Acoma Pueblo

(Ácoma Pueblo NM)
Went to see Sky City, the oldest continuously inhabited community in North America, at Ácoma Pueblo. It sets atop a tall mesa overlooking other mesas in the desert and Mount Taylor in the distance.

Sculpture in front of museum

Haak’u Museum at Ácoma Pueblo

While awaiting the next pueblo tour group, I visited the Haak’u Museum that had exhibits on the Ácoma people, native pottery, and a show of contemporary paintings by an artist from the tribe. There was also a gift shop and café.

Adobe homes on mesa

Sky City Homes

Cistern in front of buildings

Cistern in the Village

A tour of Sky City with a native guide was next. He explained the reasons for building the village up there, and gave a brief history of the tribe. Access was by way of stone steps; the road was a recent addition. There were three large water cisterns, and a spring at the base of the mesa.

Earthen oven

Horno for Baking

The homes were originally constructed using sandstone, with adobe and windows coming much later. During the Spanish occupation, the natives were forced to build the San Estevan del Rey Mission amidst their dwellings. While outwardly accepting the Catholic faith, they continued to practice their own in a secret kiva.

Adobe mission wing

San Estevan del Rey Mission

During the tour, native artisans had tables outside their homes displaying their creations of jewelry, pottery, and baked goods. I bought a fresh pie pocket baked in a horno to eat later.

Rocks and distant mesa

View from atop Sky City mesa

Mesa in the desert

Mesa Encantada on Ácoma Reservation

I enjoyed seeing the art, learning about the village, and driving through the surrounding landscape. Afterward, I camped at nearby Bluewater Lake State Park overlooking the lake.

Camp: Bluewater Lake SP-Northpoint CG
Scene: Native pueblo, museum, mission, mesa

8 Responses to Acoma Pueblo

  1. Dragonfly November 19, 2014 at 2:21 pm #

    Contrast of buildings and landscape. Where are the people in from of the homes?

    • Pleinguy November 20, 2014 at 12:33 pm #

      The people stay inside during the tour, unless they are displaying their crafts.

  2. Gypsy November 19, 2014 at 2:59 pm #

    I would love to see this place! There are so many sites I’d love to visit in NM and UT, and I would surely need several months to enjoy them all.

    • Pleinguy November 20, 2014 at 12:36 pm #

      There are many wonderful places. To see a lot would take a good while. But, you could go to see one place at a time on weekends.

  3. Brenda & Wally November 19, 2014 at 5:23 pm #

    Hi David, great pictures on your blog. We have a iPad now,so we can follow your blog.

    • Pleinguy November 20, 2014 at 12:39 pm #

      Glad you like the photos. The iPad is such a nice way to view the blog. Hope you enjoy it.

  4. dawn on camano island December 2, 2014 at 4:35 am #

    Gorgeous photos! Acoma is definitely on our must-see NM list! Such good news that the people continued their practices in a secret kiva!!

    • Pleinguy December 2, 2014 at 9:53 am #

      It was interesting to hear the history from a native point of view. I thing you would enjoy the tour.

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