This US is my favorite place for road trips.
It’s a huge country full of beautiful, well maintained (well, not for long if Trump and his administration have their way) natural wonder. There are national parks, natural reserves, and plain old plots of land filled with lakes, mountains, canyons, rivers, deserts, beaches- there is everything.
The only problem is it’s too huge if you’re just visiting! Most people don’t have enough time to drive through the whole country, which is why Colorado is my favorite state for road trips. Those different types of beautiful places I mentioned earlier? You can find most of them relatively close together just staying in Colorado! So for me, Colorado makes the perfect place for a road trip full of unplanned beauty.
I might be biased because one of my best friends lives there and takes me around to the best places. My favorite trip was our summer road trip from Denver to a few other parts of Colorado. Here are the highlights of what we saw to help with your trip.
Mountain Towns / Ski Resorts
There are so many cute mountain towns outside of Denver. We went to Winter Park, Vail, Beaver Creek, and Breckenridge. Even in the summer, there are a ton of outdoor activities available- more rigorous ones like mountain biking and alpine hiking, and more lowkey ones like alpine sledding or generally just walking around the towns. And possibly because it was summer, there were an equal amount of beer festivals, food festivals, craft shows, and farmers markets happening.
Lake Dillon / Dillon Resevoir
We just stopped to enjoy the lake views because they were gorgeous. If you have more time, you could additionally hike, boat, or camp out here.
We were just driving along I-70, listening to Nicki, and then all of a sudden there was a gorgeous red canyon reflecting the sunset. This was honestly one of the most beautiful moments of my life. Well, in Colorado I had that thought a lot.
If you want to do more than drive through it, their official website has all the information you need- some highlights include hiking and rafting opportunities and history on how the canyon was formed.
Iron Mountain Springs
After a day of hiking trails and driving and seeing sights, we needed to relax, so we went to the hot springs. There are many pools of various hot temperatures that you can move between and the mountain views are unsurprisingly beautiful. This is also the furthest we were from Denver (driving straight would be 3 hours!).
Since we were time strapped, we just drove to the top to take a picture of the continental divide sign- where the outputs of the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans meet. Alternatively, if you’re okay with the high elevation, there’s a cool hike you can do and off-roading opportunities.
Denver is such a hip city. Picture amazing outdoor restaurants, a laid back vibe, tasty craft beers, and friendly people. I made so many random friends while here! We spent our time here mostly on food adventures, and one of my favorite places was Avanti, which is like a food haven filled with food stands that serve quick and cheap-ish food from around the world.
This place not only has gorgeous, easily accessible views (since you can just drive up- no need to hike), but also has Buffalo Bill’s gravesite. You can read more about its history here.
And that’s how we spent our two day road trip! As you can tell there are an endless amount of activities you could do at these places if you have more time. What would you add to this road trip?
Do you trust me on road trip recommendations now? And are you thinking about road tripping in some other states? Check out my post for amazing weekend road trip stops from Anchorage, Alaska.