Lonely Planet Colorado

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Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher

Lonely Planet Colorado is your passport to all the most relevant and up-to-date advice on what to see, what to skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Admire the near-constant blue skies of Denver, hike through Rocky Mountain National Park, or climb the ice walls in Aspen while listening to live music; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the heart of Colorado and begin your journey now!

Inside Lonely Planet's Colorado Travel Guide:

  • Color maps and images throughout
  • Highlights and itineraries show you the simplest way to tailor your trip to your own personal needs and interests
  • Insider tips save you time and money, and help you get around like a local, avoiding crowds and trouble spots
  • Essential info at your fingertips - including hours of operation, phone numbers, websites, transit tips, and prices
  • Honest reviews for all budgets - including eating, sleeping, sight-seeing, going out, shopping, and hidden gems that most guidebooks miss
  • Cultural insights give you a richer and more rewarding travel experience - including customs, history, art, politics, landscapes, wildlife, outdoor activities, road trips and scenic drives, and cuisine
  • Over 35 color maps
  • Coverage of Denver, Aspen, Vail, Rocky Mountain National Park, Boulder, San Luis Valley, Durango, Silverton, Colorado Springs, Fort Collins, Monte Vista, Trinidad, Alamosa, Twin Lakes, Manitou Springs, and more

eBook Features: (Best viewed on tablet devices)

  • Zoom-in maps and images bring it all up close and in greater detail
  • Downloadable PDF and offline maps let you stay offline to avoid roaming and data charges
  • Seamlessly flip between pages
  • Easily navigate and jump effortlessly between maps and reviews
  • Speedy search capabilities get you to what you need and want to see
  • Use bookmarks to help you shoot back to key pages in a flash
  • Visit the websites of our recommendations by touching embedded links
  • Adding notes with the tap of a finger offers a way to personalize your guidebook experience
  • Inbuilt dictionary to translate unfamiliar languages and decode site-specific local terms

The Perfect Choice: Lonely Planet Colorado, our most comprehensive guide to Colorado, is perfect for those planning to both explore the top sights and take the road less traveled.

  • Looking for more extensive coverage? Check out Lonely Planet's Western USA guide for a comprehensive look at all the region has to offer.

Authors: Written and researched by Lonely Planet, Carolyn McCarthy, Greg Benchwick and Chris Pitts.

About Lonely Planet: Started in 1973, Lonely Planet has become the world's leading travel guide publisher with guidebooks to every destination on the planet, as well as an award-winning website, a suite of mobile and digital travel products, and a dedicated traveler community. Lonely Planet's mission is to enable curious travelers to experience the world and to truly get to the heart of the places they find themselves in.

List price: $23.99

Your Price: $16.79

You Save: 30%

 

6 Slices

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Denver & Around

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Boulder & Around

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Boulder & Around

Twenty-five square miles surrounded by reality. That’s the joke about Boulder that never goes away. The weather is perfect , the surroundings – stone Flatirons, gurgling creek, ponderosa trails and manicured college campus – beg idylling. And the populace – fit do-gooders with the beta on the best fair-trade coffee – seals the stereotype.

Boulder’s mad love of the outdoors was officially legislated in 1967, when Boulder became the first US city to tax itself specifically to preserve open space. Thanks to such vision, people (and dogs) enjoy a number of city parks and open space while packs of cyclists whip up and down the Boulder Creek corridor.

In many ways it is Boulder, not Denver, that is the region’s tourist hub. The city is about the same distance from Denver International Airport, and the hub puts you 45 minutes closer to the ski resorts west on I-70 and the extraordinary Rocky Mountain National Park.

 

Rocky Mountain National Park & Northern Colorado

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Rocky Mountain National Park & Northern Colorado

With one foot on either side of the Continental Divide and granite behemoths in every direction, Colorado’s northern mountains provide a glimpse of the top of the world. Here, the northern Rockies make an irresistible call to mountain-lovers, regardless of whether the season calls for climbing them in hiking boots or shushing down them on skis. Steamboat is a world-class ski resort without the hype of other Colorado areas, and Rocky Mountain National Park and its surrounding wilderness areas and patchwork state parks is a sanctuary for wildlife and wildlife lovers alike.

In spring, summer and autumn, hiking and biking in state and national parks and forests continue to draw visitors. Many ski resorts transform into groomed mountain-biking areas, and campers make for high-altitude lakes. The region also boasts top-notch fishing, rafting and kayaking, weathered ghost towns, horseback riding, camping and mountain touring until well after autumn turns the aspens gold.

 

Vail, Aspen & Central Colorado

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Vail, Aspen & Central Colorado

If you ask us where you can find the most trillion-dollar sights, where you can run the gnarliest rivers and charge the sickest runs, and to choose one hike that is sure to save your citified soul within a single afternoon, we would take out the map of Colorado, trim the edges and zoom into the center. Because here’s where you’ll find more magic per square mile than anywhere else in the state.

It’s the stomping ground of war heroes and X Games athletes, and the hideaway of billionaires, ski bums and gonzo fugitives. Celebrified, intellectualized and musical, it’s patrolled by bear, elk, hummingbird and eagle, laced by trail, rail and river, and linked by free transport, epic bikepaths and more friendly smiles than seems reasonable. But then again, of course these people are smiling. They freaking live here!

Jan–Mar Classic Colorado: fresh powder, blue skies and epic runs all day long.

Jun–Aug Long sunny days means hiking, biking, paddling and outdoor concerts.

 

Mesa Verde & Southwest Colorado

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Mesa Verde & Southwest Colorado

The West at its most rugged, this is a landscape of twisting canyons and ancient ruins, with burly peaks and gusty high desert plateaus. Centuries of boom and bust, from silver to real estate, tell part of the story. There’s also the lingering mystery of its earliest inhabitants, whose relics have been found at the abandoned cliff dwellings in Mesa Verde National Park.

Southwestern Colorado can be a heady place to play. Some of the finest powder skiing in the world melts to revea l winding singletrack and hiking trails in summer. Vineyards are sprouting up on the western slope. A sense of remove keeps the Old West alive in wooden plank saloons and aboard the chugging Durango railroad.

With all that fresh mountain air, local attitudes – from the ranch hand to the real-estate agent – are undoubtedly relaxed. Dally a bit under these ultra-blue skies and you will know why.

Jun–Aug Prime time for hiking and camping in the legendary San Juans.

 

Southeast Colorado & the San Luis Valley

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Southeast Colorado & the San Luis Valley

Colorado’s arid southeast is a place of high desert landscapes backed by craggy peaks and flat-topped mesas, where silvery sage and scraggly juniper trees begin to replace the aspen and pine forests of the central mountains. Dotted with signature landmarks – Pikes Peak, the Great Sand Dunes, the Royal Gorge – southern Colorado interweaves dramatic vistas with hardscrabble history to great effect.

In this stripped-down setting, the bones of the earth are particularly evident: fossilized dinosaur footprints, massive petrified sequoias and the volcanic vestiges of the Spanish Peaks serve as a stark reminder of a geological timescale in which human life is no more than the blink of an eye. But a fascinating human element lingers here, too: come discover a time when the Southwest belonged to Mexico and played host to the Santa Fe Trail, which brought together the intersecting lives of Native Americans, Mexican pioneers, French trappers, Pikes Peak-or-bust miners and the covered wagon trains of hope-filled American homesteaders.

 

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