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Around Colorado

Photo by MaxGag

Around Colorado Itineraries

Colorado’s Most Scenic Drives Hit the Heights

Leadville Colorado, Where the Old West Comes Alive

Steamboat Springs in Summer and Fall

Walk the Gold Miners’ Talk in Idaho Springs, Colorado

Rocky Mountain highs, Wild West towns, ancient Indian ruins and skiing

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Two types of visitors come to Colorado. Adventurers climb “14ers” and rappel down steep cliffs; hike trails where deer nibble tree bark and raft down the raging Colorado with spring melt; leave a plume of feather-weight powder while skiing Vail’s Back Bowls and ride a zipline over the Royal Gorge near Colorado Springs.

Others drive some of the country’s highest and most curvaceous roads, such as The Million Dollar Highway in Southwest Colorado, the Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park, or Mount Evans. You can also take tame walks, go fly fishing, and raft gentler sections of the rivers.

Both approaches let you explore remnants of gold-mining towns, and photograph wildflower-strewn meadows filled with purple columbine and pink tansy asters.

In Denver, you can watch coins being made at the Mint, see an eight pound gold nugget and visit galleries in the Golden Triangle. There’s a stampede to the Denver metro area, one of the fastest growing urban sections in the country, for its easy lifestyle, outdoor sports and culture.

Whatever you do, don’t try to see all of Colorado in one trip. This state is large and it takes time to get around. You’ll need to pick and choose where to stay and play.


Colorado Regions: Getting Oriented

Visualize the Rocky Mountains — a major draw for vacationers and locals — as a spine in the center of Colorado. On the eastern side are the Front Range cities of Denver and Colorado Springs. You could easily vacation a week in either city. The college and techie town of Boulder and the grand Rocky Mountain National Park (and its touristy gateway Estes Park) are an hour and two hours, respectively, north of Denver. Colorado Springs has the added draw of Pikes Peak, the US Air Force Academy and the red-rock Garden of the Gods.

On the Western Slope sits Grand Junction, the heart of Colorado’s wine country. Visitors flock here for Palisade peach festivals, scenic drives, and red-rock hiking and biking. It’s easy to get accustomed to the easy pace of life in Grand Junction. Beyond the city limits, you can day trip to Moab and Canyonlands in Utah; Telluride in Southwest Colorado, the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and Aspen.

The four corners region — where Colorado, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico meet — includes Southwest Colorado. It boasts old mining towns like Telluride and Durango; the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge trainOuray, called Little Switzerland because of its peaks and twisty mountain passes; wineries; footprints of ancient Puebloan civilizations at Mesa Verde National Park, and other national monuments.

In the Rocky Mountain towns of AspenBreckenridge and Vail you are surrounded by mountain playgrounds. Famed for spectacular skiing and snowboarding, there’s also plenty of other entertainment, from racing snowmobiles to cross country skiing and dog-sled rides. Summertime hiking, river rafting, mountain-biking, golfing, fishing in gold-medal rivers and visiting ghost towns provide plenty of distractions.


For Colorado itineraries which don’t fit neatly into our other Colorado destinations:

===> See the RELATED links below to explore local itineraries.


Legal Weed

Colorado has legalized marijuana, and “weed” can be purchased at pot shops in many cities. Weed tours are also given. Regulations are strict as to who can buy and where weed can be consumed. Visit GoodtoKnow before you choose to use.


Don’t forget to click on the yellow bar above for details about when to go, what it costs, and transportation.


Quick links for other Colorado destinations

Aspen and Snowmass
Boulder, Colorado
Breckenridge, Keystone and Copper
Colorado Springs and Southeastern Colorado
Denver and Around
Grand Junction and Around
Rocky Mountain National Park and Estes Park
Southwest Colorado
Vail and Beaver Creek


When To Go

Colorado is a four-season destination. Winter sports lovers, from skiers and snowboarders to snowmobilers, come to the resorts in the Rocky Mountains in the wintertime. Summertime in the mountains the resorts run festivals almost every weekend, and the trails on the mountainsides are filled with hikers and mountain bikers.

Denver has become a sophisticated city, but its locals are big on outdoor sports and bicycling throughout the year. Even in late fall and early spring, residents can be found sitting on outdoor patios.

 

What it Costs

You can plan a trip to Colorado on any budget.  Your choice of free to moderate to extremely luxurious lodging, and the types of activities will determine the price.

Abstract Pricing at a Glance

Prices often fluctuate dynamically depending on capacity, seasonality and deals. We don’t want to lead you astray by quoting exact prices that quickly become wrong. To give you a rough idea for budgetary planning purposes, though, we have indicated general price ranges for all points of interest.

Price ranges are quoted in $US.

See & Do
N/A => Not applicable
Free
$ => Tickets less than $10 per person
$$ => Tickets $11-25 per person
$$$ => Tickets $26 per person

Sleep
$ => Rooms less than $100 for a double
$$ => Rooms $200 for a double
$$$ => Rooms $300 for a double

Eat
$ => $1-15 per person for a meal (without alcohol, tax, tip)
$ => $16-40 per person for a meal (without alcohol, tax, tip)
$$$ => $41 per person for a meal (without alcohol, tax, tip)

Shop
N/A => Not applicable

Tours
$ => Tickets less than $10 per person
$$ => Tickets $11-25 per person
$$ => Tickets $26 per person

Transportation

Flights: Denver International Airport is a major hub for United and Frontier, but most of the major airlines fly here from all of the major cities in the U.S. There are also international non-stop flights from Canada, Mexico, Iceland and other countries.

During the winter, there are nonstop flights to some of the ski areas from the west coast, Texas, Chicago and other cities. If you are booking a trip to a resort, ask the resort’s chamber about direct flights from your city.

There are nonstop flights from Denver to several cities in Colorado, including Aspen, Steamboat/Hayden, Telluride and Durango.

Trains: Amtrak stops in Denver. The trip through the Rockies from the West Coast (or the reverse) is scenic.

Auto Rentals: You can rent cars from all of the major car rental companies at Denver International Airport. (You need to take the car rental agency shuttles from the main terminal to a special terminal that houses the car rental counters.)

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