Discovering Monument Valley in 2024: Your Essential Guide


Monument Valley simply hits differently. The red-sand desert floor covers 92,000 acres along the Utah-Arizona border, punctuated by sandstone buttes and gravel roads. This area is primarily known for Monument Valley Tribal Park, which was formerly a popular filming setting for vintage Western films.

You have already seen the valley on your television screen. It has served as the setting for all of John Wayne’s films, as well as classics such as Forrest Gump. But there’s more to the valley than its wonderful looks. You may visit the Navajo Shadehouse Museum and hike along wonderful paths.

Researching Monument Valley is a lot of fun. It is a well-known segment of any Arizona road trip and one of the top US road excursions. Monument Valley, with its red sand beauty and Hollywood-worthy picturesque drive, has made its way into millions of bucket lists.

Read more: Discover the 10 Best Things to Do in Monument Valley: The Ultimate  Guide for 2024

What is Monument Valley?

This 92,000-acre tract is a particularly gorgeous red-sand desert. The valley is on the border of Utah and Arizona, containing territory in both states. It is best known as Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, which boasts a stunning array of sandstone buttes that drew Hollywood’s attention.

You’ve probably seen Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, John Wayne movies, or the famous ‘Run Forrest Run’ sequence from Forrest Gump. The 17-mile Valley Drive, a tarmacked highway that is accessible year-round, runs across the valley. You may require an off-road vehicle to navigate a few dirt roads during your stay.

The valley is dotted with red rock formations, and you can plan activities such as guided equestrian trips. You may also go on walks to view locations like John Ford’s Point or join guided hiking trips with a Navajo guide to peaks like Totem Pole or the West and East Mittens.

The majority of attractions are located off the main Valley Drive, and there are several designated pull-in areas to appreciate vistas of unique rock formations. Alternatively, you can visit the Monument Valley Visitor Center and inquire about guided tour choices.

How to Visit Monument Valley?

In this guide, we’ll go over everything you need to know to have a great experience. Prepare for a comprehensive ‘how to’ instruction; after this piece, you will be well-equipped and ready to start. We will inform you about the valley’s prominent features, such as Elephant Butte and the Wildcat Trail.

However, we will supply all of the necessary details, such as how to get there and when is the ideal time to visit. One of the nicest things about Monument Valley is its location, so scroll to the end for tips on combining your visit with other unforgettable destinations, such as the Grand Canyon.

Are you ready? Here’s all you should know about visiting the valley.

How to Get to Monument Valley?

Flying into one of Arizona or Utah’s main towns and hiring a car to drive to this secluded region is simplest.

The valley is 7 hours between Las Vegas and Salt Lake City, the two most famous international airports. Flagstaff is another great airport, a 3-hour journey away, perfect for Monument Valley and the Grand Canyon. Rent a car and travel to Monument Valley from one of the airports, which provide local and international flights.

From the US, you may take Amtrak to Salt Lake City or Las Vegas. This would reduce needless flights and increase adventurous, leisurely travel. You may then rent a vehicle for the rest of the trip.

Also read: Where to Stay in Monument Valley: Your Ultimate Accommodation Guide for 2024

This shows automobile hiring as a frequent theme. You must travel with a licensed driver if you cannot hire or bring a car. The valley is one of the most distant US destinations. Driving is required to view it independently. Discover the greatest discounts on our favorite site. A caveat-slash loophole exists. A Monument Valley guided tour is an alternative if driving isn’t possible. These trips are more costly and limit free time, but they’re ideal for non-licensed travelers. Flagstaff and Sedona provide Monument Valley day trips. Group tours, including transfers, cost $250–300, so relax with a guided tour.

In summary, your valley access choices are:

  • If you’re short on time and want inexpensive tickets, fly to Salt Lake City or Las Vegas and rent a vehicle to drive 7 hours to Monument Valley.
  • Fly to Flagstaff and rent a car to drive 3 hours to Monument Valley if you’re short on time.
  • Instead of flying, take Amtrak to Las Vegas, Grand Junction, or Salt Lake City and rent a car to drive to Monument Valley in 4.5-7 hours.
  • Don’t rent a car? Fly into Flagstaff and stay there or in Sedona. A daylong Monument Valley guided tour costs $250–$300.


Finally, Monument Valley is a one-of-a-kind place to visit because of its beautiful red sand desert and famous rock buttes. In addition to its Hollywood fame, the valley offers many ways to explore, such as hiking through beautiful scenery and visiting the Navajo Shadehouse Museum. This detailed guide covers all the important information on how to get to Monument Valley, with a focus on how easy it is to drive there and other choices for a memorable trip in this remote and beautiful place.

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