On the windswept desert plain of northern Arizona, Homolovi State Park offers a rare glimpse into real American history that you may not have learned about in school. Here are three reasons you should make Homolovi State Park part of your Arizona vacations.
Homolovi State Park Video: Get a Sneak Peak
Homolovi State Park: Top 3 Reasons to Visit
1 | The Footsteps of Ancient Peoples
In around the 14th Century, an ancient people known as the Hisat’sinom stopped on their migration north to eventually join the Hopi and settled here, a mile north of present-day Winslow. As other groups began to enter the area, the Hisat’sinom eventually deserted their settlements and headed north. But these ancestral villages are still here today, preserved by the dry desert climate.
At Homolovi State Park, you can see these ancient sites and learn about them and their people through its facilities and walking tours. Excavations are still undergoing, but two of the sites are open to the public.
The larger of the two open to the public, Homolovi II, has about 1200 rooms. It was inhabited in the 14th century CE and is full of plazas, petroglyphs and kivas. It was once one of the largest cities in the area and the people traded with other peoples far and wide.
2 | Experience Hopi Culture
Most history books say that Jamestown, Virginia, is the oldest city in the United States, but they’re wrong. The longest continuously occupied town is actually the Hopi village of Old Oraibi, where residents have lived since before 1100 CE.
The Hopi have a very old culture that is still vibrant and alive today. The Hopi have kept their traditional ways remarkably intact in spite of many encroachments and Homolovi State Park is part of their ancestral land. At Homolovi State Park, you can learn about Hopi culture, dance, art, language and more.
3 | Quiet and Scenic Camping
The campground at Homolovi State Park is small and simple, but what more do you need than the scenic high desert all around you and its cool nighttime breezes? The campground here is clean, modern and quiet. It’s simple, but the location is close to civilization. You can also use the campground as a base not only for seeing the ancient villages or visiting the Hopi reservation, but also for trips to go sightseeing in Winslow and nearby attractions like La Posada Hotel, Holbrook, Painted Desert and Petrified Forest National Park.
Homolovi State Park: Preserving the Past
Homolovi State Park is 4,500 acres of pristine desert beauty. The purpose of the park’s establishment was to preserve the 300 Ancestral Puebloan archaeological sites located throughout the area. At an elevation of almost 5,000 feet, it’s also a gorgeous part of Arizona.
Things to do at Homolovi State Park include visiting the villages and visitor’s center to learn about the area, hiking its many scenic trails, catching glimpses of rare plant and animal life, year-round camping, educational programs and bird-watching. You can also see and buy unique Hopi artwork that’s being made by artists now.