Valley of the Gods is so colorful and uniquely beautiful that it’s fit for kings, queens, and even Gods. That’s if they like dry high deserts which are hot as hell in the summer and damned cold in the winter. This place is so special that BLM designated the road through it as a scenic backroad and President Obama included it in Bears Ears National Monument (fate still to be decided).
There are about 20 rock towers in this broad valley and they all have wonderfully descriptive names, like Seven Sailors, Battleship Rock, Setting Hen Butte, and the infamous Lady in the Bathtub. A 17-mile-long dirt road winds through the valley with viewpoints of the named towers. It’s a mini Monument Valley and definitely worth checking out (and totally free).
Towers in Valley of the Gods, photo by Andrew Weber
Valley of the Gods is located at the foot of Cedar Mesa’s colorful rock cliffs near the town of Mexican Hat in southeast Utah. The drive through the valley takes about an hour, with plenty of time to stop and take pictures along the way. While this road has little elevation gain, it is rough in spots so having a high clearance vehicle is a good idea. If the road is wet, do not drive Valley of the Gods Road; it turns to slime after a rain and you will get stuck, even in a 4WD vehicle. Trust me – I’ve been trapped overnight due to wet roads in the area.
The view from your coach in Valley of the Gods, photo by Andrew Weber
Food, drink, and lodging are available in Mexican Hat. We recommend grabbing a Swinging Steak and a beer in at the Swingin’ Steak Restaurant and staying overnight in Mexican Hat.
Valley of the Gods from Cedar Mesa, photo by Andrew Weber
Mountains on this map
|Flag Butte||4,886 ft (1,489 m)|
|Scotchman Butte||4,814 ft (1,467 m)|
|Seven Sailors||4,823 ft (1,470 m)|
|Setting Hen Butte||5,055 ft (1,541 m)|
|Rooster Butte||5,061 ft (1,543 m)|
|Pyramid Peak||4,944 ft (1,507 m)|
|Franklin Butte||5,179 ft (1,579 m)|
|Battleship Rock||5,422 ft (1,653 m)|
|Castle Butte||5,400 ft (1,646 m)|
|Lady in the Bathtub||5,552 ft (1,692 m)|
|Bell Butte||5,351 ft (1,631 m)|
Landmarks on this map
East Entrance to Valley of the Gods
West Entrance to Valley of the Gods
Valley of the Gods Bed & Breakfast
Town of Mexican Hat