The Navajo Nation is a very large area extending into the states of New Mexico, Utah, and Arizona (mostly in Arizona and a great place to visit). It has a long history going back to pre-historic times and spans the arrival of the Europeans and the Spanish. Today it is the home of the Navajo people and has more than a dozen national monuments, historical sites, and tribal parks. The large Lake Powell provides the Navajoland with some 186 miles of shoreline. It is certainly worth exploring and the Navajo invite people to come and explore their lands through a range of guided tours to get a great understanding of this piece of America.
About The Navajo Nation
- Size Of The Navajo Nation: 27,000 Square Miles
- Population: 173,667 Navajo Tribal Members Inside The Area (Total Navajo Population 332,129)
- Capital: Window Rock
The Navajo Nation is an American Indian territory and the largest land retained by any indigenous tribe anywhere in the United States. The territory is larger than the ten smallest American states by land area - larger than West Virginia.
Before the Americans took over the land in 1848, it was a part of Mexico. The brief but decisive Mexican-American War saw Mexico lose vase swaths of land to the victorious United States. The Navajo Reservation was expanded several times (unlike many other reservations). It is also one of the few indigenous nations whose reservation overlaps with their traditional homelands.
- Historical Fact: The Navajo Language Was Used As A Military Code In World War II Against The Japanese - The Japanese Were Never Able To Crack It
Officially the English name for the nation in the 1868 Treaty of Bosque Redondo was the "Navajo Indian Reservation", The Navajo decided to change their name to the "Navajo Nation" in 1969 but chose not to change their name from Navajo to "Diné" in 1994. "Diné" is a traditional name for the Navajo and means "the People". That name has become associated with the sufferings of the past.
The Navajo Nation Government
Today the Navajo Nation has its own government that grew in response to oil being discovered there in the early 1920s. The tribal government was established in 1923 to meet the needs of managing the American oil companies seeking to lease Navajoland for exploration. Today the Navajo government has grown to become the "largest and most sophisticated form of American Indian government" (that is according to the Navajo government website). Today it is made up of 88 council delegates in the Navajo Nation Council Chambers. While in secession, the delegates carry on deliberation in the Navajo language.
Things To See and Do
The Navajo Nation includes a wide variety of landscapes and is a great place to visit. It is a land full of majestic canyons, dry deserts, high mountain meadows, and colors of oranges, yellows, reds, and pale greens. It is something of a photographer's dream.
- Antelope Canyon Tribal Park: The Upper Canyon's Walls Rise 120 Feet And Are Picturesque. To Visit One Needs A Tour Guide
- Monument Valley Tribal Park: This Is A Stunning Park And One Of The World's Most Photographed Monuments. Its Sandstone Tower From 400 Feet To 1,000 Feet
- Canyon de Chelly National Monument: This Is Believed To Be The Longest Continuously Inhabited Area On The Colorado Plateau. Here One Will See The Navajo Raising Livestock And Farming
- Navajo Interactive Museum: This Is Based In Tuba City And Explores The History Of The Navajo People. Including Their Contributions To The Spanish-American War And In WWII
- Other Attractions Include: Window Rock Navajo Tribal Park, The Navajo Code Talkers Museum, And The Hubbel Trading Post
There is a full range of accommodation options in the Navajo Nation - it is large so it also depends on where one is intending to stay. See Discover Navajo for a list of accommodation options.
Tours In The Navajo Nation
There are a number of activities to enjoy while visiting the Navajo Nation hiking is one of the favorites and there are a number of guided tours.
These are the tour guide companies, for more information see the Discover Najavo Website. Those looking for guided tours should contact these companies:
In The Monument Valley
- Simpson’s Trail Handler Tours
- Roy Black’s Guided Tours
- Phillips Photography Tours
- Monument Valley Tours
In The Antelope Canyon – Upper and Lower
- Mystical Antelope Canyon Tours
In The Canyon de Chelly
- Ancient Canyon Tours
- Antelope House Tours
- Spider Rock Tours
- Beautyway Tours
The Navajo Nation is a great opportunity to see and explore a great part of native culture that is so often forgotten about. Plus it offers some of the most majestic landscapes of the stunning state of Arizona.