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Beauty of Canyon De Chelly National Monument

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Wednesday, 27th December 2023

Canyon De Chelly National Monument, located in northeastern Arizona, is a place of profound historical and cultural significance. In this blog, we’ll explore the wonders of Canyon De Chelly, including how to get there from Phoenix, the best time to visit, where to stay, its rich history, and its geographical context within Arizona.

Driving Directions from Phoenix, AZ to Canyon De Chelly

The journey from Phoenix to Canyon De Chelly National Monument is a scenic drive through the heart of Arizona. The distance is approximately 315 miles and takes about 5 hours by car.

  1. Start: Begin in Phoenix, AZ.
  2. Route: Take I-17 N towards Flagstaff.
  3. Transition: Near Flagstaff, merge onto I-40 E towards Albuquerque.
  4. Turnoff: Take exit 201 for US-191 N towards Ganado.
  5. Final Stretch: Continue on US-191 N directly to the entrance of Canyon De Chelly National Monument.

Best Time to Visit

The ideal time to visit Canyon De Chelly is during the spring (April to June) and fall (September to November). During these months, the weather is pleasant, with mild temperatures and lower chances of rain, making it perfect for exploring the canyons and hiking trails.

Accommodations: Top-Rated Hotels and Distances

While there are no hotels within the monument itself, nearby towns offer excellent lodging options:

  1. Thunderbird Lodge: Located in Chinle, just 0.3 miles from the Canyon De Chelly National Monument Visitor Center.
  2. Holiday Inn Canyon De Chelly: Approximately 2 miles from the Visitor Center, also in Chinle.
  3. Best Western Canyon De Chelly Inn: Situated about 3 miles from the monument in Chinle, offering a comfortable stay.

History and Origin of the Name

Canyon De Chelly (pronounced “də-SHAY”) holds centuries of Native American history, primarily inhabited by the Navajo people. The name “Chelly” is a Spanish corruption of the Navajo word “Tseyi”, which means “rock canyon”. The canyon has been home to several indigenous tribes over the centuries, including the Ancestral Puebloans (Anasazi) and the Hopi.

Location in Arizona and Proximity to Four Corners

Canyon De Chelly is in Apache County, one of the northeastern counties of Arizona. It’s approximately 150 miles from the Four Corners, where Arizona, Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico meet – a unique geographical landmark.

Nearest City

Chinle, a small city in Apache County, is the closest urban settlement to Canyon De Chelly National Monument. It serves as the primary gateway for visitors and provides essential services like lodging, dining, and visitor information.

In conclusion, Canyon De Chelly National Monument is not just a scenic marvel but a journey through time, showcasing the rich history and culture of the Native American tribes of the Southwest. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a nature lover, or just seeking a peaceful retreat, this hidden gem in Arizona is a destination that promises an enriching and unforgettable experience.

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