Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide Travel for Families
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Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide

Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide

This Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide #visitcos #GetOutdoors #Adventure #ColoradoSprings post has been sponsored by Colorado Springs CVB | VisitCOS.com.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide

If you have ever visited the great state of Colorado then you know it’s stunning but did you also know that there is just as much to do in the summer as in the winter? While Colorado Springs, Colorado is well known for its mountains and many of us think skiing when considering Colorado Springs, this town has just as much to offer in the summer and it is the perfect place for outdoor family adventure. Any Colorado travel bucket list isn’t complete without the beautiful natural landscape and activities that await you in Colorado Springs. This Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide features everything you need to plan the perfect trip.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuidePikes Peak region

Colorado Springs is great all by itself, but it’s also home to the Pikes Peak region, with the mountain itself commonly called America’s Mountain. Each year over 23 million people visit this area of Colorado and during May-July, this is one of the top visitor attractions in all of Colorado Springs. People love to hike in this area. The pines, the blue sky, and being up in a higher elevation (14,115 feet to be exact) is something every family should experience. We drove up Pikes Peak and while you need a reliable vehicle because of the high altitude (your car should be able to idle at the top and handle multiple gear shifts), this two-hour drive (about 38 miles both ways) was both scenic and something we all enjoyed. On a clear day, these gorgeous views can be seen for 100 miles. If you don’t want to drive yourself, consider a Jeep or bus tour.

FOR SERIOUS FAMILY ADVENTURERS: Imagine yourself riding down Pikes Peak and having the time of your life. The Pikes Peak Bike Tour allows you a descent 7,000 feet down on bikes they supply along with a guide and more:

  • Continental breakfast
  • 2018 Kona Bike rental (professionally maintained new bikes are added every year)
  • Pikes Peak Highway toll fee
  • Lunch– your choice between two locally owned, nationally recognized restaurants! BBQ or Mediterranean– several menu options at both restaurants!
  • Souvenir water bottle

No matter how you experience North America’s most visited mountain  (2nd most visited mountain in the world behind Mount Fuji), Pikes Peak has plenty to experience and our Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide will help you navigate the best adventures around.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideCave of the Winds

Cave of the Winds Mountain Park is located in Manitou Springs and is a popular attraction amongst tourists. With Cave of the Winds, you can go underground and experience Cave Tours. There are three cave tours to choose from depending on the ages of kids and level of adventure or love of scary stories.Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide

  • Discovery Tour – This 1 hour long guided tour was a family favorite. About a ½ mile long, the cave features concrete walkways in 15 rooms and 196 stairs. Some of the tour is a little darker but it is otherwise well lit and perfect for all ages.
  • Lantern Tour – This historical spooky adventure was vetoed by our youngest but is definitely on our “must do” list for next time. If your kids are a little older (at least 6 and up), this candlelight guided tour is one mile of narrow, dark tunnels and muddy floors along with folklore and unexplained mysteries of the Manitou Grands.
  • Caving 101 – This 2.5 hour tour is for those 13 and older who want to learn basic spelunking skills plus get a geology lesson while climbing/crawling/walking through a muddy cave. This is the ultimate in family adventure.

While everyone goes to Cave of the Winds to tour the caves, did you know that there are some fun activities in addition to those caves?  For a small fee, you can purchase a bag of dirt for the kids to sift through that contain gemstones, arrowheads and more. Each of our kids got to pick a bag and then spent some time cleaning anything that looked promising. They loved discovering what was in each bag and said that this adventure absolutely had to be a part of our Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideIf you’d rather hang out outside of the caves, Caves of the Winds also offers above ground adventures.

  • Magic Lantern Theater
  • Via Ferrata
  • The Bat-A-Pult
  • Terror-Dactyl
  • Wind Walker Challenge Course (pictured below)

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideColorado Springs Family Adventure GuideColorado Wolf and Wildlife Center

The Colorado Wolf and Wildlife Center is a nonprofit sanctuary for wolves & wild canines offering guided tours & conservation programs. This reservations required facility features several different types of tours allowing you to get up close and personal. The Interactive Alpha Tour is about 20-25 minutes and features feeding the wolves along with a more detailed visit depending on how interactive the wolves are being.

Guides stress the importance of:

  • wolves, coyotes, and foxes on our eco-system
  • preservation and conservation of the forests, land, and water that supports wildlife, flora, and fauna for future generations to enjoy.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideDuring our 1 hour tour, we saw wolves, coyotes, fox, and learned about the history of the conservancy. What was interesting to learn is that the Colorado Wolf and Wildlife Center is one of very few sanctuaries in the United States certified by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). They actively participate in the Species Survival Program by providing a home to Mexican Grey Wolves and Swift Foxes, practice conservation every day at the sanctuary and participate in many community programs. We came away from this tour having a much greater respect for these beautiful animals and wanting to come back for another visit.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideManitou Springs Penny Arcade

The Manitou Springs Penny Arcade is a cool place to hang out and play old arcade games. You’ll find games like pinball, skeeball and more where you can spend hours getting lost in the game. The whole family will enjoy spending time in here, just playing games, laughing, and taking a walk down memory lane. In fact, there are over 400 games to check out in this indoor/outdoor space.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideThe kids enjoyed learning about the games we used to play as kids and then beating us at those games. Many of the games offer tickets to winners which can be collected and then redeemed for various prizes like candy and other toys. We all loved getting our fortune told by the many fortune teller machines available and getting to learn about each one of our astrological signs with the scrolls made famous in the 80’s.  We literally spent over four hours enjoying ourselves and went back the next day for even more fun.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideCheyenne Mountain Zoo

Founded in 1926, America’s only “mountain zoo,” the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo in Colorado Springs is a non-profit zoo (one of the nine out of 230) accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA)  relying solely on membership fees for operations rather than tax support. We spent several hours with the 750 animals, 170+ species living at 6800 feet above sea level. Our kids especially loved the unique enclosures which allow you to get a little more up close and personal with your favorite animals.

Open 365 days a year, the zoo offers a historic carousel, Mountaineer Sky Ride, gorgeous views of both the Pikes Peak Region and all of Colorado Springs, picnic areas, summer camps, special tours, zookeeper talks, educational programs, exciting conservation efforts and so much more.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideManitou Cliff Dwellings

The Manitou Cliff Dwellings are a group of relocated Anasazi ruins cliff dwellings and museums located just west of Colorado Springs, Colorado. Enthusiasts have gathered historical artifacts to help bring the dwellings to life since 1907 which help unravel the mystery of Native Americans.

Just five miles west of Colorado Springs, it is recommended to visit early morning or late afternoon to avoid those large summer crowds. We explored the outdoor dwellings with an audio tour using our smartphones followed by a nature walk through their gardens. There are 4 separate museums along with various gift shops to enjoy. Make certain to search online for coupons and discounts before visiting.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideNorth Pole – Santa's Workshop

Christmas lovers every unite as this enchanted Colorado family theme park, The North Pole – Santa’s Workshop features rides for the whole family and something for everyone. From the antique car ride to the Candy Cane Roller Coaster to meeting Santa and his elves, you’ll find 20+ family friendly, fun rides along with exciting entertainment options making it a solid choice for this Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide. We saw a really cool glass blower show, a fun magic show and played a little in the arcade during our visit. You can even visit Santa is his house plus catch the Elmer the Elf show all year long.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideAs an added bonus, parents can send letters from kids (through around December 10th) to get postcards and letters postmarked from the North Pole. How cool is that? Details can be found on their site.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideGarden of the Gods Horseback Riding with Academy Riding Stables

The Garden of the Gods is a public park right in Colorado Springs that was named a National Natural Landmark in 1971. Located at the base of Pikes Peak, our professionally guided 2.5 hour+ ride featured scenic vistas over the entire city of Colorado and amazing geological red rock formations over nature trails. Our Academy Riding Stables guides were true horse and nature lovers as they provided commentary on sights, history, flora, and fauna. This was such an amazing way to see one of the most beautiful areas of Colorado Springs.

You’ll find crowds no matter what time of day or year you visit. There is also free parking, lots of picnic areas, free admission to the Visitor & Nature Center and a really cool glass café overlooking Pikes Peak AND Garden of the Gods.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideColorado Springs Escape Room

If you ever want to know how well you work together as a family, then visit an escape room. The Colorado Springs Escape Room is rated #3 on Trip Advisor for Fun & Games in Colorado Springs and rightfully so. Each escape room is interactive, immersive and allows you the chance to escape by finding and decoding clues plus solving puzzles with the end goal of leaving the room.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide

Win or lose, you do get to learn all of the secrets of the room in the hour allotted to “escape.” While we didn’t win, we did learn about the strengths of each family member which did let us go on to win several escape rooms once we got back to our home town of Atlanta. This one visit turned into our new family go-to activity and was a must do in our Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide

Old Colorado City

Just like it sounds, Old Colorado City, founded in 1859 was the first capital of the Territory of Colorado as well as the early settlement center of the Pikes Peak region. In what used to be a town, is now a fun shopping spot and neighborhood within the city of Colorado Springs, Colorado. When old minors needed supplies, they came to Old Colorado City and since being added the National Register of Historic Places in 1982, there is plenty to shop, explore, and discover. Tour galleries, visit different artists at work, check out fine dining options, attend seasonal events, shop in quaint stores, see police on horseback and more in this city full of historic character and small town charm. No Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide is complete without a visit to this quaint part of the city.

Colorado Springs Family Adventure GuideWith picturesque views of exemplary red-sandstorm mountains, beautiful forest hiking trails, and an elevation of 6,035 feet, you won’t want to be anywhere else other than Colorado. A family adventure to Colorado Springs is a dream come true that will create cherished memories for years to come. We hope that you loved our Colorado Springs Family Adventure Guide.What are you waiting for? Book today. Happy travels!

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31 Comments Leave a Comment »

  1. Wow this looks like such an amazing area to go and explore! I love there is so much adventure to be had in the area, I love the ideas around the caves, that definitely calls out to me.

  2. Looks like Colorado Springs is a great summer time adventure! The Cave of the Winds alone would make my day.

  3. Amy

    Wow, this place looks amazing to vacation at! I love how scenic it is! Such a colorful vacation destination!

  4. Rosey

    A 7000 ft descent? What? What? What? 🙂 This does look like a great family adventure. I’d love to visit Colorado Springs.

  5. brianne

    What an amazing trip! I am loving your photos, and so need to get my family here! 

  6. Our son would go crazy for the zoo and wolf preserve in Colorado Springs. He’s very interested in animals and they’re survival.

  7. Colorado looks like a beautiful place to visit. I would love to go horseback riding in the mountains!

  8. Your photos are beautiful! I need to go to Colorado Springs one day. There’s so much to see and do. My daughter will love horseback riding.

  9. Okay, now this is on my list of places to go for vacation. I love the horseback riding. WE do that every chance we get.

  10. This looks like an incredible adventure! I want to visit Colorado one day so badly, my brother went to college there and I’m always drooling over the pictures.

  11. Rose Ann Sales

    Wow! This is such a great place to visit and very western. Loved the place with different staff to do especially that animals that we can see. Thank you for sharing this great post.

  12. I’ve never been to Colorado Springs before, but it sounds like there are a lot of things to do! I would love to visit someday!

  13. What an amazing summer trip! The Lantern Tour sounds spooky but also so much fun! 

  14. What a blast! Colorado is on my list to explore with the family. You gave me so many great trip ideas!

  15. What an amazing trip!  My husband attended the Colorado University and he has always wanted to take me to CO. 

  16. I can’t get over how beautiful Colorado is! I can tell by your pictures that you all had fun. I would love to take the family there.

  17. I’ve always wanted to visit Colorado. It’s so beautiful and there just seems to be so much to do. I’m sure we could find something we all love.

  18. Sherry

    Oh wow! There is so much to do in Colorado Springs. I would love to do the Interactive Alpha Tour. I just love animals. And the escape room.

  19. Amy

    I love how cute it looks around Christmas time! That now is way too cool! I know my kids would enjoy it!

  20. Colorado is such a gorgeous state. I would love to head to Colorado Springs sometime!

  21. I have always wanted to go west. We are in Florida and have yet to go out that way yet. IT’s on my list for sure.

  22. Kathy

    I have always wanted to go to Colorado Springs. It looks so beautiful there. You have such amazing photos here too. Makes me wish I were there now.

  23. Dawn Nieves

    I’ve never been here but now I want to go. It looks so beautiful and there’s so much to do. I’m definitely adding this to my list of places to visit. 

  24. katrina gehman

    i love colorado springs. looks like everyone had a blast! i can’t wait to go back and visit.

  25. Becca Wilson

    This looks like it would be such a fun trip. I would love to take my family on an adventure like this.

  26. I wish we were close to Colorado. It’s one of the states we’ve never stopped in. Passed through once, but never took time to enjoy the state.

  27. Leigh Anne Borders

    Colorado is on my bucket list. I hope we can get there one day. You have included alot of things I know we would enjoy doing.

  28. I’ve always wanted to take a trip to Colorado. Colorado Springs is such a beautiful place.

  29. That looks like such a beautiful place to vacation. We live in the Midwest, so we usually think beach when we go on vacation…but there are so many other parts of the country I want to see. I love all the mountains in Colorado and the horseback riding!!

  30. Colorado Springs is on our bucket list. I can only imagine how beautiful horseback riding is there. It looks like you guys had the best time!

  31. Reesa Lewandowski

    I’ve never been out this way! Gosh it is beautiful! I hope to one day!

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