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Basic Facts About Montezuma Castle National Monument

One of the continent’s best preserved cliff dwellings, Montezuma Castle National Monument is located in Camp Verde, Arizona. These gorgeous prehistoric structures are more than 800 years old and are composed of more than 5 stories of carved rooms. Montezuma Castle National Monument is a fascinating piece of history tucked away in the vast desert. 

History

The dwellings were created and used by the ancient Sinagua people between 1100 and 1425 AD. Montezuma Castle was named as a national monument by President Theodore Roosevelt on December 8, 1906 via the Antiquities Act. When “Castle A” was renovated in 1933, it quickly became a popular American tourist destination. The castle is composed of 45 to 50 rooms, originally filled with ancient artifacts that allowed historians a deeper understanding of the area’s original inhabitants. Still one of the Southwestern United States’ most popular national monuments, Montezuma Castle welcomes 350,000 visitors annually. 

Landscape

Situated in the desert in the heart of Arizona, Montezuma Castle National Monument is perched atop a limestone cliff facing nearby Beaver Creek. One of the best preserved prehistoric cave dwellings in North America, the monument is comprised of 5 stories of nearly 60 rooms. Built high above the ground to protect from invaders and the annual flooding of Beaver Creek, Montezuma Castle was carved from limestone slabs as well as mud and clay.