Visit Balcony House on Chapin Mesa at Mesa Verde while exploring Trail of the Ancients

PLEASE NOTE: Because of the federal government shutdown, all national parks — including Mesa Verde National Park — are currently closed. For more information, go to www.doi.gov. We will post further notices on this website as information becomes available.

Archaeology
& History
Along the Trail

Mesa Verde National Park

On Chapin Mesa the Park's Archaeological Museum is open 365 days a year and houses a full range of artifacts uncovered in and near Mesa Verde.

The museum tracks the history of the Ancestral Pueblo People through artifacts and exhibits that reconstruct their daily life. Take a short walk from the museum to Spruce Tree House in the canyon below. Here explorers young and old may climb down into a reconstructed Kiva. Spruce Tree House is open year-round, with self guided tours in the summer, and ranger led tours in the winter. A bookstore is also located at the Museum.

On Chapin Mesa there are two loop drives. Open from 8:00 am. to sunset, Mesa Top Road takes you past mesa-top dwellings and overlooks to cliff dwellings in the canyon below. Cliff Palace Road takes you to the meeting points for tours of Cliff Palace and Balcony House. Ranger-led tours of both of these dwellings require tickets that must be purchased at the Visitor Center.

Cliff Palace is the largest cliff dwelling, and is reached after a 15 minute hike. The ranger-guided tour takes approximately one hour. Balcony House is located high in a cliff, and requires climbing ladders and squeezing through a small tunnel. Both of these sites are open spring to fall, depending on weather conditions.


Chapin Mesa
Guided tours of Balcony House on Chapin Mesa provide insights into the history of the Ancestral Puebloans who inhabited Mesa Verde
Guided tours of Balcony House on Chapin Mesa provide insights into the history of the Ancestral Puebloans who inhabited Mesa Verde
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