Monument Valley is known for its stunning sandstone mesas, spires, and buttes, isolated stacks with inclined sides and a flat top. You’ll notice dirt tracks leading off in several directions. Inspiring boomers one adventure at a time. Grab your camera (I use a Panasonic Lumix) and let’s get started! The park visitor center is open from 6am to 8pm April 1 through September 30 and 8am to 5pm October 1 through March 30. Usually accessible to regular vehicles, including small RVs, though various types of guided tour are available. It is hot at the height of summer in this corner of the state. If you agree with me, then plan to stay at The View (the Navajo hotel at Monument Valley) or Gouldings Lodge. When the medicine man learned of the affair, he turned the vaquero to stone. Spend a short time browsing in the Navajo jewelry store. It is incredibly quiet, and watching the moon rise here is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Near Goulding's Lodge (west of the Monument Valley Tribal Park), this road divides into two, one called Oljeto Road, and another called Rock Door Canyon Road. The loop includes 11 numbered viewpoints and you can expect to spend between 2-4 hours in the park. This tour excursion includes cinematic/movie locations and the famous scenic overlooks every visitor should experience and see. ... Valley of the Gods 17 Mile Loop Road - Duration: 11:51. A: Monument Valley is a Navajo Tribal park and charges a fee for access to the loop road through the valley. Bring your zoom lens and stay awhile. Monumental Valley OHV Loop [CLOSED] is a 5.1 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Kayenta, Arizona that offers scenic views and is good for all skill levels. (See press release above) *Please note, while Monument Valley Tribal Park is closed, Hwy 163 passing through the community of Monument Valley remains OPEN and services (lodging, dining, gas, groceries, tours, etc.) Yá'át'ééh ... Monument Valley is located on the boarder of Arizona and Utah. And don’t rush—this journey is about taking it slow to appreciate (and photograph) the view. It would be a shame to miss this fascinating attraction. My Itchy Travel Feet participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. The turnoff for Goosenecks State Park is on Highway 261 about 8 miles south of the Moki Dugway on the right (on your left if coming up from U.S. 163). About 3 miles west of Bluff, U.S. 191 makes a sharp left turn and heads south to Mexican Water, Arizona. Read our DISCLOSURE. Please note with these closures Goulding's will remain open and fully operational. Monument Valley, UT/AZ – The Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park spans the Utah/Arizona Border near Four Corners and is located off of Utah Highway 163. A stone monument that’s true to it’s name, The Thumb is the last stop on your Monument Valley driving adventure. Admission costs $10 per person or $20 per vehicle with up to four people. Probably the most easily recognizable of all the Monument Valley formations, you’ve seen East Mitten, West Mitten and Merrick Butte in countless photographs. To see the impressive Muley Point overlook’s expansive views, turn right on Highway 261 off the Valley of the Gods scenic drive and immediately climb the 1,000-foot graded gravel road up the Moki Dugway. Don’t forget to bring water! The ground becomes increasingly sandy in this part of Monument Valley. John Ford's Point. (If you haven’t taken the Valley of the Gods option, turn right off U.S. 163 and head north on Highway 261 for about 9 miles to get here.). Subscribe by clicking here. Monument Valley is located about 50 miles south of Bluff, UT on US highway 163. There is little question you'll love Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park's world-renowned scenic drives, whether you explore the self-guided part or book a deeper exploration with a Navajo guide. Even if you aren’t into tourist spots, it’s still worth spending a short amount of time here. 17 mile dirt road past the best formations of Monument Valley, within the Navajo Tribal Park, passing 11 major overlooks. Valley of the Gods is like a miniature version of Monument Valley without people. The paved road to Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park crosses the Utah-Arizona stateline, passes the entrance booth … When these attempts at forced relocation ultimately failed, the Navajo were allowed to return to their traditional home. When done with these side trips, return south to U.S. 163. You can also pay $2 to photograph a Navajo rider posed at the end of the promontory. This article may contain referral links. Monument Valley tours from Native American guides take you deeper into Monument Valley, with areas only accessible by guides. About Monument Valley Tribal Park. Admittance hours change according to the season, so check here when planing your trip. Before leaving Monument Valley, get out of the car for the 3.2-mile Wildcat Nature Walk around West Mitten Butte. Here’s what to see and do: Planning a trip to Utah? 11:51. There are no established campgrounds and no facilities, but there are plenty of places to camp in the wild. Now you know why I suggested unpacking your lunch at Artist’s Point. Continue straight on U.S. 163. There is a nice picnic area with a few primitive campsites (free) here but no water. Although Gouldings doesn’t have the same killer view, you’ll be surrounded by legends of the historic trading post turned lodge. Definitely consider driving this beautiful, lonely loop—though not in a large RV and not dragging a trailer. The tour brochure is usually available there. As soon as you climb out of the San Juan gorge, the views of Monument Valley spread out before you, turning your front window into an oversize, moving postcard. No, you won’t be able to begin the drive, but you don’t want to miss the chance to photograph the sun rising behind East and West Mittens. According to Tripadvisor travelers, these are the best ways to experience Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park: Monument Valley Tour (From $90.00) 2.5 Hour Guided Tour of Monument Valley (From $75.00) Sunset Tour of Monument Valley (From $85.00) Monument Valley Extended Backcountry Tour … Monument Valley has been the location for many movies and television shows. It is known to be one of the most beautiful cities in the world! Trailers and large RVs will find the long climb to Muley Point nerve-racking, but the steep switchbacks and unbeatable scenery make this one of the most thrilling drives in the state. From here it is 4 miles to the Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. From Mexican Hat, cross the San Juan River and, as the sign says, you are entering Navajo land. Plan on spending at least two to four hours to get the most out of the experience. Kayenta is the closest town (23 miles to the south) with lodging; but I’d rather wake up with a Monument Valley view outside my window.If you agree with me, then plan to stay at The View (the Navajo hotel at Monument Valley) or Gouldings Lodge. If the rock doesn’t seem to look much like a sombrero to you, it might help the illusion to consider it to be upside down, suggesting the medicine man first turned his rival on his head. You’ve arrived at a 150-foot high solitary spire that sits in the middle of a valley. After negotiating the steep (and sometimes rough) first 1/2 mile down Mitchell Mesa into the valley, the Monument Valley road levels out. Totem Pole and Sand Springs. Local legend tells of the love of a young Mexican vaquero for a Native American maiden who, alas, was already married to an evil old medicine man. Boomer travelers rely on our weekly email newsletter for fresh travel inspiration, tips, and advice. This sandy preserve bathes the region between Arizona and Utah in rich red hues, adding to its reputation of having some of the most dramatic and mesmerizing light. The loop finishes on Highway 261 (paved) just south of the descent from the Moki Dugway and north of the turnoff for Goosenecks State Park. Here are the viewpoints: 1. Monument Valley is a special place for other reasons, too. All Rights Reserved. Another well-known—and slightly touristy—stop in Monument Valley, this spot is named for John Ford, director of the movie, Stagecoach, starring John Wayne. The overlook at the park will reward you with one of the most impressive views of entrenched river meanders in all of North America. As mentioned, the Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is the land of the local Navajo. The scenic drive in Monument Valley includes 11 numbered stops, which are notated on the free map provided by the Visitors Center. Monument Valley from the valley floor Monument Valley is officially a large area that includes much of the area surrounding Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, a Navajo Nation equivalent to a national park. There is a park entrance fee ($20); it is definitely worth a visit. According to Tripadvisor travellers, these are the best ways to experience Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park: Monument Valley Tour (From US$90.00) 2.5 Hour Guided Tour of Monument Valley (From US$75.00) Sunset Tour of Monument Valley (From US$85.00) Monument Valley Extended Backcountry Tour (From US$90.00) The Monument Valley visitor center and scenic drive are actually on the Arizona side of a dividing line that is only nominal on the reservation. The San Juan River snakes for more than 5 miles here in its deeply cut canyon to cover just 1 mile as the crow flies. amzn_assoc_placement = "adunit0";amzn_assoc_tracking_id = "monumentvalleyut-20";amzn_assoc_ad_mode = "manual";amzn_assoc_ad_type = "smart";amzn_assoc_marketplace = "amazon";amzn_assoc_region = "US";amzn_assoc_linkid = "612f7ebe0d0599dc6551f362bbaa4a9e";amzn_assoc_design = "in_content";amzn_assoc_asins = "158071059X,1631213334,0929591356";amzn_assoc_title = "Plan your Monument Valley trip:";
. After 21 miles you reach the well-marked turnoff on the left for the tribal visitor center at Monument Valley. Just at the crest and right before the pavement resumes, look for the turnoff to the left. No spam, unsubscribe anytime. The 17-mile loop drive on (mostly good) dirt road is suitable for all but the most low-slung passenger vehicles in good weather. Copyright © 2021 Utah Office of Tourism. Although you’ll read advice that a 4-wheel-drive vehicle is necessary, that’s not the case. Or continue even a few miles farther north to Desert Rose Inn in Bluff, Utah (a step above the rest quality wise, in my opinion). AVAILABLE TOURS. On the unpaved roads of the scenic drive, high-clearance vehicles are recommended: Those who travel by tour bus, motorcycle, low rider and most regular passenger vehicles, however, will find this scenic drive inaccessible. The Navajo Nation depends greatly on tourism, and they are happy to share their land and demonstrate their culture. Lodging tips and other travel suggestions are included at the end so keep reading. Review of Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. The Navajo comprise the largest Native American tribe, and the Navajo Nation is the largest reservation in the country. This 17-mile long road passes through the best natural sights that the valley has to offer, including the iconic rock formations and rock pillars, and past excellent viewpoints. You will descend into theValley and walk entirelyaround the […] Because of photos and movies, it’s a familiar scene to most of us, especially baby boomers. Love Your RV 20,114 views. Behind the sombrero is an interesting geologic formation called the Navajo Rug, a wavy pattern in the cliff strata. The red rock formations range from 100 to 1,000 feet tall. Driving the 17-mile self-guided loop lets you see most of the major scenic attractions of Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park at your own pace, and at the lowest cost. This article describes what to see on a Monument Valley scenic drive. It’s one of our all-time favorite adventures in the American Southwest. We were hesitant based on all the discussion in the forum about the quality of the dirt road making up the 17 mile loop; so we rented a small SUV; however, it definitely wasn't necessary. It’s not Government owned and the local people do ask for you to respect their rules and beliefs. As you can see from this photo Three Sisters makes a great photo stop. As I mentioned earlier, those choosing the Monument Valley self-guided tour must stay on the main road. One excellent example of this is embodied in the Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. I like Coppertone Sport (click here for current price on Amazon) because it’s water resistant so it doesn’t sweat off. And if you enjoy roadtripping as much as I do, subscribe to our Road Trip newsletter. 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