12 days in Colorado Itinerary

12 days in Colorado Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Colorado holiday planner

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Route & dates

12 days in Colorado Itinerary

Start: Nashville
Fly + Taxi:  6​h 45​min
1
Steamboat Springs
— 1 night
+3
Taxi + Fly + Foot + Bus:  4​h 30​min
2
Ouray
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h
3
Pagosa Springs
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
4
Mesa Verde National Park
— 3 nights
Taxi + Fly:  5​h 15​min
5
Estes Park
— 2 nights
Fly:  7​h
End: Nashville

1
night
Steamboat Springs

Steamboat Springs ©
An internationally known ski resort, Steamboat Springs sits in the shadow of Mount Werner in north central Colorado.
Kick off your visit on the 7th (Mon): stop by F.M. Light & Sons and then look for gifts at Off the Beaten Path Bookstore.

To find more things to do, traveler tips, photos, and other tourist information, read our Steamboat Springs trip planner .

Nashville to Steamboat Springs is an approximately 7-hour combination of flight and taxi. You can also do a combination of flight and bus; or drive. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Nashville to Steamboat Springs due to the time zone difference. Expect slightly colder weather when traveling from Nashville in October: highs in Steamboat Springs hover around 59°F, while lows dip to 30°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Tue) early enough to travel to Ouray.

Things to do in Steamboat Springs

Parks Outdoors Winter Sports
Highlights from your plan
Yampa River Botanic Park ©
Yampa River Botanic Park
Off the Beaten Path Bookstore ©
Off the Beaten Path Bookstore
F.M. Light & Sons ©
F.M. Light & Sons

2
nights
Ouray

Ouray ©
Ouray is a Home Rule Municipality that is the county seat and the most populous city of Ouray County, Colorado, United States. On the 9th (Wed), hike along Bear Creek Falls, admire the sheer force of Ouray Box Canyon Waterfall, and then hike along Perimeter Trail. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 10th (Thu): explore the striking landscape at Yankee Boy Basin and then take in the dramatic scenery at Box Canyon Waterfall & Park.

To find reviews, maps, ratings, and other tourist information, you can read our Ouray road trip tool .

Do a combination of taxi, flight, and bus from Steamboat Springs to Ouray in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, flight, and car; or drive. Traveling from Steamboat Springs in October, expect somewhat warmer with lows of 37°F in Ouray. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Thu) to allow time to drive to Pagosa Springs.

Things to do in Ouray

Parks Trails Outdoors

Side Trip

Bear Creek Falls
Highlights from your plan
Bear Creek Falls ©
Bear Creek Falls
Yankee Boy Basin ©
Yankee Boy Basin
Perimeter Trail ©
Perimeter Trail

2
nights
Pagosa Springs

Pagosa Springs ©
Pagosa Springs is a municipality that is the county seat of, and the only incorporated municipality in, Archuleta County, Colorado, United States. Kick off your visit on the 11th (Fri): view the masterpieces at Two Old Crows, soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Piedra River Trail, and finally take in the exciting artwork at Lantern Dancer. Here are some ideas for day two: explore the activities along San Juan River Walk, admire the sheer force of Treasure Falls, and then take in the exciting artwork at Handcrafted Interiors Art Gallery.

For photos, traveler tips, where to stay, and other tourist information, read Pagosa Springs trip planner .

Getting from Ouray to Pagosa Springs by car takes about 3 hours. Other options: take a shuttle. Traveling from Ouray in October, you will find days in Pagosa Springs are somewhat warmer (62°F), and nights are about the same (33°F). Cap off your sightseeing on the 12th (Sat) early enough to go by car to Mesa Verde National Park.

Things to do in Pagosa Springs

Parks Nature Trails
Highlights from your plan
Piedra River Trail ©
Piedra River Trail
San Juan River Walk ©
San Juan River Walk
Handcrafted Interiors Art Gallery ©
Handcrafted Interiors Art Gallery

3
nights
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.
Get a sense of the local culture at Long House and Cliff Palace. Get outdoors at Petroglyph Point Hike and Hovenweep National Monument. Change things up with a short trip to The Anasazi Heritage Center in Dolores (about 58 minutes away). There's more to do: delve into the distant past at Spruce Tree House and steep yourself in history at Balcony House.

For reviews, photos, maps, and tourist information, go to the Mesa Verde National Park trip maker .

You can drive from Pagosa Springs to Mesa Verde National Park in 3 hours. Other options are to do a combination of shuttle and car; or do a combination of shuttle, bus, and taxi. Expect a bit warmer weather when traveling from Pagosa Springs in October: highs in Mesa Verde National Park hover around 69°F, while lows dip to 34°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 15th (Tue) early enough to travel to Estes Park.

Things to do in Mesa Verde National Park

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trips

The Anasazi Heritage Center, Hovenweep National Monument
Highlights from your plan
The Anasazi Heritage Center ©
The Anasazi Heritage Center
Long House ©
Long House
Petroglyph Point Hike ©
Petroglyph Point Hike

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.
Shop till you drop at Images of Rocky Mountain National Park and Glen Haven General Store. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Emerald Lake Trail and Kirks Flyshop & Mountain Adventures. And it doesn't end there: get a taste of the local shopping with Mountain Blown Glass, look for gifts at Earthwood Artisans, take a stroll through Downtown Estes Park, and take in the exciting artwork at The Studio Fine Art and Framing.

To find reviews, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Estes Park trip itinerary maker site .

Do a combination of taxi, flight, and bus from Mesa Verde National Park to Estes Park in 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. October in Estes Park sees daily highs of 69°F and lows of 39°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 18th (Fri) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Estes Park

Shopping Neighborhoods Parks

Side Trip

Rocky Mountain National Park
Highlights from your plan
Many Parks Curve Overlook ©
Many Parks Curve Overlook
Mountain Blown Glass ©
Mountain Blown Glass

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