Attractions

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Mallard BroodAlamosa National Wildlife Refuge – It’s one of three national wildlife refuges in the Valley that provide crucial feeding, resting, and breeding habitat for over 200 bird species and other wildlife. These diverse habitats support a multitude of songbirds, water birds, waterfowl, raptors, mule deer, beaver, and coyotes.  9383 El Rancho Lane Alamosa, CO 81101 • (719) 589-4021 • alamosa@fws.gov

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baca wildlife refugeBaca National Wildlife Refuge – The purpose of the 92,500 acre Baca National Wildlife Refuge is to restore, enhance, and maintain habitats for wildlife plans and fish species that are native to the San Luis Valley.  Crestone, CO 81131 • (719) 589-4021.

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Bachelor LoopBachelor Historic Tour – This 17-mile driving tour loops through Creede’s historic silver mining district and ghost towns.

 

 

 

blanca wetlandsBlanca Wetlands – The 8,757 acre wetlands has more than 200 ponds, marshes and playas.  Blanca Wetlands Recreation Area provides excellent habitat for large numbers of waterfowl.  A complex trail system winds through the area, creating a wonderful wildlife viewing experience for visitors.  Directions: From Alamosa, travel east on US-160, then turn left onto Road S116, which becomes Tyler Avenue. Turn right onto Twomile Road/Road 2S/9th Street and follow the signs for.

 

BLMBLM – San Luis Valley Field Office – Penitente Canyon Special Recreation Management Area, Zapata Falls Special Recreation Management Area, Blanca Wetlands, Rio Grande Natural Area, Stone Quarry, Limekiln trail system.  1313 East Hwy. 160 Monte Vista, CO 81144 • (719) 849-3149.

 

 

CHSCreede Historical Society Museum – Gunfighters, Gamblers, Conmen, Miners and Ranchers.  Basham Park Main Street Creede, CO 81130 • (719) 658-2004.

 

 

 

 

sad fishColorado Gators Reptile Park – is one of the Valley’s most unique attractions!  The Park originally began in 1977 as a fish farm, using geothermal water to grow tilapia for human consumption.  All of the tilapia are sold live, but of course not all of the fish live to go to market; so in 1987 the owners purchased 100 baby alligators to eat the dead fish.  Soon people found out about the alligators and wanted to see them so in 1990 Colorado Gators opened to the public.  Before long people were dropping off their unwanted/illegal pet alligators.  Today Colorado Gators is an alligator and reptile rescue, home to 300 alligators, crocodiles, caiman, and hundreds of other reptiles including giant pythons, rattlesnakes, huge lizards, turtles and tortoises, and so much more!  9162 CR 9 N Mosca, CO 81146 • (719) 378-2612 • Facebook

 

CCMConejos County Museum Land of the Utes, Spanish, Mexicans.  

5045 US Hwy 285 Antonito, CO 81120 • (800) 835-1098.

 

 

 


Creede Repertory Theatre
 
– The Theatre is a professional repertory theater company located in the beautiful San Juan Mountains northwest of Alamosa.  Winner of numerous statewide and national awards, CRT has become recognized as one of our nation’s top theaters.  For 52 seasons, CRT has produced the best of contemporary and classic theater from the end of May through September, as well as developing new plays by nationally-acclaimed playwrights.  Each year, CRT produces 7-10 plays in rotation on two stages – the Mainstage Theatre and the Ruth Humphreys Brown Theatre. 124 N Main Street Creede, CO 81130 • (719) 658-2540

 

CHMCrestone Historical Museum – Mining, Land Grants and Spirituality

108 West Galena Avenue Crestone, CO 81131 • (719) 256-4313.

 

 

 

Cumbres and ToltecCumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad – USA Today – 10 Best “Reader’s Choice” Award.  Best Train in America.  C&TC is a proud remnant of the spirit that won the West  and is the most spectacular example of steam era mountain railroading in North America. In recognition for its place in our national history it was awarded National Historic Landmark Designation in 2013.  Built in 1880, it was part of the San Juan Extension of the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad, with tracks running from Denver through the ore-rich Rocky Mountains to Silverton, Colorado and Santa Fe, New Mexico. Its path through steep passes and deep gorges is the stuff of adventure novels and was an engineering feat for the time. The decline of silver mining in the 1890s ended the railroad’s vital role.  Today the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad fulfills another important mission – taking passengers on the ride of a lifetime, connecting Colorado and New Mexico, and allowing us to see where the deer and the antelope play.  5234B US HWY 285 Antonito, CO 81120 • (888) 286-2737  Facebook 

 

ElephantRocksElephant Rocks – The Elephant Rocks are part of the Fish Canyon tuff; volcanic ash welded together over time and has been determined to be at least 28.8 million years old. Elephant Rocks are a weathered remnant of the Fish Canyon tuff, dating from the late Oligocene period roughly 28 million years ago. An interesting mixture of short grass prairie and foothill shrub land vegetation occurs on the site.  

 

Fit Discover – The San Luis Valley is the home of Fit Discover. As such, we endeavor to help more and more people outside of the area, as well as locals, discover its many treasures. Highlighting routes, providing guided tours of them and creating events that draw larger numbers of people will benefit our area economically. Jobs will be provided, other businesses will start, new money will be spent. Go outside today and fit discover all that the San Luis Valley has to offer!  716 Murphy Dr, Alamosa, CO 81101, 719-660-5091, Facebook.

 

FGMFort Garland Museum – The Civil War in the West, Buffalo Soldiers and Archaeology at the Fort – we’re more interesting than you think!  Fort Garland served the United States for 25 years, ushering in an era that forever changed the West. A military post from 1858 to 1883, the primary purpose of the fort was to keep the peace between the settlers and the indigenous people. Housed in five of the original buildings, the museum features exhibits that tell the stories of the fort, the people and the events of that era. Fort Garland Museum is a Community Museum of History Colorado.

29477 Highway 159, POB 368, Fort Garland, CO 81133 • (719) 379-3512; anita.mcdaniel@state.co.us

 

Karen JohnsonPounds 2Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve – The tallest dunes in North America are the centerpiece in a diverse landscape of grasslands, wetlands, conifer and aspen forests, alpine lakes, and tundra. Experience this diversity through hiking, sand sledding, splashing in Medano Creek, wildlife watching, and more!  11999 State Highway 150 Mosca, CO 81146 • (719) 378-6300.

 

 

HHMHazard House Museum – Farming, Ranching, and Banking!

807 Pitkin Avenue Saguache, CO 81149 • (719) 655-2557

 

 

 

HVHMHomelake Veterans’ History Museum – Old soldiers remembered!

3749 Sherman Avenue Homelake, CO 81135 • (719) 580-0023.

 

 

 

JDMJack Dempsey Museum – Birthplace of the World’s Greatest Heavyweight Boxer.

412 Main Street Manassa, CO 81141 • (719) 843-5207.

 

 

 

Joyful Journey Hot Springs Many come here for the curative powers of the healing water, others for the clean peaceful energy that seems to permeate the area. Our hot springs water is 100% artesian mineral water. Our Spa offers a wide variety of treatments: deep tissue massage, hot stone therapy, natural body wraps, and more.  28640 CR 58 EE, Moffat, CO 81143 • (719) 265-4328

 

los caminosLos Caminos Antiguos Scenic Byway – Translated, the name means “the ancient roads” – aptly named for its tour through 16th century Spanish territorial expansion at its northernmost boundary.  The route winds along the Upper Rio Grande region through some of Colorado’s oldest towns, surrounded by panoramic views in all directions. Begin your journey in Alamosa and follow the Los Caminos through three of our country’s most intriguing counties.

 

LBMLuther Bean Museum  – Local and regional history, art, and artifacts!

Adams State University, Luther Bean Museum, Richardson Hall #2-600 208 Edgemont Blvd Alamosa, CO 81102 • (719) 587-7151.

 

 

 

MHSMMonte Vista History Museum – Potatoes, broncos and sheep, Oh My!

110 Jefferson Street Monte Vista, CO 81144 • (719) 849-9320.

 

 

 

landing_stalksMonte Vista National Wildlife Refuge – is one of three national wildlife refuges in the Valley that provides crucial feeding, resting, and breeding habitat for over 200 bird species and other wildlife.  The Refuge’s wetlands are artificially made and intensively managed to provide habitat for a variety of waterfowl and other water birds, egrets, and herons.  6120 Hwy 15 Monte Vista, CO 81144 • (719) 589-4021.

 

 

natural archNatural Arch – was formed by the action of wind, rain and weather on a volcanic dome.  From Del Norte, travel 3 miles north east on Highway 112. Turn left on to County Road 38A, travel 5 1/2 miles north to Forest Road 660, travel about 4 miles to Forest Road 659, travel north about 1 1/2 miles to the Natural Arch.

 

 

Old Spanish TrailOld Spanish Trail Association, La Vereda Del Norte Chapter – Our “Outdoor Museum”  Hwy 160 between Monte Vista and Del Norte • (719) 873-5239 • kennruth@gojade.org 

 

 

 

Our Lady of Guadalupe Church – is the oldest church in Colorado.  305 West 8th Avenue, Antonito, CO 81120 • (719)376-5985

 

Pathfinders4x4 – Discover the real Colorado!  Where true historical heritage comes to life.  Get off the beaten path and explore our mountains like never before.  THIS IS NOT FOR YOU if you are looking for a mild and gimmicky tourist experience.  On the other hand, if you want to discover the REAL Colorado backcountry and explore historical mining sites and mountain passes via a rough four wheel drive road, THIS IS IT!  We offer Jeep rentals, Jeep tours and an Off-Road Driving School.  info@pathfinders4x4.com  719-496-6288

 

penitentePenitente Canyon – is an internationally recognized climbing area, offering more than 300 incredible sport climbing routes. South-facing routes can be climbed year-round. Numerous Trails are also available for your enjoyment within Penitente Canyon. Directions:  From Del Norte travel northwest on Highway 112 to road 38A turn north, stay on 38 A until you see signs for Penitente Canyon, about 8 miles. (719) 852-7074

 

 

Pike’s Stockade – is the site where explorer Lt. Zebulon Montgomery Pike constructed a stockade (fortification) to protect his exploration soldiers from the harsh winter elements of the San Luis Valley in Colorado. The stockade was constructed in 1807, on territory claimed by the Spanish government. He encountered Spanish dragoons and was captured and escorted to Chihuahua, New Spain (now Mexico).  Sanford, CO 81151 • (719) 379-3512 

 

RGCMRio Grande County Museum and Cultural Center – Rio Grande County Museum offers a pathway into the history and culture of the area. The Native Americans, the mountain men and trappers, the settlers from New Mexico with the Mexican land grants, gold seekers, farmers, ranchers, cowboys, merchants and those who came for the adventure are represented in exhibits. The stories of John C. Fremont and the Fourth Expedition and Col. Pfeiffer, captain in the Army with Kit Carson, are told.  The history of Rio Grande County can be experienced with walking tours through the towns of Del Norte and Monte Vista starting with a visit to the Museum.  Summertime brings seasonal art shows of local artists with a variety of art styles shown.  The Museum also serves as an information center for the Del Norte area where maps, brochures and tourist information are available.  Summer hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 to 4:00 and Saturday 10:00 to 3:00.  580 Oak Street Del Norte, CO 81132 • (719)657-2847 County tourism: riograndecountry.org

 

Rio Grande Scenic Railroad  – The Rio Grande Scenic Railroad in Alamosa provides scenic excursions from May through October and trains to mountaintop concerts June through September. Ride in restored, vintage rail cars to see top western and folk artists at 9400 feet in the Rockies.  The Train to Christmas Town, a special holiday train operates select dates in November and December. 810 State Ave Alamosa, CO 81101 • (877) 726-7245 

 

RGMRyan Geological Museum @ ASU – Earth’s History in the San Luis Valley!

210 Edgemont Blvd Porter Hall, 1st Floor north end Adams State University, Alamosa, CO 81101 • (719) 587-7921

 

 

 

SdCHCSangre de Cristo Heritage Center – Oldest Town In Colorado – “Where Colorado Began”

401 Church Place San Luis, CO 81152 • (719) 672-0999.

 

 

 

SCMSaguache County Museum – Water at the Blue Earth (Sa-gua’-gua’-chi-pa)  

439 8th St (US Hwy 285) Saguache, CO 81149 (719) 655-2557

 

 

 

Saguache Today – Saguache news and information serving Saguache County, Colorado  info@saguachetoday.com  719-293-5193 and Facebook

 

 

Sand Dunes Recreation – We focus on providing a family-friendly atmosphere that is open year-round!  We have a large pool that sits right around 98 degrees year round and a 25 person hot tub that we keep at 107 degrees.  Sand Dunes Recreation also offers our on-site restaurant, Mile Deep Grille, with a variety of options for every taste.   Lodging on site!  1991 County Road 63 Hooper, CO 81136 • (719) 378-2807

 

SMSanford Museum – 778 Main St Sanford, CO 81151 • (719) 274-4382

 

 

 

 

SLVMSan Luis Valley Museum – Families, Stories, History! Learn about Valley history through various exhibits. Visit our outside mural depicting historical people and moments in history. After April 9th 2017 see Pike’s 1810 journal and read what he had to say about his journals and the people he encountered. Watch for, on Facebook and our website for special programs, exhibits and events. Our staff will be pleased to assist you in any research you are working on. Visit us and see all that we have to offer! Gift Shop.  Tours upon request.  401 Hunt Ave, POB 1593, Alamosa, CO 81101  •  719-587-0667

 

Saguache MuseumAMuseum’s of the San Luis Valley – Check out to one of our 20 museum members: Conejos County Museum, Creede History Museum, Creede Underground Mining Museum, Crestone Historical Museum, Fort Garland Museum, Francisco Fort Museum, Hazard House Museum, Hinsdale County Museum, Homelake Veterans’ History Museum, Jack Dempsey Museum, Luther Bean Museum, Monte Vista History Museum, Old Spanish Trail, Rio Grande County Museum, Ryan Geological Museum, Saguache County Museum, Sanford Museum, San Luis Museum, San Luis Valley Museum-Alamosa,  Transportation of the West Museum.  

Walk in the footsteps of such prominent figures as: Chief Ouray, Chipeta, Buffalo Soldiers, Alferd Packer, Bob Ford, Jack Dempsey, Kit Carson, Fremont, Pike, Dario Gallegos, and Eppie Archuleta; the cultures of the Utes, Spanish, Germans, Japanese, Hispanics. An area steeped in Colorado’s beginnings that include the oldest town, church, parish, Veterans Home, standing fort, and more! Visit a museum today!  SLV Museum Association: Your pathway to the history of the San Luis Valley© • (719) 580-4346 • museumtrail@yahoo.com

 

Clear Creek FallsSilver Thread Scenic Byway – The Byway links Creede, Lake City, and South Fork via Hwy 149. This road has been designated as a U.S. Forest Service National Scenic Byway as well as a Colorado State Scenic and Historic Byway. The Silver Thread name alludes not only to the rich veins of silver ore that lured miners and settlers, but also to the route as it weaves along spectacular river canyons and climbs over the Continental Divide via Spring Creek Pass.

 

Jeremy Elliott 25Shrine of the Stations of the Cross – are a series of bronze statues that depict the last hours of Christ’s life—his judgment, sufferings, and death.   San Luis, CO 81152

 

 

 

South Fork/Silver Thread Visitor’s Center – Easter Egg Hunt. Over a thousand eggs, filled with candy ,cash, and toys. Games, Hot Chocolate and cookies. Rickles park in South Fork 1pm to 3pm , Saturday before Easter. Fourth of July Celebration on the 3rd of July. Parade 9am, Fishfry 10am to 1pm, ice cream social 2pm, Kiwanis BBQ 4pm, Rodeo 6:30pm, fireworks 9:20pm. Loggers Day Festival July 14,15,& 16, Fun, Food, Shopping, Lumber Jacks and Jills competing for cash prizes. Axe throwing, chainsaw events, crosscut saw events, log hurling, log rolling, games for the kids, A giant pile of sawdust with money hidden in it. Mushroom Foray, August TBD Rhythms on the Rio August 4,5,& 6, Enjoy a variety of music along the banks of the Rio Grande River.  28 Silver Thread Lane, South Fork, CO  719-873-5512.


SummitvilleSummitville Gold Mines
 – Located 11,000ft above sea level Summitville has had a rough 100-year history, which has given forth more than 7.5 million dollars, worth of gold silver lead and copper. During its hay days this town and mine had six processing mills, stores, saloons, boarding houses, homes, a school and slaughter house. However, today the site is home to a multi-million dollar cleanup; resulting from high levels of cyanide and arsenic in the soil, which was once used to extract the gold. Due to health dangers there is no direct access to the site, but visitors can still see the remnants of the mine and the buildings.  Directions:  25 miles south of Del Norte, CO near North Mountain Peak.

 

State Wildlife Areas:  http://cpw.state.co.us/placestogo/parks/Pages/WildlifeAreaMap.aspx

Alberta Park Reservoir  Located next to Wolf Creek Ski Area. From South Fork, go 18 miles west on US Hwy. 160 to Wolf Creek Ski Area; then drive south through the ski parking area and continue 1.7 miles on USFS Rd 391.

Beaver Creek Reservoir  From South Fork, go 2 miles southwest on HWY 160 to USFS Rd 360 (Beaver Creek Rd); then 6 miles south.

Big Meadows Reservoir  From South Fork, go 11 miles west on HWY 160 to USFS Rd 410; then two-miles west.

Cochetopa  Saguache

Coller  From South Fork, go 4.5 miles west on HWY 149.

Conejos River  From Antonito, go 15 miles west on HWY 17 to Conejos Ranch. Fishing easements intermitten for next 16 miles and are signed.

Creede  From Creede, go 1.75 miles southeast on Colorado Hwy 149. Turn west on CR 801A (dirt road) and travel approximately .5 miles.

Dome Lakes  Saguache

Higel From Alamosa, approximately 9.5 mi. Northwest on HWY 160 (3/4 mi. East of Parma) take 3 South Road 3 mi. East, turn North onto access road at sign, follow signs to parking area.

Homelake  From Monte Vista, go 1.5 miles east on Sherman Avenue

Hot Creek  From Monte Vista, go 20 miles south on HWY 15 to access road; then 5 miles west.

La Jara  From Capulin, go 11 miles southwest on D Road.

La Jara Reservoir  From Monte Vista, go 20 miles south on HWY 15 to access road; then 10 miles west.

Mountain Home Reservoir  From Ft. Garland, go 2.5 miles east on HWY 160 to Trinchera Ranch Road; then 2 miles south to Icehouse Road; then 1 mile west to north entrance. Or, continue 1 mile south to south entrance.

Playa Blanca  West from Alamosa on HWY 160 to CR 160 South; 1 mile south to parking areas.

Rio Grande  From Monte Vista, go three miles east on Sherman Avenue.

Rio Grande River  From Del Norte, take HWY 160 west for approximately six miles to County Road 17. Turn north (right) towards the bridge. The designated parking area is east of the road and south of the bridge.

Russell Lakes  From Saguache, go 9 miles south on HWY 285 to CRR; then 1.5 miles east.

Sanchez Reservoir  From the town of San Luis, take 4th Street (also known as Hwy 152) southeast. At the edge of town the road name changes to P6. Follow it to the junction of Rd. 21 and turn south. There is a sign there showing the direction to Sanchez Reservoir. Continue south on Rd. 21 until you come to Sanchez Reservoir which will be on the west side of the road.

San Luis Lakes From Alamosa, go 13 miles north HWY 17 to Sand Dunes Monument Rd; then 8 miles east to access road; then 1/4 mile north.

Sego Springs  From Manassa, go 3 miles east on HWY 142 to access road; then 1/2 mile north.

Shriver-Wright  From Monte Vista, go three miles east on Sherman Avenue.

Smith Reservoir  From Blanca, go .5 mile west on HWY 160 to Airport Rd; then 4 miles south to SWA.

Terrace Reservoir  From Monte Vista, go 12 miles south on HWY 15 to USFS Rd 250, then 9 miles west.

Trujillo Meadows  From Antonio, go 36 miles west on HWY 17 to USFS Rd 118; then 4 miles north.

 

Steam Train Hotel – Welcome to the Steam Train Hotel.  Enjoy a laid-back, relaxing vacation and save 15% on train tickets! Located in Antonito, Colorado, 6 miles north of the New Mexico border on Highway 285 Clean, Comfortable & Convenient and open all year. The Steam Train Hotel in Antonito, Colorado, is located just 3 minutes from the Cumbres & Toltec Train Depot. The Hotel with an Inn Touch! You are sure to find a room that you will enjoy staying in at our historic hotel. There are even two rooms that are reputed to be haunted. Ask if you are so inclined! Additionally book with us and save 15% on the purchase price of your tickets on the Cumbres & Toltec Rail Road–up to a $30 savings per ticket! The Cumbres & Toltec 2017 Season opens May 27. Book Now!  402 Main Street, Antonito, CO 81120, 719-298-8908, steamtrainhotel1911@gmail.com

 

TWMTransportation of the West Museum – Planes, Trains and a Buggy!  

916 First Avenue Monte Vista, CO 81144 • (719) 849-9320 

 

 

 

CUMMUnderground Mining Museum – An underground museum! Summer hours:  9am-5pm daily.  Winter hours: 10am-3pm, Tues-Saturday.  Admission: Senior (60+) $6.00, Adults (12-59) $8, Kids (6-11) $5.00.  Guided tours at: 10am & 3pm, $15 per person. Located at: #9 USFS Rd. 503, Creede, CO 81130 • 719-658-0811.

 

 

The Historic Ute Theatre & Cultural Arts Center has been in operation since 1929. It seats over 150.  The theatre is also available for lease for parties, and events!   410 4th Street Saguache, CO 81149 • (970) 596-4521

 

WheelerWheeler Geologic Area  – Eruptions from massive volcanoes, like the Creede Caldera, were followed by tremendous flows of ash and mud. As the layers of volcanic debris cooled, crystals and mineral ores collected into veins and pockets to create extensive mineral fields. This era of mountain building laid down the volcanic tuff that has become the Wheeler Geologic Area. Water erosion then carved a starkly impressive landscape of fragile capstones, needles, and spires. The Creede office of the U.S. Forest Service (719-658-2556) administers this remote landmark. 

 

Wolf Creek Ski Area  – “The Most Snow in Colorado”.  Spanning across a high alpine ridge, Wolf Creek receives an annual snowfall of 430 inches of natural powder and is known for its incredible hike-to terrain.  Visitors can enjoy skiing and snowboarding on 1600 acres of terrain for beginner and experienced downhill skiers, and snowboarders.  There are 5 lifts, 50 trails, and plenty of back-country for the adventurous.  20% of the slopes are beginner, 35% intermediate, 25% advanced, and 20% expert.  US HWY 160 South Fork, CO 81154 •  (970) 264-5639

 

ZFZapata Falls – This popular short hike is located south of the Sand Dunes National Park, off of Highway 150. It is a great option for summer afternoons when temperatures are hot. 

 

 

 

TLC Ranch & UFO Watchtower LLC is located in the San Luis Valley on Hwy 17 north of Hooper and is the only Watch Tower of its kind in the world. Visitors will enjoy the tour of the Tower, the Healing Garden and pictures and UFO stories. Documented UFO sightings in the Valley go back to the 1700s. Since its creation in 2000, there have been 88 sightings from the Tower. this is an out of this world experience! 2502 County Rd 61 Hooper, CO 81136 (2 miles north of Hooper on HWY 17) • (719) 378-2296

 

Valley View Hot Springs  Clothing Optional 64393 County Road GG Moffat, CO 81143 • (719) 256-4315

 

Zapata Ranch Bison Tours   A knowledgeable staff member will guide you through the 50,000 acre portion of the ranch known as the Medano, with the aim of getting you up close to our herd of 2,000 North American Plains bison.  The tour is designed to provide you with opportunities to view and photograph the bison; but, more uniquely, it is designed to describe the ways in which we manage this “conservation herd.”  5305 State Hwy 150 Mosca, Colorado 81146 •  (719) 378-2356