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“Very cultural experience, feels as though you have lived there before.”

Bandelier National Monument
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Bandelier National Monument from Santa Fe
Ranked #1 of 28 things to do in Los Alamos
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Bandelier National Monument is 50 square miles of the Pajarito Plateau, on the slopes of the Jemez Volcanic field in the Jemez Mountains. Over 70% of the Monument is Wilderness, with over 1 mile elevation change, from about 5000' along the Rio Grande to over 10,000' at the rim of the Valles Caldera, providing for a wide range of life zones and wildlife habitat. There are only 3 miles of road, but over 70 miles of hiking trails. The Monument, founded in 1916, protects Ancestral Pueblo archeological sites, a beautiful landscape, and the country's largest Civilian Conservation Corps National Landmark District.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children
Reviewed September 28, 2013

You have to be in shape to hike and climb up to the Anasazi Ruins. The Park Rangers are all around to explain the history and help if needed. It was a very spiritual place. Camping was very nice, well kept grounds. Clean showers and restrooms.

Thank Risa S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"main loop"
in 230 reviews
"cliff dwellings"
in 225 reviews
"alcove house"
in 266 reviews
"white rock"
in 191 reviews
"visitor center"
in 227 reviews
"climb ladders"
in 58 reviews
"long house"
in 41 reviews
"frey trail"
in 42 reviews
"frijoles canyon"
in 68 reviews
"ancestral pueblo"
in 50 reviews
"canyon floor"
in 23 reviews
"santa fe"
in 236 reviews
"trail guide"
in 40 reviews
"ceremonial cave"
in 28 reviews
"national monument"
in 77 reviews
"mule deer"
in 30 reviews
"day trip"
in 69 reviews

1,338 - 1,342 of 1,736 reviews

Reviewed September 28, 2013

Our visit coinsided with the first day open after a major flooding - 11 foot wall of water did a lot of damage to some portions of the park. This visit was therefore free. The staff have done a great job in fixing up the place. We went for a mile walk along a trail to see the archeological sites with some cavates accessed by short ladders. We even managed to see some of the petroglyphs.

Thank mike2309
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 19, 2013

We had never heard of this place but someone in Santa Fe told us we should see it. I am so glad that we did. It made a really wonderful morning.

We also went to Mesa Verde but I liked this because it felt like a more intimate experience. There is a little climbing up ladders if you want to see into the ruins but the walk itself was a very easy one. The tour is self guided though they did have a ranger at the ruins to answer questions.

Be sure to pick up the brochure for a dollar so you know what you are looking at.

2  Thank justmeinsd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 13, 2013

We arrived just before 9AM which allowed us to drive in and skip the shuttle. We watched the movie and then did the main loop trail. Make sure that you pick up the brochure in the visitors center for $1. That gives you information to read at each sign post along the way. Our family enjoyed climbing the ladders, going in the caves, taking pictures, etc.

If you have more time in New Mexico check out Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument. It's a harder hike than this and doesn't have the history, but the natural beauty is not to be missed.

Thank traveler128
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 8, 2013

Incredible hikes, with paths that accommodate differing levels of ability. I loved seeing how the complexity of the dwellings increased as we moved to newer and newer areas. The staff is very knowledgeable and friendly (and I'm usually not one to chat with the staff).

Don't miss the Alcove House, past the main loop and up, up, up - as long as you're okay with narrow paths and steep ladders. The view from the top is a can't-miss.

Also head the other way from the entrance area to find waterfalls and see the Rio Grande in the distance. This trail washed out a while before our visit, so you can no longer reach the river, but the hike is still beautiful and worthwhile. We saw a ton of wildlife on this stretch.

1  Thank Compassrosa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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