When it comes to top tourist destinations in Colorado, Durango doesn’t often top the list. Yet, for the people who know this hidden gem, it’s the home away from home they’ve always sought. Not only is this small city in Southern Colorado a tremendous jump-off spot for other fun spots, but it’s also home to many Instagram-worthy attractions. Are you ready to explore Durango?
Elevation and Climate
Durango is a four-season location that attracts tourists all year round. It is 6,512 feet above sea level, so it enjoys low summer temperatures and is blanketed by snow in the winter. It also has low humidity, making the rare 80-degree day in the summer more bearable. Durango averages more than 67 inches of snow each year.
One of the best ways to see all the natural sights Durango has to offer is riding the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad train. It provides a window into some of the most beautiful and remote regions of Durango. If you prefer to explore Durango in a more urban setting, you could watch the rain while drinking coffee at one of the local coffee shops or visit wineries and microbreweries. Walking through the Grid neighborhood in the evening is also a local favorite.
Durango Outdoor Activities and Recreation
The specific attractions will depend on the time of year, but no season is likely to disappoint. In the summer, you can go ziplining, rock climbing, hiking, and off-roading. Winter attractions include hot springs, skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling. When the weather permits, mountain biking is a favorite among locals and tourists alike.
When it comes to world-class attractions in Durango, riding the train ranks pretty high on the list. Still, there are several other places to consider when you explore Durango:
- Mesa Verde National Park: This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that allows drive-throughs and self-guided tours. It is home to evidence of ancient civilization and several rare species.
- Sky Steps: If you like a good mix of exercise and killer views but want a less rural setting, try climbing the 500 steps to an overlook that shows you the busy town below.
- The Powerhouse: This interactive center for science started as a power plant before its transition into a museum. Now it is one of the most popular attractions in Durango.
Durango Arts and Culture
Like most college towns, Durango has a lot to offer when it comes to arts and culture. Some of the most important museums and historical sites have already been mentioned, but there are several other options:
- Thrift Shops: Some people get to know an area by thrifting its throwaways. Join the locals in search of a good bargain at the local thrift shops or check out the Sunday flea market.
- Art Class: The Durango Arts Center provides classes in everything from theater to painting, and children are always welcome.
- Art Galleries: If you prefer to view other people’s art, there are more than 30 galleries for you to roam through.
Durango has activities for people of all ages. Here are three recommendations that are especially fun for children:
- Inferno Mountain Coaster: If your kids are looking for a thrill with a view, this mile-long ride is worth taking.
- Camping at Emerald Lake: Camping is a great family activity, and Emerald Lake is one of the most beautiful places to do it.
- Horseback Riding: Horseback riding is a wonderful activity for adults and older children. Be sure to ask what the recommended age range is.
You are unlikely to run out of things to do in Durango. In fact, it might take a few days to cross everything off your list, and we are always happy to welcome you back to explore Durango. Looking to add hot springs to your list? Check out Durango Hot Springs Resort and Spa.
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