9 days in Colorado Itinerary

9 days in Colorado Itinerary

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Route & dates

9 days in Colorado Itinerary

Start: Appleton
Fly + Drive:  7​h
1
Mesa Verde National Park
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 30​min
2
Durango
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 15​min
3
Pagosa Springs
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
4
Ouray
— 2 nights
Drive + Fly:  5​h 30​min
5
Estes Park
— 1 day
bus + Fly:  4​h 15​min
6
Aspen
— 1 night
Fly:  7​h
End: Appleton

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.
Start off your visit on the 27th (Sat): explore the ancient world of Spruce Tree House.

To see reviews, where to stay, maps, and more tourist information, use the Mesa Verde National Park tour itinerary builder website .

Appleton to Mesa Verde National Park is an approximately 7-hour flight. You can also drive. The time zone difference when traveling from Appleton to Mesa Verde National Park is minus 1 hour. Expect a bit warmer weather when traveling from Appleton in October: highs in Mesa Verde National Park hover around 69°F, while lows dip to 34°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Sun) early enough to drive to Durango.

Things to do in Mesa Verde National Park

Historic Sites Parks Outdoors

Side Trip

The Anasazi Heritage Center
Highlights from your plan
Spruce Tree House ©
Spruce Tree House
The Anasazi Heritage Center ©
The Anasazi Heritage Center
Petroglyph Point Hike ©
Petroglyph Point Hike

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 29th (Mon): look for gifts at Honeyville and then delve into the lush surroundings at San Juan National Forest. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 30th (Tue): examine the collection at Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and Museum, tour the pleasant surroundings at Animas River Trail, then admire the masterpieces at Earthen Vessel Gallery, and finally stop by Toh-Atin Gallery.

To see where to stay, more things to do, reviews, and other tourist information, refer to the Durango trip planner .

Drive from Mesa Verde National Park to Durango in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus; or do a combination of taxi and shuttle. In October in Durango, expect temperatures between 65°F during the day and 32°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Tue) early enough to drive to Pagosa Springs.

Things to do in Durango

Parks Nature Shopping
Highlights from your plan
San Juan National Forest ©
San Juan National Forest
Animas River Trail ©
Animas River Trail
Toh-Atin Gallery ©
Toh-Atin Gallery

1
night
Pagosa Springs

Pagosa Springs ©
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 31st (Wed): view the masterpieces at Two Old Crows, stroll through Piedra River Trail, then take in the exciting artwork at Lantern Dancer, and finally take in the natural beauty of The Springs Resort & Spa.

For maps, reviews, ratings, and tourist information, read our Pagosa Springs road trip site .

Traveling by car from Durango to Pagosa Springs takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle. In October, plan for daily highs up to 62°F, and evening lows to 33°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Wed) so you can drive to Ouray.

Things to do in Pagosa Springs

Parks Outdoors Trails
Highlights from your plan
Piedra River Trail ©
Piedra River Trail
The Springs Resort & Spa ©
The Springs Resort & Spa
Two Old Crows ©
Two Old Crows

2
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. On the 1st (Thu), take in the dramatic scenery at Box Canyon Waterfall & Park, then take in the dramatic natural features at Yankee Boy Basin, and then see the interesting displays at Ouray Alchemist Museum. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: tour the pleasant surroundings at Perimeter Trail, take in the dramatic scenery at Ouray Box Canyon Waterfall, and then hike along Cascade Falls Park.

To see maps and more tourist information, go to the Ouray trip planner.

Drive from Pagosa Springs to Ouray in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle. Expect a bit cooler weather when traveling from Pagosa Springs in October: highs in Ouray hover around 56°F, while lows dip to 37°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Fri) early enough to travel to Estes Park.

Things to do in Ouray

Parks Outdoors Trails
Highlights from your plan
Yankee Boy Basin ©
Yankee Boy Basin
Cascade Falls Park ©
Cascade Falls Park
Perimeter Trail ©
Perimeter Trail

1
day
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.
On the 3rd (Sat), look for gifts at Kirks Flyshop & Mountain Adventures, look for all kinds of wild species at Wildlife Areas, then take in the exciting artwork at Images of Rocky Mountain National Park, and finally look for gifts at Laura's Fine Candy.

To find other places to visit, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Estes Park travel planner .

You can do a combination of taxi, bus, and flight from Ouray to Estes Park in 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car, flight, bus, and taxi; or drive. Expect a bit warmer weather when traveling from Ouray in November: highs in Estes Park hover around 57°F, while lows dip to 27°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 3rd (Sat) early enough to travel to Aspen.

Things to do in Estes Park

Outdoors Wildlife Tours
Highlights from your plan
Photography Tours
Kirks Flyshop & Mountain Adventures ©

1
night
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.
On the 4th (Sun), stop by Gene Taylor Sports and then hike along Maroon Lake Scenic Trail.

To see maps, where to stay, photos, and other tourist information, read Aspen trip itinerary builder website .

Traveling by combination of taxi, bus, and flight from Estes Park to Aspen takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of car, train, and bus. Traveling from Estes Park in November, things will get a bit cooler in Aspen: highs are around 47°F and lows about 20°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 4th (Sun) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Aspen

Outdoors Parks Trails

Side Trip

Gene Taylor Sports
Highlights from your plan
Maroon Lake Scenic Trail ©
Maroon Lake Scenic Trail
Gene Taylor Sports ©
Gene Taylor Sports

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