Which Rock Art sites are most appropriate to visit? Which give the visitor the best experiences? Which are best managed? These questions are different from each other, but partly related. The point of this page is to list some of the best sites to visit, best because they both provide interesting experiences and are well managed. Methods of site management are discussed on several other pages. See Site Management and Protection. See also some Success Stories on how efforts of many people have led to protection and good management.
The best managed sites will generally have visitor centers, both to provide information and to monitor the site to keep it safe. Sometimes they will have a less formal program of volunteer site stewards. In the best cases, they will have some additional facilities for visitors, and the presentation of the rock art will itself be beautiful – it will manifest great respect for the cultures which left their records in this way (as by the vistas visitors are led through, and the quality of the walkways and standing points for viewing the rock art and its surroundings). They will be neatly maintained. The best managed sites will also have carefully recorded and documented the rock art, archaeology, and cultural significance to the peoples who have inhabited the area.
Some privately owned sites have also been well managed, sometimes simply by keeping people away from them until some institution could take over management, sometimes by admitting visitors only when chaperoned.
Since all public visits do wear down even the best-managed sites, probably we should more and more expect to visit sites only virtually, through the photographs taken by others. So a list of some nice photo galleries are included here..
Guide for Guides to RockArt Sites (.pdf file)
Pautas para Guiar a los Visitantes de Sitios con Arte Rupestre (.pdf)
Well-Managed RockArt Sites on Public Lands
Well-Managed Rock Art Sites on Private Land
Rock Art Photo Galleries for the USA and Canada