Canyons of the Ancients Visitor Center and Museum:
More than an outstanding museum sharing the story of Ancestral Pueblo and other cultures of the Southwest, the Visitor Center and Museum features a research collection of over 3.5 million artifacts and records from archaeological projects in Southwest Colorado, two 12th century archaeological sites, special exhibits and events, educational resources, internships, a research library, a nature trail, and a museum shop. As headquarters to Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, it’s the ideal place to begin your adventure into the past. Find out more about the CANM Visitor Center and Museum by clicking the name.
Canyons of the Ancients National Monument:
Pinyon-juniper forests, red rock canyons, and surprising seeps of water lay the backdrop for thousands of years of human occupation. For over 12,000 years people have called the 176,000 acres that is now Canyons of the Ancients National Monument home. Vestiges of their lives remain for us to appreciate and study: the densest region of archaeological sites in all North America. Three Wilderness Study Areas (WSA) and one Instant Study Area (ISA) provide an extra layer of serenity. Cahone Canyon WSA, Cross Canyon WSA, Squaw/Papoose Canyon WSA, and the Rare Lizard and Snake ISA comprise approximately 26,000 acres of pinyon-juniper woodlands, riparian, and sagebrush ecosystems for travel on foot only. Find out more about Canyons of the Ancients by clicking the name Canyons of the Ancients National Monument.
Where we are: Canyons of the Ancients National Monument and the Visitor Center and Museum are tucked away in the Southwest Corner of Colorado, just west of Cortez, Colorado and bordering Utah.
The Canyons of the Ancients National Monument is unique in many ways. One way is that there is no central loop road through the Monument.
The Ancestral Puebloan sites and trails are very geographically dispersed and access to these amazing places is sometimes on gravel and dirt roads. Please use caution and check on road conditions with the CANM Visitor Center before visiting the sites.
The Southwest Colorado Canyons Alliance strongly endorses the principles of Visiting with Respect and Leave No Trace ethics.