9 days in Colorado Itinerary

9 days in Colorado Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Colorado travel route planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Aspen
— 2 nights
Drive
2
Ouray
— 1 night
Drive
3
Pagosa Springs
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Mesa Verde National Park
— 1 night
Fly
5
Estes Park
— 1 night
Fly

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Aspen

— 2 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.
Kick off your visit on the 4th (Sat): identify plant and animal life at Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness Area. On the 5th (Sun), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: tour the pleasant surroundings at Snowmass Village Hiking Trails, look for gifts at Snowmass Sports, then see the interesting displays at Snowmass Ice Age Discovery Center, and finally shop like a local with Gene Taylor Sports.

To see reviews, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, read Aspen travel route site.

Washington DC to Aspen is an approximately 8-hour flight. You can also drive; or do a combination of subway, train, bus, and car. Traveling from Washington DC to Aspen, you'll gain 2 hours due to the time zone difference. While traveling from Washington DC, expect a bit cooler days and colder nights in Aspen, ranging from highs of 81°F to lows of 49°F. You'll have a few hours on the 6th (Mon) to wrap things up before traveling to Ouray.

Things to do in Aspen

Parks · Outdoors · Shopping · Wildlife

Side Trips

Ouray

— 1 night
Ouray is a Home Rule Municipality that is the county seat and the most populous city of Ouray County, Colorado, United States. On the 6th (Mon), hike along Baby Bath Tubs Trail.

To see traveler tips, reviews, where to stay, and more tourist information, use the Ouray online trip itinerary maker.

Traveling by car from Aspen to Ouray takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi. Expect slightly colder weather when traveling from Aspen in July: highs in Ouray hover around 74°F, while lows dip to 52°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 7th (Tue) early enough to go by car to Pagosa Springs.

Things to do in Ouray

Parks · Trails · Outdoors · Nature

Pagosa Springs

— 2 nights
Pagosa Springs is a municipality that is the county seat of, and the only incorporated municipality in, Archuleta County, Colorado, United States. Start off your visit on the 8th (Wed): tee off at Pagosa Springs Golf Club, then look for gifts at Made in Colorado Shoppe, and then witness a stunning natural landmark at Bath House (Hot Springs) @ The Springs Resort & Spa. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 9th (Thu): take in the exciting artwork at Handcrafted Interiors Art Gallery, then view the masterpieces at Lantern Dancer, then look for all kinds of wild species at Rocky Mountain Wildlife Park, and finally trek along San Juan River Walk.

To find ratings, photos, traveler tips, and other tourist information, go to the Pagosa Springs trip itinerary builder app.

You can drive from Ouray to Pagosa Springs in 3 hours. Another option is to take a shuttle. Traveling from Ouray in July, expect nights in Pagosa Springs to be about the same, around 51°F, while days are somewhat warmer, around 81°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Thu) so you can drive to Mesa Verde National Park.

Things to do in Pagosa Springs

Parks · Outdoors · Golf · Wildlife

Mesa Verde National Park

— 1 night
Whereas most national parks are primarily devoted to showcasing unique and special landscapes, Mesa Verde National Park focuses on ancient human habitation.
On the 10th (Fri), take a memorable drive along Ruins Road, then contemplate the long history of Balcony House, and then contemplate the long history of Cliff Palace.

To find ratings, more things to do, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Mesa Verde National Park day trip tool.

Traveling by car from Pagosa Springs to Mesa Verde National Park takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and car; or do a combination of shuttle, bus, and taxi. When traveling from Pagosa Springs in July, plan for somewhat warmer days in Mesa Verde National Park, with highs around 90°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 56°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 10th (Fri) so you can travel to Estes Park.

Things to do in Mesa Verde National Park

Historic Sites · Scenic Drive · Outdoors
Highlights from your trip

Estes Park

— 1 night
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.
Kick off your visit on the 11th (Sat): stop by Kirks Flyshop & Mountain Adventures, view the masterpieces at Images of Rocky Mountain National Park, then admire the sheer force of Alberta Falls, and finally contemplate the waterfront views at Sprague Lake. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 12th (Sun): get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour.

To find reviews, more things to do, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Estes Park online itinerary builder.

Traveling by flight from Mesa Verde National Park to Estes Park takes 6 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of taxi, bus, and car. In July, daytime highs in Estes Park are 91°F, while nighttime lows are 59°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 12th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Estes Park

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trip

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.