Is Visiting the Four Corners Monument Worth It? : A Weekend in Arizona (Part 4)

So how do you follow up on a visit to Antelope Canyon, one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to?  Let’s just say that Northern Arizona is not lacking for even more feature destinations!  We left Antelope Canyon at around 11AM, and made a beeline to our next hotel: the Hampton Inn in Kayenta, AZ.  We weren’t rushing there because it was an aspirational property!  The reason we were going is because we had gotten into the habit of a mid-day A/C and shower break.  As we quickly realized upon arriving in Arizona in August, it was really hot.  Following the break (a shower has never felt so good!), our destination for the next part of the trip was due to our enjoyment of AMC’s terrific show Breaking Bad.

Skyler White at Four Corners Monument


On Episode 6 of Season 4, Skyler White’s character unsure of what to do with her family, and drives from their home in Albuquerque, New Mexico to the Skyler drives to the Four Corners Monument to flip a coin.   Spoiler alert: the coin she flips lands on Colorado twice, before she uses her foot to drag the coin back to New Mexico.

Ever since this episode, Annalisa has wanted to head there.  She has this fascination destinations that straddle multiple states, time zones etc., and the thought of being in 4 places at once was mind-boggling.  As you can tell from the photographs, the Four Corners monument demarcates the borders of New Mexico, Colorado, Utah and Arizona.  The cost of entering the Navajo land was $5 per person (cash only), and no national park passes are valid here.  The site looks exactly like it does in photographs, and the outer edges of Four Points Monument is lined with stalls of Navajo-nation selling souvenirs.

Requisite Four Corners Picture


There isn’t much to do at the Four Corners Monument except for taking photographs so that you can make your friends jealous on Facebook.  Once that’s done (10?  15 minutes?), you could do some browsing in the stalls adjacent to the marker, but they sell mostly the same wares.  All in all, Annalisa was glad we went, and in theory it is cool.  Would it be worth a drive from Albuquerque or Phoenix?  Probably not.  But if you were headed to the area for another destination (like we were for Monument Valley the next morning), then it is certainly reasonable to make the detour and check this off a list.

After we were done at the Four Corners Monument, we headed back to Kayenta, AZ.  By now, we were hungry, and looking forward to trying Navajo frybread.  Frybread is fried dough, and can sometimes be made into a taco.  Not knowing anything about the area, we did a little research ahead of time on TripAdvisor and came across the Amigo Cafe.  We quickly realized that there weren’t a lot of options in Kayenta in general (it was pretty much either this, or Sonic), but were satisfied when we left.

Navajo Frybread Taco


That was the normal size of the frybread taco.  At less than $10, it was so much food that it is more than enough for 2 (unless you’re Fezzik, or my brother).  I loved it, though Annalisa wasn’t the biggest fan.

On a fairly random side note, if you were bored in Kayenta and looking for a way to pass the time, you can check out the world’s largest exhibit for Navajo codetalkers.  The Navajo codetalkers actually served as the inspiration for a terrible Nicolas Cage movie in 2002.  The world’s largest part might be true, but that is more a testament to the lack of other exhibits more than anything.  The exhibit is located in a Burger King, adjacent to the Hampton Inn, to give you a sense of scale.  I can’t make this stuff up.

Total distance driven to this point: 725 miles.

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  1. We took our then 8 and 10 year old nieces on a vacation into the 4 corners area (monument valley, petrified forest, etc). I was driving and they were all sleeping (including my wife) so I took a detour to the 4 corners monument. The kids LOVED it. They had a lot of time being in a different state than each other or my wife or me.

    It was, quite suprisingly, one of the highlights of their trip. For us, it was only at all interesting because of their reaction. By ourselves it would have been a waste of a nice afternoon.

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