Great Sand Dunes National Park- A few hours south from Cañon City will take you to this fascinating and inspiring park. Towering sand dunes as far as the eye can see offer hours of entertainment as you explore the rolling hills, flowing creek (visit in May or June for the best chance to see flowing water), and the visitor’s center. Kids can even earn their Junior Rangers badge! The park has a campground and is a perfect place to get away from the lights, hustle, and bustle of everyday life. That’s what your Colorado Vacation is all about, right? Additional overnight accommodations are located nearby.
Cripple Creek / Victor – If you’re a history buff, a wild west fanatic, or a fan of quintessential Colorado scenery, you’ll love the towns of Cripple Creek and Victor. Both towns offer a number of easy and fun hikes (we love the Vindicator Valley Trail) that showcase the area’s rich mining history. Visit the Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine for a unique trip through 1,000 feet of rock and into a real mine. There are also a number of enchanting local hotels that warrant a night’s stay (or two!) on your authentic Colorado vacation.
Breckenridge is one of the top names in Colorado getaways, but you have to see the quaint downtown surrounded by towering peaks to truly understand what makes this destination so great. Known for its premiere skiing and beautiful hiking—picture rocky trails and alpine lakes—it’s a Colorado weekend getaway that makes you want to get outside and explore. For those who are interested in cozying up while on vacation, a spa package or winery visit could do the trick.
Nestled below Colorado's radiant mountaintops is beautiful Lazy R Cottages in Estes Park. Just one mile from Rocky Mountain National Park, we offer one-, two- and three-bedroom cabins perfect for romantic escapes and family vacations. Our cabins have kitchens or kitchenettes, fireplaces, decks with mountain views, and some with personal hot tubs … perfect for relaxing after a day enjoying Estes Park and the National Park. Dog-friendly units available ($15 per dog/per night). Free Wi-Fi. View more about our Estes Park cabins.
Situated in Southern Colorado, the Great Sand Dunes National Park is an impressive sight. Shaped by winds blowing from and against the nearby Sangre de Cristo Mountains, the piles of sand climb to more than 750 feet (230 meters), making them the tallest dunes in North America. Sand-boarding, skiing and sledding on the dunes are the park’s most popular activities, and there are medium-size slopes to slide on located near the main parking area. A longer hike to the north brings thrill seekers to a 300-foot (90 meter) slope that tumbles onto into Medano Creek.
The main things to do here are to simply gaze out over the canyon and appreciate the environment or wander along the walking paths and short hiking trails on the rim. These are generally flat and easy trails. If you're adventurous, you can hike into the canyon, but trails are not maintained or marked, conditions are difficult, and you are basically on your own and responsible for the costs of rescue, should the need arise. Three campgrounds are located in the park; the North and South Rim campgrounds are open to tents and RVs but the East Portal is only open to tents.
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Rocky Mountain National Park, established in 1915, is a living showcase of the grandeur of the Rocky Mountains. Located outside Estes Park, Colorado, Rocky Mountain is a great family vacation destination, offering outdoor experiences for all—from easy nature hikes around crystal clear mountain lakes to daring rock scrambles up waterfalls and mountains.
My mind calm, the knitting absorbed any excess energy and left my senses free to absorb the stunning surroundings. Feeling no need to move, I watched the silhouettes of fish moving upstream, hummingbirds zip over my head, and a northern harrier cruise over the grassland, looking for prey. Months later, I can imagine every detail of that spot on the bank anytime I close my eyes.
A romantic weekend at the Castle Marne Bed and Breakfast on Capitol Hill in Denver will transport you to more elegant and romantic times with its nine magnificent rooms accented by antique Victorian furniture, fine décor, canopy beds, and fluttering curtains. Of course, they all have modern bathrooms with whirlpool or claw foot bathtubs and other contemporary amenities you simply cannot do without.
One of the country’s most beautiful natural area’s to explore in the United States, the Rocky Mountain National Park is an ideal vacation destination for those who crave outdoor adventures and awe-inspiring vistas of mountains, lakes and valleys. With 355 miles of hiking trails, ranging from flat lakeside strolls to steep mountain climbs, there are corners of this park that appeal to everyone. Take a scenic drive and spot diverse wildlife, such as Elk, Mule Deer and Bighorn Sheep, or go hunting for one of the 30 postcard-worthy waterfalls views. While there is no lodge inside the park, visitors can find campgrounds to pitch a tent and spend a night under the stars.
Another addition to the Denver skyline is the 165-room ART Hotel, which opened early summer of 2015. Located in downtown Denver’s Cultural District, the boutique hotel is simply unique, capturing the contemporary art scene as if the hotel were its sketching pad. When my husband and I stayed there, one of our favorite things to do order a cocktail at the rooftop bar and then step out onto the FIRE Terrace, a unique Denver rooftop bar and restaurant experience with a fourth-floor patio that overlooks the bustling life of the Broadway Street below.
Crested Butte may be off the beaten path, but it’s worth the trip as one of the most stunning mountain towns in all of Colorado. The atmosphere is one that combines the charms of a historic mining town with hippy flair. Set at the base of the Rockies, it’s world-renowned for skiing, but in the warmer months, it becomes a top hiking and mountain biking destination, as well as drawing countless visitors for the chance to take once-in-a-lifetime whitewater rafting adventures through the Taylor Canyon. A true mecca for mountain bikers, there are hundreds of miles of trails linked together to create an endless day of touring from Gothic to Mt. Crested Butte, Irwin to Gunnison, or even from Crested Butte all the way to Aspen. If you don’t have a bike, stop by Big Al’s Bicycle Heaven and rent one for the day or for the length of your stay. In addition to riding the trails, you can ride around town and check out all the historic buildings and funky alleyways.
^ This article incorporates public domain material from the Library of Congress document: "Majestic view from the old, one-way, dirt Fall River Road in Rocky Mountain National Park in the Front Range of the spectacular and high Rockies in north-central Colorado". Library of Congress - Prints & Photographs Online Catalog. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
The ski resort town of Vail is one of the best places to visit in Colorado in winter but it's also a pleasant place to enjoy at any time of year. When it comes to skiing, this is one of the top ski resorts in Colorado, with seemingly endless runs for all levels of skiers. The town at the base of the ski hill is postcard cute, with chalet-style restaurants, shops, and hotels that make you feel like you are in the heart of the Alps. This is a high-end resort with luxury hotels, fine dining, and designer stores.
Stay up past your (kids’) bedtime at this grown-ups-only urban retreat that fuses art and sustainability. Side-by-side Victorian homes sit on the edge of downtown Denver, putting you close to the city’s vibrant dining and nightlife. Many rooms feature murals or paintings by local artists, so you can soak up some culture from your in-room whirlpool tub. There are eco-friendly perks throughout, like organic toiletries and gardens where the onsite chef grows herbs and veggies for your complimentary breakfast.
A classic Colorado city just up the road from Denver, Fort Collins is a great spot for a weekend trip in Colorado. The historic college town is artsy and vibrant with plenty to do. Whether it’s bringing the kids to the Museum of Discovery, hiking and kayaking at Horsetooth Open Space, perusing Old Town shops, or biking to Fort Collins’ many craft breweries, there’s something for everyone.
Glacial geology in Rocky Mountain National Park can be seen from the mountain peaks to the valley floors. Ice is a powerful sculptor of this natural environment and large masses of moving ice are the most powerful tools. Telltale marks of giant glaciers can be seen all throughout the park. Streams and glaciations during the Quaternary period cut through the older sediment, creating mesa tops and alluvial plains, and revealing the present Rocky Mountains. The glaciation removed as much as 5,000 feet (1,500 m) of sedimentary rocks from earlier inland sea deposits. This erosion exposed the basement rock of the Ancestral Rockies. Evidence of the uplifting and erosion can be found on the way to Rocky Mountain National Park in the hogbacks of the Front Range foothills. Many sedimentary rocks from the Paleozoic and Mesozoic eras exist in the basins surrounding the park.
Located one mile from the main entrance of Rocky Mountain National Park and two miles from Estes Park, Rams Horn Village Resort offers 46 luxury cabins, a heated outdoor swimming pool in the summer, three outdoor, year-round hot tubs, a fitness center and a playground on over seven acres of landscaped grounds. Every amenity at Rams Horn is free to use with your reservation and every cabin will turn into a second home.
Central Colorado - Pikes Peak RegionNestled within majestic Rocky Mountain scenery, Cripple Creek offers fun and adventures for the entire family. Try your luck in one of our exciting casinos, check out our fascinating museums, or explore our many history-rich activities such as a ride on the CC&V Narrow Gauge Railroad or a 1,000 foot descent underground into the Mollie Kathleen Mine.
At 265,000 acres, Rocky Mountain National Park isn't the country's largest national park, nor is it the most-frequented with about 4 million annual visitors (compared to Great Smoky Mountains National Park's more than 11 million visitors). But there is something definitively magical about RMNP, which rises 12,183 feet into the Colorado sky. The main attraction is hiking its 350-some miles of trails that wind through pine and spruce forests, glittering alpine lakes, swaths of wildflowers and if you're lucky, some elk or bighorn sheep. And maybe it's the thinner atmosphere that goes to visitors' heads, but even the most jaded report feelings of awe and wonder after a day or two of breathing in that refreshing mountain air.
Colorado is the perfect destination for an extra-special weekend getaway, especially since it’s home to numerous exciting cities and nature spots. Admire panoramic views of the sweeping, majestic Rocky Mountains, and plan an afternoon hike and picnic. Book a stay at a gorgeous Colorado vacation rental near a historic national park to conveniently enjoy the great outdoors. Here are eight of the most romantic weekend getaway locations in Colorado.
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A small city that packs a lot of punch for its size, Vail is one of the most beloved ski destinations in the country, where its not uncommon to spot a celebrity or two. Nestled between the Gore Mountain Range and Sawatch Mountain Range, this narrow alley is home to the largest single-mountain resort in the United States. While most visitors come to Vail for its famous 5,289 acres of ski slopes, in the summer visitors can also explore the Eagles Nest Wilderness Area and Holy Cross Wilderness area to hike the area’s rugged mountainside trails.
On Friday evening, an NPS spokesperson responded to FOX31 and Channel 2's request for a comment. In an email, they said the park remains open. However, entrances to the park were closed due to road conditions. The spokesperson said the main entrance gates were closed Saturday night past Beaver Meadows Visitor Center and near the Fall River Entrance. The gate near the Grand Lake Entrance on the park's west side was closed Saturday morning due to road conditions, the spokesperson said.
“This isn’t a furlough for us,” Oropeza said. “There are definitely folks who, if this continues into next week, they’ll have to forfeit their commitment. Some are exploring applying for other jobs. They have student loans, they have car payments and other bills. …There are ripple effects this is having down the road. Our seasonal contracts, we have to have our contracts for summer seasonal work signed soon. All these things are getting backlogged.”
The Experience: Denver is the perfect urban adventure for anyone who likes midsize cities. It's easy to navigate and manage and doesn't feel at all claustrophobic, but offers endless cultural excursions, gourmet dining experiences, and a fun nightlife you'd expect from large cities. Make sure you visit the Denver Art Museum, check out the breweries in the RiNo neighborhood, and stay at the Crawford Hotel, which is in the old Denver Union Station. For a boutique hotel, stay at The Maven Hotel.