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Mesa Verde National Park

4.4
World heritage site · Ruins · Hiking Trails
Whereas most national parks are primarily devoted to showcasing unique and special landscapes, Mesa Verde National Park focuses on ancient human habitation. The Ancestral Pueblo people lived in this area from AD 600 to 1300, and the park today preserves about 600 of the dwellings they built into the khaki-colored sandstone. Five of these are open to the public through guided and self-guided tours. Many visitors head for Cliff Palace, which is thought to be the largest cliff dwelling in North America, and is accessible only via ranger-guided tour. The park offers a series of hiking trails, which allow visitors to explore other areas independently. Some of these hikes provide views of dwellings not open to visitors. The arid climate supports woodlands and shrub communities, and wildlife such as black bears, mountain lions, bobcats, and elk. The main draw to Mesa Verde, however, remains its archaeological significance. Add Mesa Verde National Park and other United States destinations to your travel plans using our United States trip site.
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