One of the most culturally rich areas in the United States in ancient times was the Four Corners, home to the Anasazi (the ancient ones). These pueblo peoples lived in numerous settlements in the area, some housing as many as 1,200 people. At the height of their civilization from about 900 to 1100, the Anasazi excelled in knowledge of astronomy and development of road systems, irrigations systems and complex dwellings built on high desert plateaus, in river valleys and sheltered in high cliffs and mesas.
Farmington is surrounded by many fine examples of the Anasazi culture. Guided and self-guided tours are available for visitors seeking a view of this ancient world.
Chaco Canyon, the heartland of the Chaco world, in what is now Chaco Culture National Historic Park, lies just 45 miles south of Farmington. (Note: some of those miles are on very rugged dirt roads.) At the edge of Farmington, is Aztec Ruins National Monument an Anasazi settlement of about 400 interconnecting rooms with a dramatic reconstructed Great Kiva which offers a real sense of the original sacred space. Salmon Ruins is another ancient site at the edge of Farmington where archaeological research continues. Its museum displays include artifacts unearthed there and replicas of more modern Native American culture. Experts at Salmon Ruins give guided tours of Chaco Canyon and other sites in the area. Mesa Verde National Park, 75 miles north of Farmington, offers a view of dramatic cliff dwellings built by the Anasazi.
All Veterans Memorial Plaza
South Tucker Ave. and River Road Animas Park, Farmington, NM
All Veterans Memorial Plaza is located within Animas Park, along the Animas River. This memorial park is a place where all veterans can be honored and remembered.
Aztec Ruins National Monument
725 Ruins Road, Aztec, NM 87410
The site is open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. Visitors will be able to utilize restrooms, the picnic area, and the short trail through the Aztec West great house. All trails are self-guided, with park brochures and information available on site. The visitor center, museum, and bookstore are closed until further notice due to the Covid-19 virus. Those interested in learning more about Aztec Ruins are encouraged to take the cell phone audio tour by calling 505-386-0361 or by going to azru.toursphere.com.
Chaco Culture National Historical Park
1808 CR 7950 Nageezi, NM 87037
Due to Covid-19, and to protect staff and visitors' health and safety, Chaco Culture National Historical Park has temporarily closed the Visitor Center, Museum and Western National Parks Association Park Store to the public effective immediately. Loop Road will remain open from 7:00 am to 5:00 pm, with the entrance gate to Loop Road closing at 4:30 pm. All visitors must vacate Loop Road by 5:00 pm. All trails are self-guided, with park brochures and some information located outside the visitor center entrance. All backcountry trails require a backcountry permit, which can be found at the entrance of each trailhead.
Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad
500 S. Terrace Ave, Chama, NM 87520 and 5250 US Highway 285, Antonito, CO 81120
Chama Location: 575-756-2151 or 888-286-2737 Antonito Location: 719-376-5483 or 888-286-2737
The Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad is a coal-fired, steam-operated, narrow gauge train that travels through the remote wilderness of the southern Rocky Mountains between Chama, NM and Antonito, CO. The railroad is known around the world for its spectacular scenery, unique machinery, and historic structures.
Dinétah Rock Art & Pueblitos
Dinétah is the traditional homeland of the Navajo people. The region is full of Ancestral Puebloan (Anasazi) and Navajo rock art and small Navajo ruins called pueblitos, which is Spanish for “little pueblos.” There is also evidence left by the Ute tribes and early Spanish explorers and settlers. While not a National Park, these sites are of great interest to those interested in visiting Aztec Ruins National Monument, Chaco Culture National Historical Park and Mesa Verde National Park.
3041 E. Main Street, Farmington, NM
New Hours: Monday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Tuesday-Wednesday CLOSED, Thursday-Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Sunday Noon to 5:00 p.m. Experience a wide variety of exhibits relating to the diverse history of the area’s cultures, traveling exhibits, and art shows when you visit the Farmington Museum. National and regional juried arts shows are also featured as well as an exceptional selection of lectures and workshops.
Although completely surrounded by the Navajo reservation, the Hopi people have a long history that is distinctly different from their neighbors. The major Hopi villages are located at the top of three mesas in Northeastern Arizona. Each village is independent and practices its own style of government. All Hopi villages have gifted artisans, and distinctions can be made by the crafts that each village produces.
Hovenweep National Monument
McElmo Route, Cortez, CO 81321
Hovenweep National Monument is open however, some facilities have closed.
Jicarilla Apache Reservation
POB 507 Dulce, NM 87528
Located in the mountains and mesas of north-central New Mexico, the Jicarilla Apache landscape offers diverse scenery, from forests of Ponderosa Pines to flats dotted with Sagebrush.
Mesa Verde National Park
Hwy. 491, Mesa Verde National Park, CO 81330
Mesa Verde National Park is open to the public with some areas open for self-guided exploring. Please note the museum and visitor center are closed and staffing is limited. The cliff dwellings are also closed and guided tours are canceled until further notice.
Museum of Navajo Art & Culture
301 W Main St, Farmington, NM
This facility is closed at this time.
The Navajo Nation is the largest Indian tribe in the United States, with roughly one third living in New Mexico. The majority of the Navajo people live in Arizona, while a small population resides in southern Utah. The Navajo reservation covers more than 27,000 square miles of land throughout Utah, Arizona and New Mexico.
6131 Hwy. 64, Bloomfield, NM 87413
Closed at this time.
Visible from Hwy. 64 & Hwy. 491
Shiprock Pinnacle is one of New Mexico's most iconic landmarks. This unique towering rock formation can be seen for miles in all directions. Shiprock is known to the Navajo as "Tsé Bit' A'í", or rock with wings. The peak tip rests at 7,178 feet above sea level, and is at the center of three volcanic pressure ridges that pushed the rock skyward millenniums ago. Due to its sacred nature, climbing is not permitted.
Navajo Lake State Park
505-564-7600 or 800-842-3127
The wildlife, scenery and a Navajo Pueblito found amidst these 3,900 acres of diverse canyon landscape make this a great area for day hikes.
The Southern Utes have built a modern cultural and tourism center just north of Ignacio, Colorado, the Southern Ute capital. Ancient artwork, artifacts and photographs are exhibited at the Southern Ute Indian Cultural Center and Museum.
TRAC Art Center & Gallery
123 W Main, Farmington, NM 87401
Ute Mountain Ute
The Ute Mountain Ute capitol is in Towaco, Colorado. The Ute Mountain Utes have created a sound economy based on tourism and natural resources. Visitors can enjoy tours of archaeological sites, gaming, fishing and hunting.
Anasazi Heritage Center
27501 Hwy. 184, Dolores, Colorado 81323
The Anasazi Heritage Center is southwest Colorado's premier archaeological museum with permanent and changing exhibits featuring archaeology, history and regional Native American cultures.
Canyon de Chelly
Hwy 160 / PO Box 588, Chinle, AZ 86503
The labyrinth called Canyon de Chelly (d’SHAY) is really several canyons. Throughout the park, visitors will see archaeological ruins such as cliff dwellings and kivas as well the panoramic views of the canyons.
Edge of the Cedars State Park
660 West 400 North, Blanding, Utah 84511-0788
Edge of the Cedars State Park features an Ancestral Puebloan (Anasazi) ruin and modern visitor center and museum. The museum is the archaeological repository for southeast Utah.
Goosenecks State Park
c/o Edge of the Cedars State Park Museum, 660 West 400 North, Blanding, UT 84511
Goosenecks State Park is where the San Juan River has carved deep canyons through the countryside before reaching the Colorado River. The river winds back and forth for 5 miles while only traveling one linear mile.
Mexican Hat Rock
US Highway 163, Utah
Mexican Hat Rock is a rock formation north of the small town of Mexican Hat shaped like an upside-down sombrero. The town of Mexican Hat serves as the "put-out" spot for rafters on the San Juan River from Bluff, UT. The Mexican Hat Rock can be reached by a small trail.
Hwy. 163, Monument Valley, AZ
Monument Valley's enchanting landscape displays mesas, buttes and fragile pinnacles covering 91,696 acres in Southeast Utah and Northwest Arizona. The world-famous panorama of Mitten Buttes and Merrick Butte are visible from the Monument Valley (Tse'Bii'Ndzisgaii, Navajo name) Visitors Center. Places such as Ear of the Wind and other landmarks can only be accessed via guided tours.
Natural Bridges National Monument
35 miles west of Blanding, Utah
Natural Bridges National Monument is open however some facilities have closed.