Pagosa Springs, CO

Travel Guide
Pagosa Springs
Sail on a still lake, raft down a rushing river, and hike, bike or horseback ride along mountain trails before soothing tired muscles in hot springs.

For lovers of outdoor adventure, Pagosa Springs is a dream destination. Raise your heart rate with action-packed outdoor activities before relaxing in one of the town’s three hot springs resorts.

Spreading out from this mountain town is some 3,000,000 acres (1,200,000 hectares) of wilderness and national forest just waiting to be explored. Hurtle down the rapid-filled San Juan River on a raft, kayak or tube. More benign adventures can be experienced in the nearby Navajo State Park, where the still waters of a reservoir are perfect for fishing, boating and swimming. Walks in the park can yield sightings of everything from prickly pear cactusto free-roaming mule deer. Bald eagles can even be seen overhead.

From town, it’s just a short drive to the Wolf Creek Ski Area, which opens throughout winter. Zip down the slopes on skis, try ice-fishing or dog-sledding, or take the whole family on a festive sleigh ride. Families will also enjoy a visit to the Rocky Mountain Wildlife Park, home to bears and mountain lions, among other creatures.

Find out more about local history at Chimney Rock National Monument, a site encompassing ancient Ancestral Puebloan dwellings and ceremonial buildings. Make the 0.5-mile (0.8-kilometer) trek up the site, which is set at an elevation of 7,000 feet (2,000 meters) above sea level and promises spectacular views of Colorado as well as neighboring New Mexico. Culture-keen visitors will want to see the Fred Harman Art Museum. The museum is devoted to Fred Harman, the brains behind the Red Ryder and Little Beaver comic strips. More than 50 original pieces of this “cowboy art” can be viewed here.

When you need a break from exploring, sink into the soothing pools at one of the town’s three hot springs. The Springs Resort & Spa has 23 soaking pools, theHealing Waters Resort and Spaencompasses a hot mineral water pool, outdoor soaking tub and indoor hot baths, whileOverlook Hot Springs Spa features rooftop tubs.

Pagosa Springs is located around 280 miles (450 kilometers) from Denver and 150 miles (240 kilometers) from Santa Fe.

Where to stay in Pagosa Springs

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San Juan River Village

If you're spending some time in San Juan River Village, San Juan River is a top sight worth visiting.

San Juan River Village
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Timber Ridge Ranch