Canyon de Chelly (pronounced “dee shay”) was authorized in 1931 by President Herbert Hoover as a National Monument in large measure to preserve the important archeological resources that span more than 4,000 years of human occupation.
The agreement left most of the landscape as the property of the Navajo Nation. About 40-50 Navajo families that own land on the canyon floor, continue to farm that land, raise livestock there in summer, and guide tours. They now grow Corn, squash, tomatoes, cherries, pears and apricots in the Valley. Cattle and horses roam some of the fields.
For nearly 5,000 years the main and side canyons of Canyon de Chelly have been occupied, the longest continuous stretch of habitation on the Colorado Plateau, according to the Park Service.
No Entrance Fee
There is no fee for park entrance; however, the park does appreciate donations. Donations can be dropped in the donation box inside the visitor center.
The Visitor Center is open daily all year from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., except for Christmas Day.
Suggestions If You Just Have:
2 Hours – Visit all 7 overlooks on South Rim Drive OR visit all 3 overlooks on North Rim Drive.
1/2 Day – Visit all 10 overlooks on South and North Rim Drive OR Visit the South Rim Drive and hike the White House Trail OR join a half day guided tour.
1 Day – Visit all 10 overlooks on South and North Rim Drives plus hike the White House Trail OR visit all 10 overlooks plus join a half day guided tour OR join an all-day guided tour.
2 Days – Visit all 10 overlooks on the South and North Rim Drives, hike the White House Trail AND join an all-day guided tour.