12 days in Colorado Itinerary

12 days in Colorado Itinerary

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Route & dates

12 days in Colorado Itinerary

Start: Kansas City
Drive:  9 h
1
Colorado Springs
— 2 nights
Drive:  15 min
2
Manitou Springs
— 2 nights
Drive:  3 h
3
Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve
— 2 nights
Drive:  2 h 45 min
4
Buena Vista
— 2 nights
Drive:  3 h 45 min
5
Estes Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  10 h 15 min
End: Kansas City

2
nights
Colorado Springs

Colorado Springs ©
Stunning Garden of the Gods Park scenery, blue skies and the glory of Pikes Peak-America’s Mountain have attracted visitors to Colorado Springs for more than a century.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Seven Falls, Rail Tours and Pikes Peak. Kick off your visit on the 29th (Sat): tour in style with a train tour and then explore and take pictures at Pikes Peak. Keep things going the next day: look for all kinds of wild species at Seven Falls.

For other places to visit, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Colorado Springs custom trip planner.

Kansas City to Colorado Springs is an approximately 5-hour flight. You can also drive; or take a bus. The time zone changes from Central Standard Time to Mountain Standard Time, which is usually a -1 hour difference. Traveling from Kansas City in July, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be slightly colder in Colorado Springs, with lows of 59°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Mon) early enough to drive to Manitou Springs.

Things to do in Colorado Springs

Nature Parks
Highlights from your plan
The Broadmoor Seven Falls ©
The Broadmoor Seven Falls

2
nights
Manitou Springs

Manitou Springs ©
Manitou Springs' main street was once a trail that led directly to the base of Pike's Peak.
Kick off your visit on the 31st (Mon): delve into the distant past at Manitou Cliff Dwellings, then get in on the family fun at North Pole - Santa's Workshop, and then explore the fascinating underground world of Cave of the Winds. Keep things going the next day: have some family-friendly fun at Arcade Amusements Inc., explore the activities along Manitou Springs Incline, and then stop by Downtown Manitou Springs.

To see where to stay, traveler tips, ratings, and other tourist information, refer to the Manitou Springs travel planner.

Manitou Springs is very close to Colorado Springs. Traveling from Colorado Springs in July, expect little chillier with lows of 54°F in Manitou Springs. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Wed) to allow enough time to travel to Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve.

Things to do in Manitou Springs

Theme Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

North Pole Colorado Santa’s Workshop
Highlights from your plan
Cave of the Winds Mountain Park ©
Cave of the Winds Mountain Park
North Pole Colorado Santa’s Workshop ©
Manitou Springs Incline ©
Manitou Springs Incline

2
nights
Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve

Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve ©
Kick off your visit on the 2nd (Wed): take in the dramatic scenery at Zapata Falls. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 3rd (Thu): explore the activities along Little Medano Creek.

To see other places to visit, reviews, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve holiday planner.

Explore your travel options from Manitou Springs to Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve with the Route module. Plan for little chillier nights when traveling from Manitou Springs in August since evenings lows in Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve dip to 46°F. On the 4th (Fri), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel to Buena Vista.

Things to do in Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve

Nature Parks

Side Trip

Zapata Falls
Highlights from your plan
Zapata Falls ©
Zapata Falls

2
nights
Buena Vista

Buena Vista ©
The Town of Buena Vista is a Statutory Town in Chaffee County, Colorado, United States. Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Browns Canyon Rafting as well as Performance Tours Whitewater Rafting. Start off your visit on the 4th (Fri): take a pleasant ride with a tour on horseback and then make a short side trip with Browns Canyon Rafting. Keep things going the next day: stroll through Buena Vista Whitewater Park and then make a short side trip with Performance Tours Whitewater Rafting.

To see other places to visit, photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Buena Vista itinerary planner.

The Route module can help you plan travel from Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve to Buena Vista. In August, plan for daily highs up to 77°F, and evening lows to 48°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 6th (Sun) early enough to drive to Estes Park.

Things to do in Buena Vista

Outdoors Tours Adventure
Highlights from your plan
Browns Canyon Rafting ©
Browns Canyon Rafting

2
nights
Estes Park

More than just a convenient resting place for travelers on their way to the national park encompassing the Front Range of the Rockies, Estes Park is a popular place to visit in its own right.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Sun): soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers and then get to know the fascinating history of Wild Basin Area. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: take in the exciting artwork at Images of Rocky Mountain National Park, trot along with a tour on horseback, and then hike along Emerald Lake Trail.

To see ratings, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, read our Estes Park travel planner.

You can drive from Buena Vista to Estes Park in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi. Plan for somewhat warmer temperatures traveling from Buena Vista in August, with highs in Estes Park at 89°F and lows at 56°F. You will leave for home on the 8th (Tue).

Things to do in Estes Park

Outdoors Tours Parks

Side Trip

Rocky Mountain National Park
Highlights from your plan
Horseback Riding Tours
Emerald Lake Trail ©
Emerald Lake Trail
Wild Basin Area ©
Wild Basin Area

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