3-Day Sightseeing & Outdoor Adventure in Monument Valley, Arizona

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, Arizona

3 days

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park
Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park
Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park
Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park
Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park

About Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, Arizona

Experience the raw beauty of the American Southwest at Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, Arizona. This iconic landscape, with its towering sandstone buttes and vast, sun-baked vistas, has been the backdrop for countless films and is deeply sacred to the Navajo Nation. Embark on a guided tour to learn about the area's rich cultural history, or explore the 17-mile Valley Drive at your own pace. Don't miss the chance to witness a breathtaking sunrise or sunset over the valley, painting the monoliths in hues of red and orange. Whether you're a nature lover, a photography enthusiast, or a history buff, Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park offers an unforgettable journey into the heart of the American West.

3-Day Itinerary

Day 1

Exploring Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park

Morning

Start your day with a guided tour of the Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. Explore the iconic sandstone buttes and vast desert landscape that have been featured in countless films and photographs.

Lunch

Enjoy a picnic lunch amidst the breathtaking scenery of the park. Make sure to try some traditional Navajo dishes such as frybread or mutton stew.

Afternoon

After lunch, continue your exploration of the park. Visit the Navajo Indian Village to learn about the Navajo culture and history.

Dinner

For dinner, enjoy a meal under the stars. Many local establishments offer outdoor dining with views of the stunning desert landscape.

Evening

End your day with a night sky tour. The clear desert skies offer an unparalleled opportunity for stargazing.

Morning

Begin your second day with a sunrise photography tour. Capture the stunning colors and shadows of the desert landscape as the sun rises.

Lunch

Have lunch at a local establishment. Try some more traditional Navajo dishes or opt for a classic American meal.

Afternoon

Spend the afternoon hiking one of the park's trails. The Wildcat Trail offers stunning views of the valley and its iconic buttes.

Dinner

Enjoy another dinner with a view. As the sun sets, the desert landscape takes on a whole new level of beauty.

Evening

Spend the evening relaxing and reflecting on the day's adventures. Perhaps take a leisurely stroll under the stars.

Morning

On your final day, take a jeep tour of the park. This is a great way to see parts of the park that are off the beaten path.

Lunch

Have a final picnic lunch in the park. Enjoy the stunning scenery one last time before you leave.

Afternoon

Spend your last afternoon visiting the Monument Valley Visitor Center. Here you can learn more about the park and its history.

Dinner

For your final dinner, try a Navajo taco. This local specialty is a must-try before you leave.

Evening

End your trip with a final night of stargazing. The desert sky is truly a sight to behold.

Attractions in Itinerary (4)

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park

1
Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park

A vast park with sandstone masterpieces towering at heights of 400 to 1,000 feet, the park offers visitors a unique view of the natural beauty and cultural history of the Navajo people.

Parks
Cultural Experiences
Landmarks
Navajo Indian Village

A traditional Navajo dwelling that offers a glimpse into the Navajo way of life.

Cultural Experiences
Architecture
Wildcat Trail

3
Wildcat Trail

A self-guided 3.2 mile trail that offers an intimate experience with the natural beauty of Monument Valley.

Tours
Attractions
Monument Valley Visitor Center

4
Monument Valley Visitor Center

The starting point for tours and information about the Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park.

Attractions
Cultural Experiences

Local Food and Drinks (11)

Navajo Taco

A popular dish in the Navajo region, it consists of fry bread topped with beans, meat, cheese, and vegetables. It's a must-try for its unique combination of flavors and textures.

Blue Corn Mush

A traditional Navajo dish made from blue cornmeal and water. It's often served with mutton or lamb and is a staple in the local diet.

Mutton Stew

Mutton Stew

A hearty stew made with mutton, potatoes, carrots, and onions. It's a common dish in the Navajo region and offers a taste of the local lifestyle.

Fry Bread

Fry Bread

A type of flat dough bread, deep-fried to a golden brown. It's a staple food in the Navajo culture and can be eaten alone or used as a base for other dishes.

Chilchin (Red Berry Pudding)

A sweet dessert made from sumac berries, cornmeal, and sugar. It's a traditional Navajo treat that offers a taste of the region's natural resources.

A sweet cake made from cornmeal, sugar, and local spices. It's a popular dessert in the Navajo region and showcases the local culinary traditions.

Pinon Coffee

Pinon Coffee

A unique coffee made from pinon nuts, which are native to the Southwest. It has a distinct nutty flavor and is a local favorite.

Navajo Tea

A herbal tea made from the greenthread plant, which is native to the Southwest. It's often consumed for its health benefits and offers a taste of the local flora.

Prickly Pear Cactus Fruit Juice

Prickly Pear Cactus Fruit Juice

A refreshing juice made from the fruit of the prickly pear cactus. It's a common drink in the Navajo region and offers a taste of the local environment.

Blue Corn Pancakes

Blue Corn Pancakes

A breakfast dish made from blue cornmeal, resulting in a unique color and flavor. It's a common breakfast item in the Navajo region.

Three Sisters Stew

Three Sisters Stew

A hearty stew made with corn, beans, and squash, which are known as the 'three sisters' in Navajo culture. It's a traditional dish that showcases the region's agricultural practices.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, Arizona is during the spring (April to June) and fall (September to early November). During these periods, the weather is most pleasant with moderate temperatures, making it ideal for outdoor activities like hiking and sightseeing. The park is less crowded as well, allowing you to fully enjoy the stunning landscapes and cultural experiences. However, it's always recommended to check the weather forecast before your trip as conditions can change rapidly.

National holidays

Here you can find the national calendar of all public holidays for the year. These dates are subject to change as official changes are announced, so check back regularly for updates.

DateDayHoliday Name

January 1

Mon

New Year's Day

January 15

Mon

Martin Luther King Jr. Day

February 19

Mon

Presidents' Day

May 27

Mon

Memorial Day

June 19

Wed

Juneteenth

July 4

Thu

Independence Day

September 2

Mon

Labor Day

October 14

Mon

Columbus Day

November 11

Mon

Veterans Day

November 28

Thu

Thanksgiving Day

December 25

Wed

Christmas Day

Please note that during national and public holidays, opening hours for establishments, museums, etc. may vary. Don't forget to check in advance!

How to get around

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is accessible by car, and there are several scenic drives within the park that visitors can take. However, some areas are only accessible with a Navajo guide or on a guided tour.

There are several companies that offer guided tours of Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. These tours can include transportation, a guide, and sometimes meals. They can be a great way to learn more about the park's history and culture.

There are several hiking trails within Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. These trails offer stunning views of the park's iconic sandstone formations. Please note that some areas of the park are only accessible with a Navajo guide or on a guided tour.

Horseback riding is a popular way to explore Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. There are several companies that offer horseback riding tours, which can be a unique and exciting way to see the park.

Biking is allowed on the park's main roads, but not on the hiking trails or in the backcountry. Biking can be a fun and active way to see the park, but please be aware that the park's roads can be busy with car traffic.

Ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft are not widely available in the Monument Valley area due to its remote location. However, some local transportation companies may offer similar services.

While we strive for accuracy in our "How to get around" section, the information may not always be up-to-date or 100% accurate; we highly recommend cross-checking with local resources before your travel.

Important information

Currency$ USD

Time zoneUTC-5

Driving sideRight

Emergency phone911

Drinking waterYes

Power sockets

Power socket type APower socket type B

Voltage120 V

Things to know about Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, Arizona as a first time visitor

1

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is located on the Arizona-Utah state line, within the Navajo Nation reservation.

2

The park is open year-round, but the best time to visit is during the spring (March-May) and fall (September-November) when the weather is mild.

3

During the summer months (June-August), temperatures can reach up to 100°F (38°C), so it's important to stay hydrated and protected from the sun.

4

Winter (December-February) can be cold with temperatures dropping to around 20°F (-6°C), so pack warm clothing if you plan to visit during this time.

5

The park is not pet-friendly, so it's best to leave your furry friends at home.

6

There is an entrance fee to the park, which goes towards its maintenance and preservation.

7

The park's visitor center offers a variety of services including information, restrooms, a gift shop, and a restaurant.

8

There are no gas stations or grocery stores within the park, so it's recommended to fill up your tank and pack food and water before your visit.

9

The park's scenic drive is a 17-mile (27 km) dirt road that takes about 2-3 hours to complete. It's accessible by private vehicles, but a 4x4 is recommended due to the rough terrain.

10

Guided tours are available and are the only way to access certain areas of the park, such as the restricted backcountry.

11

Respect the Navajo culture and traditions. Do not disturb or remove any artifacts, and always ask for permission before taking photos of the local people.

12

Camping is not allowed within the park, but there are nearby campgrounds and accommodations available.

13

Cell service is limited within the park, so download maps and other necessary information beforehand.

14

The park is located in a remote area, so it's recommended to have a first-aid kit and emergency supplies on hand.

15

The park's altitude is around 5,000 feet (1,500 meters), so take time to acclimate to avoid altitude sickness.

16

Wildlife is abundant in the park, so keep a safe distance and do not feed the animals.

17

The park is in the Mountain Time Zone and observes Daylight Saving Time.

18

The park's roads can become impassable during heavy rain or snow, so check the weather forecast before your visit.

19

The park is a popular filming location, so don't be surprised if you come across a film crew during your visit.

20

Lastly, remember the principle of 'Leave No Trace'. Carry out all trash and leave the park as you found it for future visitors to enjoy.

Packing List

  • Clothing

  • Lightweight clothing

  • Long-sleeved shirts

  • Long pants

  • Underwear

  • Socks

  • Comfortable walking shoes

  • Hat or cap for sun protection

  • Sunglasses

  • Swimsuit (if you plan to swim)

  • Jacket or sweater for cooler evenings

  • Toiletries

  • Toothbrush and toothpaste

  • Shampoo and conditioner

  • Body wash or soap

  • Deodorant

  • Razor and shaving cream

  • Sunscreen

  • Lip balm with SPF

  • First-aid kit (including band-aids, antiseptic wipes, tweezers)

  • Prescription medications

  • Insect repellent

  • Travel documents and essentials

  • Valid ID or driver's license

  • Credit and debit cards

  • Cash (for places that don't accept cards)

  • Health insurance card

  • Reservation confirmations

  • Road maps or GPS

  • Electronics and gadgets

  • Smartphone

  • Charger for smartphone

  • Camera

  • Charger for camera

  • Portable power bank

  • Headphones or earbuds

  • Miscellaneous items

  • Reusable water bottle

  • Snacks

  • Travel pillow and blanket

  • Books or magazines for leisure reading

  • Binoculars for wildlife viewing

  • Notebook and pen for journaling

  • Umbrella or raincoat (just in case)

  • Backpack or daypack for daily essentials

Weather Conditions

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, located in Arizona, is known for its dramatic landscapes and iconic sandstone buttes. However, the weather can be quite variable, so it's important to plan your visit accordingly. The park experiences a desert climate, which means hot summers and cold winters. Summer temperatures can reach up to 90°F (32°C), while winter temperatures can drop as low as 20°F (-6°C). Therefore, it's crucial to pack appropriate clothing for the season you're visiting in. Lightweight, breathable clothing is recommended for the summer months, while warm layers are a must for winter. Spring and fall are considered the best times to visit, with temperatures ranging from 60°F to 80°F (15°C to 27°C). These seasons offer more comfortable conditions for outdoor activities like hiking and photography. Regardless of the season, always remember to stay hydrated. The arid desert climate can quickly lead to dehydration, especially during the hotter months. Carry plenty of water with you and consider wearing a hat and sunscreen to protect against the strong sun. Finally, keep in mind that weather conditions can change rapidly in the desert. It's not uncommon for sudden rainstorms to occur, especially during the monsoon season from July to September. Always check the local weather forecast before setting out for the day and be prepared for unexpected changes in weather. In conclusion, while the weather in Monument Valley can be challenging, with the right preparation, you can have a safe and enjoyable visit to this stunning location.

MonthHi / Lo (°C)Weather Overview

January

14° / -6°

January is the coldest month in Monument Valley, with temperatures often dropping below freezing. It's a quiet time to visit, but be prepared for cold weather.

February

17° / -3°

February sees a slight increase in temperature, but it's still quite chilly. The park is less crowded during this time.

March

22° / 0°

March brings warmer weather and the beginning of the tourist season. It's a great time to visit for those who prefer milder temperatures.

April

28° / 4°

April is a pleasant month with moderate temperatures. It's an excellent time for outdoor activities.

May

35° / 9°

May brings hot temperatures and the start of the peak tourist season. Be prepared for hot days and cool nights.

June

40° / 14°

June is the hottest month in Monument Valley, with temperatures often exceeding 40°C. It's a great time to visit if you enjoy hot weather, but remember to stay hydrated.

July

41° / 17°

July is also very hot, with occasional thunderstorms. It's a popular time for tourists, so expect larger crowds.

August

40° / 16°

August sees slightly cooler temperatures and frequent thunderstorms. It's a great time to visit if you enjoy dramatic weather.

September

37° / 11°

September brings cooler temperatures and fewer tourists. It's a great time to visit if you prefer milder weather and less crowded conditions.

October

29° / 5°

October is a pleasant month with moderate temperatures. It's an excellent time for outdoor activities.

November

20° / 0°

November sees a drop in temperature and fewer tourists. It's a good time to visit if you prefer cooler weather.

December

14° / -4°

December is a quiet month in Monument Valley, with cold temperatures and fewer tourists. It's a good time to visit if you prefer a peaceful experience.

Did you know?

Did you know that Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is located on the Navajo Nation—one of the largest American Indian tribes?

1 of 10

Places near by Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, Arizona

Canyon de Chelly National Monument

Canyon de Chelly National Monument

A vast park with a canyon that features archaeological sites and cliff dwellings.

2h
150.5 km / 93.5 mi
How to get there
Goosenecks State Park

Goosenecks State Park

A small state park that overlooks a deep meander of the San Juan River.

45m
40.2 km / 25.0 mi
How to get there
Natural Bridges National Monument

Natural Bridges National Monument

A National Monument featuring several natural bridges formed by water erosion.

1.5h
115.9 km / 72.0 mi
How to get there
Four Corners Monument

Four Corners Monument

The only point in the U.S. where four states intersect at one point: Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and Colorado.

2h
180.2 km / 112.0 mi
How to get there
Navajo National Monument

A National Monument that preserves three of the most intact cliff dwellings of the ancestral Puebloan people.

1.5h
96.6 km / 60.0 mi
How to get there
Mesa Verde National Park

Mesa Verde National Park

A U.S. National Park and UNESCO World Heritage Site that protects some of the best preserved Ancestral Puebloan archaeological sites.

3h
225.3 km / 140.0 mi
How to get there
Hovenweep National Monument

Hovenweep National Monument

A National Monument featuring six prehistoric, Puebloan-era villages spread over a twenty-mile expanse of mesa tops and canyons.

2h
145.1 km / 90.2 mi
How to get there
Valley of the Gods

Valley of the Gods

A scenic sandstone valley that features stunning geologic formations.

45m
37.9 km / 23.5 mi
How to get there
Shiprock

Shiprock

A monadnock rising nearly 1,583 feet above the high-desert plain on the Navajo Nation.

2.5h
169.5 km / 105.3 mi
How to get there
Antelope Canyon

Antelope Canyon

A slot canyon known for its smooth, wave-like walls and the light beams that shine down into the canyon.

3h
193.1 km / 120.0 mi
How to get there

Other Destinations in Arizona