Life is but a dream in the Centennial State. Colorado is jam-packed with opportunity for hiking, skiing, snowboarding, camping, and much more. No matter the season, there’s an outdoor adventure waiting to happen.
Maybe you’ll try your hand at the historic Vail Ski Resort (aka the largest single mountain resort in the country.) Or, perhaps you’ll spend a day hiking through some of the 350-miles of trails at the Rocky Mountain National Park.
Whatever thrill you’re looking for, you’ll certainly find here. If you’re planning a trip out west, go with a plan.
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Here are some of the best places to visit in Colorado
Here’s a little history lesson. The 14,114-foot summit in this mountain town- Pike Peak- inspired one of our nation’s most patriotic songs, “America the Beautiful”.
Once you step into Colorado Springs, you’ll immediately see why. Its beauty transcends from its outdoor recreation to its culturally rich downtown neighborhoods.
Check out the Garden of Gods to see its spectacular rock formation. Also, you could venture to Seven Falls for a day of chasing waterfalls. These seven cascading waterfalls have reopened to the public after a flood devastation.
Another must-see town on this list is Vail, which is arguably the skiing capital of the U.S. What makes it one of the best places to visit in Colorado is its mass amount of open space. Visitors have over 1,100 acres to take advantage of.
Vail Ski Resort is set in the footsteps of the White River National Forest. This 2.3 million acre land has over 2,500 miles of trails, so you’ll never run out of space to venture.
Mesa Verde National Park offers a glimpse into the lives of the Ancestral Pueblo people. This Native American civilization inhibited the cliff dwellings for nearly 700 years.
5000 archeological sites make up this preserved land. So, if you’re looking for a mix of history and outdoor fun, this is the place for you. Also, be sure to check out the Sun Point Overlook for stunning views of the entire canyon.
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Rocky Mountain National Park
This list wouldn’t be complete without the ever-popular Rocky Mountain National Park. Not only is it one of the best places to visit in Colorado, but one of the best in the country.
With 415 square miles of mountains, forests, and alpine tundra, you’ll never run out of land to explore. The Trail Ridge Road and the Old Fall River Road are popular destinations, as they offer an assortment of colorful sights.
Also, the Keyhole Route leads to the largest summit, Longs Peak. The view along the way ain’t so bad either.
Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park
Black Canyon of the Gunnison has a unique kind of charm. Its isolation gives way to a beautiful serenity. But, this 2000-foot canyon is rocky enough to inspire some of the wildest adventures.
We must warn you- take caution when hiking through the steep hills that fill this national park. Don’t worry- it’s all worth it once you see the 2 million-year-old Gunnison River.
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Great Sand Dunes National Park
You probably weren’t expecting to get some beachy vibes in Colorado. But, the tallest dunes in America offer a crazy diverse landscape that you just can’t resist.
The Great Sand Dunes sit right in front of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, which creates a remarkable backdrop.
You can even try your hand at climbing the 750-foot dunes to get a better look! Rent a car and cruise along Medano Pass Primitive Road for a scenic drive you won’t forget.
You knew the Mile High City was bound to appear. Denver is easily one of the best places to visit in Colorado because of its rich history and outdoor recreation. Oh, and it also has more breweries per capita than any other city in the states.
Spend a day wandering through the vibrant LoDo neighborhood for some excellent dining. Then, venture to some of the nearby suburbs to burn it all off. Check out Mt. Galbraith in Golden, Colorado for some stellar panoramic views.
Or, head west a little to visit Breckenridge, a quaint ski resort heaven. Coldwell Banker Mountain Properties blog offers some good recommendations of places to see while you’re in town.
Million Dollar Highway
Its name says it all. U.S. Route 550 is easily only of the most scenic drives in the whole country.
Start your drive in Durango, before making your way through Silverton, Ouray, and Placerville. You’ll hit a few more towns before eventually looping back to Durango.
This 300-mile long highway is not for the faint of heart, as it hugs the mountainside. It overlooks miles and miles of cliffs and valleys. Be careful though- there’s no guardrail.
Aspen is another Colorado staple. You’ll be thoroughly impressed by the world-class skiing in this small town.
If you’re up for some intense rides, check out the Highland Bowl. Or, if you’re going for a more relaxing day, John Denver Sanctuary green, lush garden will not disappoint.
Downtown Aspen is quite popular. It offers an array of bars, restaurants, galleries, retail shops and more.
Visiting in the summer months? Be sure to check out some of the whitewater rafting excursions that have also made this town famous.
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You can’t leave Colorado without a stop in its most notorious college town. Boulder sits at the base of the Rocky Mountains and is popular for adrenaline junkies. That’s because it has practically every outdoor activity under the sun.
You can easily make a day of hiking, climbing, biking, or canoeing through this beautiful town. Make sure to visit the Flatirons, a reddish-brown sandstone formation that draws thousands of visitors each year.
What are Some of the Other Best Places to Visit in Colorado?
Colorado is Colorado, meaning that no matter where you go, you’ll find a great adventure. What are some of your favorite places to see in this great state?
If you liked this guide, you should stick around. Our travel archives are full of tips and takes on just about any destination.