“Built over 700 years ago!”
The Cliff Palace is the largest cliff dwelling in North America. The structure built by the Ancient Pueblo Peoples is located in Mesa Verde National Park in their former homeland region. The cliff dwelling and park are in the southwestern corner of Colorado, in the Southwestern United States. Tree ring dating indicates that construction and refurbishing of Cliff Palace was continuous from c. 1190 CE through c. 1260 CE, although the major portion of the building was done within a twenty-year time span. The Ancestral Pueblo that constructed this cliff dwelling and the others like it at Mesa Verde were driven to these defensible positions by "increasing competition amidst changing climatic conditions." Cliff Palace was abandoned by 1300, and while debate remains as to the causes of this, some believe a series of megadroughts interrupting food production systems is the main cause. Cliff Palace was first discovered in 1888 by Richard Wetherhill and Charlie Mason while out looking for stray cattle.
This place was amazing to behold from just the view points offered right of the road. However the $4 a person tour was so absolutely worth it!
We took the earliest tour (9:00am) so we had complete shade though out our tour. This was a must for us because it gets very hot as the day progresses. First you follow the guide down some steep steps carved right into the sandstone cliff, around the corner and then you are on level with the "palace" It is amazing that these building has stood through so many years. Truly a site to see and on level with it was great fun. The way back out is not for the faint of heart. Three ladders strait up the cliff face in a narrow crack is crazy but more so to know that the inhabitants of this world scaled the cliff every day. Amazing
We made it here around 1030 and we wouldn’t have been able to get tickets until 4. You can only get tickets at the visitor center and only two days in advance so if you are just dropping by on your trip you won’t be able to see cliff palace. You need tickets for Cliff Palace and also Long House. We are driving to Step House which is self guided. Still not the same and we are disappointed.
Great viewpoint of this one for a sunset photo!
Spectacular! Part of the Mesa Verde National Park. Allow time to hike a bit. It's amazing!
WOW! You have to go for this. $15 to get in the park +$4 per person for a tour is an absolute bargain. This is amazing. Absolutely amazing. GO NOW ;)
If you can only see one thing in all of Mesa Verde, then it's got to be the Cliff Palace. The site is incredible to behold--a whole set of preserved buildings nestled right into the cliffs. The view from the observation point is pretty rad, but if you have the time then you should definitely take the tour through the ruins.
We could only look at it from across the way as the Cliff Palace tours aren’t currently happening. The Mesa Loop has some great viewpoints.
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