DENVER (KDVR) — Whether you want to hit the slopes, soak in a hot spring, go for a hike, or just take in some mountain views, there are so many things to do and see in Colorado.
While some might choose tropical destinations, others will opt for a road trip. If you want to do something a little closer to home, our state is the perfect state for a staycation.
FOX31 put together this list of options to check out if you decide to stay in Colorado for spring break.
When you think of wine country, your mind probably gravitates toward California and Napa Valley. When you think of Palisade, you likely think of peaches.
But another thing Palisade is known for is its vast number of wineries.
“The perfect weather, subtle breezes and artesian wells provide a premier environment for vast acres of vineyards to grow,” Visit Palisade said.
Palisade is located under four hours from Denver just off of Interstate 70. According to the United States Census Bureau, Palisade has a population of 2,783.
There are over 30 wineries in Palisade, which makes it a great destination for wine lovers.
Check out hot springs
If you are looking for a little warmth for your spring break, why not check out a hot spring.
According to the Colorado Geological Survey, the state has 93 known thermal areas including springs, augmented natural springs, and wells.
Here are six hot springs to visit:
- Ouray Hot Springs
- The Springs Resort
- Dunton Hot Springs
- Strawberry Hot Springs
- Iron Mountain Hot Springs
- Mountain Princeton Hot Springs
Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center
From dining to entertainment to a place to stay, you can get all of that at the Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center in Aurora.
The resort has a climate-controlled indoor pool and heated outdoor pool with three waterslides and a lazy river.
It also features a variety of restaurants and bars, as well as shopping and a spa.
Ouray is nestled in the San Juan mountains with incredibly picturesque backdrops. Whether you are looking for adventure or relaxation, Ouray has something for everyone.
Here are some of the things you can do in Ouray:
- Visit the hot springs
- Visit Box Canon Falls
- Go hiking
- Go on a jeep adventure
- Ski or snowboard
If you are looking for food, there are also a wide variety of top-rated restaurants.
If you are looking to go for a hike to enjoy the warmer weather, we have you covered.
Some trails could be icy and snow covered due to recent snow, so it would be a good idea to bring spikes in case they are necessary. You can check specific trail conditions and reports at All Trails.
Here are some great hikes to check out during your staycation:
Spruce Mountain Open Space
The Spruce Mountain Trail is located around 45 minutes from Denver at the Spruce Mountain Open Space near Palmer Lake. The hike is a 5.5-mile loop.
Mount Morrison South Ridge Trail
The Mount Morrison South Ridge Trail at Matthews Winters Open Space Park is a 3.6-mile out and back trail near Morrison. The trailhead is located about 18 miles from Denver.
Enchanted Mesa Trail
The Enchanted Mesa Trail is a 2.3-mile out and back trail near Boulder. It is located around 28 miles from Denver.
Evergreen Mountain Trail
The Evergreen Mountain Trail at Alderfer Three Sisters Park is a 4.2-mile out and back trail near Evergreen. It is located about 30 miles from Denver.
Roxborough State Park
The Carpenter Peak Trail at Roxborough State Park is 6.5 miles roundtrip. The trailhead is located around 55 minutes from Denver.
Red Rocks Park
Another great hike that is about 25 minutes from Denver is the Red Rocks to Dakota Trail Loop. It is a 6.4-mile hike.
If you plan on hiking during spring break, make sure you are prepared with food, plenty of clothing and a plan.
Take a train ride
Another really cool opportunity in Colorado is the Cascade Canyon winter train ride on the Narrow Gauge Railroad.
“This unforgettable roundtrip excursion departs from Durango and journeys to Cascade Canyon offering magnificent views of the Animas River and the snowclad peaks of the Rocky Mountains of southwest Colorado. Spanning 26 miles each way, this 5.25 hour round trip experience is offered on select dates from November 19 through May 5,” the Durango Train website explained.
Here are the dates for the train:
- March: 3-31
- April: 1,2,8,9,14,15,16-30
- May: 1-5
Garden of the Gods
A very popular place to visit in Colorado is Garden of the Gods. From incredible, picturesque views to plenty of entertainment opportunities, there is something for everyone.
Garden of the Gods is located in Colorado Springs. It is open daily from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Here’s what you can do while you’re there:
- Jeep and trolley tours
- Segway tours
- Bike/E-bike tours
- Guided nature walks
- Rock climbing
The park also offers a variety of specialty events each week.
If you are looking for a challenge during your spring break staycation, why not try the Manitou Incline?
The average hiker completes the Manitou Incline hike in about 1-2 hours.
“The Manitou Incline gains nearly 2,000 feet of elevation over less than 1 mile. It’s not for the faint of heart, but people from all walks (or climbs) of life have successfully conquered it. It is, perhaps, the most unique and challenging trail in the country, attracting runners, military, Olympic athletes, and hiking enthusiasts from around the world,” Visit Colorado Springs shared.
If you are planning to try the incline, you can make a free reservation here.
Evergreen is a beautiful mountain town located about 30 miles west of Denver. From fishing to hiking to shopping, there are a variety of things to do. Many people enjoy taking a walk around the Evergreen Lake. And you never know when you’ll come across wildlife, like elk or even the occasional bear. There are also plenty of restaurants to check out in the town that will satisfy many palates.
Rocky Mountain National Park
One of the most popular destinations in Colorado is Rocky Mountain National Park. From fishing to hiking to viewing wildlife to camping to backcountry skiing and snowboarding, it is a great destination for people who love the outdoors.
But it is important to be aware when visiting RMNP during the spring.
“If you are planning for a spring break trip, or even a trip in early to mid-May, pack your snow boots and warm clothes! You need to be ready for winter conditions,” the National Park Service said.
There are multiple webcams on the RMNP website so you can see current conditions in the park.
There are currently some construction projects underway at the park, so you will want to avoid the Fall River Entrance and instead, use the Beaver Meadows Entrance via Highway 36.