Trail Of The Ancients 6 Day Itinerary

The 116-mile Trail of the Ancients, America’s only National Scenic Byway dedicated solely to archaeology, is a byway full of archaeology and culture in the heart of the Colorado Plateau.

With access to countless examples of Ancestral Puebloan culture, stunning scenic vistas, and some of the most austere land in the country, the Trail of the Ancients invites travelers to Step Back in Time and create their own adventures.


Cortez is the perfect jumping off point for exploring Trail of the Ancients, offering local accommodations, fine dining and other travel services.

Day Two: Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado

Mesa Verde, the crown jewel of Trail of the Ancients, is a spectacular way to start your archaeological adventure.

Day Three: Ute Mountain Tribal Park, Colorado

One of the most remote stops on the Trail of the Ancients, adventure awaits you on “the other side” of the mesa”.

Day Four: Four Corners Monument

This Trail of the Ancients stop joins four states and two Indian tribes in a unique cultural experience.

Day Five: Hovenweep National Monument

Hovenweep brings together the Colorado and Utah portions of Trail of the Ancients, with part of the monument located in each state.

Day Six: Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, Colorado

“Touch the Past” at this unique stop on the Trail of the Ancients, located just a few miles north of Cortez.

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