At first glance, you may not think The Royal Gorge Region is the place for a family trip, a history buff, or a first-time hiker, but you’d be wrong.
Here are 10 amazing ways to take in the region that show it is really a destination for anyone, and everyone.
Off-Season? It’s On.
With 260 days of sunshine a year, your summer vacation just became your whenever vacation. When you visit Fremont County in the off-season, you’ll experience year-round outdoor recreation, top-notch attractions, great eats, and sweet shopping.
In fact, while other parts of the state are in the deep freeze of winter, Cañon City and its surrounding areas are often enjoying 40, 50, and even 60-degree days. So, why is that? Located in a banana belt, this area is tucked into the folds and bluffs of the Arkansas River Valley, and therefore enjoys a much milder climate than Denver, year-round.
Keep it Gorgeous
You will be surrounded by natural beauty, from the famous Royal Gorge and the Arkansas River running through through it to the surrounding mountains. Give back to this region by conserving these natural spaces when immersing yourself in the outdoors.
When you follow the 7 Principles of Leave No Trace, you connect with the world around you and become part of the solution to conservation.
Keep it gorgeous for you, for the community, for everyone.
Outdoor Recreation for All Interests
With natural wonders all around there is an outdoor activity for any interest. You’ll find nothing but fun whether you’re a family with kids, an extreme adventurer, or any level between.
It’s easy to miss all these amazing opportunities, so we’ve compiled a list for you to create the perfect itinerary to suit your needs in the great outdoors.
- For Families
- For Extreme Adventurers
- For Rafters
- For Bikers
- For Hikers
- For Campers
- For Off-Roaders
- For Fishers
- For Horseback Riders
- For Climbers
Take to the Trails
Fremont Adventure Recreation (FAR) is a local organization that have devoted themselves to increasing and improving outdoor recreation opportunities throughout Fremont County. We have FAR to thank for Hogbacks Open Space, Royal Gorge Trail System, Oil Well Flats, and South Cañon Trails (featured in The Travel as one of Colorado’s Best Scenic Hikes of 2022).
These trails and more offer opportunities for Hiking, Biking, Off-Roading, and Horseback Riding. The Arkansas Riverwalk Trail is favorite with over 7 miles of paved trail along the river that is accessible to all abilities.
While National Parks and hot spots of Colorado may have crowded trails, the abundance of options throughout the area make space for everyone.
Explore History Beyond Civilization
Long ago, the dinosaurs roamed the earth…and Cañon City. If you’re not taking a peek into the past when visiting, you’re missing out.
In addition to a multitude of historical museums, we boast geologic and paleontological wonders waiting to be discovered at Garden Park, Temple Canyon, The Royal Gorge Dinosaur Experience, and beyond. It all started during the Bone Wars, or Great Dinosaur Rush, when competitive fossil hunting led to amazing discoveries throughout this region.
LEARN MORE ABOUT…
Support Local: Shopping, Dining, and Lodging for All
Connecting with the local community that makes your experience of the region possible is rewarding for both you and the towns you visit.
Arts and Culture are great way for visitors to do this and both Cañon City and Florence put this at the forefront with exhibits at the Fremont Center for the Arts and Bell Tower Cultural Center (Florence Arts Council). Florence is actually the Antique Capital of Colorado, a must-stop for any avid shoppers.
Many visitors stay in Pueblo or Colorado Springs and make a day trip out to Fremont County, but there are tons of great lodging options in town. Next time you visit, come and stay. See the Lodging Directory to find the best spot for you, whether it’s a hotel/motel, glamping, or primitive camping, you will be covered. And while you’re staying in town, be sure to grab a bite to eat at one of the local restaurants.
Connect with the Land through Agritourism
Agritourism is something not every visitor thinks about, but it’s full of fun, beauty, education, and delicious spoils for those who include it in their travel plans.
Farms, orchards, seasonal pumpkin patches, corn mazes, and bountiful vineyards, making it ideal for hosting farmers markets and agricultural tours. And with its mild temperature and rich soil, the Royal Gorge Region has been an agricultural hub since the 1860s.
Events to Plan Your Visit Around
There are exciting events happening all year long throughout the county and surrounding areas for all interests. Festivals, farmers markets, art exhibits, races, historical and educational events, music, and more!
The largest event the area has is the annual Blossom Festival that ushers in the summer season in Cañon City. This event has a carnival, music competition, pageant, race, and more. It’s a must-do event and happens during May of each year, a beautiful time to visit the area and engage with the community.
Take to the Skies
For those who like adrenaline and an aerial view, there are some incredible opportunities to explore the region from the air.
Not one for heights but love to take in the sky? There are amazing open spaces throughout the region to stargaze. Perfect for all ages and all abilities.
One of a Kind Attractions
This area is perhaps best known for being home to the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park where you can walk across the highest suspension bridge in America.
Not one for heights? Experience the gorge from the bottom as you ride under the bridge and beyond on the Royal Gorge Route Train.