Thursday, January 03, 2013

Montezuma Castle

On our way to Sedona in Arizona, we stopped at a few sights, including Montezuma Castle National Monument. Built by a Native American group nicknamed the Sinagua, the 5-story, 20 room dwelling dates back to around the 1100's. Located about 100 feet above the valley, the shelter of the rock cliff alcove helped to preserve this structure. The site also has ruins of another structure known as Castle A, which was at one time 6 storys and had about 45 rooms. Hopi Indians trace their roots to the area and still return for some ceremonies. The area was discovered by settlers around 1860, who took many of the artifacts and other clues about the inhabitants. The name they attributed to the pueblo dwelling was incorrect, as it is not associated with the Aztec emperor, nor is it a castle. However, the misnomer stuck. Today's visitors can only view the dwellings from the valley floor. Despite this, the Montezuma Castle, one of America's best preserved cliff dwellings, it still is worth visiting. 

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