Staff Picks

Top 10 Activities in Colorado Springs

Pinterest Icon
a rocky mountain with trees at the Garden of the Gods

With all there is to do in Colorado Springs– in any season– it’s particularly challenging to pick just a few of our favorite activities when the mountains wake to spring. But we’ve risen to the challenge, and this month, are giving you our Top 10 outdoor experiences that are just a short drive from Cheyenne Mountain Resort. We’re surrounded by incredible natural beauty and we want to make sure you get out there to see it. There’s something for every age– whether you’re a family full of nature lovers or a couple of thrill seekers, these are 10 of the best activities in our big backyard. 

1. Garden of the Gods

No visit to Colorado Springs would be complete without a visit to the Garden of the Gods. Even for returning visitors, this geological wonder’s giant red rock formations boggle the mind and dazzle the senses. The park and visitor’s center are open daily and free to the public. Take a self-guided tour around the park and simply stare in awe at nature’s glorious creations. If you’re in the mood for a fitness challenge, consider climbing to the top of one of the giant red crags. You wouldn’t be alone; adrenaline junkies and athletes do it all the time by enlisting expert guidance from Front Range Climbing. You can sign up for a climbing tour at the Garden of the Gods visitor’s center. Of course, we won’t blame you for wanting to keep your feet on the ground; pack a lunch to eat at one of the park’s picnic areas instead, or visit the park’s daytime café. 

2. North Cheyenne Cañon Park

North Cheyenne Cañon Park is only a few miles from Cheyenne Mountain Resort, and it’s one of Colorado Springs’ most beloved and historic parks. Even if you don’t have much time, you can take the Mt. Cutler Trail. It’s a moderately strenuous, two-mile round-trip hike that peaks on a foothill overlooking a waterfall and canyons. The park offers dozens of other hiking, biking, and horse-riding trails, as well.

3. Manitou Cliff Dwellings

Preserved under a protective, red sandstone overhang, Puebloan cliff dwellings dating back more than 800 years await the curious visitor in Manitou Springs. With permission to go inside and touch the ancient dwellings, visitors can interact with history and explore the site room by room on a self-guided tour. Mesa Verde, Colorado was the original site of the dwellings, but that area was deemed unsafe from looters at the time and so the dwellings were moved and reassembled in Manitou Springs. Builders used concrete rather than adobe to ensure the dwelling’s lasting structural integrity and visitors’ safety. Today, the Manitou Cliff Dwellings overlook the quaint village of Manitou Springs at the foot of Pikes Peak. Visitors are encouraged to take their time as they explore the preserve and consider what it may have been like when the public was first invited to the site back in 1907, not to mention when the Puebloan people themselves called the sandstone rooms home.

4. Pikes Peak

Rising 14,115 feet above sea level, Pikes Peak dominates the scenery of Colorado Springs from every vantage point. There are four ways up America’s Mountains, with the most unique being the “Pikes Peak or Bust” Jeep tour with Adventures Out West. For a more relaxing journey, the recently re-opened Broadmoor Manitou and Pikes Peak Cog Railway is the most hands-off and family-friendly option. Book your tickets in advance for this four-hour, nine-mile journey up to the summit, rumbling along Ruxton Creek, past Minnehaha Falls, through Deer Park and much more! You can also set your own pace by driving up Pikes Peak in your car or hiking the 12-mile Barr Trail with 7,900 feet of sweat-inducing vertical gain. The view is worth the effort, no matter how you choose to climb.

5. Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

You don’t need to be a child to enjoy a zoo — not to mention the award-winning Cheyenne Mountain Zoo! This unique zoo experience guarantees genuine animal interactions. At its heart is one of the largest giraffe herds in North America, where you can view our long-necked friends face-to-face. The Zoo’s newest exhibit, Water’s Edge: Africa, displays impressive homes for Nile Hippos and African Penguins. Seeing the beautifully taken care of animals inspires thoughts of conservation and environmental education as well as creating life-long family memories.

6. United States Olympic & Paralympic Museum

A dark horse on our list, but a worthy activity nonetheless! Colorado Springs is home to the flagship U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Training Center, and there’s a fabulous museum here, too. Located downtown, this museum is buzzing with modern technology, interactive exhibits and a rich history that celebrates mankind’s greatest athletic achievements. It’s guaranteed to awe and inspire. You can also tour the Olympic Training Center where our world-class athletes compete.

7. The Cave of the Winds

Down the road from the Manitou cliff dwellings are another rich, educational experience and an absolute local favorite! It’ll be hard to leave the beautiful red rock vistas and enter the pitch-dark chambers of the vast cave system, but once inside the tour will boast geological wonders and unique-to-Colorado history you won’t believe. After exiting the mouth of the cave, you’ll have a few activities to choose between whether it’s the Wind Walker Challenge Course, Bat-A-Pult zipline ride, or the climbing wall. If you’re brave enough to tip over the edge of the cliff on the Terror-Dactyl plunge, make sure to leave your sunglasses with the attendant; you’d be sure to lose them on the 100-mile-per-hour drop!

8. Pete Dye’s First Golf Course West of the Mississippi

Number eight on our list is right on our own property: our very own Golf Course and the first West of the Mississippi where it’s said you can ‘re-imagine what it’s like to play golf.’ Surrounded by the jagged peaks of the Rocky Mountains and the glassy waters of the Curr Reservoir, Cheyenne Mountain Resort’s Pete Dye-designed golf course was created to challenge golfers of all skill levels. So grab your clubs and rise to the occasion! This private golf course is only available for Resort hotel guests and members of the Country Club of Colorado. 

9. Colorado Springs Eateries

If you’re going to take on all of these activities, you’ve got to refuel! Fortunately, one thing Colorado Springs locals all agree on is that our city’s dining experience is on par with nature; it’s delicious. If you’re looking for unique-to-Colorado Springs dining experiences take a visit to Ivywild School, The Carter Payne, or The Rabbit Hole. These locations boast fabulous menus in spaces that are likely to surprise you. Other mouth-watering highlights for Colorado Springs include Sushi O Sushi, Colorado Mountain Brewery, the Gates Grille, and Elevations Drinks + Eats.

10. Cheyenne Mountain Resort

Finally, when you’ve had your fill of adventure and are ready for rest, come back to the most relaxing and luxurious activity of your day by settling into Cheyenne Mountain Resort, your home away from home in Colorado Springs. With five pools, two hot tubs, and a whole beach-front lake there is plenty of space to soak in the day, and get a good night’s sleep. Not to mention the secret sanctuary that is Alluvia Spa and Wellness Retreat, the best full-service spa oasis in Colorado Springs.

Of course, this is just our shortlist of fun things to do in Colorado Springs. There’s so much more! And we’d be thrilled to host you and share more insider tips when you check in at Cheyenne Mountain Resort. Make your reservation today!