Map of Colorado Explorer

Mountains, lakes and desert landscapes – Colorado has it all

Few are immune to the pull of Colorado. If you’re in search of show-stopping mountain views, unique desert formations, scenic hiking trails and a flourishing food scene, this welcoming state will tick all your boxes. Let a local leader show you what they love about Colorado as you journey across the state over six days. Discover the artistic side of Denver, hike through spectacular scenery in Rocky Mountain National Park, wash away your worries in Steamboat Springs and get a taste of the Wild West at the Colorado National Monument. But be warned – once you visit Colorado, you’ll want to keep coming back.


Start
Denver, United States
Finish
Salt Lake City, United States
Destinations
Style
Original
Theme
Explorer
Code
SSEC
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why you'll love this trip

  • Denver’s creative side will be revealed to you on a walking tour through the colourful River North Arts district, taking in vibrant murals and mind-bending 3D installations.

  • Take a walk on the wild side as you explore the picturesque landscapes of Rocky Mountain National Park, with fresh air, wildlife and mountain views abound.

  • Get to know the charming mountain town of Steamboat Springs – from fantastic local beer to relaxing hot springs, this place has a little something for everyone.

  • Explore the unique landscapes of the Colorado National Monument, ending the day with a barbecue dinner while watching the sun set over the desert.

  • Walk in the 150-million-year-old footsteps of dinosaurs at the Dinosaur National Monument, home to a fascinating display of the bones of ancient creatures.

Is this trip right for you?

  • Please ensure you consult your local government’s advice regarding domestic travel prior to booking this trip.

  • There are many opportunities for easy/intermediate hikes, and sturdy footwear is recommended.

  • This trip is new to our range this year. And while we have thoroughly researched every detail of the logistics, new destinations and working with new partners can sometimes throw us some unexpected surprises. More often than not, it’ll be a great surprise. But every now and again there might be a hiccup. We like to think that’s what puts the ‘adventure’ in ‘adventure travel’.

Itinerary

Welcome to Colorado! Your adventure begins in Denver, where a meeting will take place at 9am this morning for you to link up with your local leader and fellow travellers. Colorado’s capital has a flourishing food and music scene, but the best way to get to know the city is by admiring its art. After your meeting, head to the River North (RiNo) Arts District, a hub for colour and creativity. Here your leader will introduce you to a vibrant collection of works, from graffiti and murals to fascinating 3D installations, and explain how local artists have brought this beloved neighbourhood back to life. In the early afternoon, leave the rush of the city behind and make the 2-hour drive to the super-scenic Rocky Mountain National Park, chock-full with towering peaks and breathtaking scenes. Settle into your hotel and enjoy some time to get to know the area, then regroup in the evening for a spine-tingling experience. The vast Stanley Hotel is famed for being the inspiration for Stephen King’s 1977 horror novel, The Shining, and is known for being a hotbed of paranormal activity. Set off on a walking tour through the hotel after dark with the guidance of a storyteller who will share tales of the hotel’s past – whether you’re a believer or not, this is sure to be an experience you won’t forget!
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Estes Park – Evening Ghost Tour
  • Denver – Art Tour
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Rise and shine! After breakfast this morning it’s time to head into the Rocky Mountain National Park, undoubtably the state’s most scenic spot. Have your camera at the ready for a drive through the park, as breathtaking scenes stream past the window. After the drive, hit one of the best-loved trails in the park for a gentle hike to Bear Lake. This 1-kilometre loop will reward you with some truly unforgettable views, including Bear Lake itself, framed by glorious mountains. Now you’re warmed up, set off on a 5.5 kilometre loop trail in Moraine Park. This is one for the wildlife lovers – birds and elk are commonly spotted along this route, and if you’re lucky you may even spot some cute little critters like marmots or pikas. The rest of the day is free for your own discoveries. You may like to get out on the water and go kayaking or standup paddleboarding on Lake Estes, or get to know Colorado’s dazzling night sky during a stargazing tour.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Rocky Mountain National Park - Hike
  • Rocky Mountain National Park – Scenic Drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Hit the road and make tracks for Steamboat Springs (approximately 4 hours), a charming town sitting in Yampa Valley. There’s plenty to see along the way – stop off for a 1-kilometre loop hike to Adams Falls, passing through shady forests of aspen and pine before arriving at the rushing waterfall. You’ll also pay a visit to the pretty little town of Grand Lake where you can pick up some lunch and stretch your legs with a walk around the settlement. Arrive in Steamboat Springs in the late afternoon and perhaps head to one of the town’s inviting bars to toast to the day’s adventures.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Grand Lake - Hike
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Get up and get those legs moving – today starts with a gorgeous post-breakfast hike to Spring Creek, taking in stunning scenery and vibrant wildflowers. The rest of the day is yours to get to know the area. You may like to join your leader on the popular Steamboat Brew Trail, hitting three of the town’s best breweries to sample some of Colorado’s finest beer, hire a mountain bike to explore the area on two wheels, or simply relax and unwind in one of the town’s famous hot springs. Your leader will have plenty of tips on how to have an amazing afternoon here.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Steamboat Springs - Hike
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Start the day with a drive to the Colorado National Monument (approximately 3.5 hours). A real change of scenery from the forests and mountains you’ve explored so far, the sandstone monoliths of this arid landscape conjure up images of America’s Wild West.
You’ll have the chance to discover the unique formations on foot by taking a short hike in the area, then it’s on to Palisade. Here you’ll have some time to grab some lunch before popping into a local family-owned winery to sample their delicious range of reds, whites and roses and learn about wine production in Colorado. We then drive to the city of Grand Junction, where we stay overnight. You will have a little free time to stroll down the bustling Main street. As evening falls, head to a local food truck to pick up some seriously tasty barbecued food, then drive up the iconic Rim Rock road to watch the sunset as you tuck into your dinner.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Colorado National Monument – Evening sunset BBQ
  • Colorado National Monument – Hike
  • Palisade – Wine tasting
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
It’s the last day of your adventure, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had. Drive through quintessential Western scenery and cross into Utah (approximately 5.5 hours), stopping off at Dinosaur National Monument, where dinosaurs roamed 150 million years ago. Pay a visit to the fascinating Quarry Hall, home to around 1500 ancient bones of dinosaurs who once ruled these parts, then take a short hike and enjoy a picnic lunch. Continue on to Salt Lake City in Utah, arriving at around 5pm, at which point your adventure will come to an end.
Included Activities
  • Dinosaur National Monument - Hike
  • Dinosaur National Monument – Quarry Hall
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch

Meals

5 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 1 dinner

Transport

Private vehicle

Accommodation

Hotel (6 nights)

Included activities

  • Estes Park – Evening Ghost Tour
  • Denver – Art Tour
  • Rocky Mountain National Park - Hike
  • Rocky Mountain National Park – Scenic Drive
  • Grand Lake - Hike
  • Steamboat Springs - Hike
  • Colorado National Monument – Evening sunset BBQ
  • Colorado National Monument – Hike
  • Palisade – Wine tasting
  • Dinosaur National Monument - Hike
  • Dinosaur National Monument – Quarry Hall

Dates & availability

Trip departures are unavailable.

There are currently no scheduled departures on our Colorado Explorer trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.

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Important notes

Travellers on Intrepid trips are required to produce proof of full vaccination against COVID-19. Read details here.

FIRST DAY: Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 9am. Please make your own way to the Joining Point Hotel listed in the Essential Trip Information for this itinerary.
LAST DAY: On the final day, this trip finishes at approximately 5pm on arrival in Salt Lake City. You will be dropped at our hotel downtown. If departing this day, please do not book any flights before 8 pm.
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement applies to all nights on your trip and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.
COVID: Please ensure you have checked local state information regarding COVID-19 restrictions and regulations before you travel.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

View Essential Trip Information

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