Have you promised a certain someone a special vacation? Are the kids begging to get out of the house this summer?
Show your family how much they mean to you with an RV camping trip!
Destination: Mesa Verde National Park
With over 52,000 acres of breathtaking natural beauty to explore, you can’t go wrong with RV camping at Mesa Verde National Park. There’s a reason the place gets over 600,000 visitors every year—it’s incredible!
From exploring ancient cliff dwellings to hiking picturesque trails, Mesa Verde has something for everyone. And the best way to experience it all is with an RV. Keep reading to learn more!
Mesa Verde National Park Facts
In 1906, President Theodore Roosevelt established Mesa Verde National Park. It was the first national park created not only to preserve natural wonders but also to protect the archeological heritage of Native Americans.
Before you head off to Colorado for your RV getaway, expand your knowledge with a few more Mesa Verde National Park facts.
- The Pueblo people lived in today Mesa Verde National Park for over 700 years, from 600 to 1300 CE.
- Mesa Verde contains and protects an incredible 5,000 archaeological sites and over 600 Pueblo people cliff dwellings.
- The park has been named a Colorado Important Bird Area (IBA) by the Audubon Society. It is one of the few habitats that remain for the threatened Mexican spotted owl.
- Mesa Verde National Park contains 74 species of mammals, over 200 species of birds, 16 species of reptiles, five species of amphibians, six species of fish (four of which are native), and over 1,000 species of insects.
- The lowest point in Mesa Verde National Park is 6,000 feet in altitude. Its highest peak, Park Point, sits at 8,572 feet.
- Cliff Palace is the largest cliff dwelling in Mesa Verde. It contains an incredible 150 individual rooms and 23 larger ‘kivas’ used as meeting rooms.
Best Mesa Verde National Park RV Parks and Campgrounds
There’s much to do and see in Mesa Verde National Park that the best way to experience it all is by staying close by in an RV.
Thankfully, there are plenty of quality RV parks near Mesa Verde National Park to choose from. Below are a few of your top choices.
Amenities: Morefield Campground is the sole RV campground in Mesa Verde National Park. Just four miles from the park entrance, in a grassy canyon with beautiful wildflowers and spectacular views, Morefield is option number one for RV camping in Mesa Verde National Park.
The campground offers a café, a full-service village, a gas station, an RV dumping station, a coin-operated laundry, complimentary showers, a gift shop, and more.
Capacity: Morefield is a huge campground with 267 sites. However, there are only 15 RV sites with full hookups, and you’ll need to reserve one ahead of time at the Aramark website.
More information: Morefield Campground
Mesa Verde RV Resort
Amenities: Mesa Verde Resort is the closest RV park near Mesa Verde National Park. The resort offers WiFi, a pool, and is pet friendly. Plus, there is security on site, a convenience store, and a 10% discount for AARP members or a 20% discount for veterans and active-duty military.
Capacity: Mesa Verde RV Resort boasts dozens of sites, plenty of full RV hookups, pull-through sites, and every other RV luxury you could need.
More information: Mesa Verde RV Resort
Ancient Cedars Mesa Verde
Amenities: Ancient Cedars Mesa Verde is less than a mile from the Mesa Verde National Park entrance. It has fire pits, WiFi, showers, laundry, and even a log cabin with pool and foosball tables. Plus, if you’re a golfer, there’s an 18-hole miniature golf course on the grounds. And, if you have kids, they can go horseback riding next door.
Capacity: Ancient Cedars has over 70 RV sites, including plenty of full hookups.
More information: Ancient Cedars Mesa Verde
Cortez/Mesa Verde KOA
Amenities: Cortez/Mesa Verde KOA is just seven minutes from the entrance of Mesa Verde National Park. The spot is great for relaxing, especially with Denny Lake nearby. There’s also a dog park, a snack bar, and a swimming pool for kids.
Capacity: Cortez/Mesa Verde has dozens on RV sites with plenty of full hookups, pull-throughs, or anything else you could need.
More information: Cortez/Mesa Verde KOA
La Mesa RV Park
Amenities: La Mesa RV Park is a little further from Mesa Verde National Park—eight miles from the park entrance, to be exact. However, it does offer daily, weekly, and monthly rates for longer stays. There’s also WiFi, laundry, and showers, but no pool.
Capacity: La Mesa boasts dozens of RV sites all with full hookups, and there are plenty of pull-through sites available.
More information: La Mesa RV Park
Photo Credit: Instagram User @frugalfrolicker
Best Time to Visit Mesa Verde National Park for RV Camping
Here’s some good news: there’s no best time to visit Mesa Verde National Park for RV camping! It’s open year-round!
Whether you’re looking for a winter wonderland escape or a summer retreat, Mesa Verde has it all.
Although the park is open year-round, many archaeological sites and cliff dwellings can only be visited from May to October. That doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty to do in the winter at Mesa Verde.
The winter is perfect for snowshoeing or cross-country skiing if you’re looking to burn off some steam. Or, if you want, you can just sit back under fire and stargaze. The altitude and clean air make Mesa Verde ideal for budding astronomers.
Mesa Verde is known for having a colder spring, but that doesn’t mean the whole season is wasted. The mild temperatures in spring make it the perfect time of year to stretch your legs on longer hikes.
You could try Spruce Canyon or Petroglyph Point for beautiful views and solitude, or take on the two-mile Knife Edge trail for a more strenuous hike.
Summer is by far the most popular time of year at Mesa Verde National Park. In August, there can be as many as 3,000 people a day entering the park.
All park attractions are open in the summer, and guided tours run consistently. It’s a great time of year to take a ranger tour through cliff dwellings, just make sure you bring plenty of water and sunscreen—temperatures in Mesa average in the ’80s during summer.
Fall can also be a very busy season at Mesa Verde. Tour groups of students are common until the end of October when the cliff dwellings close. Still, there’s a lot you can do. From hiking to camping, it’s an outdoor lover’s paradise.
For example, if you’re a birdwatcher, fall is the best time of year to visit. You can catch migrating warblers and hummingbirds feeding on Indian paintbrush. If you’re lucky and patient, you might even see a golden eagle or peregrine falcon in the fall.
Things to Do in Mesa Verde National Park
Now that you know where to stay and what seasons to come, we have a few tips on the best things to do in Mesa Verde.
From hiking to stargazing, there’s no way you could run out of things to do at Mesa Verde National Park. The possibilities are endless!
Tips on Visiting Mesa Verde National Park
We know that you’re ready to get going to Mesa Verde! Before you head out, we have a few tips to help you have fun and stay safe.
- If you want to see cliff dwellings in the park, make sure you can make it before October. Most of the major dwellings are closed in winter due to hazardous conditions.
- Spruce Tree House, one of the most intricate and incredible Pueblo cliff dwellings, has been closed since 2015 due to rock falls. However, you can still get an amazing view of the dwelling from a trailhead nearby that remains open.
- If you’re coming in the summer, be aware park entrance fees rise by $10 per vehicle or $5 per person for bicyclists starting in May and ending in October.
- The entirety of Mesa Verde National park lies above 6,000 feet, so take your time adjusting to the altitude for your first hikes, and make sure you bring sunglasses, water and plenty of sunscreen.
- If you’re not the hiking type, don’t miss out on the Mesa Top Loop Road driving tour for great views from Square Tower House Overlook.
- Remember to bring binoculars, many of the sites can only be viewed from a distance. Extra water is a must, the sun can be intense, and summer highs can reach the mid-90’s.
Photo Credit: Instagram User @emacampanella
RV Rental for Mesa Verde National Park
Clearly, the best way to visit Mesa Verde National Park is with an RV camping trip! That way, you can see everything this wonder of the world has to offer in comfort and style.
Even if you don’t have an RV, you can rent one fast from Cruise America. RV rentals start at just $50/night! And Cruise RVs come fully equipped, so you won’t have to hassle with a laundry list of gear.
Contact Cruise today to get started on your very own RV adventure!