Where To Stay Near Dinosaur National Monument

Durango Co A Fun Place To Stay Further From Mesa Verde

Dinosaur National Monument

Durango is located east of Mesa Verde and much further away than the other options for where to stay near Mesa Verde National Park. Still Durango is a popular option for where to stay when visiting the Mesa Verde area.

From lodging in Durango its 36 miles to Mesa Verde National Park. Added to the driving time in the park the miles behind the wheel quickly add up. So from a point of convenience the other options for where to stay in Mesa Verde National Park and vicinity are preferable.

But Durango is still a popular option for where to stay when visiting Mesa Verde. Durango is a college town with a refreshing vibe that offers something else than the other Mesa Verde places to stay.

In the Colorado college town you find the famous Durango and Silverton Railroad and Museum. It lets you embark on a historic and unforgettable journey up into the Rocky Mountains.

That Durango is a bigger city than both Cortez and Mancos also means more Mesa Verde hotels and dining options. So in Durango you have all you need for a comfortable time exploring the Colorado region.

To sum up, Durango is a fun option for where to stay in the Mesa Verde area. The city doesnt offer as good park access as the other options for where to stay in Mesa Verde and vicinity. But Durango is a destination on its own, and s historic train ride is a great thing to add to a Mesa Verde stay.

  • Distance: 36 mi / 58 km
  • Driving time: 50 min
  • Pick Durango for: A fun town with reasonable Mesa Verde access.

Take A Whitewater Rafting Trip

The rivers located in Dinosaur National Monument, the Yampa, and the Green, are the chief tributaries of the Colorado River. Together, these rivers provide an exciting opportunity for rafters to sightsee and enjoy whitewater adventure.

Both rivers feature class III and IV rapids. However, the Green River includes classics like Triplet Falls, Hells Half Mile, and Disaster Falls. Dinosaur River Expeditions offers both single and multi-day trips.

Dinosaur National Monument Camping Must Know

The following sections contain all the basic information you need to ensure you have a great time camping in Dinosaur National Monument. Before we dive in, there are a few important regulations to note:

  • Water is not widely available, especially during the winter offseason. Check if your campsite will have access to potable water when you plan to camp and prepare accordingly.
  • Only camp in designated sites or areas that abide by the At Large Backcountry regulations.
  • No more than eight people per individual campsite and 25 people per group campsite.
  • Always store your food using the provided food storage locker, in your car or in an animal-proof container.
  • Always practice Leave No Trace principles.

Detailed information on fires, pets, wildlife, and more can be found in the sections below.

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Camp In A Starry Dino Graveyard

While there are countless camping options in the region, the park itself has six campgrounds with roughly 120 sites. Prices vary based on the season as well as the availability of water.

The Green River Campgroundfittingly located on the lush banks of the Green Riveris a popular option, being closest to the Quarry. Its also near the Split Mountain Boat Ramp, where rafters disembark after trips through the parks winding, majestic canyons. If you want to stay closer to the rafting launch point, the Gates of Lodore Campground is located near the northern launch sites.

Another popular option is the Echo Park Campground right at the center of the park, where youll enjoy stunning views of the iconic Steamboat Rock. Its also close to the Fremont petroglyphs.

Recommended Petrified Forest Hotels In Winslow

Best Time to See Dinosaur National Monument in Utah 2020

La Posada Hotel and Gardens Stay at a historic Winslow institution

La Posada Hotel and Gardens has become a real Winslow institution. Designed by Mary Colter the hotel was always meant to be a special place.

Famous guests since La Posada first opened up in 1930 include Albert Einstein, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Betty Grable and John Wayne. No other option for where to stay near Petrified Forest National Park has had such a rich history.

Best Western Plus Winslow A comfortable Petrified Forest hotel with swimming pool

Another great option among the best places to stay near Petrified Forest National Park is Winslows Best Western. The comfortable rooms at the Best Western in Winslow is all you need after a day out exploring the area.

And after a hot day in the Arizona desert its certainly a pleasure to enjoy the Petrified Forest hotels inviting swimming pool.

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Camping Near Moffat County Co

This popular KOA is one of the best options for those entering Dinosaur National Monument from its eastern side. It is set on the edge of the town of Craig, providing easy access to shops and dining. The campground offers a variety of full hookup RV sites, plus tent camping and cabin rentals.

Amenities include a small shop, laundry, playground, and dog park.

Number of sites: 46 Fee: $22/night for a basic site , $30/night for an electric site Capacity: 6 people per siteRVs: Yes, electricity available at the Pronghorn Campground onlyReservations: Required. Reservations can be made online or by calling 1-800-244-5613.Pets: AllowedMore Information

Elkhead Reservoir State Park offers two great campgrounds located just under an hour from the east entrance of Dinosaur National Monument. RVs and tents are welcome at both campgrounds, but electric hookups are only provided at the Pronghorn Campground. All sites have picnic tables, firepits, parking pads and access to nearby restrooms. Many sites enjoy shoreline locations on the edge of the reservoir. Keep in mind that reservations are required to camp in Elkhead Reservoir State Park.

And You Can Hike River

Do you like national parks but dislike crowds? Same. Big fan of dinosaurs? Us too! Allow us to tip you off about Dinosaur National Monument, a stunning adventureland at the border of both Utah and Colorado. It sits at a nexus point between perennial favorites like Yellowstone, Arches, Zion, and Rocky Mountain National Park. But perhaps due to the vastness of its desert locationor maybe because it hasnt earned official national park statusyoull have the place to yourself to explore its gorgeous landscapes and amazing history.

Dinosaur National Monument is unique in that, in addition to outdoor treks and big views, you can see one of the densest collections of dinosaur bones and animal fossils in the world. Plus it has petroglyphs, secluded camping, and rafting on a river surrounded by stripey desert mountains on both sides. Here are the best things to do on a very-worthwhile trip through the area.

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Dinosaur National Monument Campgrounds

There are six developed campgrounds located with Dinosaur National Monument. Three of these are located on the Utah side of the park , and three are located on the Colorado side .

In addition to these six campgrounds, Dinosaur National Monument also features nearly two dozen primitive riverside sites and an endless array of at large backcountry options for those really wanting to get off the beaten track. All of the campgrounds are well located throughout the park, giving visitors plenty of campsites to choose from regardless of which section of Dinosaur National Monument they want to explore.

The map below gives you a general sense of where each of the developed campgrounds are located in Dinosaur National Monument as well as their relation to the surrounding area.

Pay close attention to when each campground is open, as many are closed or difficult to access in the winter months. Additionally, the price for camping varies with the season it is more expensive to camp during the summer months when water is available.

Generally speaking, The weather is most agreeable and all of the campgrounds are typically open and accessible during this period.

Developed Campgrounds In Dinosaur National Monument

Dinosaur National Monument (Utah/Colorado) – How to visit & what to see

There are six developed campgrounds located in Dinosaur National Monument. These campgrounds vary in size and services and give plenty of options for those looking to explore all that Dinosaur has to offer. Details for all six campgrounds are below.

Number of Sites: 80 sites Fee: $18/night RVs: Yes, max size of 30 RV or 20 trailer. Reservations: Available for B Loop sites . Season: Mid April through Mid OctoberMore Information

The Green River Campground is set in a tranquil cottonwood grove on the banks of the Green River. Located just five miles from Dinosaur Quarry, its the closest lodging option to this popular destination. The Green River Campground also provides good proximity to the Split Mountain boat ramp, a common endpoint for rafting trips in the area.

The Green River Campground contains 80 campsites. Site #41 and the adjacent bathroom are accessible for wheelchair users. The campground is organized into several loops with potable water and restrooms available throughout. There are flush toilets, but no showers. 27 out of the 80 total campsites are reservable in advance on Recreation.gov, while the remaining sites are always available on a first-come, first-served basis. The campground typically only fills up on weekends near holidays.

RVs are welcome at the Green River Campground, although there are no hookups or dump station available. RVs longer than 30 and trailers longer than 20 are not recommended at the campground due to the narrow roads.

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Rv Parks & Campgrounds Near Dinosaur National Monument

Dinosaur National Monument features some of the most spectacular scenery in Utah and Colorado. RV camping is the best way to stay in the heart of the wilderness without giving up a good night’s sleep. If you don’t have an RV, why not consider a rental? RVshare makes it easy to pick the perfect model so that you have the freedom to camp anywhere in comfort.

How Much Time Should I Spend When Visiting Dinosaur National Monument

The amount of time you spend when visiting Dinosaur National Monument really depends on how much of the park you would like to see. If you are only planning on seeing the dinosaur quarry then you could be done in 2 hours.

Dinosaur National Monument is 210,000 acres! So you could easily spend a day or two exploring. We decided to go for about 5 hours. However, we only visited the Utah side. We went to the dinosaur quarry and hiked the most popular trails on the Utah side.

If you wanted to drive over to Colorado where another visitor center is located, you would want to plan an entire day. There is also camping available in the park, so breaking up your visit over a couple of days might be a good idea.

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Camping Near Dinosaur National Monument

While camping within the confines of Dinosaur National Monument is a remarkable and unrivaled experience, there are many reasons why you might seek out one of the developed campgrounds in the nearby area. Considering there are no hookups nor dump stations at any of the campgrounds inside the Monument, RVs may prefer to set up camp in one of the more accommodating sites nearby. Additionally, the campgrounds listed in this section provide a great place to stay before or after your trip to Dinosaur National Monument, as they give you more convenient access to services, supplies, and major roadways.

If youre looking to check out any of the other Colorado National Parks or National Monuments, but sure to take a look at our other camping guides below:

Fee: $12-25/night for tents, $25-50/night for RVs Capacity: None stated.Reservations: Recommended for RV sites and cabins. Call 1-877-444-6777 or visit recreation.govPets: AllowedMore Information

Located about 40 minutes north of Vernal, Ashley National Forest has a wide range of options to suit all types of campers. RVs are welcome at many of the numerous campgrounds in Ashley National Forest, although the Lodgepole Campground is the best option given its the only one with a dump station that gives easy proximity to Dinosaur. Beyond traditional developed campgrounds, there are also options for cabin rentals and dispersed camping.

Amenities include picnic tables, firepits, flush toilets, trash collection, and boat rentals.

Picnic At Josies Cabin

To Behold the Beauty: Dinosaur National Monument

Our favorite part of visiting Dinosaur National Monument, besides the dinosaurs, was Josies Cabin. This abandoned cabin is a kids dream. Seriously, my kids did not want to leave. They loved exploring the cabin, pretending it was their house, and imagining different furnishings in each room. They could have played all day in it.

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Visit The Quarry Exhibit Hall

Located on the Utah side, the Quarry Exhibit Hall is probably the highlight of any visit to the Dinosaur National Monument. The Hall is located on the exact site where dinosaur fossils were first unearthed in 1909.

The main exhibit is the 80-foot long Wall of Bones. This impressive display is made up of more than 1,500 fossils, all embedded in the rock formation where the animal died millions of years ago. An overview of the massive display takes place on the upper level and a closer perspective is provided on the lower levelthis is where you can actually touch a few of the bones.

Vernal Ut The Best Hotels Near Dinosaur National Monument

There are no places to stay within Dinousar National Monument. But Vernal in Utah offers Dinosaur National Monument lodging just a short drive from the dinosaur experience.

Vernal is conveniently located to the west of Dinosaur National Monument. From Vernal its only 16 miles to Dinosaur National Monument Quarry Visitor Center within the park. Thats where you find the dinosaur quarry packed with dinosaur fossils.

So from the hotels near Dinosaur National Monument in Vernal you easily get to the dinosaur experience. Compared to visitors who stay further away from the park, you get a head start if you make Vernal your base.

The tiny towns Jensen in Utah and Dinosaur in Colorado also offer good park access. But the Dinosaur Monument lodging options in those towns are very limited.

Vernal is not by any means a large city, but it has all the Dinosaur National Monument hotels and restaurants that you need for a comfortable time in the Utah and Colorado desert. In the city you find a mix of both big hotel chains and smaller local Dinosaur hotels.

In addition to the areas Dinosaur National Monument you in Vernal also find Utah Field House of Natural History State Park Museum. The museum is very educational and a must if youre interested in dinosaurs.

  • Distance: 16 mi / 26 km
  • Driving time: 25 min
  • Pick Vernal for: The best place to stay near Dinosaur National Monument.

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Camping Near Dinosaur Co

Seasonal camping is allowed in designated sites along the edge of the reservoir. RVs are welcome, but there are no hookups and some spots can be tight. There are bathrooms, picnic tables, and swimming areas available for campers to use. Kenney Reservoir is just six miles from the town of Rangely and 30 minutes from Dinosaur National Monument.

Where To Stay Near Mesa Verde National Park Co

Exploring Dinosaur National Monument | Utah and Colorado Units
  • Post last modified:July 1, 2022

Mesa Verde in Colorado is not only a national park but also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The parks famous Puebloan cliff dwellings is something you dont want to miss out on. But where to stay near Mesa Verde National Park for the best experience?

Its very convenient to stay at the Mesa Verde lodging within the park or in the neighboring towns Cortez and Mancos. Further away Durango is another option for where to stay when visiting Mesa Verde National Park.

This travel site can exist thanks to compensation from advertising and affiliate links. Find out more here.

Also Check: Denver Museum Of Nature And Science Dinosaurs

What To Expect While Visiting Dinosaur National Monument

Dinosaurs once roamed at Dinosaur National Monument. Their remains are still visibly embedded in the rocks located in the dinosaur quarry. Today, the mountains, desert, and untamed rivers flowing in deep canyons are some of the landscapes you will see at the monument.

Petroglyphs hint at earlier cultures. Later, homesteaders and outlaws found refuge at Dinosaur National Monument. Whether your passion is science, adventure, history, or scenery, Dinosaur National Monument really has it all.

Where To Stay Near Petrified Forest National Park Az

  • Post last modified:July 1, 2022

Petrified Forest National Park is famous for its 225 million years old petrified logs. The fascinating fossils in the Arizona park make it a very special place to visit. But where to stay near Petrified Forest National Park for the best experience?

The town Holbrook offers Petrified Forest hotels with the best park access. Another great option for where to stay when visiting Petrified Forest National Park is Winslow.

This travel site can exist thanks to compensation from advertising and affiliate links. Find out more here.

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Mancos Co A Smaller Town With Lodging Near Mesa Verde

Mancos is an option for where to stay near Mesa Verde National Park that is located even closer than Cortez. You find the very small Colorado town northeast of the national park on US 160.

From Mesa Verde accommodation in Mancos to the park adventure its as little as 8 miles . But once again have in mind that the National Park Service estimates a drive time of 1.5 hours from the entrance point to the southern parts of the park.

Mancos is a much smaller city than Cortez. With that comes fewer options for Mesa Verde lodging and dining in Mancos. So for a wider selection of Mesa Verde hotels and restaurants you need to look towards Cortez or the even bigger Durango.

In short, Mancos is a very convenient option for where to stay near Mesa Verde National Park. Its a very small Colorado town but its location with accommodation near Mesa Verde is great. In fact, no other town is located as near Mesa Verde National Park.

  • Distance: 8 mi / 13 km
  • Driving time: 10 min
  • Pick Mancos for: Mesa Verde hotels in a smaller town with great access.

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