18 days in Colorado Itinerary

18 days in Colorado Itinerary

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Route & dates

18 days in Colorado Itinerary

Start: Evansville
Fly:  6​h 45​min
1
Aspen
— 2 nights
Fly + bus:  4​h 15​min
2
Estes Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
3
Denver
— 2 nights
Fly + taxi:  4​h
4
Mesa Verde National Park
— 2 nights
taxi + Fly:  4​h 45​min
5
Colorado Springs
— 2 nights
+2
Fly + foot + bus:  5​h
6
Ouray
— 3 nights
Drive:  7​h 45​min
7
Rocky Mountain National Park
— 3 nights
+3
Drive + bus + foot + Fly:  12​h 30​min
End: Evansville

2
nights
Aspen

Aspen ©
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.
Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Maroon Bells.

To see where to stay, ratings, and other tourist information, you can read our Aspen trip itinerary builder website .

Evansville to Aspen is an approximately 7-hour flight. You can also do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 1 hour traveling from Evansville to Aspen. When traveling from Evansville in October, plan for slightly colder days in Aspen, with highs around 60°F, while nights are cooler with lows around 30°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Estes Park.

Things to do in Aspen

Parks Nature Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Maroon Bells ©
Maroon Bells
Independence Pass ©
Independence Pass
Maroon Lake Scenic Trail ©
Maroon Lake Scenic Trail

2
nights
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.
Start off your visit on the 14th (Mon): hit the best photo ops around with an inspiring photography tour and then take a memorable drive along Peak to Peak Scenic Byway. On your second day here, wander the streets of Downtown Estes Park, view the masterpieces at Aspen and Evergreen Gallery, and then indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

For more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, read Estes Park route maker website .

Do a combination of flight and bus from Aspen to Estes Park in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In October, Estes Park is somewhat warmer than Aspen - with highs of 69°F and lows of 39°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 15th (Tue) so you can go by car to Denver.

Things to do in Estes Park

Outdoors Wildlife Tours
Highlights from your plan
Spas
Photography Tours
Peak to Peak Scenic Byway ©
Peak to Peak Scenic Byway

2
nights
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 16th (Wed): browse the exhibits of Denver Botanic Gardens, then contemplate the long history of Molly Brown House Museum, and then take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mount Evans. Keep things going the next day: learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at Denver Zoo, see the sky in a new way at Denver Museum of Nature & Science, and then sample some tasty brews at a beer tour and tasting.

To see more things to do, traveler tips, maps, and more tourist information, use the Denver trip itinerary planning tool .

You can drive from Estes Park to Denver in 1.5 hours. Another option is to do a combination of taxi and bus. In October in Denver, expect temperatures between 67°F during the day and 40°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 17th (Thu) so you can travel to Mesa Verde National Park.

Things to do in Denver

Parks Tours Museums
Highlights from your plan
Denver Botanic Gardens ©
Denver Botanic Gardens
Mount Evans ©
Mount Evans
Denver Museum of Nature & Science ©
Denver Museum of Nature & Science

2
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.
Kick off your visit on the 18th (Fri): explore the ancient world of Long House, then delve into the distant past at Cliff Palace, then explore the ancient world of Balcony House, and finally delve into the distant past at Spruce Tree House. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: learn more about the world around you at The Anasazi Heritage Center, then get engrossed in the history at Cortez Cultural Center, and then trek along Nordenskiold #16 Trail.

For more things to do, maps, where to stay, and other tourist information, read our Mesa Verde National Park travel route planning tool .

You can do a combination of flight and taxi from Denver to Mesa Verde National Park in 4 hours. Other options are to do a combination of flight and shuttle; or drive. Traveling from Denver in October, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be slightly colder in Mesa Verde National Park, with lows of 34°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 19th (Sat) to allow time for travel to Colorado Springs.

Things to do in Mesa Verde National Park

Historic Sites Museums Parks

Side Trips

The Anasazi Heritage Center, Cortez Cultural Center
Highlights from your plan
Long House ©
Long House
Cliff Palace ©
Cliff Palace
Balcony House ©
Balcony House

2
nights
Colorado Springs

Colorado Springs ©
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.
On the 20th (Sun), stroll around Garden of the Gods, stop by Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, then take in the pleasant sights at Pike's Peak - America's Mountain, and finally explore the world behind art at Michael Garman Museum & Gallery. Keep things going the next day: learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, have some family-friendly fun at Battlefield Colorado, and then gain insight at United States Air Force Academy.

To find where to stay, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, read our Colorado Springs day trip planner.

You can do a combination of taxi and flight from Mesa Verde National Park to Colorado Springs in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, flight, and shuttle; or drive. In October, daytime highs in Colorado Springs are 67°F, while nighttime lows are 39°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Mon) to allow enough time to travel to Ouray.

Things to do in Colorado Springs

Parks Trails Zoos & Aquariums
Highlights from your plan
Garden of the Gods ©
Garden of the Gods
Pike's Peak - America's Mountain ©
Pike's Peak - America's Mountain
Cheyenne Mountain Zoo ©
Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

3
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. Start off your visit on the 22nd (Tue): explore the stunning scenery at Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and then take in the dramatic scenery at Bear Creek Falls. On the 23rd (Wed), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: walk around Box Canyon Waterfall & Park, examine the collection at Ouray Alchemist Museum, then discover the riches below the earth's surface at Yankee Girl Mine, and finally tour the pleasant surroundings at Yankee Boy Basin.

To find photos, traveler tips, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our Ouray trip maker website .

Getting from Colorado Springs to Ouray by combination of flight and bus takes about 5 hours. Other options: drive; or do a combination of shuttle and flight. Traveling from Colorado Springs in October, expect nights in Ouray to be about the same, around 37°F, while days are little chillier, around 56°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 24th (Thu) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in Ouray

Parks Nature Trails

Side Trips

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, Bear Creek Falls
Highlights from your plan
Ouray Alchemist Museum ©
Ouray Alchemist Museum
Box Canyon Waterfall & Park ©
Box Canyon Waterfall & Park

3
nights
Rocky Mountain National Park

Rocky Mountain National Park ©
Rocky Mountain National Park presents an ideal setting for recreation in the mountain range for which the park is named.
Start off your visit on the 25th (Fri): tour the pleasant surroundings at Emerald Lake Trail, explore and take pictures at Trail Ridge Road, and then get a taste of life in the country at Glacier Creek Stables. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: contemplate the waterfront views at Bear Lake, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Chapel on the Rock, then take a memorable drive along Old Fall River Road, and finally admire the verdant scenery at Many Parks Curve Overlook.

To find maps, more things to do, other places to visit, and other tourist information, you can read our Rocky Mountain National Park trip itinerary site .

Getting from Ouray to Rocky Mountain National Park by car takes about 8 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and car; or do a combination of car, flight, and bus. Traveling from Ouray in October, you will find days in Rocky Mountain National Park are a bit warmer (69°F), and nights are about the same (39°F). Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 27th (Sun) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in Rocky Mountain National Park

Parks Outdoors Nature
Highlights from your plan
Trail Ridge Road ©
Trail Ridge Road
Bear Lake ©
Bear Lake
Emerald Lake Trail ©
Emerald Lake Trail

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