The Colorado Springs region is the gateway to Southern Colorado. There are plenty of free things to do in Colorado Springs with kids help you have an affordable family vacation.
The region is classified as an “alpine desert” and has a moderate, dry climate and over 300 days of sunshine annually. The peak tourism months are June through August, but the winters are mild and there are plenty of free and family friendly things to do on your next family vacation, including these 10 attractions and events:
- Garden of the Gods Park & Visitor Center– Learn about the heritage and history of this famous park. Walk, drive or ride the trails on horseback to see the red spires created through eons of geological activity. Open year round.
- Pioneers Museum– Guided by a mission to
collect, preserve, research, and interpret the history and culture of the Region, the Museum features permanent exhibits on the history of the area and changing exhibits on topics of broad interest. The Museum’s active changing exhibition schedule has featured subjects as diverse as Western art, antique quilts, Plains and Pueblo Indian culture, and space exploration. Open year round.
- Interpretive Paint Mines Located on 750 acres of the sweeping plains of eastern El Paso County, the mines have evidence of human life as far back as 9,000 years ago. The colorful clays were used for making pottery and ceremonial paints. The park features fantastic geological formations including spires and hoodoos that were formed through erosive action and the forces of nature. The park includes a restroom facility, four miles of trails, interpretive signage and many natural wonders. Open year-round.
- Manitou Mineral Springs – Where in Colorado Springs are the springs that named the town? Manitou Springs. Actually. Currently there are eight springs open to the public, each with its own distinctive flavor and effervescence. Centuries ago, the great tribes of the plains and the Mountain Utes paid homage to the healing and spiritual powers of the mineral springs and believed the medicinal waters were a gift from the Great Spirit Manitou. Make sure to stop at the Manitou Springs Visitor Center to pick up your free Mineral Springs brochure/map, detailed content chart and sampling cup.Open year-round.
- The Gold Belt Scenic Tour is a Colorado Scenic and Historic Byway and a National Scenic Byway. Drive the Gold Belt Tour and retrace the historic travel routes connecting Cripple Creek and Victor Mining District, site of the world’s largest gold rush, to the communities of Florence, Cañon City and Florissant. Today, the communities of the Gold Belt Tour invite you to experience the rich local heritage as you follow the “Roads to Riches.” The Gold Belt Tour is located in southern Colorado, just one hour from Colorado Springs. Each of the roads offers distinct scenery ranging from rolling mountain parklands to deep rocky canyons. Can be driven year-round weather permitting.
U.S. Air Force Academy – The Academy is free and open to the public year-round. Learn what it’s like to be a training Cadet, enjoy the scenic beauty and trails, attend a sporting event and even tour the famed Cadet Chapel known around the world for its unique architecture.
- Cripple Creek Heritage Center – Explore 11,600 square feet of multiple hands-on exhibits improved by audio and video techniques. Immerse yourself in the old days of the World’s Best Gold camp. Stop here before entering the heart of Cripple Creek’s history. Open year round.
- Art on the Streets – Enjoy the outdoor beauty and amazing installations of Downtown Colorado Springs. Pieces are scattered throughout the main streets to enjoy at your leisure or, guided tours can be taken in the summer. Displayed year round.
- Focus on the Family Visitor Center Take a self-guided walking tour of the Welcome Center building, as well as have fun with the little ones in the Kid’s Korner play area and Whit’s End Soda Shoppe. Open year round.
- Bear Creek & Fountain Creek Nature Centers –Home to watchable wildlife, guided walks and family fun activities throughout the year.