For many years the Pikes Peak region and Colorado Springs is the vacation destination for millions of people around the world. Below is a list of some of the more popular attractions.
Places To Visit
Air Force Academy. Visit this four-year military school in late spring and feel the excitement of the graduating class. Start at the Visitor’s Center and take the short walk to the Cadet Chapel. Time it with mmealtimeduring the school year and watch the cadets line up for meals. Portions of this base are open to the public to include the Visitor’s Center, Cadet Chapel, Arnold Hall, and the stadium. Enter the base from I-25 Academy’s north entrance in Gleneagle.
The Broadmoor. Enjoy the splendor of this old world five-star resort located in the heart of Broadmoor. Built in 1918, this resort has undergone multiple expansion projects and now includes three golf courses, tennis, swimming, spa, multiple restaurants, and a convention center. Located at One Lake Avenue.
Cave of the Winds. Walk deep into the Rocky Mountains and experience geological history. See stalactites, stalagmites, and may other cave formations. Located six miles west off Hwy 24 in Manitou Springs.
Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. A local favorite. This zoo sits on the side of a mountain providing incredible city views from many locations throughout the zoo. Enjoy the giraffe exhibit as you enter the zoo, visit the elephants, hippos, monkeys, reptiles,and Cougar Canyon, a natural habitat for Colorado’s top predator, the mountain lion. Walking the zoo can be challenging, so wear your sneakers and drink lots of water. Plan to also visit the Will Rogers Shrine of the Sun (description below).
Cripple Creek & Narrow Gauge Railroad. Tour the city of Cripple Creek and visit the casinos then enjoy the unobstructed views and narrations of the gold mines and trestles as you travel the Narrow Gauge Railroad to Anaconda, a nearby deserted mining camp. Seasonal – May-October. 5th and Bennett Ave, Cripple Creek.
Garden of the Gods Park. The natural park of with over 1,300 acres can be seen from just aboutanywhere in the city. This park includes with massive rock formations of red sandstone with names like Balance Rock, Cathedral Spires, and Kissing Camels. There are natural trails for foot traffic and horses throughout the park. Make sure to start at the Visitor’s Center and end at the Trading Post for lunch, they have great buffalo burgers. Make sure to visit Rock Ledge Ranch too (description below). 1805 N. 30th St.
Manitou Cliff Dwellings. Experience life 700 years ago in these Anasazi cliff dwellings. A popular attraction for local grade schools, the cliff dwellings allow you to roam through the homes of the American Indians from 1200 B.C. – 1300 A.D. Make sure to visit the museum and gift shop. Located five miles west on Hwy. 24 in Manitou Springs.
North Pole & Santa’s Workshop. Visit Santa in this mountain setting from mid-May to Christmas. Twenty-five acres featuring animals, artists, and more than two dozen amusement rides. 5050 Pikes Peak Hwy.
Old Colorado City. Visit the historic District of Old Colorado City where historic buildings are restaurants, art galleries, studios, and specialty shops. W. Colorado Avenue from 24th to 28th streets.
Paint Mines Interpretive Park Only an hour east of Colorado Springs, this National park is an actual archaeological preserve with amazing geologic formations that include spires and hoodoos. Since it is a part of the El Paso County Park System, it is also free!
Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame & Museum of the American Cowboy.Self guided tours of the history of the American cowboy, rodeos, Wild West Show exhibit, rodeo sculptures, and the Hall of Champions. I-25 at exit 147. 101 Pro Rodeo Drive.
Rocky Mountain Dinosaur Resource Center. Enjoy the exhibits and educational resources of this dinosaur museum. 201 S. Fairview Street, Woodland Park.
Royal Gorge Bridge & Park. Visit the world’s highest suspension bridge that spans Colorado’s most famous canyon and the Arkansas River. 4218 Fremont County Road 3A, Canyon City.
Seven Falls. View the seven step falls from the 224 step lookout at Eagle’s Nest. Located 2850 S. Cheyenne Canyon Rd.
U.S. Olympic Complex. Visit the headquarters of the USOC, the training center, aquatics, gyms, dining room, residence halls, and other organizations. Free tours. 1750 E. Boulder (aka 1 Olympic Plaza).
Will Rogers Shrine of the Sun. Built by Spencer Penrose in memory of his friend, the great American humorist, Will Rogers. The shrine towers 100 feet high on Cheyenne Mountain. Admission includes admission to Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. Drive through the zoo to access the shrine. Plan a picnic lunch and enjoy the view. 4250 Cheyenne Mountain Road.
Western Museum of Mining & Industry. Guided tours of gold and silver mining. Exhibits include working machinery used in early hard rock mining and panning for gold. Exit I-25 at exit 156A. 225 Northgate Blvd.
World Figure Skating Hall of Fame & Museum. Honors national and international skaters and features artifacts, costumes, national and international medals and trophies. 20 First Street.
Briarhurst Manor. Built in 1876, this stone tudor-style mansion was built by the founder of Manitou Springs, Dr. William A. Bell. Now a fine restaurant.
Glen Eyrie. This 67-room tudor-style castle was built in 1871 for the founder of Colorado Springs, General William Palmer. Make sure to make reservations for the tour, as they book up rather quickly. 3820 N. 30th St.
Pioneers Museum. Built in 1903 as the original El Paso County Courthouse, this beautiful structure now houses the Pioneers Museum of history and culture of the Pikes Peak region. 215 S. Tejon St. Free Admission.
Rock Ledge Ranch. Experience the ways our ancestors farmed at this farming and agricultural museum. Located near Garden of the Gods and 30th and Gateway.
By Nancy Murray
Murray & Associates, Keller Williams Colorado Springs