Heritage Travel
Comments 2

Sacred Places

After two wonderful days at the Grand Canyon, we headed out on Tuesday – but not before making a stop at Mary Colter’s beautiful Desert View Watchtower at the eastern entrance to the park.  Colter designed this gift shop and observation tower for the Fred Harvey Company in a way that appears to blend into the landscape.  She also brought in Hopi artist Fred Kabotie to paint the interior of the tower with symbols that depict various elements of Hopi mythology and religious ceremony.  There is a great reverence for the Native American culture here in Colter’s work.  Click on the link above for a description of the construction of the tower.  This structure is also featured on the beautiful cover photograph of my colleague Arnold Berke’s wonderful book on Mary Colter.

After leaving the Grand Canyon, we headed to Utah, driving through the magnificent Monument Valley of Arizona and Utah.  Read the Wikipedia write up linked above to begin to understand the geological and tourism aspects of this wonderful place, but it is best understood as the sacred place it is for the Navajo Nation.  We drove through this incredible landscape, listening to Native American music and simply soaking up the experience.  As is to be expected in one of the most photographed places on the planet, we stopped and captured some images of our own, a couple of which we share with you below, but it is difficult to capture this special place in photographs or words.









We end the day in the small (population 320) historic town of Bluff, UT.  A wonderful day in sacred places.

More to come…


This entry was posted in: Heritage Travel


I am David J. Brown (hence the DJB) and I originally created this personal blog more than ten years ago as a way to capture photos and memories from a family vacation. After the trip was over I simply continued writing. Over the years the blog has changed to have a more definite focus aligned with my interest in places that matter, reading well, roots music, and more. My professional background is as a national nonprofit leader with a four-decade record of growing and strengthening organizations at local, state, and national levels. This work has been driven by my passion for connecting people in thriving, sustainable, and vibrant communities.


  1. Les Amis de Mary Colter says

    Although you have not spelled our beloved Mary’s last name correctly — it is Colter — we much appreciate your words about this amazing lady!

  2. My fault…I was working from the road and from memory! I’ll make the corrections.

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