13 days in Colorado Itinerary

13 days in Colorado Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Colorado itinerary planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Colorado Springs
— 2 nights
Drive
2
Denver
— 3 nights
Drive
3
Rocky Mountain National Park
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Vail
— 1 night
Drive
5
Aspen
— 4 nights
Fly

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Colorado Springs

— 2 nights
Stunning Garden of the Gods Park scenery, blue skies and the glory of Pikes Peak-America’s Mountain have attracted visitors to Colorado Springs for more than a century.
Colorado Springs is known for parks, zoos & aquariums, and nature. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: learn about all things military at National Museum of World War II Aviation, deepen your knowledge of military history at United States Air Force Academy, admire the masterpieces at Michael Garman Museum & Gallery, and take in the dramatic natural features at Red Rock Canyon Open Space.

For other places to visit, where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, read Colorado Springs tour itinerary planning site.

Little Rock to Colorado Springs is an approximately 6.5-hour flight. You can also drive; or take a bus. The time zone changes from Central Standard Time to Mountain Standard Time, which is usually a -1 hour difference. Prepare for a bit cooler weather when traveling from Little Rock in December: high temperatures in Colorado Springs hover around 45°F and lows are around 18°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Sat) early enough to drive to Denver.

Things to do in Colorado Springs

Parks · Zoos & Aquariums · Museums · Nature

Side Trip

Denver

— 3 nights

Mile-High City

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.
Step out of Denver to go to Idaho Springs and see Summit Lake Park, which is approximately 1h 25 min away. There's lots more to do: admire the natural beauty at Denver Botanic Gardens, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mount Evans, pause for some serene contemplation at Trinity United Methodist Church, and contemplate the long history of Molly Brown House Museum.

To find more things to do, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, you can read our Denver trip planner.

You can drive from Colorado Springs to Denver in 1.5 hours. Other options are to take a bus; or do a combination of flight and train. In December, daily temperatures in Denver can reach 43°F, while at night they dip to 19°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 24th (Tue) early enough to go by car to Rocky Mountain National Park.

Things to do in Denver

Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Shopping

Side Trip

Rocky Mountain National Park

— 2 nights
Rocky Mountain National Park presents an ideal setting for recreation in the mountain range for which the park is named.
On the 25th (Wed), take a memorable tour with Tours, take a memorable drive along Trail Ridge Road, and then take in the exciting artwork at Images of Rocky Mountain National Park. On the 26th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: stroll through Hidden Valley Sledding and Tubing Hill, take a memorable drive along Peak to Peak Scenic Byway, and then indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To see traveler tips, where to stay, other places to visit, and other tourist information, refer to the Rocky Mountain National Park trip itinerary planner.

Getting from Denver to Rocky Mountain National Park by car takes about 2 hours. In December, daytime highs in Rocky Mountain National Park are 46°F, while nighttime lows are 17°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Thu) to allow time to drive to Vail.

Things to do in Rocky Mountain National Park

Outdoors · Scenic Drive · Tours · Spas

Side Trip

Vail

— 1 night

Western White House of President Gerald Ford

Originally built as a base for Vail Ski Resort, the town of Vail has blossomed into its own destination, but still has less than 6,000 permanent residents.
Kick off your visit on the 27th (Fri): fly down the slopes at Beaver Creek Ski Area, test your problem-solving skills at Vail Valley Escape Room, then stroll through Vail Mountain Resort, and finally let the kids burn off some steam at Ford Park.

To find photos, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, refer to the Vail trip maker website.

Traveling by car from Rocky Mountain National Park to Vail takes 3.5 hours. Traveling from Rocky Mountain National Park in December, you will find days in Vail are cooler (25°F), and nights are about the same (14°F). Finish up your sightseeing early on the 27th (Fri) so you can go by car to Aspen.

Things to do in Vail

Parks · Winter Sports · Outdoors · Fun & Games

Side Trip

Aspen

— 4 nights

Rocky Mountain High

Known as a ski resort town, Aspen's history goes back to its roots as a silver-mining village tucked away in an isolated valley of the Rocky Mountains.
Change things up with these side-trips from Aspen: Thermal Spas (in Glenwood Springs) and Marble Distilling Co. & The Distillery Inn (in Carbondale). And it doesn't end there: fly down the slopes at Aspen Snowmass, take some stellar pictures from Independence Pass, hike along Maroon Lake Scenic Trail, and take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Maroon Bells.

To see maps, photos, reviews, and other tourist information, you can read our Aspen day trip website.

Drive from Vail to Aspen in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Traveling from Vail in December, expect nights in Aspen to be about the same, around 10°F, while days are somewhat warmer, around 35°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Tue) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Aspen

Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Winter Sports

Side Trips

Colorado travel guide

4.4
River Rafting & Tubing · Parks · Scenic Drive
The Centennial State
Home to diverse natural ecosystems, Colorado boasts numerous ski resorts, vineyards, canyons, fossil-rich national parks, rugged natural trails, and picturesque scenic drives. Arguably the greatest of Colorado's many natural wonders is Mt. Elbert, the highest peak in the North American Rockies. The state's natural beauty inspired the opening lyrics of the song "America the Beautiful." Aside from its abundant unspoiled wilderness, Colorado also offers many urban attractions, including award-winning restaurants and nationally praised microbreweries. With an extensive system of highways and railroads, the state provides visitors on vacation with a chance to explore this largely untamed part of the country by car or train.