Founded in 1880, Durango has been through numerous changes over the years from a central hub for the gold and silver mines in the area to a college town to a widely respected place for outdoor adventure. Before you visit Durango, here a six things we thought would be helpful when planning your trip.

1. There’s an excessive number of awesome mountain bike trails.

The area around Durango offers some of the best mountain biking trails in the United States. The San Juan National Forest includes numerous trails for mountain bikers who are looking for a day ride or even an overnight adventure. You will be thoroughly pleased with a mountain biking adventure that is sure to offer you plenty of adrenaline.

2. Skiing at Purgatory is always an adventure.

If you are traveling to Durango during the winter months, the Purgatory Ski Resort is an ideal place for skiing enthusiasts. The resort boasts more than 1,300 acres of terrain, ten chairlifts, 88 trails and five terrain parks for the extreme sports fan. There is plenty of space on slopes whether you are a novice taking a lesson or an expert looking for champagne powder.

3. You can take a historic train ride through the wilderness.

While in Durango, you can spend a relaxing day on one of the oldest narrow gauge trains still operating in the United States. The Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Train travels approximately 52 miles and takes roughly nine hours to complete the round trip journey. Outdoor enthusiasts can also experience a more remote adventure by taking the train to one of the many designated drop-off/pick-up points along the route. Theses stops will allow you access to such places as the San Juan National Forest and the Weminuche Wilderness area.

4. Fourteeners, day hikes, or backpacking… You can do it all.

Durango is surrounded by an unbelievable amount of National Forest land and designated wilderness areas. Within the Weminuche Wilderness areas you will find opportunities for a perfect day hike, back packing trip and there are three 14,000-feet mountains (Eolus, Windom and Sunlight) for you to conquer.

5. Raft on the Animas River.

While visiting Durango, you can experience the thrill of kayaking, white water rafting or just a lazy tube ride on the 126 mile long Animas River. The Animas River contains numerous rapids that range from Class II to IV and there is perfect for white water adventures whether you are a beginner or expert. Also nearby is the Dolores River which travels through beautiful red colored canyons and you can even experience an overnight or multi-day trip.

6. Immerse yourself in the Wild West.

Durango is packed with incredible history and the historic architecture will make your eyes pop. While walking around downtown Durango you will view a number of buildings constructed between the 1870s and 1920s which represent numerous architectural styles that range from Neo-classical to Late Victorian to Late 19th Century Revivals. A must see building is the 1887 Strater Hotel which exhibits a perfect Victorian style.

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We are driven by our deep respect for our environment, and our passionate commitment to sustainable tourism and conservation. We believe in the right for everyone - from all backgrounds and cultures - to enjoy our natural world, and we believe that we must all do so responsibly. Learn More