Early American settlers attributed these ruins to the Aztec, a misnomer. The ruins actually belonged to the ancestral Puebloans, who left the area almost a thousand years ago. The people built apartment-like complexes and great houses for gathering out of adobe mud and mortar, sandstone, and wood.

Highlights

  • Visitor Center, offering a museum, 15 park film, and information about the park and hikes

  • Reconstructed Great Kiva; the oldest and largest reconstructed buildings of its kind

  • Ranger-guided trails are offered during summer months

  • Several self-guided trails, including the Heritage Garden and Native Plants Walk which show traditional crops grown by the ancestral Puebloans, as well as native flowers.

  • Old Spanish National Historic Trail to Downtown Aztec, NM; 2 miles

Location

Aztec Ruins National Monument is located in the northwestern part of the state, in Aztec, New Mexico. It is close to Farmington, NM, Mesa Verde National Park, the Navajo Dam, and both the Southern Ute and Navajo Nation Reservations.