There’s only one place in the United States you can experience it, and yet too many people feel that it’s too far out of the way.
Yes, we’re talking about the four corners – the place where Arizona, Utah, Colorado and New Mexico meet in what is the only four-state border in the entire country. While this sight is so unique that there’s only one – yes, one – in the U.S., many people avoid it during their western trip because of the perception that there’s really not a lot to do in the middle of four huge and mostly empty states.
Of course, if you read the title of this article, you’d know that these people are wrong – and not only are they wrong, but they fail to recognize that there are at least five great things you can do in the area. Here’s the proof:
1. Four Corners Monument Visitors Center. The Four Corners isn’t only a meaningless pole, a marker out in some empty field; it’s attached to a visitors center that gives you a true destination to pursue rather than one photograph to take before you move on to the next phase of your trip. There you can look at the history of the four corners as well as the region at large, learning about its Navajo and Mexican roots as well as what happened to it in order to create the borders that we know today.
2. Mesa Verde National Park. Heading northeast into Colorado after your trip to the Four Corners? Then you’ll eventually get to Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado – but not only is it a national park, but it’s also a UNESCO World Heritage site due to its high concentration of Pueblo dwellings built in the area between the 6th and 12th centuries. This isn’t only a fascinating historical site but home to some of the most spectacular views in the entire state.
3. Glen Canyon Recreational Area. If your trip is bringing you further westward, you might be able to make the trip out to Utah’s Glen Canyon Recreational Area. It doesn’t only sound like the Grand Canyon but actually looks like it too – the entire recreational area actually covers an astounding 1.2 million acres of unparalleled beauty and western American splendor. There’s plenty of history and science for all of your family members to enjoy when you stay here as well.
4. Grand Canyon National Park. Need we say more? If you’re coming from the east, the Four Corners are right on the way to Grand Canyon National Park, the big kahuna of the southwest and home to perhaps the greatest natural wonder of the world. If you need to be told why you should visit here, you didn’t pay attention in geography class.
5. Zion National Park. Traveling further out west, you can visit another national park in Utah that offers a nice counter-point to what you’ve seen out of the southwest already: Zion National Park is famous for its towering landscapes and terrains.
Meg Jones has stood on all four states at once, while enjoying the view of Native American jewelry sellers and some burrows soaking up the heat. She works with this website belonging to Phoenix Lock Master and writes about security issues and the Arizona area.