Explore the most popular historic site trails in New Mexico with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Nice views. Good Trail. Clearly marked. Cool historic sites.

This is not a marked trail but more of an open space. There are some signs to the petroglyphs on the way up, but once top of La Bajada it's a beautiful view. You can find your way back down to the parking lot through the horse trails in the canyon.

Easy trail with lots to see where the cave dwellings are. The climb to Alcove House is really worth it if you are in decent shape... and if you don’t mind heights. It can be pretty freaky climbing down those ladders. The ladders are solid, but there’s no room for error.

If you are going to be in Bandelier, you have to do this trail. The ladders are very secure but be warned, while going up is tiring going down is just as exhaustive!

hiking
9 days ago

It so cool here! In the two hours I hikes there I didn't see any other people. It's like a death place. No human. No animals. You can only see the peculiar badlands and the rocks with patterns.

Wasn’t expecting much but it’s actually pretty cool! Little archeology fun.

$5 “parking fee” and worth every penny. The trail itself was very gravely, making me wish I’d opted for my actual hiking boots rather than tennis shoes. There was a moderate climb (600ft in about a 1.5 miles). The spring was indeed dripping, albeit softly and slowly...but nonetheless dripping. Altogether a good break from freeway driving that won’t kill your ETA.

This is a nice desert walk. There are a few petroglyphs along the way and many at the halfway point. There are almost no inclines. This would be a great family hike. It also seems like it would be a nice jog. The rabbits that went bolting across the path were really fun to see. There is no water and no porta potties along the path, but there were bathrooms at the beginning.

In our 60's now, my husband and I walked all the way to the old sanitorium. It is well worth the hike to see the history that exists in those mountains. The structures, for the most part, are well preserved. It's amazing to even think how people could live up there so many years ago. As a side note, the office personel are very friendly and excited to speak about the history of the area. Taking family up there next time. Loved it!

Great place to look down on Pueblo Bonito complex

Not wheelchair nor stroller friendly. It is a desert hike without shade. Be prepared with water and good shoes. Petroglyphs are located in the back of the canyon so you should hike the entire 2.2 mile loop.

We went in late April on a whim and enjoyed near perfect temperatures, as well as free admission. As others have noted, they don't allow food or gum, only water. They recommend carrying extra water and stuff, but it's a very short, easy hike with only one small section of elevation gain. The trail is well marked and the archeological site is pretty well preserved. The volunteers do a nice job of giving interpretations along the trail, and if you ask, they'll tell you some good stories about the burn scar as well. Definitely worth a small detour, though a quick stop at the visitor center doesn't hurt either. Be aware of the limited hours of opening as well.

My wife and I hit the trail just before 8:00 am on July 12, so it was hot. Trail is flat and very easy for the first 3 miles or so. If you finish the hike to Penasco Blanco, it gets steep and passes over bedrock, so be sure to watch for the cairns. The petroglyphs and pictographs are awesome. All told, it took us about 4 hrs of actual hiking, with about 1 hr of picture taking and breaks. Did I say it was hot? Bring lots of water, use sunscreen, and wear a hat.

hiking
1 month ago

Super easy, basically just a nature walk. The ladders were cool, but 140 feet sounds higher than it actually is. Saw a lot of wildlife and cool plants and trees. Went late in the day, at about 5, and it was pretty warm, but at about 6:30 it’s significantly better (they close at 8, though). The main loop trail to the left has way more shade than to the right, though, so if I were doing it at 5pm again, I’d go left on the main loop to go out to alcove then finish the other half of the main loop with the smaller ladders and Pueblo stuff on the way back.

Love this Hike! The views from above the Sanatorium are amazing!

Easy hike, took me about 35 minutes. Petroglyphs are a little tough to see, but if you look up amongst the rocks, especially next to any of the markers, you'll see some cool ones. there is zero shade on this hike, so plan accordingly!

Great short hike to the dwellings. Look out for wild flowers and lizards hiding in the rocks along the path. A sun hat/sun screen is recommended as there is very little shade. The volunteer ranger at the dwellings was great! Filled with knowledge and super friendly. :) The drive near there is very scenic and enjoyable as well.

trail running
1 month ago

When we first drove in it didn’t seem like we should even be there but once we reached the trailhead I felt a lot better about the run. Take both the east and west loops for the full 3 miles. Views were amazing and it was very quiet and secluded. Did NOT see any mountain lions (thankfully). Overall a pretty fun trail.

Our family absolutely loved this trail. Seeing the remains of the church that has been there for almost 400 years as well as being able to climb down into a few kiva's. kids will enjoy this just as much as us older folks. Away from the trail, IF you have a NPS passport this is a great stop for passport stamps. I think they have 4 stamps assigned to this location (Pecos Stamp, Santa Fe Trail Stamp, Route 66 stamp, and I can't remember the final one)

walking
2 months ago

Quick, easy trail that leads to some fun ruins of the time of the Chaco Culture. There are also some old buildings that depict the time of the Salmon homestead.

walking
2 months ago

Wonderful trail with a wonderful history. The story of the revolt from the pueblo against Spain is fascinating.

hiking
2 months ago

This one is off the beaten path. We say one couple. The trail is a loop and when you get to the turn around point you will think you are in a Star Wars movie set. It is absolutely amazing and worth the 3 hrs. Don't pass this one up. Bring water as there is nothing out there.

Fun, easy walk through some ancient ruins.

hiking
2 months ago

A whimsical and ethereal collection of hoodoos and twisted geology. The egg factory is surreal, especially near sunset as the golden light really brings out the patterns on these bizarre features. The petrified wood was a real surprise. I can across one large log and numerous smaller sections. There were shards of petrified wood scattered everywhere. Great place to wander.

Graveled trail

It's a shame this trail's so short! It's beautiful. After you cross the bridge, you'll walk through a canyon by a creek. There's a couple of bridges to walk across. You get a photo op of the cliff dwellings, then a climb up to them. There's a ranger on duty to answer questions. After viewing the dwellings, you walk along the cliff. Then descend back to the bridge.

hiking
3 months ago

Not a bad walking/running trail. Petroglyphs were difficult to see. Much preferred hiking trail in Boca Negra. Pretty view and more petroglyphs.

hiking
3 months ago

Main Loop Trail is best with guild book so as not to miss the petroglyphs along the way. Don’t forget binoculars for views of canyon and other dwellings not close to trail.
Climbed to Alcove House in late afternoon, the tallest ladder’s rungs were very hot to the touch due to warm temperatures and afternoon sun.
I’m extremely afraid of heights but this opportunity was too great to miss.
Don’t look down
Stare straight ahead
Take one step at a time
Don’t attempt when crowded.

Lengthy hike to Supernova Pictograph site near the end of the trail. Trail is generally sand and dirt without much elevation gain until near the end of the trail. It is out and back. Hardly any traffic after the first two miles. I went in the early afternoon and it was quite warm, even in early May. You will want to take plenty of water and some trail food, of course. There is no cell service generally anywhere within the Park so you must take care of yourself out there. The trail is well marked and easy to follow. Not much wildlife but I did see some coyote scat, some birds, a couple of lizards and one large snake.

trail running
3 months ago

I did this for the Climax canyon 5k trail run. Great scenery along the KT boundary. We saw a mountain lion. beautiful trail.

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