Traveling between towns has never been as much fun for me as it was in Colorado.
The Colorado Scenic and Historic Byways are some of the most picturesque roads I ever had the pleasure of driving on. There are so many places to stop for photo ops, as well as plenty of towns to visit – each one with its own vibe, history and culture.
My first trip was spending some quality time driving the Collegiate Peaks Scenic Byway. I was stunned by how many natural attractions there were along that road including geothermal hot springs, canyons and views of the truly majestic Rocky Mountain peaks. I decided to pull off and get lunch in this great little spot just outside of the city of Salida. The restaurant was lovely and it was a gorgeous day, so I dined al fresco and just took in the scenery. The views of the Collegiate Peaks were breathtaking, and I was told that some of the peaks are as high as 14,000 feet. At the base of the mountains, there were farms and fields as far as the eye could see.
Hot Springs along the San Juan Scenic Byway, Colorado
The Adorable Town of Westcliffe
Leaving Salida, I took a different road, this one called the Frontier Pathways Scenic Byway, which took me to the town of Westcliffe where I was spending the night. Westcliffe is a super quaint little ranching community with buildings dating back to the 1890s and some very cool historic ranches, including the Historic Beckwith Ranch. The hotel I stayed in was adorable, and that night the sky was so clear that I could actually see the Milky Way, which was pretty amazing!
The following morning, I was up early and stepped outside the hotel where I was met with a stunning sunrise as it came up from behind the snowcapped mountains. Back onto the Frontier Pathways Scenic Byway for the last leg of my journey, I headed to the city of Pueblo. The first thing I did when I got to Pueblo was to get some lunch, which consisted of some excellent sushi. After that, I ambled down to The Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo which runs through part of the town. I took a tour on a river boat which passed by some great looking restaurants and bars. It was an informative guided tour full of all sorts of interesting facts about the town and local history. I found Pueblo to have a really interesting feel to it, maybe because of the diverse cultures of the residents, or simply because of its unique architecture and history. Whatever it was, visiting Pueblo was a splendid way to finish my delightful tour of the Colorado Scenic Byways.
After my trip, it is clear that traveling the 26 Colorado Byways is an excellent way to explore the natural beauty of Colorado and the perfect way to see all the quaint towns along the way!
Family fun on the Riverwalk in Pueblo, Colorado