Imagine the most amazing sunrise you will ever see - a purple sky with a yellow streak and shadows of three amazing buttes right from your room balcony. The silence, the stars dotting the sky and the sky changing from purple to dark blue to yellow as the sun comes up within 20 minutes.
That is what you will see if you stay at The View in Monument Valley from any room on the property. It is a very long drive to get there, but you'll be happy you made the trip because it was an experience like no other. Staying overnight at the Grand Canyon, we experienced sunrise there the night before and I remarked that I will never see another sunrise like that again, but I was wrong because the next day when we opened the curtains at daybreak, my breathe was truly taken away at the views from this hotel.
The hotel itself is located adjacent to the Monument Valley Visitor Center and is not much to look at from the front - you'll see a squat adobe style hotel when you pull up. However it is placed perfectly as a perfect angle so that every room has a view of West Mittens, East Mittens and buttes. At check in, you'll be in a lobby that is distinctly Native American with a round fireplace in the center and much Native American decor.
We had requested a second floor room which ran us about $200. We were given room 216 in the center of the hotel. Thankfully this hotel has an elevator so we went to our room as soon as we got in and threw open the curtains to see the magnificent view of red rock everywhere, huge buttes as far as the eye could see. Our room had two beds, a decent bathroom, refrigerator, desk, t.v. and balcony made for watching sunrise and sunset.
The room was very clean and the beds comfortable. We opted not to drive into the park until the next day but did explore the hotel to see the different views. We got a cup of coffee at the restaurant and then sat outside to enjoy the view. The hotel has one restaurant which is sit down but the food is still cafeteria food, with a very basic soup and salad bar and small menu choice. You are in the middle of nowhere so that is your only option unless you want to drive to Gouldings for McDonalds or Burger King. We made due for dinner and breakfast was a bit better with a buffet. At check in we were given coupons for $5off the breakfast buffet and it cost us $17 for both of us. The buffet was the usual scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon, pancakes and french toast which ran out and took awhile before it was refilled. There was also oatmeal, cereal and some fruit.
We debated about taking a tour the next day or driving ourselves and we opted to drive ourselves and were glad we did. The tours that are available (starting at $55 per person) were on open Jeeps going very fast over bumpy road. Not only do you need to worry about getting filthy from the dust the Jeep kicks up but also of your back and neck as you bounce over the bumps. One advantage of the tours though is that they Native Americans can go off the main path into an area that is not permitted unless you are on a tour.
We spent about two hours after checking out exploring the park. The many buttes have different names and you can look and see different figures in the rock formation - Elephant Butte, Three Sisters, Mittens, etc. The colors change as the sun travels so it was a very interesting place. We also saw wild horses , it was a beautiful way to spend a day.
If you have the opportunity to stay here and explore Monument Valley, take advantage of it to see the most photographed canyon in the world. Look for the images you've seen in the many movies that were filmed here. Sit in the spot that was said to be John Wayne's favorite when he filmed in the Canyon. You'll love "The View".