Drive through Colorado for nature lovers and city dwellers

Colorado is known for its diverse landscape and allure. In one state, travelers can find the towering Rocky Mountains, valleys, and desert environment of Great Sand Dunes National Park, while also enjoying city-dwelling in Colorado Springs and Denver. Colorado makes it easy to take one incredible road trip to experience it all.

Starting and finishing in Denver is the easiest way to go on a road trip through Colorado. Denver, the state capital, is abundant in graffiti art, 19th century architecture, and culinary offerings. For a place to stay, see the Catbird Hotel (3770 Walnut St.). The hotel’s minimalist design takes up little space and makes it stand out by adding screens, kitchenettes and a loft-style bed. Another Denver option is the Rumble Hotel (1280 25th Street), known for housing Death & Co. The famous cocktail bar and brand behind the drink recipe books.

For places to eat, The Source Hotel + Market Hall has 25 vendors offering food and craft gifts. The Safta Restaurant inside The Source serves modern Israeli cuisine prepared by Alon Shaya, James Beard nominee. Don’t forget the naan as with all fresh spreads and appetizers like lamb. Denver Central Market (2669 Larimer Street) is filled with anything you could crave like baked goods, tacos, or oysters on a half-shell. Snooze Eatery (1701 Wynkoop St. Suite 150) is great for breakfast, with plenty of fresh juices, coffee and pancake flights. The Whole Sol Blend Bar (3605 Walnut Street) is perfect for a quick latte and morning smoothie.

While you’re in town, check out a Denver graffiti tour of the RiNo neighborhood to learn about the stories behind the city’s street murals. Drive into the mountains to discover the well-preserved town of Saint Elmo-Just, which dates back to the 19th century and has been so well preserved. To discover some funky interactive art installations, head to Meow Wolf Denver (1338 1st St.).

Natrop, Salida and Kriston

Driving toward Nathrop, head to Mount Princeton Hot Springs (15870 County Road 162, Nathrop). Take a dip in the natural hot springs or in one of the warm filtered spring water bathtubs. Guests can stay directly on the property at the Mount Princeton Hot Springs Resort. Cabins are available with full kitchens, multiple bedrooms, bathrooms, and balconies overlooking the mountains.

Nearby, grab a quick latte at Bunny and Clydes Corner’s Café and Café (203 west of 1st Salida Street). In Crestone, you’ll find a small spirit village with unusual roadside attractions like the UFO Watchtower or Colorado Gators Reptile Park (9162 Lane 9 N, Mosca) where visitors can take alligator wrestling lessons, at their own risk.

Del Norte and Alamoso

The Mellow Moon Lodge (1160 Grand Ave. Del Norte) is a renovated and updated hotel located in the community. Step into The Historic Windsor Hotel Dining Room for dinner. An unforgettable lunch at 1874 Distilling (645 Grand Ave, Del Norte) to top the biscuits and Bloody Mary bars. Drive to Great Sand Dunes National Park to explore, or rent skis and sand boards to traverse the dunes. The sand gets very hot in the afternoon, so make sure you have shoes or socks on hand with plenty of water. In the spring, when the snow begins to melt from the mountains, it creates a temporary river that floats in it.

Refresh some Mexican food from Calvillo Mexican Restaurant (400 Main St., Alamosa) or Nino’s (326 Main St., Alamosa). For breakfast in the Del Norte area, Raisin Rye Bakery (675 Grand Ave., Del Norte) serves freshly baked produce. Check out SLV Brewery (631 Main Street, Alamosa) for a burger and a pint.

Kanon City

Next up is Cañon City, where guests can test their sense of adventure at Royal Gorge Bridge & Park (4218 County Road 3A) after checking into Royal Gorge Cabins (45054 WUS Highway 50). Thrill seekers can try a roller coaster that soars over the cliffs. If that’s a bit intense, check out the zip line and gondola ride across the strait. At night, enjoy a traditional French meal at Le Petit Chablis (512 Royal Gorge Blvd.), with fresh bread, garlic butter in the crust and lamb chops.

Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs

The Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs area is filled with unique shops and restaurants like Crystal Park Cantina (178 Crystal Park Rd., Manitou Springs) for amazing fried fish tacos and guacamole. Grab a snack before heading up the mountain to Pikes Peak on the Cog Railway (515 Ruxton Ave, Manitou Springs). This is a quick way to see the views from the top of Pikes Peak without having to hike. Riders will reach the top of the mountain in about an hour, but just be prepared for the change in altitude. Many of the train passengers felt slightly dizzy and unbalanced, so take plenty of water with you.

Next, explore the shops in Manitou Springs before heading to the Garden of the Gods Club and Resort (3320 Mesa Road, Colorado Springs). This AAA Four Diamond resort has a lot to offer its guests, including the on-site spa, Strata, and it offers treatments like the Mystic Inca Ritual which is essentially a series of whole-body masks and scrubs that channel various elements like purple corn and enzyme-packed emollients. heating mask. The resort has infinity pools and a gym with huge windows overlooking the Garden of the Gods. If guests want to stay in the evening, Kissing Camels’ on-site restaurant serves dishes such as jumbo shrimp and lobster soup.

Nearby, guests can head to Academy Riding Stables (4 El Paso Blvd., Colorado Springs) for a horseback ride through the Garden of the Gods. The horses are nice and tamed, and the guide was very knowledgeable. Check out the shops in Old Town Colorado like Maggie M Boutique (2409 W. Colorado Ave., Suite 100, Colorado Springs) before dropping in at Rabbit Hole (101 N. Tejon St. Cocktail Bar. Grab some sushi nearby at B&R For delicious rolls.Don’t leave town before testing your fears at Cave of the Winds Mountain Park (100 Cave of the Winds Road, Manitou Springs) to ride the Pterodactyl, the canyon swing that drops you at 100mph.

Thank you for visiting Colorado and their partners for hosting me.

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