El Malpais National Monument, Grants

4.6
#1 of 8 in Things to do in Grants
Must see · National Park · Nature / Park
El Malpais National Monument is a National Monument located in western New Mexico, in the Southwestern United States. The name El Malpais is from the Spanish term Malpaís, meaning badlands, due to the extremely barren and dramatic volcanic field that covers much of the park's area.

It is on the Trails of the Ancients Byway, one of the designated New Mexico Scenic Byways.
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El Malpais National Monument reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
306 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • El Malpais, means “the badlands” in Spanish, is pretty much what the Spanish conquistadors called challenging or bad terrain. They couldn’t cross the lava field with horses and livestock. El...  more »
  • Stop at the National Monument visitor center just south of I-40. They will greet you and be genuinely glad you stopped in. The monument covers a large area and contains multiple types of geology...  more »
Google
  • Great for kids to go caving! Free camping at Joe Skeen Campground-- I think we got the last spot for the night. Junction cave was awesome-- it is cool in there. Be sure to get a free permit at the visitors center, and definitely bring a helmet, or get one there because you will need it! If you have kids that love climbing all over everything, this is the place to go!
  • Hidden gem. We did not know that the park existed and that there were lava flows and tubes in New Mexico. We got any early start to avoid the hotest part of the day and found the trail to be spectacular. The wild flowers were beautiful.

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