Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs

4.8
#1 of 2,728 in Things to do in Colorado
Admire one of the country’s most impressive archaeological wonders at Garden of the Gods. The 552 hectare (1,364 acre) public park is famous for the dozens of freestanding red rock formations created by a geological upheaval millions of years ago. Hike through the lush green forests while admiring the towering 91 m (300 ft) formations set against the dramatic backdrop of snowcapped Pike’s Peak. Head to the park’s visitor and nature center to learn the history of the formations or to grab a cup of coffee and enjoy panoramic views of the park from the cafe terrace. Quickly create a custom-made itinerary for Colorado Springs using our trip planner.
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Garden of the Gods Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
14,019 reviews
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4.8
TripAdvisor
  • The rock formations at the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs are impressive. Summer temperatures tend to be harsh. If hiking, visit prior to noon, wear comfortable walking shoes and bring water a...  more »
  • Although we picked a hot day to go, we had a wonderful time. Breath-taking scenery, deer peeking at us from the trees, and an easy trail for us less agile types made for a nice time. The visitor cente...  more »
  • A short ride from the Broadmoor and simply beautiful. Wear comfortable shoes and bring water. I recommend staying at least an hour.  more »
Google
  • There are certain places that just blow my mind apart, One of those is this one, in Colorado Springs. Here the two sides of my brain compete for dominance. "Concentrate on me." The left side gets me here, loves the scientific explanations. Details of what creates those beautiful red pink rocks. Processes like erosion, weathering. Reduced to sediment, precipitated out of water, transported by wind, or by glaciers. How long & during what time periods. What made hills, rock formations, mountains like nearby Pike's Peak. Finds names of groupings like 3 Graces. Notes shapes, sizes, distinctive features like Balancing Rock. Loves the visitor's center information. Daytime visits. Makes sure I have plenty of water, sun screen, appropriate clothes, a watch. Nags if I don't pay attention to the signs so I won't get lost. All the while the other side interrupts. The right brain loves it here, too. A breathtaking place that showcases the majesty of Creation. Amazed at everything. The awe and beauty of The Garden of the Gods. Exhilaration at the vistas. Joy in exploration while hiking. Wants to visit on dark days, cloudy rainy days. Twilight. Where the light plays tricks with shadow, shapes. Gets spellbound trying to grasp the scope of millions and millions of years in the making. Sees visions of a gathering place of the gods, imagines what that would look like. Laughs & muses on a quote from The Point: "Being a rock is a very heavy life." A memory suddenly relevant, real. Feels the place, its vibes. Wonders about faces on the rocks as they seem to change. No matter whether you are left brain or right brain, this is a place well worth experiencing, with friends and family. I came here as a Child, and appreciate it now even more. Still I learn. Still I marvel. Both sides of me.
  • Why is it called the Garden of the Gods? The name came about in 1859 when two surveyors who discovered the beautiful park said that the place is a “capital place for a beer garden… that it is a fit place for the Gods to assemble.” So they called it the “Garden of the Gods.” And that has been the name since then. Designated as a National Natural Landmark in 1971, the free public park in Colorado Springs boasts of vertically tilted “fins” of deep-red, pink and white sandstones, conglomerates and limestone that were formed millions of years ago. The Garden of the Gods is popular for hiking, jogging, rock climbing, mountain biking, and even just driving around its loop. With its 15 miles of trails, visitors have hours and hours of nature fun. Some trails are wheelchair-accessible. Although vehicles can just exit the highway and drive straight to the entrance of the Garden of the Gods, I would suggest you stop by first at the Visitor and Nature Center. The Center is located opposite the entrance gate, on the other side of the highway. Buy something from the center’s privately owned store and cafe. The money will help maintain and improve the park services. From the moment you entered the gate, driving slow around the loop, and stopping at some points for photos, you may just need about an hour to complete the loop. However, if you intend to park your vehicle and decide to enjoy the trails, then spare at least three hours to see the beauty of the garden.
  • This place is amazing!! Started my hike early before the visitor center was open and I absolutely loved it. There were deer and other wildlife all over the place which made for some awesome pictures. The trails take you to different very cool looking rock formations. The visitors center has awesome looking displays filled with great information. The gift shop has some unique items for sale.
  • Very informative and well done videos and other displays. The staff did a great job of talking through the local wildlife. My wife and I also paid admission to watch the movie. It was extremely novel compared to other national monument videos, and had some cool information. However, set your expectations to something very child-oriented. If I were giving recommendations to other adult-only parties, I would recommend skipping the movie and spending more time in the park itself.
  • I love this place. You can do many activities here for free. Biking, rock climbing, hiking,walking or just drive around. The rock formations are unique and natural. This is free park so try to follow safety rules and try to keep the park clean and beautiful. If you want to take a walk through trails I would suggest to keep water bottle with you and nice pair of comfy shoes.

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