A road trip from Denver to Colorado Springs is technically a short trip, but there is plenty of beautiful Colorado landscape to admire on your journey. Denver still has a few artifacts dating back to its heyday as an Old West town; however, today, it is the capital of Colorado, and there are modern attractions to visit, such as the Denver Art Museum and the 16th Street Mall. You can even catch a professional football, baseball, hockey, basketball, or soccer game. Once you reach Colorado Springs, you will want to take some time to explore the Rocky Mountains or Pike National Forest. On this road trip from Denver to Colorado Springs, you can marvel at the Centennial State's natural landscapes and sweeping vistas.
Colorado is home to four national parks, and they are all within a day's drive of Colorado Springs or Denver.
Mesa Verde National Park
Located in southwest Colorado, Mesa Verde National Park is known for its well-preserved ancestral Puebloan cliff dwellings. Cliff Palace is one of the most popular examples of these dwellings. If you want to learn about Native American culture, you should stop by the Chapin Mesa Archeological Museum. While you are traveling in your RV, you should take the Mesa Top Loop Road. This section of road winds past the historic overlooks and archaeological sites, including the panoramic Sun Point Overlook. For those who want to see the ancient rock carvings, plan to visit Petroglyph Point Trail.
Great Sand Dunes National Park
The Great Sand Dunes National Park is located in southern Colorado. This park is the perfect spot to view huge sand dunes, including the towering Star Dunes. There are times when a beach and creek will develop at the base of the dunes. If you are looking to explore, you should hit the backcountry Medano Pass Primitive Road. This stretch of road will lead towards the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. There are plenty of trails that will take you through the forests, alpine lakes, and wetlands near Medano Lake.
Rocky Mountain National Park
Denver and Colorado Springs are both close to Rocky Mountain National Park. This national park spans across the Continental Divide and encompasses alpine tundra, protected forests, and mountain ranges. If you want to travel past the rivers and aspen trees, you should take Old Fall River Road or Trail Ridge Road. The Keyhole Route is a climb that crosses several rock faces, and it leads to the tallest mountain at Longs Peak. Hikers can take the trail towards Bear Lake for a spectacular view of the peaks.
There are some beautiful state parks in Colorado. When you are on a Denver to Colorado Springs road trip, you should plan to spend a few days at these magnificent parks.
Cherry Creek State Park
This state park is located in the heart of Denver. Cherry Creek State Park is filled with plenty of things to see and do. The park is home to a natural prairie and wetland environment. During the summer, you can swim in the 880-acre reservoir or hike around the lake. Many people come to this location to sail or paddle on the water. When the weather turns colder, Cherry Creek is a great place to ice fish.
Chatfield State Park
Chatfield State Park is one of the most popular parks in the Denver area. Many people head to this park for its deep blue reservoir, rolling foothills, and recreational opportunities. The 3,895-acre park has beautiful views of the Rocky Mountains and their surrounding foothills. This spot is the perfect place for water sports. Sailing, kayaking, fishing, and water skiing are some fun activities to try at this park. If you want to relax, you may want to sunbathe on the western shore. Nature lovers can hit the 26 miles of trails for an adventure on foot, bike, or horseback. Some of these trails will wind through the Platte River Valley. Since prairie dogs, bald eagles, and mule deer can all be found at Chatfield State Park, this is a must-see stop for wildlife fans.
Cheyenne Mountain State Park
Just outside of Colorado Springs, Cheyenne Mountain State Park opened in 2006. This state park covers over 2,700 acres of land near the eastern flank of Cheyenne Mountain. Throughout the park, you will see the landscape transition from mountain peaks to open plains. There are over 27 miles of trails for you to explore. Cheyenne Mountain State Park also has campsites, a visitor center, and a picnic area. This park also has an abundant wildlife population. You might see foxes, black bears, deer, elk, cougars, or red-tailed hawks while you are in the park.
During your Denver to Colorado Springs RV road trip, you will want to stop off and visit some of these fascinating points of interest.
Denver Botanic Gardens
If you want to see a bounty of beautiful flowers, you should stop by the Denver Botanic Gardens. This park is located in the Cheesman Park neighborhood of the city. The Denver Botanic Gardens covers over 23 acres of land, and it contains theme gardens, a sunken amphitheater, and a conservatory. In the summer, concerts are hosted in the park.
Denver Art Museum
This art museum is located in the Civic Center area of Denver. This is one of the largest art museums between Chicago and the West Coast. The Denver Art Museum is known for its extensive collection of American Indian art. It also contains more than 70,000 works from across the world.
Pikes Peak Highway
Pikes Peak is the highest summit in the Rocky Mountains, and you can drive the 19-mile toll road that runs from Cascade to the summit. Unless there is a snowstorm, the road is accessible throughout the year. If you want to travel up the road, you will need to pay a toll fee.
There are several comfortable campgrounds throughout the Denver and Colorado Springs areas. For those who need to use a dump station, there are clean facilities near these locations. If you are looking for a place to stop on your Denver to Colorado Springs road trip, you will want to check out these major cities.
The city of Boulder is located near the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, slightly northwest of Denver. The downtown area is known for its cafes, art galleries, boutiques, breweries, and restaurants. In Boulder, the University of Colorado has a campus, and it is the home to the Museum of Natural History and Fiske Planetarium. If you are looking for a great place to spend a part of your vacation, you can find a few campgrounds to set up your home base for the night.
Aurora, part of the Denver metro area, is often called the "Gateway to the Rockies." If you are traveling by RV, there are plenty of places to visit. Over 50 miles of hiking and biking trails wind through this city. For those who want to experience the local culture, Aurora is home to museums and theaters. This city is also a great place to hit the links. Throughout the area, you will find six public golf courses. In addition to that, there are several clean and comfortable campgrounds in the Aurora area.
Centennial is one of the newest communities in Colorado. This city was incorporated in 2001, and it is already the ninth-largest city in the state. It is a trendy spot to visit because of its close location to Colorado's capital city. The Streets at SouthGlen are a popular place where you can visit local boutiques, restaurants, and shops. This new city is an excellent place to park your rig at a campground and spend a few days exploring the surrounding areas.
When you follow this road trip itinerary from Denver to Colorado Springs, you will enjoy historic locations and beautiful scenery along the way. If you want to travel in comfort and style, consider an RV rental from RVshare. From large motorhomes to compact campervans, there is a rig that will meet your travel and budget needs. Once you hit the road, you are protected by our renter guarantee and 24/7 roadside assistance. Find the perfect vehicle for your travel needs in Denver or Colorado Springs.