Cultural World Heritage Package
This package will give you a unique and in-depth understanding of the distinctive cultural heritage of the 4-Corners Region. You will visit 2 of only 20 World Heritage sites in all of the U.S. and learn about some of the most rich and fascinating cultural history in the world. Investigate the ancestral Puebloan people (formerly known as the Anasazi) with a visit to Mesa Verde National Park and then Chaco Canyon, both major centers of Puebloan culture and and development over 700 years ago. Then, optionally, experience an archaeological investigation at Crow Canyon (seasonal - Summer on Wed. and Thurs. only) OR a horseback ride into the Ute Mountain Tribal Park, one of the most unknown and unexplored Puebloan ruin systems in the world.
On Day 1 of this tour, gain an in-depth understanding of the ancestral Puebloan people by experiencing a rare opportunity to take a horseback ride into the Ute Mountain Tribal Park - one of the most undiscovered Puebloan ruin systems in the U.S.
On Day 2, you will take a tour of your first World Heritage site, Mesa Verde National Park, to witness the amazing remnants of this ancient culture and home of the largest cliff dwellings in North America.
Finally on Day 3, you will visit your second World Heritage site, Chaco Canyon National Historical Park, which was a major center of Puebloan culture between AD 850 and 1250.
- Lodging in Durango at your choice of available partner lodging options (4 nights is highly recommended to provide ample time to enjoy 3 full-day activities).
- A full day, guided tour to Mesa Verde National Park with entrance to the park, all park fees, lunch and hotel pick up and drop off included.
- A full day, guided tour to Chaco Canyon with entrance to the park, all park fees, lunch and hotel pick up and drop off included.
- A beautiful Ute Mountain Tribal Park horseback ride through Colorado's backcountry and even the possibility of seeing some of the Country's last wild horses. Off season, we recommend substituting a historical and scenic ride on the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad.
- Add extra nights to your trip (in Durango, Cortez, Silverton, and/or Ouray).
- Add additional activities to your itinerary: a ride on the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, Evening entertainment, river trips, jeep tours, horseback rides, and more!
After a beautiful and scenic drive or flight from any direction, check into your selected hotel and kick your feet up, grab a bite at one of our world-class dining options and rest up for 3 days of cultural and historical exploration!
Day 1 - Ute Mountain Tribal Park Tour:
Enjoy a one-of-a-kind backcountry horseback ride into the Ute Mountain Tribal Park. This ride is a chance of a life time to see the west as its most wild, taking you into the Ute Tribal Park to explore a historical hidden gem with some of the most untouched cliff dwelling and Puebloan ruins in the world. You will also have an opportunity to explore Colorado's back-country and even see some of the West's last wild horses. Walk away from the professionally guided tour having explored some of the best that Colorado has to offer, a great horseback excursion, back-country wilderness and wildlife and an incredible glance back in history. (Please note: there is a maximum weight limit of 240lbs. and they must have a min of 6 riders for this trip to depart. If minimum is not met, they will do their best to accommodate a similar and equally as exciting ride for you.)
When the day is over, head into Durango and check into your Durango hotel. If you would like more out of your day, try an evening of frontier style fun with a show at the Henry Strater Theater in Durango.
Day 2 - Mesa Verde Tour:
Enjoy the perfect complement to your first day's learning journey with a full-day tour of Mesa Verde National Park. A professional and knowledgeable tour guide will pick you up at your hotel and take you out to spend a full day exploring the ancient culture and architecture of Mesa Verde National Park. Mesa Verde National Park offers some of the most notable and best-preserved archaeological sites in the United States. You will experience southwestern cultural heritage and comparisons between the Ancestral Puebloan people and their contemporary indigenous descendants who still live in the Southwest today.
During their last century, some Pueblo Natives of Mesa Verde left the mesa tops and built their homes in the alcoves that abound in the many canyon walls, commonly referred to as "cliff dwellings". The exact number of dwellings in Mesa Verde is unknown, but over 600 cliff dwellings have been documented. You will get to explore many dwellings with hand chosen experts of Archaeology, Anthropology, and Geology that will enhance your journey to this area with the knowledge and experience needed to understand the advancement of this civilization and their cultural development. This tour is truly hassle-free as it includes the entrance fees, refreshments and bag lunch of your choice in tour price.
Day 3 - Chaco Canyon Tour:
Your guide will again pick you up for another all-inclusive learning journey to Chaco Canyon National Historic Park - a major center of Puebloan culture between AD 850 and 1250 and one of the most exceptional concentration of Pueblos in the United States. Because of its wild beauty and high desert landscape, its hot summers, short growing seasons, and marginal rainfall - it is an unlikely place for a major center of ancestral Puebloan culture to take root and flourish yet this valley was the center of a thriving culture a thousand years ago.
Explore the Chaco Canyon experience:
The cultural flowering of the Chacoan people began in the mid-800's AD and lasted for more than 300 years which can be seen clearly in the grand scale of the architecture. Using masonry techniques unique for their time, they constructed massive stone buildings ("great houses") of multiple stories containing hundreds of rooms much larger than any they had previously built. Although each is unique, all great houses share architectural features that make them recognizable as "Chacoan." and many were planned construction, in contrast to the usual practice of adding rooms to existing structures as needed. The monumental scale of its architecture, the complexity of its ceremonial life, the high level of its community social organization, and the far-reaching nature of its commerce combine to create a cultural vision unlike any other seen before.
Bring your family to experience some of the richest cultural heritage in the United States with this World Heritage Cultural tour - a fun and exciting "learning" journey for any family.
- World Heritage Site Tours
- Crow Canyon Archaeological Center
- Ute Mountain Tribal Park Horseback Ride
- Train Rides