From time to time I love to share the wisdom of other travelers with my readers as a way of bringing you even more great advice. I’m so happy to welcome Tanya from Rad Family Travel as the author of today’s guest post. Enjoy!
Guest Post from Rad Family Travel
We just moved here a bit over a year ago and we still feel like we’re on a mini-vacation when we get out to explore this beautiful city of Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Here’s what we’ve discovered to be kids’ favorite things to do in Colorado Springs!
5 Things to Do in Colorado Springs With Kids
Visit America’s only mountain zoo! Cheyenne Mountain is the 6th-best zoo in the nation. Hand-feed giraffes and budgies, experience animals up-close, and witness a view like no other on the chairlift-style, open-air ride called Mountaineer Sky Ride.
Nestled literally right on the side of Cheyenne Mountain, this zoo is built on tiers as it zig-zags up the hill side. Your kids will love viewing grizzly bears up close, watching rhinos and elephants, and so much more.
Plan to dine at the zoo. You heard me right. The Grizzly Grill inside the zoo offers gourmet favorites that might surprise you. Picture daily carving stations, pasta bowls, rice bowls, wraps, soups, and fresh, made-to-order salads. Throw in yummy burgers, homemade pizza, sandwiches, and ice cream, and you’ve got it made in the shade.
Splurge. It’s worth it.
(You are allowed to bring in food and coolers if you’d rather.)
Garden of the Gods Park is a must-see, must-do experience for all ages. Imagine sensational views, 300′ towering sandstone rock formations against the backdrop of famous fourteener Pikes Peak, and bright blue skies.
And it’s free fun. The family that gave this park to Colorado Springs gave it on the condition that access to Garden of the Gods remain free forever, plus it’s a registered National Natural Landmark.
There are several ways to explore Garden of the Gods; biking, hiking, rock climbing, jeep, and seaway tours are all available.
For even more Colorado Springs hiking ideas, check out 5 great hiking areas in Colorado Springs.
Super fun time for all ages! Our kids ask to go here when friends and family visit us from out-of-town. Just $15-$20 entertains our family of six for an hour or more. You gotta go.
Hundreds of old and not-so old arcade games, and most of them cost only a quarter to play. Pinball, racing games, Skeeball, Pac-man, Joust, and so much more. The arcade is located just off Main Street in Manitou Springs and is made up of several little buildings painted white with red lettering.
Take the guided tour (combination outdoor and indoor) through this campus where selected Olympians train and practice.
This U.S. Olympic Complex is the flagship training center for the U.S. Olympic Committee and the Olympic Training Center programs. This training center provides housing, dining, training facilities, recreational facilities, and other services for more than 500 athletes and coaches at one time on the complex.
These talented, disciplined athletes are selected to train here. Resident sports include boxing, cycling, figure skating, gymnastics, shooting, wrestling, and more.
(The kids are pictured with 2014 Bronze Paralympian Snowboarder Medalist Keith Gabel, who happened to be on campus the day we visited.)
Photo courtesy of pixabay.com
Pikes Peak sits at 14,115 feet and you can reach her peak on the world’s highest cog train! Enjoy the amazing views and the majestic views that inspired Katharine Lee Bates to pen the song America the Beautiful.
If you’re really into jaw-dropping views and thrills, consider visiting the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park in nearby Canon City, Colorado, just one hour from Colorado Springs. Ride the red gondola across the gorge, then walk the bridge back. Check out Tommy Knocker’s Playland, the Cloudscraper Zip Line, and the Royal Rush Skycoaster!
Even More Kid-Friendly Colorado Springs Attractions
Best Lodging with Kids in Colorado Springs
Nestled on the north side of Colorado Springs in a sweet plaza with dining options and a movie theater within short, easy walking distance, this new rustic resort with an indoor water park is 19 miles from Cheyenne Mountain Zoo and about 20 minutes from downtown.
Spacious, clean, simple suites feature flat-screen TVs and pull-out sofas, along with mini-fridges, microwaves, and coffeemakers. Upgraded suite options and room service are available.
The best part: water park access is complimentary. There are also 8 bars and eateries, as well as all-day kids’ activities, mini-golf, and a kids’ spa. A resort fee covers use of a gym and parking.
Family-Friendly Eats in Colorado Springs with Kids
Best place for ice cream
Josh and John’s for naturally homemade ice cream. Try Mocha Java Jolt or Colorado Cookies and Cream. Yum.
Best place for baked goods and beer
Ivywild School is a historic school building turned community marketplace and brewery, Ivywild is home to Bristol Brewery Company and The Old School Bakery. Both delicious.
Best place for pizza
Bambino’s Urban Pizzerria, a downtown casual restaurant serving up pizza and Italian fare.
Best burger joint
Bingo Burger is also downtown. This funky little burger joint offers gourmet hamburgers, amazing fries, great shake, and craft beers.
Indoor Attractions in Colorado Springs With Kids
Colorado Springs is a fantastic destination all year round. But just in case the weather forces you indoors, here are a few options.
Meet the Author – Tanya from Rad Family Travel
Tanya Raedeke writes a family travel blog at radfamilytravel.com. She’s a recent transplant from Kansas City to Colorado Springs. When she’s not cheering her four kids on at sporting events or dating her husband of nearly 20 years, you’ll find her making a mess in the kitchen cooking up real food or daydreaming about her family’s next adventure. Tanya offers a great travel planning bundle, that helps families budget, plan and pack for all their adventures!
All photos taken by Tanya Raedeke and may not be used without permission unless otherwise noted.
Have you visited Colorado Springs before? What can’t miss attractions or restaurants are on your list? Leave a comment below!
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