For the thrill seekers who want to get their blood pumping, look no further for an abundance of pristine Colorado climbing routes of all difficulties than in Garden of the Gods Park and exceptional whitewater rafting through the scenic Royal Gorge. Or take things a tad slower and enjoy the mountain scenery from horseback, a zipline tour, a guided fishing trip, or from one of the hundred-plus hiking and bike trails surrounding the city. Then cap off a few days’ excitement with a relaxing and restorative soak in the outdoor mineral water hot springs while the sun sets slowly behind Pikes Peak—America’s Mountain. Whichever way you choose to do it, Colorado Springs is the perfect place to unplug, unwind, and revitalize yourself in the Rocky Mountain air.
Do More Outdoors
Get closer to the heavens with a visit to the Garden of the Gods natural landmark. This ethereally titled park features majestic red rock formations that reach to the sky. The park features more than one hundred climbing routes amid the sandstone pillars, from trad to sport to top-rope and bouldering. Experienced climbers need only acquire a free permit to hit the rocks, but for those lacking the know-how or proper gear to venture up the rocks on their own, the Front Range Climbing Company leads guided trips to all the best natural climbing spots. The park is also a great place to hike, picnic and take an adventure tour on a bike, Segway, Jeep or Trolley.
Academy Riding Stables is the place to experience tranquil horseback adventure through breathtaking mountain scenery. Embrace your inner cowboy or cowgirl with horses and rides for all ages and levels of experience. Keep it simple with a pleasant hour-long ride through Garden of the Gods or go all out on an overnight at an authentic dude ranch.
Then, leave the ground and soar above the amazing geological wonder that is the Royal Gorge on an aerial gondola ride at the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park, in Cañon City. Take in the view while strolling across the 1929 suspension bridge, one of the highest feats of engineering of its kind in the world. Climb aboard the Royal Gorge Route Railroad for a scenic trip alongside the roaring waters of the Arkansas River.
Relax and Unwind
Minutes from Garden of the Gods Park is your answer to a day of rugged outdoor adventure: SunWater Spa, located in nearby Manitou Springs. Soak away your cares and ease your tired body at this wellness sanctuary. Relax and relive the day without leaving the outdoors and the refreshing, crisp mountain air as you soak in a cedar tub filled with natural hot mineral water routed from the nearby 7 Minute Spring. Book a hot stone massage or even an entire spa day filled with healing services.
Visit www.visitcos.com to find your adventure.
Words and videos by Dyar Bentz.