Durango Area Attractions
Southwest Colorado is a vibrant outdoors getaway. There is a diverse range of things to do and experience in Durango and the surrounding area. Mother Nature has created this incredible playground that features something exciting for every age and interest. Although set at an elevation of about 6,500 feet, Durango is like a mountain valley that gradually climbs to rolling mountains and extends to alpine peaks that rise to over 14,000 feet.
Make Durango your home base. From sightseeing excursions to adventurous activities, experience all that the Four Corners Region has to offer. Choose from a variety of Durango Hotels, Vacation Rentals or Romantic Bed and Breakfasts with outdoor outfitters, boutique stores and natural wonders at your fingertips.
It seems that is always a festival or an event happening in Durango including Music in the Mountains. For those that like the nightlife and thrill of casino gambling, the Sky Ute Casino Resort provides all the action you can handle. And if it's rest, relaxation and rejuvenation you want, head to one of Durango's Hot Spring Spas. Things to do in Durango are limited only by your imagination. There is an adventure for every season, every interest and every age.
Durango's most popular attraction. With so many places to see, your challenge will be deciding how to spend your days. Of course you won't want to miss a ride on the famed Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. Get ready for and unforgettable journey that traces the route commuters took over 125 years ago. Chugging above the Animas River high in the San Juan Mountains, you'll absorb the thrill of hugging tightly against canyon walls and witnessing the stunning scenery of alpine trees and rushing white rapid waters below. From the train you will see old stage coach roads and old mining camps that set in the shadows of 14,000 feet peaks.
Step back into ancient times. Over 1,300 years ago, Puebloan Indians settled around the Durango area, attracted by its fertile soil and abundance of wild game. They left behind many well-preserved Indian ruins and early dwellings. Among the most visited are those like the Chimney Rock Archeological Area found in the San Juan National Forest.
To the west of Durango you will find even more heritage sites in Mesa Verde National Park, with over 600 cliff dwellings, rock art and archeological treasures. Sight-seeing is not only fun, but can be educational as well.
Enjoy the local scene. Durango's historic downtown has lots to offer and you are sure to relish this respite from the big city. Explore for pioneer buildings. Shop. Make a massage appointment at a local day spa. Wander the Fort Lewis College campus. Walk along the Animas River Trail. Or buy tickets to whichever music, dance or theatre event is currently gracing the stage at the Community Concert Hall. Kids will love the new Durango Discovery Museum, a hands-on interactive science center located right in towny.
The exquisite landscapes of Durango, CO
Mother Nature's bounty can be seen in every direction around Durango. The San Juan National Forest showers visitors with thousands upon thousands of acres of leaf-filtered sunlight. This pristine wilderness is ripe for outdoor adventure. Of course hiking is a favorite forest activity, as is biking, and fishing. And with dozens of San Juan Campgrounds to choose from, you can even take temporary summer abode among the towering trees and fall asleep to the lilting chirp of crickets.
Jump on the San Juan Skyway. Spend a thrilling day sightseeing some of the most pristine wilderness you will ever experience. This "road to the sky" loops about 233 miles (375 km) takes you through the towering 14,000 foot San Juan Mountains. The drive can take as few as 5 hours or you could spend days stopping along the way to see all of the area attractions.
Visit Old West towns along the way like Silverton, Ouray, Pacerville, Rico, Dolores and Cortez, Colorado. The day trip is spectacularly beautiful anytime of the year. Winter glistening snow, springtime meadows of wildflowers, the greenery of summer and the golden colors of fall. You will definitely want to take photos of this journey.
San Juan Skyway Map
Click map for enlarged view.
After a day of sightseeing, exploring or riding the train, head to one of the fine restaurants in Durango, hear a concert, enjoy some nightlife or just relax at your upscale hotel. Tomorrow will be another exciting day.
More Things to Do in Durango, CO
Four seasons of outdoor excitement. During the winter, the mountains around Durango boast some of the best, world-class snow-skiing in the country including Durango Mountain Resort. The summers are ideal for rafting the rapids and you will discover some the best campgrounds in Southwestern Colorado.
Vallecito Lake near Durango CO is a major water recreation playground that includes swimming, boating, kayaking, canoeing and windsurfing. And during the changing colors fall, experience some of the most tranquil hiking that nature has to offer. Or if you prefer, take a horseback ride into the wilderness areas or ride the zip-lines.
Come to Durango once. And you will return again and again. With each visit you will capture a new collection of vivid memories of an amazing vacation spot and its almost endless supply of attractions and activities.
Click to see more things to do in Durango, CO.