Durango Attractions

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Written by Cassidy Barnes posted on Tuesday, February 16th, 2010

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Durango, Colorado is an activity-rich tourism spot in the extreme southwest of Colorado. Durango lodging is a great place to base your vacation from, with options varying from cozy hotels to unique guest ranches.

A plume of smoke erupts from the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gague Railroad as it snakes through Southwest Colorado. (Matt Inden/Colorado Tourism Office)

There are a plethora of things to do in Durango. Read below for a list of some of the most popular.

Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad
This train runs between Durango and Silverton, Colorado and was originally built to bring supplies into the Animas River Valley for gold mining. Now, instead of hauling supplies in and gold ore out, it brings tourists to and from Silverton so that they can take in the San Juan Mountains from the cars, lunch in town and then take the train back to Durango.

Mountain Biking
Durango has a large cycling community and hosts the Iron Horse Classic, an annual race that brings avid bikers from every corner of the U.S. Durango was also host to the first Mountain Bike World Championships, back in 1990.

Whitewater Rafting
The Piedras, Animas and Dolores Rivers offer whitewater rafting in Colorado, all very close to Durango. From wild to mild, there are river trips for everyone’s taste.

Fly fishing in the Animas River, which flows through town, is gold medal good. Fishing in Colorado’s mountain-fed streams is the perfect way to spend an afternoon, and a great place to find dinner!

Autumn in Durango
Drive the scenic San Juan Scenic Byway in the fall to take in all the changing leaves, or stop by Durango during it’s annual Colorfest. And just 35 miles west of Durango, you’ll find Mesa Verde National Park, a gem to visit no matter what the season, but perfect for brisk autumn hikes.

Skiing near Durango, Colorado
Just 25 miles north of Durango, you’ll find Purgatory at Durango Mountain Resort. This ski area is cleverly themed after Dante’s Inferno. While you’re there, try to pull some tricks at the Pitchfork Terrain Park or in the Paradise Freestyle Arena.

Hot Springs near Durango
Just north of town, the Trimble Spa & Natural Hot Springs has two lodging options and a full array of spa treatments, along with access to their two geothermal-heated mineral water pools. Soak your stress away…

Stay in one of the cabins by the Vallecito Reservoir to wander around the high country lake and explore the deep relaxation that comes only from staying in the wild. The Weminuche Wilderness Area is another great place to stay for real backpacking and camping in tents.

Colorado Rockies Activities

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