8 days in Colorado Itinerary

8 days in Colorado Itinerary

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Route & dates

8 days in Colorado Itinerary

Start: New York City
Fly:  6 h 45 min
1
Denver
— 1 night
Drive:  1 h 45 min
2
Rocky Mountain National Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  3 h
3
Colorado Springs
— 1 night
Fly + Taxi:  4 h 45 min
4
Mesa Verde National Park
— 1 night
Drive:  6 h 30 min
5
Glenwood Springs
— 1 night
+2
Taxi + Fly + Bus:  8 h 30 min
End: New York City

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.
Kick off your visit on the 10th (Wed): pause for some serene contemplation at St. John's Cathedral and then contemplate the long history of Union Station. Keep things going the next day: admire the natural beauty at Denver Botanic Gardens, then make a trip to 16th Street Mall, and then explore and take pictures at Coors Field.

To find reviews, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, refer to the Denver road trip site .

New York City to Denver is an approximately 7-hour combination of flight and train. You can also do a combination of bus, flight, and train; or drive. The time zone difference moving from Eastern Standard Time (EST) to Mountain Standard Time (MST) is minus 2 hours. Traveling from New York City in October, expect slightly colder with lows of 40°F in Denver. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Thu) so you can drive to Rocky Mountain National Park.

Things to do in Denver

Historic Sites Shopping Neighborhoods
Highlights from your plan
Denver Botanic Gardens ©
Denver Botanic Gardens
Denver Union Station ©
Denver Union Station
16th Street Mall ©
16th Street Mall

2
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.
Kick off your visit on the 12th (Fri): enjoy the sand and surf at The Beach at Grand Lake, cruise along Trail Ridge Road, and then explore the striking landscape of Sheep Lakes. Keep things going the next day: explore the activities along Bierstadt Lake, take a memorable drive along Peak to Peak Scenic Byway, and then relax and rejuvenate at some of the top local wellness centers.

To find maps, where to stay, reviews, and more tourist information, read our Rocky Mountain National Park road trip planner .

Drive from Denver to Rocky Mountain National Park in 2 hours. In October, daytime highs in Rocky Mountain National Park are 69°F, while nighttime lows are 39°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Colorado Springs.

Things to do in Rocky Mountain National Park

Outdoors Parks Scenic Drive

Side Trips

The Beach at Grand Lake, Peak to Peak Scenic Byway
Highlights from your plan
Trail Ridge Road ©
Trail Ridge Road
Peak to Peak Scenic Byway ©
Peak to Peak Scenic Byway
Bierstadt Lake ©
Bierstadt Lake

1
night
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.
Start off your visit on the 14th (Sun): take in the dramatic natural features at Garden of the Gods, then see the interesting displays at Michael Garman Museum & Gallery, and then go for a walk through Pikes Peak.

For photos, other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, read our Colorado Springs day trip planner.

You can drive from Rocky Mountain National Park to Colorado Springs in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus. October in Colorado Springs sees daily highs of 67°F and lows of 39°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Sun) so you can travel to Mesa Verde National Park.

Things to do in Colorado Springs

Parks Museums
Highlights from your plan
Garden of the Gods ©
Garden of the Gods
Michael Garman Museum & Gallery ©
Michael Garman Museum & Gallery

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.
On the 15th (Mon), explore the ancient world of Long House, then delve into the distant past at Balcony House, and then contemplate the long history of Cliff Palace.

To see more things to do, reviews, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Mesa Verde National Park journey builder site .

Getting from Colorado Springs to Mesa Verde National Park by combination of flight and taxi takes about 5 hours. Other options: do a combination of shuttle, flight, and taxi; or drive. Traveling from Colorado Springs in October, plan for slightly colder nights in Mesa Verde National Park, with lows around 34°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Mon) to allow enough time to drive to Glenwood Springs.

Things to do in Mesa Verde National Park

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

1
night
Glenwood Springs

Glenwood Springs ©
Glenwood Springs occupies a scenic location at the junction of the Colorado River and the Roaring Fork River, halfway between Vail and Aspen along the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains.
On the 16th (Tue), boost your wellbeing at a local thermal spa and then see human ingenuity at work at Rifle Gap State Park.

Take the guesswork out of planning a Glenwood Springs vacation by using our trip itinerary maker.

Drive from Mesa Verde National Park to Glenwood Springs in 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, flight, and shuttle; or do a combination of taxi and bus. While traveling from Mesa Verde National Park, expect cooler days and about the same nights in Glenwood Springs, ranging from highs of 47°F to lows of 32°F. On the 17th (Wed), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Glenwood Springs

Outdoors Parks Spas

Side Trip

Rifle Gap State Park
Highlights from your plan
Rifle Gap State Park ©
Rifle Gap State Park
Thermal Spas
Hanging Lake Trail ©
Hanging Lake Trail

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