The rugged landscape of the western states of America has long been central to the region’s reputation as the Wild West and the Garden of the Gods is a stunning example of this terrain. As the low, grassy plains around Denver give way to dense woodlands, a series of rock formations rise dramatically upwards. These phenomenal red rocks are the centerpieces of the 1,367-acre (553-hectare) Garden of the Gods park, a favorite destination for hikers, mountain bikers and other lovers of the great outdoors.
Spend a day exploring the expansive natural landscape of Colorado. A network of scenic drives will take you through the park and many of the biggest attractions can be seen from the road. Stop a while at the site of the delicately poised Balanced Rock, one of the most photographed rock formations in the area.
While you may feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere, the Garden of the Gods is located just outside of Colorado Springs and just an hour's drive from Denver. Those eager to really go off the beaten track will love the trails that take you through gorges, over mountains and between the huge rocks. Trek through the wilderness on the Siamese Twins Trail, one of the park’s most popular hikes.
There are also 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometers) of paved paths, which are accessible by people in wheelchairs or families with strollers.
Guesthouses and restaurants are located on the edge of the park. Pack a picnic andfind a quiet spot to enjoy the scenic views of Pikes Peak.
Pick up maps and trail recommendations at the Garden of the Gods Visitor and Nature Center. The park is located approximately 67 miles (108 kilometers) south of Denver and is best reached by car. There is no fee for entry. Parking is also free. On some of the busier public holidays, a four-wheel drive vehicle or coach bus tour is available for a fee to take you around the park. Segway tours are another option to explore this amazing landscape.