Much of the appeal of Colorado Springs lies in its scenic surroundings, which include the towering Rocky range and the unique red rock formations of the Garden of the Gods park. A great place to start a visit to Colorado Springs is at Pikes Peak, one of the area’s most popular attractions. The famous mountain is closely linked to the nation’s early history and was a famous symbol of the 1859 gold rush to Colorado. Hike up the popular Barr Trail to Pikes Peak’s 14,115-foot (4,302-meter) summit. Or, from March through December, catch the Pikes Peak Cog Railway for a leisurely ride to the top. After you descend the mountain, stop into the Garden of the Gods city park. This park sits at the foot of Pikes Peak and is known for its jagged red rock cliffs. Other outdoor leisure activities include golf and white-water rafting on the nearby Arkansas River. This part of the Rockies is also home to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, a favorite destination for families.Delve into the frontier heritage of the area at the Colorado Springs Pioneer Museum or at the Western Museum of Mining and Industry, both located in the city.Finding your way around Colorado Springs is relatively simple. The city is built on a grid system, and buses and taxis are plentiful. Many visitors choose to drive, as parking and roads are good and many of the top sites, such as the Garden of the Gods, are only accessible by car. Colorado Springs is generally mild and sunny, as the mountain range protects the city from harsh weather. However, there is still plenty to do if you need to stay indoors. Stop by the United States Air Force Academy, where you can see the striking modernist Cadet Chapel, or enjoy art at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center.