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Colorado Springs, CO

What to Do in Colorado Springsflickr/Jasperdo
Visit Garden of the Gods Park (1805 30th St.) to be inspired by the rustic beauty of majestic sandstone pinnacles jutting skyward. Interesting things to do include taking a free naturalist-guided walk to learn about wildflowers, snakes and other interesting tidbits about Colorado, or going it alone on one of the easy-to-moderate scenic trails. Don't leave your camera behind.

Take a scenic drive to Pikes Peak. Travel 19 miles along the twisting Pikes Peak Highway to the summit, where you'll be rewarded with a magnificent panorama. If you would rather not take on the dizzying mountain route yourself, leave the driving to someone else by taking a bus tour to the top.

Spend some time at The Broadmoor (1 Lake Ave.). The resort, which opened in 1918 as the “Grand Dame of the Rockies,” is nestled in a valley with a spectacular mountain backdrop. Take a guided trail ride at the Broadmoor Stables, relax with a spa treatment, peruse the boutiques or dine in one of the property's restaurants.

The most stunning structure at the U.S. Air Force Academy (2306 Academy Dr.) is the Cadet Chapel, with its 17 futuristic glass and silver spires soaring skyward. You can tour the chapel, along with the Honor Court, Field House, Arnold Hall and other sites; maps are available at the academy's visitor center, which also presents a movie showcasing the cadet experience.

Explore underground wonders at Cave of the Winds (100 Cave of the Winds Rd.) in nearby Manitou Springs. Guides lead you through the winding passageways either by flashlight or hand-held lantern, depending on the tour. Either way, you'll be mesmerized by the play of light on the jagged geological formations and will even experience total cave darkness.

Hunt for souvenirs in the Old Colorado City historic district (W. Colorado Ave. & S. 21st St.). This is where the rowdy Wild West town of Colorado City sprang to life in 1859. Now, instead of saloons, jails and brothels, you'll find quaint boutiques, eclectic galleries and bistros. On summer Saturdays, you can shop for goods at the farmers market on the main drag.

Wander through the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College (30 W. Dale St.) on your own, or sign up for one of the docent-led tours. An impressive array of modern works in a pueblo-style space is supplemented by traveling exhibits and a varied permanent collection, including Western, Southwestern and Native American art. Among the other excellent things to see here is the sculpture garden.

Guided tours of the U.S. Olympic Complex (1750 E. Boulder St.) will provide you with an inside peek at where the country's elite athletes live and train prior to the games—you might even witness a practice session. The visitor center presents a video about the Olympics prior to the tours, which are mostly conducted outdoors.

If you're up for a little recreation or fresh air, check out one of the area's parks. Hikers like North Cheyenne Cañon Park (2120 S. Cheyenne Canyon Rd.), with its miles of trails, lovely scenic vistas and waterfalls. A favorite with trekkers, horseback riders and mountain bikers, Palmer Park (Academy Blvd. & Maizeland Rd.) also has play areas, picnic grounds and a dog park.

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Cheyenne Mountain Zoo (4250 Cheyenne Mountain Zoo Rd.) houses more than 750 amazing creatures in an invigorating mountain environment highlighting wildlife in natural settings—a favorite is the Rocky Mountain Wild exhibit, with moose, mountain lions and grizzly bears among the residents.

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Colorado Springs, CO

Top AAA Diamond Hotels

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Cheyenne Mountain Resort Colorado Springs, A Dolce Resort

3225 Broadmoor Valley Rd. Colorado Springs, CO 80906

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The Mining Exchange, a Wyndham Grand Hotel & Spa

8 S Nevada Ave. Colorado Springs, CO 80903

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Best Western Executive Inn & Suites

1440 Harrison Rd. Colorado Springs, CO 80905

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SpringHill Suites by Marriott Colorado Springs South

1570 N Newport Rd. Colorado Springs, CO 80916

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Travel Information

City Population

416,427

Elevation

6,008 ft.

Sales Tax

Colorado's statewide sales tax is 2.9 percent; an additional 3.12 percent is levied by the city, 1.23 percent by the county and 1 percent by the Pikes Peak Rural Transit Authority. The county has a 2 percent lodging tax and 1 percent rental car tax.

Emergency

911

Police (non-emergency)

(719) 444-7000

Hospitals

Memorial Hospital, (719) 365-5000; Penrose-St. Francis Health Services, (719) 776-5000; St. Francis Medical Center, (719) 571-1000.

Visitor Information

515 S. Cascade Colorado Springs, CO 80903. Phone:(719)635-7506 or (800)888-4748

Air Travel

Colorado Springs Airport

Rental Cars

Rental car agencies serve the Colorado Springs area from downtown and the airport. Hertz, (719) 596-1863 or (800) 654-3080, offers discounts to AAA members.

Rail Service

No passenger trains serve Colorado Springs.

Buses

TNM&O Coaches Inc. and Greyhound Lines Inc., (719) 635-1505, 120 S. Weber St., serve the Colorado Springs area.

Taxis

Colorado Springs is served by Yellow Cab Co., (719) 777-7777. It is best to request cabs by phone. Taxis are on the meter system, with the charge about $4.90 for the first mile and $2.90 for each additional mile, for up to four passengers.

Public Transportation

Buses operate in the metropolitan area Mon.-Fri. 5:35 a.m.-9:35 p.m.; Sat. 6:35 a.m.-6:35 p.m.; and Sun. 7:30 a.m.-5:35 p.m. in the downtown area; check individual routes for current schedule information. The fare for in-town routes is $1.75, transfers are free with paid fares and are good for 2 hours and 2 one way trips. Day passes are $4. Phone (719) 385-7433.

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