Canyons of the Ancients Visitor Center and Museum:
Start Your Adventure Here!

The Canyons of the Ancients Visitor Center and Museum is an archaeological museum and visitor center for Ancestral Pueblo and hunter-gatherer cultures. Located in Dolores, Colorado near Mesa Verde National Park, the museum and visitor center is a great place to begin your exploration of the Canyons of the Ancients National Monument.

The museum features the Ancestral Pueblo (or Anasazi) culture and other Native cultures in the Four Corners region. The museum displays the history of the Mesa Verde Ancestral Pueblo (formerly known as Anasazi), giving us a glimpse into one of the most fascinating and advanced pre-historic civilizations. Visitors will discover the methods used by modern archaeologists to reveal and preserve the artifacts and records from excavations. The Four Corners area is known as one of the richest archaeological regions in the United States and the rich past of the Mesa Verde Anasazi lives on through these efforts.

Many of the exhibits in the museum are hands-on and interactive. You can weave on a loom, grind corn meal on a genuine metate, examine the past through microscopes, handle real artifacts, or feel the finger indentations on corrugated pottery.

The Canyons of the Ancients Visitor Center and Museum also serves as the Canyons of the Ancients National Monument visitor center. Available services and facilities include a museum, gift shop and bookstore, theater, captioned audiovisuals, public restrooms, bus parking, and wheelchair accessibility and availability.

For more information, please call 970-882-5600, or visit our website at Entrance is free for Golden Pass and/or America the Beautiful Pass holders.

Know Before You Go

  • •Open year-round (except for New Year’s Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day)
  • •ADA accessible trail to Escalante Pueblo
  • •Museum is ADA accessible
  • •No admission fee to Visitor Center
  • •Admission fee to Museum is required
  • •Tours of the museum collections and curation are every Thursday, May – October
  • •Reservations required
  • •Plan to spend at least half a day at the Center
  • •Enjoy panoramic views of Sleeping Ute Mountain from the Escalante site
  • •Combine your visit with a trip to Lowry Pueblo
  • •Inquire about special exhibits & events

Main Attractions

  • •Dominguez Pueblo
  • •Escalante Pueblo
  • •Weave on a Pueblo-style loom
  • •Grind corn into meal with stone tools
  • •Touch real artifacts
  • •Explore replicas of an early pit-house and Pueblo household
  • •Behind the scenes curation tours

Amenities & Services

  • •Museum
  • •Visitor Center
  • •Museum shop
  • •Picnic area
  • •Restrooms
  • •Water
  • •Nearby restaurants

Getting There

Located on State Highway 184, three miles from Dolores

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