1-4 story buildings, the canyon alone is beautiful. Adding such historical bounty is the cherry on the cake. The dirt road to Chaco was full of deep washboards and potholes so the drive to it was slow and shaky but feasible. I can see why during rainy times; this could be very difficult to access. Pay attention to the weather before going, especially if you don’t have a four-wheel drive or high clearance vehicle. Thanks to the difficult access however, this place is still remote enough to give you a feel of what it was like when they built it centuries ago. There is no overnight stay right now. We had thought of coming back a second day but after all these miles or shaking and rattling, we decided to go visit something else. Just too hard on our small camper van and us. Not sure if the road was worse than usual due to Covid-19 or not? Still feasible if going very slow. Not a ranger in sight to answer questions but free information was left outside the visitor center. We enjoyed a completely self-guided visit at our own pace but would love to come back for guided tours. Can’t tell you either about the museum or the visitor center as both were closed. It was already near high 80’s F by lunch time so getting quite hot already. Mornings are best time to visit now (here mid-May). My favorite thing was the ability to go inside the Pueblo Bonito ruins, following a set path, rather than just being able to see them from the outside. Interesting and humbling. Also, the sight of the huge rockslide next to Pueblo Bonito is quite an eye opener. Amazing that more of the ruins didn’t get destroyed by it. As much as I may complain about the road to Chaco, I like that it keeps many people out. Mostly only the hearty folks who seem to care about preservation make it here. Thank you…
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Date of experience: May 2020
2 Helpful votes
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Noel J wrote a review Mar 2020
Evanston, Illinois423 contributions129 helpful votes
Yes, the roads are not paved and it is quite bumpy in spots. It is worth the drive and absolutely breathtaking. It stirs the imagination of the impact this place had so long ago. The Rangers were very friendly and gave us good advice on the route for our next destination.
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Date of experience: March 2020
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NotNow wrote a review Mar 2020
Salem, New York33 contributions17 helpful votes
For the past 45 years I have been dreaming of Chaco Canyon & Pueblo Bonito. The hype is that the roads to get in are so dreadful, requiring at the least a lifted Jeep or the like, a tanker of H2O, mules, Sherpa Porters-- well, that was what has kept me and others away. I won't lie-- the road in is dirt. With ruts, a wash that has def had it's share of floods, cows, rocks, and I am sure in summer heat. But. We traversed it fairly easily in a VW Passat. Don't let the road deter you! The road IN the Park is paved, there is water in the Visitors Center park lot & bathrooms, pit toilets at the pull offs. There is no "food" except dry snacks in the shop, so bring your own. The drive in is lined with cliff dwellings, the private homes of the local Navaho, spectacular cliffs. The ruins in the park are beautiful, the scenery is gorgeous, the almost tame elk herd we saw--a stag & 4 cows- were an added bonus. Reminds you that the people who built these structures also had to survive and these were a food source. **If it has recently rained or snowed, call the Park to find out the road condition** Support our National Parks which are under such severe threats, a Parks Pass is well worth it & Free for Life if you are handicapped.
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Date of experience: March 2020
7 Helpful votes
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