Visit a Cliff Dwelling

There are a number of cliff dwellings that can be toured during your visit to Mesa Verde National Park. Most of these can only be visited by taking a ranger-guided tour. One is open seasonally on a self-guided basis. See the chart below for general information. For details, use the links at right.




Cliff Palace

Late May
Mid September


Balcony House

Late April
Early October


Long House

Mid May
Mid October


Step House


Mid May
Mid October

Spruce Tree House Due to continued safety concerns relating to rock falls, Spruce Tree House remains closed for the foreseeable future. Overlooks near the museum offer superb views of the cliff dwelling. more>>

Tickets for guided-tours must be purchased in person at the Mesa Verde Visitor and Research Center. Both guided and self-guided tours are strenuous. For more information on these tours, or to see a park schedule, please use the links at right.


Know Before You Go

Visiting a cliff dwelling can be strenuous. The cliff dwellings are at 7,000 foot (2134 m) elevation. Please consider your physical health before hiking or going on tours.

Trails are steep and uneven, with steps and ladders. Visiting cliff dwellings or hiking is not recommended for those with heart or respiratory problems.

Children on Tours
Parents, please watch your children at all times - especially on trails, in the cliff dwellings, and near canyon rims. Although there are no height or age restrictions for tours, children must be capable of walking the extent of the trails, climbing ladders, and negotiating steps independently. All infants must be carried in backpacks while on tours and adults carrying children in backpacks must be able to maintain mobility and balance.

Your safety depends on your own good judgment, adequate preparation, and constant attention. Learn about the physical nature of the tours BEFORE you go. This information is on the website, in the visitor guide handout, at the visitor center, and described by rangers before selling tour tickets and leading the tours. Don't ruin your vacation by having an accident. Your safety is your responsibility.

Last updated: August 19, 2016

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 8
Mesa Verde National Park, CO 81330


(970) 529-4465

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