The Centennial State | Colorado

The Centennial State | Colorado

The Centennial State | Colorado

&

The Beehive State | Utah

 

The next few days in Colorado and Utah – my 5th and 6th States – were phenomenal. I was travelling on my own, and loving every minute of it. There is nature at some serious American scale here and I fail to see how you could not be impressed! Hire a car and get exploring.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin or subscribe via my menu bar.

3 THINGS YOU REALLY CANNOT MISS:

ARCHES NATIONAL PARK | visiting this spectacular place in Utah was one of my favourite days of the entire 5 month trip. It is nature to another level. Put your trainers on and get hiking to Delicate and Double O arches, and my all time best spot at the ‘Top of the World’.

colorado and utah
Arches National Park is fantastic – this is Delicate Arch
colorado and utah
Landscape Arch near the Devil’s Garden
colorado and utah
Double O arch
colorado and utah
The breath-taking 360 degree views from ‘Top of the World’

colorado and utah

colorado and utah

colorado and utah
Arches everywhere – just keep climbing

MONUMENT VALLEY NATIONAL PARK | another spectacular spot in neighbouring Colorado. I visited here first, and it blew my mind. Remember a car is essential in this part of the mighty world.

colorado and utah
Look closely to see the cars being absolutely dwarfed at Monument Valley
colorado and utah
Vast desert and red turrets

colorado and utah

colorado and utah

colorado and utah
Rolling views of blue and orange
colorado and utah
The sparse landscape driving away from Monument Valley

DOORS OPEN DENVER | I was lucky enough to be in Denver, Colorado, during this event: such an eye-opener to the city. A behind the scenes tour of gorgeous old Paramount Theatre made me feel tearful!, whilst the Masonic Temple was fascinating.

colorado and utah
Behind the scenes at Paramount Theatre – a real hit of nostalgia
colorado and utah
Doors Open Denver and a visit to the Paramount Theatre
colorado and utah
The interior represents an excellent example of “Zig Zag Art Deco” design, popular in the Jazz Age
colorado and utah
The Paramount houses a one of a kind Wurlitzer twin-console organ designed to produce varied sound effects in accompaniment with the silent picture shows
colorado and utah
A tour of the Masonic Building

3 THINGS WORTH A SNOOP:

FOUR CORNERS MONUMENT | as you’ll have a car to see the NPs above, make a detour to this unique spot where Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, and Utah meet – the only instance across the USA.

colorado and utah
Four Corners Monument
colorado and utah
Be prepared for a lot of big open road driving

DENVER ART SCENE | it’s a great city and I’d highly recommended – alongside the Denver Art Museum – keeping your eyes peeled for the Blue Bear, the Dikeou Collection of Contemporary Art, Byers Evans house, and Clifford Still museum. Also check out: Rooster and Moon for coffee, and re-charge with yoga and dinner at City o City.

colorado and utah
The Denver Art Museum — DAM is an art museum located in the Civic Center
colorado and utah
“Fox Games” by Sandy Skoglund at the DAM
colorado and utah
The Colorado Convention Center’s Blue Bear known as I See What You Mean
colorado and utah
The Dikeou Collection is inconspicuously housed within a cluster of otherwise nondescript office suites on the fifth floor of the historic Colorado Building
colorado and utah
The impressive Clifford Still Museum

DURANGO | this was my first stop over after leaving the sunshine of New Mexico, only to arrive in cute, snowy Durango, Colorado. At this point it dropped to -6 out of car! I certainly hadn’t accounted for altitude in my route planning. Also check out: Breakfast at Oscar’s.

new mexico
Snowcapped mountains post blizzard-drive, at my Durango stopover
new mexico
The snowy town of Durango

3 THINGS TO STEER CLEAR:

COLORADO STATE CAPITOL | in Denver: be aware there’s a bit of a dodgy feel at night around this area due to homeless problems. I had good cheap accomm at 11th Avenue hotel, close to 16th street mall and Latimer Square – where I splurged on dinner at Tamayo. Also check out: The Tavern Downtown and Coors Field for baseball.

colorado and utah
View from the Colorado State Capitol with snowcapped mountains in background

LAZY LIZARD | I stayed here. You probably shouldn’t. It’s in Moab, Utah – a base for Arches National Park – and the only cheap place to stay I could find, but it was grim and felt dirty.

POSH SNOW GITS | this watch out stems from a bit of jealousy! I drove solo through some awesome scenery in Colorado and what would be the bases of Aspen and Vale snow resorts. No après-ski for me though….

1 THING I WISH I’D DONE:

RED ROCKS AMPITHEATRE | 10 miles west of Denver, sounds like an incredible music venue, although it’s a tough call between this and the host of National Parks I had to skip: Bryce Canyon, Zion, and The Rockies of course.

AND KNOW THIS: 60% of the residents of Utah belong to the Mormon Church, whilst The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado, is credited with being the inspiration for the haunted hotel in Stephen King’s The Shining.

 

–> –> –> Next stop Vancouver | Canada –> –> –>

–> –> –> Click here for the USA road trip | About My Trip page –> –> –>

Leave a Reply