The Colorado Vacation Directory

Durango - Southwest Colorado

Includes Bayfield, Hesperus, Ignacio, Lemon, Vallecito Lake

A city created by the railroad, Durango retains a "Frontier West" feeling; yet it is the home of Fort Lewis College and Durango Mountain Resort. Surrounded by the San Juan Mountains and set amidst reddish, sandstone bluffs, this town bustles with activity and adventure. Year round outdoor activities include mountain biking, rock climbing, hiking, rafting, kayaking, horseback riding, hunting, fishing, camping, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, snowboarding, and downhill skiing in the two-million acres of the San Juan National Forest.

Durango Silverton narrow gauge railroad, Colorado
Take a Ride on the Historic Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad
Aerial view of Vallecito Lake in Durango, Colorado
Vallecito Lake is one of Colorado's largest recreational lakes and is a 30 minute drive from Durango

Take a walk through living history on Main Street, Durango's National Register Historic District, with gift shops, saloons and ice cream shops there is something for everyone in the family to enjoy. The famous Durango-Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad is the country's only coal-and-steam-powered train operating daily with round trips to Silverton; chugging along sheer cliffs, criss-crossing the Animas River on its' 45 mile trip. The Animas River, "river of lost souls," has exciting whitewater rafting during spring run-off and settles down in the summer for family jaunts. Rent a bike for a day and discover why this area is so popular with mountain bikers.

Family in railroad car near Animas River, Colorado
Enjoy the Beauty of the Animas River from a Box Car
The Durango and Silverton Railroad, Colorado
Experience the Thrill of a Steam Powered Engine

Vallecito Lake near Bayfield is a beautiful mountain lake; 23 miles northeast of Durango. Enjoy a quiet, intimate visit to a secluded mountain valley, home to one of Colorado's largest lakes at an elevation of 8,000 feet. Surrounding the lake are a variety of accommodations and recreation opportunities. Cabins, dude and guest ranches, motel units, RV parks and campgrounds, are available along with marinas, stables, restaurants, stores and gift shops. Boating, fishing, horseback riding, hiking, backpacking, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and ice fishing are all part of the allure of this year round outdoor mecca.

Just west of Vallecito Lake is the smaller Lemon (Reservoir) Lake. Only the east side of the lake is accessible by County Road 243. Fishing is good as it is stocked with trout and Kokanee salmon. Lemon Lake is also a fun place to boat, sail and wind surf.

Hesperus is a tiny community outside Durango; its "ski hill" is lit for night skiing and there's a tubing hill for kids. Believe it or not the "ski-hill" has a snack bar and warming hut. There is great hunting here in the fall.

Located in southwestern Colorado, Ignacio, is within the Southern Ute Indian Reservation. The Sky Ute Casino is the main attraction and features gaming halls, a bowling alley and new Cultural Center and Museum. Lake Capote is the reservation's top trout-fishing destination.

Durango Play Park is a Whitewater Park/Kayak Course located right in Durango on the Animas River. Starting at the Santa Rita Park and ending just behind Four Corners River Sports, this Park consists of multiple holes and waves that change with water flows. Some of the unique sections include the Smelter Wave/Hole, Corner Pocket, the Santa Rita hole, and the Big Kahuna wave.

25 miles north of Durango is Durango Mountain Resort (FKA Purgatory), which offers the unpretentious skiing of the southwest. Also nearby is Wolf Creek Ski Area for even more downhill skiing.

Commercial air travel accommodations are handled by Durango - La Plata County Airport. Please contact your preferred travel agent or airline for flight arrangements.

Durango is near: Mesa Verde Area, Navajo Lake, Pagosa Springs Area, Silverton & Farmington, NM

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Premium Durango Businesses

Pine River Lodge - Overlooking Beautiful Vallecito Lake  Reservation link icon Photos on page icon Special offers and discounts link icon
YEAR AROUND FUN! Lodge with indoor pool! In the San Juan Mountains along Pine River overlooking Vallecito Lake, cabins and vacation homes with kitchens. Near Durango and Mesa Verde National Park.

cabins vacation homes Lodging by water Pool on site Scenic Byways Fishing Hunting 

Featured Durango Businesses

Bear Paw Lodge Cabins and Vacation Homes  Web page link icon
Near Vallecito Lake, northeast of Durango with mountain cabins and modern vacation homes. Bear Paw Lodge, a family destination: woodsy, relaxing, uncrowded, playground, camp firepit, volleyball and WiFi!

cabins vacation homes Family Friendly 

Colorado Trails Ranch: A Guest Ranch Experience  Reservation link icon Photos on page icon
A true family experience! Colorado Trails Ranch is tucked in the San Juan Mountains, north of Durango. Guests enjoy: western trail rides, fly-fishing, youth programs, yummy food! 1, 2 & 4 hour Horseback Rides!

cabins Family Friendly Pool on site National Parks Fishing Horseback Riding 

Durango's Tamarron Vacation Rentals  Email link icon Web page link icon
Tamarron Resort is along the Million Dollar Highway, 15 miles north of downtown Durango; and, 5 miles south of Purgatory Ski Resort. Vacation Rentals: Kitchenette lodge rooms and studio lofts. Ski Shuttle!

lodges suites & condos Pool on site Scenic Byways Jeeping and Offroad Vehicles Golfing Winter Lodging 

Healing Waters Resort and Spa in Pagosa Springs  Web page link icon Photos on page icon
Soak in Pagosa Springs! Family Friendly Resort: Free access to our healing waters spa mineral baths, hot springs swimming pool, and outdoor soaking tub during your stay: hotel rooms, suites or park-cabin.

cabins motels Pool on site Hot Springs 

Old Hundred Gold Mine Tour - Historic Firsthand Experience  Email link icon Web page link icon Photos on page icon
A family experience in Silverton! Gold Mine Tour with Tram Ride into Galena Mountain. Historic guided walk in a hundred years old mine. See gold, crystals, minerals. Must day trip from Durango or Ouray.

Scenic Byways Tourist Attractions activities and fun things to do 

Pine River Lodge - Overlooking Beautiful Vallecito Lake  Reservation link icon Photos on page icon Special offers and discounts link icon
YEAR AROUND FUN! Lodge with indoor pool! In the San Juan Mountains along Pine River overlooking Vallecito Lake, cabins and vacation homes with kitchens. Near Durango and Mesa Verde National Park.

cabins vacation homes Lodging by water Pool on site Scenic Byways Fishing Hunting 

T Bar M Outfitters LLC  Web page link icon Photos on page icon
Serving the 4-Corners Region from Durango, T Bar M Outfitters LLC it the local leader in adventure with years of experience and a dedication to client satisfaction. Fishing and Wilderness Horseback Trips.

Fishing Horseback Riding 

United Campground of Durango - A Train Enthusiast's Campground  Web page link icon Photos on page icon
JUMP into our POOL! Deluxe camping and recreation at moderate rates on the north edge of Durango, served by a trolley to town. Ride the famous Narrow Gauge Railroad, it runs thru United Campground!

Tent Camping RV Parks and Resorts Pool on site Fishing 

Westerly RV Park  Web page link icon
OPEN ALL YEAR! Westerly RV Park is across from Durango Hot Springs in the Animas River Valley. RV sites: 60X30, 30/50 amp hookups. Shade trees. Free WiFi. Between Durango and Purgatory Ski Area.

RV Parks and Resorts Hot Springs 

For more travel information contact:

Durango Activities & Maps

National Parks and Monuments:
Chimney Rock National Monument
Mesa Verde National Park

Scenic Byways:
San Juan Skyway Scenic Byway
Tracks Across Borders Scenic Byway

Seasonal Attractions:
Music in the Mountains

Hiking Trails:
The Colorado Trail

Rafting & Kayaking:
Piedra River Rafting & Kayaking

Jeep & 4WD:
Durango Jeeping & ATV/UTV Trails

Hot Springs:
Durango Hot Springs

Ski Areas & Resorts:
Purgatory Ski Resort

Durango Snowmobile Trails

Local Area Maps:
Durango Area Map
Vallecito Lake Area Map

The Colorado Vacation Directory

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Calendars of Events | National Parks, Monuments & Historic Sites | Scenic Byways & Drives | Fishing & Fly Fishing | Hot Springs | Horse Riding | ATV/UTVing | Jeeping & 4WD | Whitewater Rafting & Kayaking | Attractions | Golfing | Restaurants & Dining | More Fun Stuff | Hunting & Land Leases | Snowmobiling | Downhill Skiing & Snowboarding | Snowshoeing | Cross-Country Skiing

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Copyright by The Colorado Directory, Inc. This is a directory only; it is not and does not contain a recommendation, warranty, guaranty, inducement or endorsement of any kind. Representations herein were supplied by the individual businesses. The publisher, The Colorado Directory, Inc., does not assume any responsibility for truth, falsity or completeness of any representation made herein or any errors, changes, services rendered, or changes made in the use of this directory. This information was compiled as accurately as possible. Prices and services are frequently subject to change. Errors called to the publisher's attention will be corrected in the future. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored or transmitted in any form or by any means, without permission in writing from the publisher.