Dream sleep: The View, USA

Sitting on the Utah/Arizona border, this Navajo-owned hotel is the only lodging inside Monument Valley Tribal Park, and the place to immerse yourself in both indigenous culture and the grandeur of the Wild

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The red rock pinnacles and mesas of Monument Valley are sacred to the Navajo. They believe them to be the petrified remains of fallen monsters, defeated by the holy people, and now buried in the sand. Millions come each year to share in that mythology and see this sacred land. Few get to stay on site.

Navajo owned and operated, The View is the only hotel inside Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. And it is well-named: its rooms have balconies facing the Mittens, two huge red buttes rising like giant’s fists. At a lookout beside the hotel, tourists jostle for a glimpse. At The View, you have your own private box.

The hotel has been designed to blend into the sandstone desert. Inside, it is a reflection of Navajo culture, with locally made art and hand-woven rugs (a Navajo speciality) dotted throughout. The restaurant features traditional Navajo dishes, such as green chile stew and Navajo tacos, as well as American fare. It’s not fancy, but the panoramic windows make it, perhaps, the south-west’s most spectacular bite.





Alongside the traditional guest rooms, there is a campsite with RV hook-ups as well as cabins perched on the valley rim. Rooms are simple, but floor-to-ceiling windows bring the majesty of Monument Valley inside: soft pink at dawn, fire-orange dusk. Book a third-floor ‘Star View’ room for the best night-sky views.

Ultimately though, you’re here for the park. Navajo-led tours, bookable via the hotel, can take you deep into the backcountry. Here, Navajo families still live the old ways, without running water or electricity, living off the land as they have for centuries; you can learn how yucca and juniper are harvested to make baskets and bracelets, hear legends, find petroglyphs and spot wild mustangs roaming free.

While this is ‘Indian’ country, it’s seen plenty of cowboys over the years too. The valley has become synonymous with Hollywood’s image of the Wild West – many classic Westerns such as Stagecoach were shot here. When we think of that history, we now picture this stark red desert.

There is a Navajo word, Hozhóó, which means harmony, and it is that which the hotel’s founder Armanda Ortega wishes to share with her guests. A harmony where ‘Mother Earth meets Father Sky in a seemingly endless vista of beauty’. Stay here and you’ll have it all to yourself.

Valley-view rooms from $129pn (£93), camping from $29.95pn (£22); monumentvalleyview.com

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