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A tour of America's national parks

By: Catie Leary on Dec. 18, 2009, 10:53 a.m.
Cliff Palace at Mesa Verde

Photo: Ken Lund/Flickr

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Mesa Verde National Park

Mesa Verde's Cliff Palace is the largest cliff dwelling in North America. Unlike many of its park counterparts, Mesa Verde is a cultural resource in addition to its natural beauty. The site was constructed by the Anasazi, the ancient Pueblo people, almost 800 years ago in what is now Colorado. Carved into caves and outcroppings, these spectacular cliff dwellings were put under federal protection in 1916 to preserve the archeological site.