Montezuma Castle National Monument

Useful Information

Location: Interstate 17, exit 289, 5 km signposted.
(34°36'43.57"N, 111°50'34.89"W)
Open: Memorial Day to Labor Day daily 8-18.
Labor Day to Memorial Day daily 8-17.
Fee: Adults USD 5, Combi Ticket with Tuzigoot National Monuments USD 7. Valid 7 days. [2006]
Classification: SubterraneaCave House
Light: n/a
Guided tours: V=700,000/a [2005]
Address: Montezuma Castle National Monument, P. O. Box 219, Camp Verde, AZ 86322, Tel: +1-928-567-3322, Fax: +1-928-567-3597.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1100 start of construction.
1300 present size reached.
1400 abandoned.
08-DEC-1906 Montezuma Castle National Monument established by President Theodore Roosevelt.


Montezuma Castle National Monument is a five-level, 20 room cliff dwelling erroneously named for the 16th century Aztec ruler Montezuma. It is a classic example of the last phase of southern Sinagua occupation of the Verde Valley (Green Valley). It was built into an overhanging cliff of the limestone high above Beaver Creek, more than 600 years ago by the Sinagua Indians. This is one of the best preserved cliff dwellings in North America, sometimes dubbed the "high-rise apartment building" of the prehistoric.

The inhabitants created beautiful pottery and textiles, many of them are on display in the museum at the Visitor Center. From the museum a 600 metre long trail to the monument starts.

The Sinaguan made their living from farming, hunting, and gathering. Their culture was a synthesis of elements adapted from surrounding Pueblo, Mogollon, and Hohokam cultures. They adopted irrigation techniques from the Hohokam, to grow corn, beans, squash and cotton. The fertile valley was the base of their life. It is unknown until today why they abandoned this castle and vanished.