There’s nothing quite like spending a warm summer afternoon with some freshly-packed food and a view. Gather up the sandwich making materials and pop a squat at these beautiful picnic spots in, and outside the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park.
The Elkhorn Loop is just outside the Bridge and Park
Outside the Bridge & Park entrance, the Elkhorn Loop picnic area and overlook provides a glimpse at our beautiful bridge.
Outside Gate Pavillion
Enjoy a bit of shade from the Colorado sun from these pavilions, also outside our park entrance.
Inside the Park (must pay admission).
Near the Tommy Knocker Play Land
Cool off with some Dippin’ Dots ice cream before or after watching the kiddos climb, crawl and slide their way through our play land, included with admission.
While this area is reserved for special events, the public is free to take advantage of the tables and shade when no one has booked the space. Enjoy the sounds of live entertainment in the background during the summer months.
Cliff Side Patio
Stay on the north side before crossing the bridge and enjoy snacks while watching others cross the 1,270 wooden planks of the Bridge to the south side.
Cañon City is a great choice for a romantic weekend escape. Close to Cripple Creek, Penrose, Florence, Victor and Colorado Springs, there are a lot of things to do with that special someone while in Fremont County. Enjoy the scenic drive along Highway 50 and the stunning views of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains against those famous Colorado blue skies.
Make a stop at the historic Abbey. Visitors are welcome to take a self-guided tour of the monastery year-round or enjoy a guided tour June through September. Also on the grounds of the monastery is the Winery at Holy Cross Abbey, which was just awarded the 2015 Gold Medal Champion by the Tasters Guild. Sip and swirl samples of these delicious, award-winning Colorado wines. The tasting room is open seven days a week and a bottle is the perfect memento to remember the trip.
Stroll through downtown Cañon City, listed on the Registrar of National Historical Places. It’s also one of the largest intact historical districts in the state. Nearby, Florence’s downtown is known as the Antiquing Capital of Southern Colorado.
Nosh on some delicious lunch or dinner at Cafe 1230, located inside the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park’s new Visitor Center. Gaze out the glass windows at the stunning Royal Gorge next to a cozy fireplace. Afterwards walk hand-in-hand across the highest suspension bridge in North America. It’s the perfect place to steal a kiss and get a photo opp.
Lodging options range anywhere from quaint Bed & Breakfasts and campgrounds to the Hampton Inn & Suites. Other eateries offer pizza to French fare.
While of course warmer temperatures, Colorado sunshine, and some of the best whitewater rafting in the country is popular in the spring and summer months, there’s just as much fun to be had year-round in the Royal Gorge region. Make a stop at these spots, even in the winter months.
Colorado Prison Museum – Step into this museum that was once the area’s women’s correctional facility. Built in 1935, this historic space explores the history of prison life dating back to territorial days.
Royal Gorge Bridge & Park – Weather permitting, we are open nearly almost every single day of the year! Some rides are subject to the mercy of mother nature but guests can enjoy our indoor Cafe 1230, Visitor Center, a jaunt across the bridge and our historical theater and plaza, even on extra chilly days.
The Winery at Holy Cross Abbey – Whether you’re looking for a unique gift, or want to taste-test onsite Abbey’s impressive architecture.
Royal Gorge Dinosaur Experience – One of the region’s newest attractions offers a ropes course, indoor museum, and guided tours. With fossil casts and various exhibits, it’s easy to uncover the prehistoric history of Canon City.
Royal Gorge Museum & History Center – Admission is free to those wishing to learn more about the city’s past. From galleries to Fremont County’s movie history, there’s a lot to learn in Canon City’s Municipal Building.
Cañon City is one of the most well-known fossil areas in the U.S. Packed full of prehistoric history, fossils and insight as to the creatures that roamed this region of Colorado millions of years ago. Here are just a few the stops to dig up a little dinosaur fun before, or after a visit to the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park.
Skyline Drive – Drive your passenger car on a road that ascends and follows the top of a high razorback ridge overlooking Cañon City. Enter this one-way, paved road from US 50 on the west edge of town. Soon the landscape falls away hundreds of feet on both sides, which is just a bit hair-raising! Cañon City spreads out on both sides of you and there are pullouts to enjoy the view. Towards the top, there is an interpretive display to help you see dinosaur tracks embedded in the cliff face.
Garden Park Fossil Area – Garden Park Fossil Area is one of the most productive and historically important locations in the United States for the study of Late Jurassic dinosaurs. Fossil hunters and scientists from across the country have dug in Garden Park since 1877, when the nearby town of Cañon City, Colorado was still young. Important discoveries include the first complete skeleton of Allosaurus, some of the most complete Stegosaurus skeletons, as well as the first known remains of dinosaurs like Camarasaurus, Ceratosaurus, and Diplodocus.
Royal Gorge Regional Museum & History Center – The museum offers a rich look into the history of the region and its people. Many of the items on display at the former Dinosaur Resource Center, which closed a few years back, now call the museum home. Enjoy an array of prehistoric related items including the well-known replica dinosaurs.
Posted in Adventure, Family Friendly, Royal Gorge Region | Tagged Colorado Dinosaur, Colorado Fossils, Colorado Vacation, Dinosaur Tracks, Family Travel, Prehistoric, Skyline Drive
There’s so much for families and little ones to enjoy at the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park, including our new Junior Ranger program. Make sure to grab a children’s activity sheet, included in the purchase of a 4-11 year old ticket. The sheet helps navigate the entire Royal Gorge Bridge & Park. When complete, turn it in at the Express Lane inside the Visitor Center to receive an authentic Junior Ranger Badge that’s perfect for show and tell.
Who says learning can’t be fun?
Kiddos of all ages will enjoy a trip to the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park. They’ll surely light right up when they hop aboard the Silver Rock Railway mini train. Included with admission, the one mile route on these open-air cars is a chance for the whole family to sit back before taking on the day. Be sure to hit the restrooms just inside the new Visitor Center before enjoying all the rides and adventure.
Stop by the Waterclock for a lesson on time and mechanics before climbing inside the new aerial gondolas for a scenic trip across the Royal Gorge, also included with admission. Stroll over to the Plaza Theater for some history on the man-made wonder of the bridge and history of the region. Throughout the summer months, talented aerial performer April Vollm and the magic of Christian Augustine mesmerize.
There’s no better way to stretch growing legs and burn off some energy than on the new giant Children’s Playland. Laughter and games are guaranteed on this two-story structure with ropes, slides, nets and even a maze. For a small fee, a great memento can be created inside the wax hand shop. The splashpad is a great way to cool down on a warm summer day. Everyone can pick their favorite horse on the beautiful new vintage-style carousel for 360 degree views.
Once they’ve had their fill, cross the Bridge on the way back to the Visitor Center. Make sure they find their state flag and plaque to grab a necessary snapshot for the scrapbook. Too tired to make the trek back? Grab the people mover back to homebase. There’s plenty to keep everyone busy and dont forget, littles under three get in for free. Discounted admission can also be purchased online prior to arriving.
Posted in Family Friendly, Rides & Attractions | Tagged Aerial Gondolas, children’s attractions, Colorado Day Trips, Colorado Vacation, Family Travel, Family Travel in Colorado, Family Vacation, mini train, play area,royal gorge, Things to do in Colorado