11 days in Colorado Itinerary

11 days in Colorado Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Colorado trip planner

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Route & dates

11 days in Colorado Itinerary

Start: Detroit
Fly:  5​h 30​min
1
Denver
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 30​min
2
Estes Park
— 2 nights
Fly + taxi:  5​h 15​min
3
Mesa Verde National Park
— 1 day
Drive:  1​h 30​min
4
Durango
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
5
Buena Vista
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h 15​min
6
Colorado Springs
— 3 nights
Fly:  6​h 15​min
End: Detroit

1
night
Denver

Denver ©
Aptly nicknamed the "Mile-High City," Denver sits at an altitude of 1,600 m (5,280 ft) above sea level, located right where the Great Plains give way to the Rocky Mountains.
Start off your visit on the 3rd (Wed): get a taste of the local shopping with American Museum of Western Art, then wander the streets of 16th Street Mall, and then take in nature's colorful creations at Denver Botanic Gardens. On the 4th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: stroll the grounds of Buffalo Bill Grave and Museum, then relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, and then buy something for everyone on your list at Pearl Street Mall.

Plan my trip to Denver with suggested itineraries provided by Inspirock.

Detroit to Denver is an approximately 5.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. The time zone changes from Eastern Standard Time (EST) to Mountain Standard Time (MST), which is usually a -2 hour difference. Traveling from Detroit in July, expect little chillier with lows of 60°F in Denver. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 4th (Thu) so you can go by car to Estes Park.

Things to do in Denver

Shopping Museums Tours

Side Trips

Buffalo Bill Grave and Museum, River Rafting & Tubing, Pearl Street Mall
Highlights from your plan
Denver Botanic Gardens ©
Denver Botanic Gardens
River Rafting & Tubing
Buffalo Bill Grave and Museum ©
Buffalo Bill Grave and Museum

2
nights
Estes Park

Estes Park ©
More than just a convenient resting place for travelers on their way to the national park encompassing the Front Range of the Rockies, Estes Park is a popular place to visit in its own right.
On the 5th (Fri), stop by Brownfield's, then shop like a local with Aspen and Evergreen Gallery, then soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers, and finally cruise along Trail Ridge Road. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: trek along Emerald Lake Trail, take in the exciting artwork at Patterson Glassworks Studio & Gallery, and then kick back and relax at The Beach at Grand Lake.

To find maps, ratings, more things to do, and other tourist information, refer to the Estes Park day trip app .

Traveling by car from Denver to Estes Park takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi. Expect a daytime high around 91°F in July, and nighttime lows around 59°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 6th (Sat) so you can travel to Mesa Verde National Park.

Things to do in Estes Park

Outdoors Parks Trails

Side Trips

Rocky Mountain National Park, The Beach at Grand Lake
Highlights from your plan
Aspen and Evergreen Gallery ©
Aspen and Evergreen Gallery
Trail Ridge Road ©
Trail Ridge Road
Emerald Lake Trail ©
Emerald Lake Trail

1
day
Mesa Verde National Park

Mesa Verde National Park ©
Whereas most national parks are primarily devoted to showcasing unique and special landscapes, Mesa Verde National Park focuses on ancient human habitation.
On the 7th (Sun), delve into the distant past at Spruce Tree House, then steep yourself in history at Balcony House, then delve into the distant past at Cliff Palace, and finally explore the ancient world of Long House.

To see reviews, where to stay, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read our Mesa Verde National Park day trip planning tool .

You can do a combination of flight and taxi from Estes Park to Mesa Verde National Park in 5.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of flight and shuttle; or drive. In July, daytime highs in Mesa Verde National Park are 90°F, while nighttime lows are 56°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 7th (Sun) early enough to travel to Durango.

Things to do in Mesa Verde National Park

Historic Sites
Highlights from your plan
Long House ©
Long House
Cliff Palace ©
Cliff Palace
Balcony House ©
Balcony House

2
nights
Durango

Originally a frontier mining town, Durango is known today for its scenic setting, outdoor activities, and the 1880s steam-powered railway that takes visitors through sections of the mountains where roads don't reach.
Kick off your visit on the 8th (Mon): relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, pause for some serene contemplation at St. Columba Catholic Church, and then see the interesting displays at Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and Museum. Keep things going the next day: look for gifts at Toh-Atin Gallery, take a memorable drive along Million Dollar Highway, and then view the masterpieces at Scenic Aperture Gallery.

To see more things to do, ratings, maps, and more tourist information, read Durango road trip planner .

Traveling by combination of taxi and bus from Mesa Verde National Park to Durango takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of taxi and shuttle. In July, plan for daily highs up to 86°F, and evening lows to 54°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Buena Vista.

Things to do in Durango

Outdoors Tours Scenic Drive

Side Trip

Million Dollar Highway
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Toh-Atin Gallery ©
Toh-Atin Gallery

1
night
Buena Vista

The Town of Buena Vista is a Statutory Town in Chaffee County, Colorado, United States. Start off your visit on the 10th (Wed): stroll through McPhelemy Park and then get interesting insight from Tours.

To see other places to visit, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Buena Vista trip itinerary planning site .

Traveling by car from Durango to Buena Vista takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle, bus, and car; or do a combination of flight and bus. Prepare for little chillier weather when traveling from Durango in July: high temperatures in Buena Vista hover around 80°F and lows are around 49°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Wed) to allow time to drive to Colorado Springs.

Things to do in Buena Vista

Tours Adventure Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing

3
nights
Colorado Springs

National Landmark red cliffs and the even more striking Pikes Peak mountain attracts tourism to Colorado Springs.
Museum-lovers will get to explore National Museum of World War II Aviation and Michael Garman Museum & Gallery. Take a break from the city and head to River Rafting & Tubing and Pikes Peak. And it doesn't end there: stroll through Garden of the Gods, meet the residents at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, and stop by Garden of the Gods Trading Post.

For traveler tips, maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our Colorado Springs travel route planner .

Drive from Buena Vista to Colorado Springs in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Traveling from Buena Vista in July, expect Colorado Springs to be somewhat warmer, temps between 86°F and 58°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 13th (Sat) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Colorado Springs

Outdoors Parks Tours

Side Trips

Garden of the Gods Trading Post, River Rafting & Tubing
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Pikes Peak ©
Pikes Peak

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