It’s Friday and you know what that means: Flashback Photo Fridays, when I share a photo and why it’s meaningful to me.
A few weeks before I packed my bags and moved to Spain, I set off on a two week road trip to explore the Southwest with a very good friend. We had planned most of the trip, knowing that if we wanted to see certain sites, we would need to plan just how long it would take to drive there, where we could stay and what there was to do. I’m not always the best planner but soon realized road trips and the wide-empty spaces of the United States means a lot of driving.
A plan is helpful.
We gave ourselves a free day, just in case we wanted to stay longer or en route heard about a must-see place. With a checked-out guidebook from the library, we were set. Reading the guidebook during long distances and when I was off driving-duty, a National Monument situated within Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado caught my attention: Canyon de Chelly (Pronounced: Shay).
Neither of us had heard about Canyon de Chelly National Monument but the description caught our attention, along with free entrance and available campgrounds made it even more appealing. Well, why not? We thought. Driving through wide-open spaces with no other cars on the highway, I was a bit surprised when we passed a sign stating “Navajo Nation.” I looked blankly and said, Why didn’t I know this? I feel so ignorant.
Navajo Nation. The Navajos have their own government, have their own set of rules, including their own police force. We came across a small desolate town and emotions came over me. Why is there only fast food in this place? Church’s chicken, taco bell, burger king, Carl’s Junior. Being a foodie, naturally I wanted to try Navajo cuisine but realized that wasn’t going to be possible.
We pulled in to the National Park, talked to the friendly national park rangers. set up our tent and then went exploring before sunset.
What a beautiful treasure!
Not well-known yet full of history.
Navajos live in the canyon, raise lifestock and farm continuing their tradtions and culture, similar to how people lived in the canyon 5,000 years ago!The National Park Service and Navajos work together to preserve this unique and significant heritage site.
Curious to know about this beautiful treasure in Navajo Nation? Read more on the National Parks website