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Family Vacation Ideas in Colorado

Written by Ben Sack, 04.19.2019

7 Family Vacation Ideas in Colorado

Colorado is one of the most beautiful states in the country. With over 300 days of sunshine each year, endless wilderness to explore, quaint mountain towns, and more fun activities than you pack into a single vacation, Colorado is an ideal spot for a family adventure.

Family Trip Ideas In Colorado for Nature Lovers

Do you and your family enjoy breathtaking views, hiking, camping, and other outdoor activities? Whether you want to take it easy soaking in the scenery on gondolas or you want to get wet and wild on a Colorado river, our beautiful state has what you’re looking for.

Read on to learn about our top 7 family vacation activities and travel locations that we recommend for the outdoor adventurer.

1. Whitewater Rafting

the most gentle river class - class IImagine paddling down the river as the rapids jostle you this way and that. You have time to take in the idyllic scenery of stretches of the Colorado river that are rarely visited as you enjoy memorable bonding time with the ones you love. Family rafting is a fun and exciting way to get out in nature. With family rafting trips designed for kids 4 years of age and older, this is a great way to leave technology behind and immerse yourself in nature.

2. Visit the Royal Gorge Bridge

Not only is the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park one of the most popular tourist destinations in Colorado, but it offers a host of activities that can entertain your kiddos. Here you can transverse the highest suspension bridge in America, take a gondola ride that offers panoramic views, and enjoy activities great for kids of all ages. These include:

  • The highest zipline in America
  • “Royal Rush” Skycoaster
  • Tommy Knocker Children’s Playland (great for the younger kids)

When you’re done with the adventure activities, take a scenic train ride aboard the Royal Gorge Route Railroad. Since the early 1900s, this train has been taking families through the gorgeous canyon for a unique and spectacular ride. On board you will find freshly prepared locally sourced food to enjoy on your journey.

Royal Gorge North Rim View

3. Soak in Thermal Springs

glenwood springs hot springsThroughout the mountains of Colorado, you will find a variety of different hot springs. These natural thermal springs range from natural, rustic pools, like those found at Strawberry Hot Springs in Steamboat Springs, to resort-style pools with all-natural spring water like those found at The Springs Resort & Spa in Pagosa Springs.

When you visit local hot springs, don’t miss out on exploring the areas they’re located in. These hot springs are often found in some of the best mountain towns, with plenty of good eats, shopping, and other activities to enjoy.

4. Skiing and Snowboarding

skiing in coloradoThe rugged Colorado peaks are full of ski resorts. Whether you’re an advanced rider or a complete newbie, skiing or snowboarding in Colorado can be a fun experience that offers gorgeous views of our snow capped mountains.

Ski resorts are sprinkled all throughout the mountains. You’ll find some close to Denver, like Breckenridge and Copper, and others a bit further out, like those in Telluride.

5. Horseback Riding

Incredible geologic views on Garden of Gods horseback rideIf you find yourself in the great plains of Colorado, why not go on a family horseback riding trip? There are outfitters all across the state that can take you and your family along memorable stretches of nature. This is a wonderful option for the animal lovers in your family!

6. Camping

Glamping campfireWe would be remiss not to mention camping when discussing family trips in Colorado. If you and your family enjoy the solitude that camping offers, bring your equipment and find a spot to relax underneath the starry Colorado sky.

For those who would prefer something a bit easier and more comfortable, why not try glamping? Royal Gorge Cabins offers glamping tents and other vacation rentals just 10 minutes outside of the Royal Gorge Bridge, where you can enjoy nature while having someone else do the hard part.

7. Visit Denver

If you’re visiting from out-of-state, don’t miss out on our beautiful capital city of Denver. Denver boasts countless tasty restaurants, top rated hotels and spas, ample shopping, and tons of fun adventures that kids will love. Some of the top-rated places to see in Denver include:

  • The Molly Brown House Museum
  • Denver Zoo
  • Downtown Aquarium
  • Elitch Gardens
  • Coors Field
  • 16th Street Mall

With Denver conveniently located between Denver International Airport and the mountains to the west, it’s an easy stop before or after your mountain adventure.

Are You Ready for Your Colorado Family Vacation?

Colorado is a beautiful state full of adventures the whole family can enjoy. With quaint mountain towns, world-class ski resorts and whitewater rafting, and a welcoming and fun capital city, you and your family can make memories that will last a lifetime.

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About the Author

Ben Sack is the General Manager of Echo Canyon River Expeditions, Colorado's largest white water rafting outfitter. He's also a raft guide, a photographer, and he loves exploring Colorado and beyond with his wife and two boys.
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