If you have driven north on the I-17, you have probably seen an exit for Montezuma’s Castle. This “castle” dwelling features 20 rooms and was originally habited by the Singua for around 400 years. Historians believe that the cliff dwellings could date back to 800 – 1000 years old.
Clever Dad and I hadn’t been here in a long time but the kids actually had never been here. It’s only about an hour and a half north of Phoenix and is right off the I-17.
While you can’t get too close to see inside, it’s still an amazing site to see from below. Bring a pair of binoculars or a long lens to zoom in a bit. It’s crazy to think how they used to have people climb ladders to take a closer look until 1951.
The way these were built are simply amazing. It was a great opportunity to talk with the kids about living today vs then.
Along the trail there were other beautiful views like the trees and the river.
The trail is pretty easy and is completely paved. You could see Montezuma Castle in just an hour or two and even stop to rest on one of the benches or picnic tables to enjoy lunch!
If you go:
Check the hours and directions here: http://www.nps.gov/moca/index.htm
- Visit when the weather is a little cooler, it can be a bit hot in the Summer.
- This is a national park so invest in the America the Beautiful pass and get into all National Parks all year round for one price!
- Get there early, parking is limited.
- Make this one of your stops on a road trip up to Sedona, Prescott, Flagstaff etc.