Guided Tours

 
A line of hikers make their way up a canyon between sagebrush, juniper, and steep cliffs
A guided hike through Mesa Verde's backcountry

NPS

Ranger-Assisted Tours

A ranger-assisted tour is a timed-entry experience that allow visitors to move through a cliff dwelling at their own pace and in a socially distanced way. Rangers stationed along the route will facilitate and provide interpretation.

Long House
Located on Wetherill Mesa, Long House tours offer visitors an opportunity to enjoy the quieter side of Mesa Verde. As the second-largest cliff dwelling, Long House feels both grand and intimate. Visitors will enjoy changing landscapes, picturesque views of distant canyons and mesas, and an active seep spring within the dwelling.

This 60-minute, ranger-assisted tour involves hiking 2.25 miles (3.6 km) roundtrip with an elevation gain of about 130 feet (40 m) and climbing two 15-foot (4.5 m) ladders within the site.

No bicycles or vehicles over 25 feet (8 m) or over 8,000 pounds (3,628 kg) GVW are allowed on the narrow, winding 12 mile (19 km) road to Wetherill Mesa.

May 22 to October 22, 2022
9:00 am to 11:30 am and 1:30 pm to 3:00 pm; tours every ½ hour

Cliff Palace
Cliff Palace is a world-famous masterpiece of architecture and design and the largest cliff dwelling in North America. Built between 1190 and 1280 CE, Cliff Palace was once home to over 100 people.Today, it stands as a testament to the engineering and artistic achievements of the Ancestral Pueblo people. For a virtual tour of Cliff Palace, go to https://go.nps.gov/CPvideo .

On this 30-minute ranger-assisted tour, you will descend uneven stone steps and climb four ladders, with an elevation change of 100 feet (30 m). Total walking distance is 1/4 mile (0.4 km).

July* to October 22, 2022
9:00 am to 11:30 am and 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm; tours every ½ hour

*Expected to reopen in July 2022, following the completion of road construction. Date is subject to change. See Closures page for most up-to-date information.

Ranger-Guided Tours

On these more intimate, in-depth tours, rangers guide small groups into the park's backcountry to visit several of the park's lesser-seen cliff dwellings.

Balcony House
A tour of Balcony House is one of the most adventurous in the park and not for the faint-of-heart. You will scale the face of a cliff via several tall ladders, squeeze your way through a narrow tunnel on your hands and knees, and explore some of the same passages used over 800 years ago! For those ready for the challenge, this tour offers you the chance to follow in the footsteps of the Ancestral Pueblo residents who lived there. For a virtual tour, go to https://go.nps.gov/BHvideo .

On this one-hour tour, you will climb a 32-foot (9.8 m) ladder, crawl through an 18-inch wide (45 cm) and 12-foot (3.7 m) long tunnel, and climb up a 60-foot (20 m) open cliff face with uneven stone steps and two 17-foot (5 m) ladders to exit.

July* to October 22, 2022
9:00 am, 11:00 am, and 1:00 pm

*Expected to reopen in July 2022, following the completion of road construction. Date is subject to change. See Closures page for most up-to-date information.

Mug House
Named for three mugs tied together with yucca rope found hanging inside one of its rooms, Mug House was a village of 80 to 100 residents during the 1100 to 1200s CE. Along the rough trail to Mug House, tours will also experience Adobe Cave, Ancestral Pueblo rock art, and wonderful views of Rock Canyon.

This strenuous 90-minute, 2.25-mile (4.8 km) round-trip hike is along an unpaved, uneven trail that descends 100 ft (30 m), and includes steep drop-offs, switchbacks, and scrambling up and down boulders. Each hiker must be able to scramble over boulders and navigate steep gravel trails unassisted.

No bicycles or vehicles over 25 feet (8 m) or over 8,000 pounds (3,628 kg) GVW are allowed on the narrow, winding 12 mile (19 km) road to Wetherill Mesa.

May 22 to June 28, 2022
9:00 am and 11:00 am


Square Tower House
Featuring the tallest standing structure in the park, an intact kiva roof, original plaster and paint, and plentiful rock art, Square Tower House is one of Mesa Verde's most impressive cliff dwellings. Visitors to the Mesa Top Loop can get a great view from the overlook, but intrepid hikers are treated to an adventurous and intimate look inside Square Tower House on this special ranger-guided tour.

This strenuous 90-minute, 1-mile (2.6km) round-trip hike is along an unpaved, uneven trail that descends 100 feet (30 m), and includes steep drop-offs, switchbacks, and two ladders (the longest is 20 feet [6.1m]). Each hiker must be able to scramble over boulders and navigate steep gravel trails unassisted.

Daily May 28 to June 15, 2022
8:30 am
 
Separation bar with triangles - black and white
 

Other Guided Experiences

 

The Mesa Verde National Park concessioner, Aramark, offers addtional guided-tour experiences in the park. To learn more or to make an online reservation for these, visit the Aramark website.

Last updated: June 27, 2022

Park footer

Contact Info

Mailing Address:

PO Box 8
Mesa Verde National Park , CO 81330

Phone:

970-529-4465

Contact Us

Stay Connected