Located in northwestern New Mexico, you’ll find the ancient Chaco Culture National Historic Park. This park is famous for being one of the most exceptional concentration of pueblos in the American Southwest. The park consist of some of the most historic ancient ruins north of Mexico and preserves some of the most important pre-Columbian cultural and historical areas in North America.
Chaco Culture National Historic Park
If you’re planning a trip to Chaco Culture National Historic Park, you’re in luck because it is magnificent. Be sure to stop at the Visitor Center to obtain all the information about the park that you may need before entering. After stopping at the Visitor Center, there is a 9-mile loop road that provides access to five major Chacoan sites. Each site provides self-guided trails for hikers. Further more, there are four backcountry hiking trails that provide access to more sites. Permits are free and can be picked up at the Visitor Center and all trailheads.
The ancestral Pueblo people once called this place home with their massive buildings that have yet to be seen anywhere else in the American Southwest. For a deeper contact with the canyon that was central to the community between 850 and 1250 A.D., you don’t want to miss a chance to learn more about Chaco through tours, endless trails for hiking & biking, and even campfire talks under the night sky.
The Chaco Culture National Historic Park is also famous for it’s night sky. It is known to have the best sky for star gazing. Many visitors travel here each year just to lay on the ground and stare up at the sky. Not only is the bright night sky a beautiful thing to look at, but it’s also a survival tactic for nocturnal wildlife. By designating over 99% of the park as a “natural darkness zone”, in which no permanent outdoor lighting exists, Chaco is maintaining the preservation of nocturnal ecosystems.
Are you interested in visiting Chaco National Historic Park? Whether you’re going to star gaze or head out on a hike to see the ruins, you won’t be disappointed when visiting this destination. All sites and trails are open from 7:00 a.m. to sun down. Pets are only allowed on backcountry trails as long as they are on leashes no longer than 6 feet.
Have you visited this historic park? Tell us about your experience in the comments!