Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park

Monument Valley   |  Rosie Serago
  • Weather: Sunny, 88F
Monument Valley, an iconic symbol of the American West and the sacred heart of the Navajo Nation, is the ideal setting for your next adventure in the warm, high desert climate of southeastern Utah. Visitors may explore the 17-mile scenic drive in private vehicles or book a jeep tour to explore the area's backroads and sacred lands with the help of a local guide. 

The valley is host to towering sandstone rock formations that have been sculpted over time and soar 400 to 1,000 feet above the valley floor. Combined with the surrounding mesas, buttes and desert environment, it truly is one of the natural wonders of the world. Stay the night and step out after dark to appreciate the timelessness and wonder of the Milky Way. Stopping to appreciate the rhythms of this ancient, sacred land has the ability to change your perspective if you take the time to let it.

Winter in Monument Valley How to Visit Tribal Lands

Monument Valley Fees, Permits & Hours

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is located on the Navajo Nation Reservation, along the state line of southeast Utah and northeast Arizona. The park is a three hour drive from Moab, a little under one hour from Bluff and about 5 hours from Phoenix. Check ahead for current conditions and entrance fees.

  • Fees: $8 per person per day. Children 7 and under are free. 
  • Visitor Center hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., year-round. 
  • Scenic Drive summer hours: 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Last vehicles are permitted onto the drive at 6 p.m. and must depart it by 8 p.m.
  • Closed during all major holidays in accordance with the Navajo Nation: Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.
  • Permits are required for backcountry hiking, camping, filming and various special uses such as weddings. Visit the park’s website for more information on current fees and permits.
  • GPS coordinates of park visitor center: 37.002449, -110.172615

Visitor Center

Monument Valley Weather

Visitors come to Monument Valley year-round, but most come during spring and autumn to best enjoy the high-desert environment. The onset of searing summer heat usually begins in late May, and it can persist into mid-September. Autumn provides some of the most stable weather of the year. Temperatures may reach mid-90s F in July and August. Clear, warm, sunny days and cool nights make this one of the most delightful seasons to visit.

Winter in Monument Valley can be cold and windy, although there will be some nice days. Average highs in the winter are in the 40s, so you'll want to pack layers and water when you venture out to enjoy serene, sometimes snow-dusted, panoramas.

Utah Weather

Goulding's Lodge is tucked under soaring rimrock cliffs two miles west of the Monument Valley.

Photo: Austen Diamond

Where to Stay

The nearest town to Monument Valley is Mexican Hat, a short drive to the northeast on U.S. 163. For more lodging and dining options, continue along this same highway for another 20 minutes to reach Bluff. Accommodations are also available in Kayenta, Arizona, south on U.S. 163. Goosenecks State Park (near Mexican Hat) also has a campground. 

Gouldings Lodge is another nearby option and the most convenient place to eat inside the park. This lodge is tucked under soaring rimrock cliffs two miles west of the Monument Valley turnoff from U.S. 163 in Utah. Gouldings also has a nice campground that offers RV hookups, a pool and separate cabins. Explore their guided tour opportunities as well.  

The View Hotel is the only lodging inside Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. Reservations well in advance are a good idea if you want to enjoy the amazing views of Monument Valley from this modern hotel.

Visit with Respect

  • You are a guest on the reservation and tribal park land, and allowed on site with the permission of the tribe. Act accordingly. Learn more about Native Nations in Utah.
  • Avoid taking pictures of people or events unless you have permission. Remember, this is where people live and work. (Watch: Voices of Bears Ears — The Navajo).
  • Act respectfully at all times, but particularly at important sites and burial grounds.
  • Don’t remove pottery or other artifacts you may find — this is a violation of federal law. (Read: How to Visit Rock Imagery Sites)
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