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Rocky Mountain Food Tours

Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs is one of the top rated parks in the world. Make sure this incredible (and free!) landmark is top of your list when visiting Colorado Springs!

Scroll down to see the best six ways to explore the park plus other things to do in Colorado Springs while you’re in the area.

 

Central Garden at Garden of the Gods Park | Photo Credit: Colorado.com
Central Garden at Garden of the Gods Park | Photo Credit: Colorado.com

 

Garden of the Gods is a natural wonder and one of Colorado Springs’ most popular attractions. The striking contrast between the plains to the east, the jagged red-rock formations, and the snow-capped mountains to the west is breathtaking and must to be seen in person to fully appreciate.

We have Colorado Springs’ founder, General William Jackson Palmer, to thank for all of the free public parks throughout the city including Garden of the Gods Park. Though the park is the main attraction, don’t miss the Visitor and Nature Center, which offers interactive exhibits, a fantastic gift shop, and a cafe with healthy and organic meal options. Plus, since there is limited parking inside, there is a large lot at the visitor’s center with a paved path that leads right into the park.

 

What are the best ways to explore the park?

Garden of the Gods is unlike any other park in the world and offers opportunities for everyone no matter age or athletic ability to explore and feel a part of nature. In addition to the list of ways to explore the park below, The Garden of the God Park also sponsors several different activities and events to promote public education and provide some revenue to help maintain the park. Examples of these events include meditation in the garden, yoga, kids’ scavenger hunts, watercolors with a view, hiking 101, and earth science for teens.

We’ve put together a list of six ways to see the inside of the park – from Segways to hiking, you’ll be sure to find the one that’s right for you!

 

Balanced Rock | Photo Credit:uncovercolorado.com
Balanced Rock | Photo Credit: uncovercolorado.com

 

1. Take in the sights from the comfort of your car

Driving around the park is actually a great way to see all the incredible rock formations. It’s a short drive and a great option if you are pressed for time, happen to visit on a bad weather day, or have someone in your party who might find walking or hiking a challenge. Once inside the park, you’ll see several pull-off areas where you can stop to briefly explore and take a few photos.

 

2. Get into nature by taking a hike (only where allowed, of course!)

Hiking is a very popular way to really experience Garden of the Gods. There are several hiking paths throughout the park. The Central Garden Trail is the perfect introductory trail and will take you to several of the most prominent rock formations. This trail is paved and has minimal elevations changes, making it wheelchair and stroller accessible. Be sure to get a picture with the famous Kissing Camels Rock!

Other popular hiking trails include Siamese Twins Trail, Palmer Trail, Scotsman Trail, and Dakota Trail (where you might see a Big Horn Sheep!). And everyone loves to stop and admire Balanced Rock, located at the south end of the park.

 

3. Rock climb and see the park from new heights

Technical rock climbing is allowed in the park; however, you must apply for a permit first and follow all the rules and regulations of the park while climbing. If you would like to have an experienced guide help you and your family have a fun rock climbing experience, then Front Range Climbing can help.

 

Biking Garden of the Gods | Photo Credit: bikepikespeak.com
Biking Garden of the Gods | Photo Credit: bikepikespeak.com

 

4. Cruise through on a bicycle or electric bike

E-bikes make pedaling through the hilly park surprisingly easy, and it’s a great way to avoid the traffic. Almost anyone regardless of athletic ability can easily ride an e-bike, so strap on a helmet and explore the park while soaking in the sites along the way!

Currently, there are a couple different companies offering tours including Amp’d Adventures and Pikes Peak Bike Tours. Amp’d Adventures offers a variety of e-bike styles including a cargo bike that can carry kids as well as regular mountain bikes. Pikes Peak Bike Tours also offers fantastic, fully guided e-bike tours through Garden of the Gods for ages six and older.

 

5. Take a Jeep and or Segway tour

Join Adventures Out West for a jeep excursion, Segway adventure, or trolley ride through Garden of the Gods. Not only do their tours offer wonderful sightseeing opportunities, they also offer fun local history. Prices and times vary depending on the tour, so make sure you plan in advance and choose the right one for your schedule and interests.

 

6. Saddle up and see the sights from horseback

You’ll feel like a real cowboy in an old Western flick while riding horseback through Garden of the Gods! Get off the beaten path and explore areas of the park that cars and hikers cannot access. Academy Riding Stables offers one- and two-hour tours based on your level of experience. They even offer pony rides for the little ones in your group!

 

Siamese Twins Rock Formation | Photo Credit:GardenoftheGodsColorado.com
Siamese Twins Rock Formation | Photo Credit: GardenoftheGodsColorado.com

 

What else is there to do in Colorado Springs?

There are many amazing things to do in Colorado Springs, so plan to take some extra time to explore all of the sights!

 

Take a food tour in Downtown Colorado Springs

If you love local food and drinks, don’t miss the food tours and brewery tours in downtown Colorado Springs! With tours running every week year-round, there are options for any size group including families. Tickets include all of the food and non-alcoholic drinks (you can upgrade to include alcoholic drink pairings!) plus a guide who will share all of the amazing history of Colorado Springs. View the calendar and make sure to book in advance!

 

Visit Manitou Springs and Pikes Peak

Garden of the Gods is also just a few minutes away from historic Manitou Springs. There you can sip on the mineral waters, play at the penny arcade, or check out the Manitou Cliff Dwellings. If you really want an adventure, you can also make your way up Pikes Peak—America’s Mountain! Make sure you read our blog post on Pikes Peak including five different ways to reach the summit.

 

 

With so much natural beauty and recreational options, The Garden of the Gods is a place you’ll want to visit again and again. Plus, there are many other things to do and see while you’re visiting Colorado Springs.

We hope you enjoy your time exploring Colorado Springs!

Cheers, Your Rocky Mountain Food Tours Team

(So, what’s a food tour, anyway…?)

 

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