Mesa Verde Cliff Dwellings



I'll just comment quickly on the major mesa verde cliff dwellings and then let the pictures and video speak for themselves.

I had fun making the video quick, and a little bit "trippy." After you watch it, you'll know what I mean.  Any of  your comments below would be appreciated!  

Video and Picture Credits

There are five major dwellings that you saw in the video:

Spruce Tree House

This is the best preserved Ancesteral Puebloan "Apartment Complex" because of its protective location.  This is my favorite house because there's a water spring within a few hundred miles away.  There's nothing like water near by to make your life a little bit easier.  

mesa verde cliff dwellings
Great protection from the Elements

mesa verde spruce tree house
About 70 People Lived Here Between 1211 and 1278 AD

The Square Tower House

This building looks similar to a small Medieval castle and it's the tallest dwelling in the park.

mesa verde square tower house
Don't You Love the Construction Into the Rock?

mesa verde cliff dwelling tower
I Like the Older Picture of the Tower

This picture shows how the site was revered from the beginning of this ancient era until now.

Balcony House

This house had the best defensive system and had 45 rooms a 2 kivas (ceremonial areas) for the past inhabitants.

It now is the most strenouous of all of the places to tour.  You will have to climb a 32-foot ladder and crawl through a 12-foot tunnel.  

mesa verde balcony house
Couldn't You Relax Here?

Anasazi is no longer the term used for the descendents of this area because the word translates as "enemy ancestor" or "ancient enemy."  So we don't "paint" them as "ancient enemies," the term Ancient Puebloan is preferred.  

balcony house
Here is Your Climb Up to the Balcony

Long House

This is the second biggest of the mesa verde cliff dwellings and it had enough rooms for about 150 people.  It's also the most practical because not much attention was given to decorative motifs or other aesthetics.  

long house
There is also a Water Spring Close By

Oak Tree House

oak tree house
Don't You Love How Oak Tree is Nestled Into the Stone?

Cliff Palace

Cliff Palace is the "Grandaddy" of all of them and it's the most popular tourist attraction.  

It had 217 rooms, 23 kivas, open courts, storage areas, and even walkways inside. Many rooms also had nice paintings and other decorations.

mesa verde cliff palace
Look How Much Bigger Cliff Palace is Compared to the Others

cliff palace history

Cliff Palace is what got all of the descendents and later inhabitants excited about Mesa Verde over 100 years ago.  The Ute Native Americans saw this and left it alone for sacred reasons.  A rancher named Wetherill discovered this and let the world know about it.  It wasn't long before photographers, archeologists and conservationists did everything they could to preserve this amazing area.  

If you're a little more curious about that, you might want to read my article about reverence and Mesa Verde.  I'd be interested in your comments about that.


All of these tours will require a ranger and you'll want to stop by the Far View Visitor Center to get some background before you go.

Do you have any great pictures from Colorado that you'd like to see in one of my videos?  If so, then click here.

I'll be constantly creating new articles and videos related to Colorado.  You can keep Colorado in your memory by subscribing to my free newsletter.   I guarantee you'll enjoy it!

Thanks for spending some time on my site and I want to wish you the best in your travels!

P.S.  If you're on Your Way to Arizona from Southwest Colorado, You Might Want to Spend about 1/2 an hour at the Four Corners Monument.

And Click Here for More Colorado Attractions


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Video and Photo Credits for Mesa Verde Cliff Dwellings come from CreativeCommons

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