Shops, restaurants, galleries and historic buildings attract crowds to this former gold rush town near the center of modern-day Colorado Springs.
Browse shops, specialty boutiques and learn about the history of Colorado Springs when you visit its oldest district, Old Colorado City. The historic area was founded in 1859, the first settlement in the Pikes Peak region.
A good place to start your exploration is at Old Colorado City History Center Museum. Study artifacts and photographs that tell the story of the early years of Colorado City, the former name of this historic district.
As you make your way along the streets, look for some of the old buildings. Go to Bancroft Park for the Garvin Cabin which was constructed in the year Colorado City was founded. See an example of Victorian architecture in the building that used to be Jacob Schmidt's Saloon and Beer Hall. Visit the 1891 Templeton Building that was once the location of a gentleman’s club. Stop by the Old Colorado City Library. It operates out of a 1904 Carnegie Library, built with money donated by the philanthropist Andrew Carnegie.
See the neighborhood in miniature at the Michael Garman Museum and Gallery. There are scale models of 18 buildings and hundreds of handmade sculptures that honor American heroes. Watch and listen to holograms of residents telling stories of life in the city.
Many visitors come to the old city for its shops. The streets are lined with independent stores and boutiques selling unique gifts, souvenirs, jewelry and antiques. Buy fresh local produce at the farmer’s market, held on Saturday mornings between June and October. If you want to take home an original piece of art, there are lots of art galleries to explore.
Embark on an art walk, which takes place on the first Friday of every month from April to December. The self-guided tour features several streets of galleries and artist studios.
If you are here on the Memorial Day weekend, join in with the annual celebrations of the city's founding.
Old Colorado City is approximately 2 miles (3 kilometers) to the west of the center of Colorado Springs. Drivers will find free parking in some of the side streets.