23 days in Colorado Itinerary

23 days in Colorado Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Colorado travel route planner

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Route & dates

23 days in Colorado Itinerary

Start: Sacramento
Fly:  5​h 30​min
1
Denver
— 4 nights
Drive:  1​h 45​min
2
Rocky Mountain National Park
— 4 nights
Drive:  3​h
3
Colorado Springs
— 4 nights
Drive:  1​h 15​min
4
Canon City
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h
5
Buena Vista
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 45​min
6
Aspen
— 4 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
7
Fruita
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h 30​min
8
Mesa Verde National Park
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 30​min
9
Durango
— 2 nights
Fly:  7​h 45​min
End: Sacramento

4
nights
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.
Venture out of the city with trips to Guanella Pass (in Georgetown) and Idaho Springs (River Rafting & Tubing & Summit Lake Park). And it doesn't end there: admire the natural beauty at Denver Botanic Gardens, take a stroll through 16th Street Mall, look for gifts at Belmar, and admire the masterpieces at Denver Art Museum.

To see ratings, other places to visit, more things to do, and other tourist information, you can read our Denver online holiday planner .

Sacramento to Denver is an approximately 5.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train, subway, and flight; or drive. The time zone difference when traveling from Sacramento to Denver is 1 hour. Plan for little chillier temperatures traveling from Sacramento in September, with highs in Denver at 79°F and lows at 52°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Sat) so you can drive to Rocky Mountain National Park.

Things to do in Denver

Parks Outdoors Museums

Side Trips

Idaho Springs, Belmar, Guanella Pass
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Mount Evans ©
Mount Evans
Coors Field ©
Coors Field

4
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.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near Rocky Mountain National Park: Estes Park (Earthwood Artisans & Art Center of Estes Park Gallery) and Carousel of Happiness (in Nederland). There's much more to do: admire all the interesting features of Trail Ridge Road, explore the activities along Bear Lake, take in the awesome beauty at Hallett Peak, and take some stellar pictures from Farview Curve Overlook.

For ratings, maps, reviews, and tourist information, go to the Rocky Mountain National Park trip itinerary planning app .

Drive from Denver to Rocky Mountain National Park in 2 hours. In September, daily temperatures in Rocky Mountain National Park can reach 81°F, while at night they dip to 50°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 26th (Wed) to allow enough time to drive to Colorado Springs.

Things to do in Rocky Mountain National Park

Outdoors Parks Trails

Side Trips

Estes Park, Carousel of Happiness
Highlights from your plan
Trail Ridge Road ©
Trail Ridge Road
Carousel of Happiness ©
Carousel of Happiness
Emerald Lake Trail ©
Emerald Lake Trail

4
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.
Take a break from Colorado Springs with a short trip to Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine in Cripple Creek, about 1h 05 min away. There's much more to do: explore the striking landscape at Garden of the Gods, take in the exciting artwork at Commonwheel Artists Co-op, get your game on at Battlefield Colorado, and admire all the interesting features of United States Air Force Academy.

To see ratings and other tourist information, use the Colorado Springs trip planner .

Traveling by car from Rocky Mountain National Park to Colorado Springs takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus. In September in Colorado Springs, expect temperatures between 79°F during the day and 51°F at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 30th (Sun) early enough to go by car to Canon City.

Things to do in Colorado Springs

Theme Parks Parks Shopping

Side Trips

Manitou Springs, North Pole - Santa's Workshop, Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine
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

1
night
Canon City

Part of Colorado's Royal Gorge Region, Cañon City straddles the Arkansas River.
Start off your visit on the 1st (Mon): get outside with Royal Gorge Anglers and then get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports.

For maps, where to stay, ratings, and other tourist information, use the Canon City online trip itinerary planner .

You can drive from Colorado Springs to Canon City in 1.5 hours. In September in Canon City, expect temperatures between 83°F during the day and 56°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Mon) so you can travel to Buena Vista.

Things to do in Canon City

Outdoors Adventure Tours
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Royal Gorge Anglers ©
Royal Gorge Anglers

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 2nd (Tue): take an in-depth tour of Buena Vista Heritage Museum, relax in the rural setting at Jumpin' Good Goat Dairy, and then relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour.

Before you visit Buena Vista, use our trip planner to discover what you can do and see there.

You can do a combination of car and bus from Canon City to Buena Vista in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. Prepare for little chillier weather when traveling from Canon City in October: high temperatures in Buena Vista hover around 62°F and lows are around 31°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Tue) to allow time to drive to Aspen.

Things to do in Buena Vista

Adventure Tours Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Jumpin' Good Goat Dairy ©
Jumpin' Good Goat Dairy
Buena Vista Heritage Museum ©
Buena Vista Heritage Museum

4
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 out of town with these interesting Aspen side-trips: Woody Creek Distillery (in Basalt) and Glenwood Springs (Cooper Corner Gallery, Thermal Spas, & more). The adventure continues: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Maroon Bells, stop by Snowmass Sports, hike along Maroon Lake Scenic Trail, and pause for some photo ops at The John Denver Sanctuary.

To find reviews, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, use the Aspen day trip planning app .

Traveling by car from Buena Vista to Aspen takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In October, daily temperatures in Aspen can reach 60°F, while at night they dip to 30°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 6th (Sat) so you can travel to Fruita.

Things to do in Aspen

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Glenwood Springs, Snowmass Sports, Woody Creek Distillery
Highlights from your plan
Maroon Bells ©
Maroon Bells
Independence Pass ©
Independence Pass
Thermal Spas

1
night
Fruita

Fruita ©
The City of Fruita is a Home Rule Municipality located in western Mesa County, Colorado, United States. Start off your visit on the 7th (Sun): take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Grand Mesa, take in the awesome beauty at Colorado National Monument, and then wander the streets of Downtown Grand Junction.

For reviews, other places to visit, traveler tips, and more tourist information, you can read our Fruita day trip planner .

You can drive from Aspen to Fruita in 2.5 hours. Plan for a bit warmer temperatures traveling from Aspen in October, with highs in Fruita at 67°F and lows at 40°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 7th (Sun) so you can travel to Mesa Verde National Park.

Things to do in Fruita

Parks Nature Wildlife

Side Trip

Grand Junction
Highlights from your plan
Colorado National Monument ©
Colorado National Monument
Grand Mesa ©
Grand Mesa

1
night
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 8th (Mon): delve into the distant past at Long House, steep yourself in history at Balcony House, and then steep yourself in history at Cliff Palace.

For ratings, reviews, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Mesa Verde National Park trip planning app .

Drive from Fruita to Mesa Verde National Park in 4.5 hours. Traveling from Fruita in October, expect slightly colder with lows of 34°F in Mesa Verde National Park. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Mon) so you can drive 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

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 9th (Tue): witness a stunning natural landmark at Trimble Hot Springs, then look for gifts at Honeyville, and then relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour. Keep things going the next day: view the masterpieces at Scenic Aperture Gallery, don't miss a visit to Historic Downtown Durango, and then see the interesting displays at Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and Museum.

To find where to stay, traveler tips, reviews, and other tourist information, refer to the Durango tour itinerary planner.

Getting from Mesa Verde National Park to Durango by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of taxi and bus; or do a combination of taxi and shuttle. In October, daily temperatures in Durango can reach 65°F, while at night they dip to 32°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Durango

Tours Adventure Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Historic Downtown Durango ©
Historic Downtown Durango
River Rafting & Tubing

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