Goulding's Lodge & Campground
PO Box 360001, Monument Valley, Utah, 84536, United States
The Historic Choice
We chose this historic place because it was the first on the scene. It has been the choice for many famous and not so famous people throughout the years. I wanted to feel some of that history during our visit. So it wasn't just about scenery, or culture, but the history of the valley as well.
It was a good choice. The room was clean, large and comfortable with a view of some of the spires. The food at the restaurant was of a local flavor. The staff were cordial and open.
The lodge consists of various buildings, with the hotel rooms in two long buildings with views, and then other cottages and cabins scattered. There is a pool (which was open in January), a workout room, a gift shop, restaurant, the old trading post -now a museum, and an old shed used during filming of one of the many western's shot in the area and now preserved as that set.
Unique Quality: Gouldings is also a small town with a grocery store, gas station, and homes. Further up the small canyon is the campground. While not as scenic as the one on the rim with the view of the Mittens this one would be just fine. I took the small hike there to see the hidden arch.
Directions: Just opposite the entrance to the Tribal Park
Only one in the Park
Hotel, Motel, Campground, Lodge...the only accommodation inside the State Park. Small aircraft and helicopters frequently land on the road opposite this hotel whether they are taking tourists sightseeing or guests are arriving the easy way...we didnt know. This is a fairly big resort where all the main tours start from. It has a very big gift shop but we found the goods to be expensive. Theres also a museum with pieces from when Gouldings was first founded in 1923.
This complex is right on the State border so be aware there may be a time change.
Unique Quality: Renowned for its restaurant The Stagecoach where John Wayne would eat when filming out in the Valley
A room with a view
Goulding's has a long and interesting history as the original trading post for the valley. Harry and Leone ("Mike") Goulding built the post, and their home, here in the 1920's. During the depression of 1938, Harry and Mike went to Hollywood, looking for economic opportunities for their area. They convinced John Ford that Monument Valley would be the perfect place to shoot his new western ("Stagecoach") and the rest is movie history.
The trading post, with the Goulding's apartment upstairs, is now a museum and the site has grown to include a 62-unit motel, restaurant, gift shop, tour desk, campground, laundry, indoor pool, grocery store, food court and gas station. There's even a medical clinic and airstrip!
The motel is really two buildings, one built above-and-behind the other, and rooms come with either one or two double beds. They are comfortably appointed with coffeemakers, cable TV, VCRs (Westerns can be rented out at the desk) and each room has a balcony with a view of Monument Valley. There is a large flagstone terrace with a picnic table on the upper level and we had the great good fortune of landing the only room with direct access to it from our sliding door (otherwise it's reached from a short cut-through hallway).
The rates are much higher than your standard motel ($180 per double, May through Oct, 2010) but it's very close to the park entrance and the view is worth it. They also have a few 2-bedroom units for larger families, and 2 attractive cabins. Rates also change a great deal according to season so check their website for off-season bargains.
This is a very popular place so make your reservations EARLY - they fill up quickly during high season! If you can't get an opening here, the only other rooms are inside the park at The View Hotel but they're even more expensive.
The campground has a few cabins, hookups, tent sites, hot showers and is close to the grocery, laundry and pool. Also has a playground.
Unique Quality: The view, the view, the view!
Lots of useful facilites very close to the motel
Quiet and peaceful at night
Nice patio and balconies for star-gazing and sunrise- watching
Small rooms but clean and well-maintained
Directions: Just off US 163, about 20 miles north of Kayenta, and practically on the Arizona/Utah border. The turn-off is clearly marked.
Best hotel of the area, I suppose
We didn't stay here, but at the Holiday Inn in Kayenta.
Bad choice, we had to come to Goulding's Lodge!
The view over Monument Valley, seen from here, and the hotel is a lot nicer.
Next to the hotel there is a little museum/ cabin where you can learn about the cinematographic history of the valley.
Also the gift shop is very nice.
In the Heart of Monument Valley
Relatively well kept hotel considering the remoteness of the place. The rooms are average in size and a little bit older but not lacking any of the main amenities. Beds were comfortable.
Unique Quality: Whatever this hotels lacks in amenities, it makes up for in location. The views are outstanding.
The only hotel in the valley and it has a story.
This hotel is usually full well in advance, so book early. We ended up in a double-wide trailer which was very nicely furnished. It was private and had plenty of bedrooms, had we had a need for them!
Unique Quality: The ONLY hotel in Monument Valley. Nearest is north in Mexican Hat
Directions: Goulding's is located just north of the Arizona-Utah border, adjacent to the Navajo Tribal Park in Monument Valley, which is approximately 170 Miles northeast of Flagstaff and less than 310 miles from Phoenix, Arizona.
Motel in Monument Valley
Gouldings is fairly average motel type accommodations. Apparently is reserved way ahead for the peak months, we enjoyed a stay in December when we were just about the only visitors.
Do go for the views though, Gouldings was recently featured in Englands "The Sunday Times" as one of the best views from a hotel window, I heartily endorse their recommendation.
Unique Quality: Uniquie qualities - the views! On site is also a small museum and a cinema showing a film about native americans in Monument Valley.
John Wayne filmed here and his cabin still stands behind the lodge.
More about Goulding's Lodge & Campground
Accomodations near Monument Valley
There are several options for overnight accomodations near Monument Valley. The closest is Mitten View Campground, right on the reservation. Across US 163 you can stay at the pricey Goulding's lodge, where John Wayne used to stay while filming in the area. Or, you can stay in Kayenta which is 23 miles to the south, or Mexican Hat which is about the same distance to the north. We were headed to Moab next, so decided to drive 46 miles to Bluff and spent the night at the Mokee Motel. The Mokee was located right on US 163 and was operated by a very friendly and helpful proprietor.
In retrospect, I would recommend staying in Mexican Hat instead and then returning to Monument Valley again the next morning before continuing north to Moab.
Trip to Monument Valley
I would rate Gouldings Lodge as a B+. The food at their restaraunt was OK but nothing to write home about but they are the only game in town.
The tour that they offer for 3 to 4 hours is very good but dusty. Wear something comfortable that can be washed. I would not recomend the trip for someone with a bad back as the undeveloped road is very rough but the views are worth the trip.
Spring Break was wonderful!
We just returned from a Spring Break trip to the Southwest with our teenage sons and all agree that Monument Valley was the highlight of our vacation. We were prepared for the worst after reading previous reviews on this site but were thrilled to discover Gouldings Lodge to be clean, well appointed, comfortable and spacious with firm beds, and of course the fabulous view. The Navajo people were gentle and gracious not only at the Lodge but throughout the area. We were able to tour the Valley in our rental car, but had we been able to stay longer we would have taken a tour.
We did not eat at the Gouldings restaurant. In the town of Kayenta there is a wonderful restaurant with authentic food and atmosphere - the "Amigo" cafe, on route 163, which we really enjoyed and was inexpensive. No alcohol is served.
If you are considering visiting the area, Gouldings is the only accommodation in which you wake up in the morning and see the formations right there. We were fortunate to see them wreathed in clouds and brushed with snow. This burned off during the next few hours, leaving the air crystal clear. The beautiful and majestic buttes stood proudly in the bright sun and the wide blue skies overhead were magnificent.
4wd jeep rental
I'm planning a trip to Monument Valley and can't find the phone # of any 4wd jeep rental outfits. Can you help me
Re: 4wd jeep rental
After a quick search I found these links:
Have a good trip !
Re: 4wd jeep rental
take a look at 'navajo' on the VT web-site's search block.
There a several tour guide outfits in Monument Valley (check gouldings Utah) and in Page, Arizona (call 928-645-2741)
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Goulding's Lodge & Campground
We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:
- Gouldings Lodge Monument Valley
- Goulding Lodge
- Gouldings Hotel Monument Valley
- Gouldings Hotel Campground
- Goulding`s Lodge And Campground
- Goulding`s Lodge & Campground Hotel Monument Valley
Address: PO Box 360001, Monument Valley, Utah, 84536, United States