Photos and marketing for Mesa Verde seem to focus on Cliff Palace, which is the largest site at the park, however the Balcony House site not only offers a tremendously persevered and restored site but one that is really fun to travel to and from. You enter the site by means of a large and sturdy 32 foot ladder, which is double wide and allows you to travel next to your partner providing added security for those intimidated by height. Once you reach the site, you are amazed at how advanced the builders of this mini city were. After the short narration offered by the park ranger you are able to walk around and explore the site entering in and behind the rooms at the site. At the completion of the tour you are treated to traveling though two small corridors or tunnels. No one on our tour even came close to getting stuck, but if you are claustrophobic or terrified of heights you may want to stick with the Cliff Palace or Long House, which are much less strenuous to access. If you are up to a little challenge the Balcony House site should be the first on your list to visit. Tickets, which are required to tour three of the major sites at Mesa Verde, can be purchased at the park or in the nearby city of Cortez at the Colorado Visitors Center. You can purchase your tickets for various tour times offered during the day up to two days in advance, which is great if you are traveling through Cortez or staying in Cortez while visiting Mesa Verde. Securing tickets for your trip in advance helps insure you can visit these tremendous museums, especially during peak visiting times when tickets are limited. Balcony House is about a 30 minute drive from the visitors center, so plan your day accordingly. The tickets are only $3 each and well worth it.
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