Coronado 1930's excavation Kuaua Pueblo ruins with Sandia Peak in the background.
Coronado State Monument includes the partially reconstructed ruins of the ancient Pueblo of Kuaua, a Tiwa word for "evergreen." This monument is named for Francisco Vasquez de Coronado who is thought to have camped near this site with his soldiers in 1540 while searching for the fabled Cities of Gold.
The pueblo of Kuaua was occupied from 1300 AD and abandoned near the end of the 16th Century. Today you can visit this historical site and learn about the history of the Kuaua pueblo people. An interpretive trail (1/5 of a mile) winds through the site leading to a reconstructed kiva (ceremonial chamber) that was excavated at the site in the 1930s. Many decorated layers were revealed and are considered the finest example of pre-contact mural art in the United States. Inside this kiva you will find mural reproductions of Pueblo life depicting animal figures and human images.
The Kuaua Mural Hall houses 15 panels of the original murals excavated out of one of the rectangle kivas. Native American and Spanish Colonial artifacts are on display in the John Gaw Meem designed visitor center.
The Children's wing displays the history of central New Mexico. Activities include trying on conquistador armor, grinding corn on a slab/metate with a two-handed mano/grinding stone. A video presents the history of the two cultures past and present lifestyles.
Enjoy a spectacular view, bring a lunch and walk our interpretive trails or sit by a ramada/shelter overlooking the Sandia Mountain and the Rio Grande.