Reflecting one of the longest continuously
inhabited landscapes of North America, the cultural resources of
Canyon de Chelly include distinctive architecture, artifacts, and
rock imagery while exhibiting remarkable preservation integrity that
provides outstanding opportunities for study and contemplation.
de Chelly also sustains a living community of Navajo people, who are
connected to a landscape of great historical and spiritual
significance. Canyon de Chelly is unique among National Park service
units, as it is comprised entirely of Navajo Tribal Trust Land that
remains home to the canyon community. NPS works in partnership with
the Navajo Nation to manage park resources and sustain the living
Majestic canyons of Canyon de
Chelly National Monument protected prehistoric Pueblo Indians for
1,000 years and served as an ancestral Navajo Indian stronghold. The
ruins of these prehistoric Indian communities are nestled below
towering cliffs or perched on high ledges.
Located in the center of the
Navajo Reservation, Canyon de Chelly extends from the highlands of
the Defiance Plateau and Chuska Mountains in the east to the arid
expanse of the Chinle Valley in the west. Although established as a
national monument in 1931, Canyon de Chelly continues to support a
living community of Navajo families.
An excellent way to view Canyon
de Chelly is to hike the moderate, 2.5-mile White House Ruins trail,
which descends 600 feet to the canyon floor. To hike anywhere else
in the canyons, visitors must be accompanied by a park ranger or
authorized guide. The park offers guided tours on foot or horseback
or by 4-wheel drive. Visitor's can view Canyon de Chelly and Canyon
del Muerto by driving along the north and south rim drives.
The monument has a campground and
lodge. Park rangers offer talks throughout the summer on geology,
Navajo history, culture and other topics.
Auto tours, hiking, rock art viewing,
interpretive exhibits and talks, horseback riding (by prior
arrangement), picnicking and photography. Concession jeep tours are
available from Thunderbird Lodge, PO Box 548, Chinle, AZ 86503,
Phone 928-674-5841/5842. Facilities include hiking and auto trails,
parking, restrooms, exhibits, concession canyon trips, and horse
Open All Year
Campsites are available at no charge on a
first-come, first-served basis year-round. Reservations for group
sites of 15 or more people can be made by contacting the Monument.
No reservations are accepted for RV groups. Backcountry camping is
allowed with an authorized guide.