With the hustle and bustle of life and work, it isn’t rare that we look forward to unwinding and getting away from our hectic schedule. The historic Manitou Springs at the base of Pikes Peak is your go-to destination, and it has been for a long time. The healing waters, the cool mountain air, and the mineral springs are a few of the reasons why people have been visiting Manitou Springs time and again.
Whether you’re looking to relax and take a break, or to get those muscles moving in a 12-mile hiking trail, Manitou Springs is your all-in-one destination! If you’re confused about what to do here, we have a few of the adventurous activities you can indulge in at Manitou Springs!
1. Manitou Incline
Manitou Incline originated as a path for cable cars to carry materials to Pikes Peak. Covering a length of 1 mile with 2744 steps, the Manitou Incline is a steep vertical incline climbing over 2000 feet. Once at the top, you can proceed down along the Barr Trail, enjoying yet another scenic view.
2. Pikes Peak
Standing at more than 14,000 feet, Pikes Peak is one of the best attractions at Manitou Springs for an adventure junkie. You can drive to the summit, which is risky but gives you plenty of time and opportunity to enjoy and capture the scenery.
For a laid-back, scenic, yet thrilling adventure, you can travel to the summit of Pikes Peak via the Pikes Peak Cog Railway, the highest cog railway in the world. You get to enjoy the waterfalls, pine forests, and an amazing view of Colorado Springs.
Now, if you are visiting Manitou Springs for an exhilarating hike, then the Barr Trail is yours to take. A steep upward hike stretching 20 km long, make sure you’re all set to handle the cool temperature and tiring yet adrenaline-charged hike on the trail to reach the summit.
3. Cave Of The Winds
Cave of the Winds stands at a height of 7000 feet and is one of the best adventurous attractions in Manitou Springs. Here, you get to choose from three different cave tours, all with varying aspects. Touring these caves takes you on a journey of history and science interlaced with fun. There’s the spooky Lantern Tour, a Discovery Tour to explore the cave features, and the Caving 101 Tour to observe the hidden details of the cave system.
For a rush of adrenaline, you can always go for the Terror-Dactyl, where you fly at 100 mph across the Williams Canyon and other such rides. Other than that, you can also experience the rock climbing wall or go zip lining.
4. Garden Of The Gods
Garden of the Gods is truly the treasure of Pikes Peak, with a rich history and scenic view sure to leave you breathless. Known for its serenity and the influence it had upon settlers and tribes since time unknown, Garden of the Gods is a National Natural Landmark maintained with the utmost care.
The best part of Garden of the Gods is that you can discover it yourself along the miles of trails laid down, and there are multiple ways to do so.
You can always drive through Garden of the Gods. This way, you get to see all the main formations during your ride, while also gaining a glimpse at the wildlife and beauty of the route. One key stop is High Point, where you can get a breathtaking view of Pikes Peak, so be sure to check it out!
Another option is to take a Jeep tour where you get to explore all the secret spots around the area along with frequent stops.
A guided horseback tour is an alternative way to explore Garden of the Gods with real cowgirls and cowboys is sure to be experienced! You can also mountain-bike your way through Garden of the Gods, keeping in mind the designated trails and speed limits.
Are you a fan of feeling the breeze in your hair while having a fun-filled history session? Then the Segway Tours are what you need a taste of! You get a small training on riding the Segway and voila! You’re ready to explore!
5. Miramont Castle
For those bewitched by stunning architecture and looking to experience the Victorian Life, Miramont Castle is a must-visit. You get to see a showcase of rich Victorian heritage and historic artifacts. Once you’re done exploring the castle and its grounds, you get treated to delicious teas, fresh cream, and scones in the Queen’s Parlor Tearoom. This is truly a great experience, bound to spoil you with the historic charm and exceptional architecture.
6. Emma Crawford Coffin Races
This is an event held the weekend before Halloween in memory of Emma Crawford, where 4-person teams race their customized coffins down the Red Mountain.
The story behind the race dates back to the 1880s, when Emma Crawford visited Manitou Springs and loving the town, wished to be buried atop the Red Mountain. About 40 years later, due to erosion and other reasons, the coffin was uncovered and slid down the mountain, passersby finding just a nameplate and a few bones in it.
In memory of this, coffin races were held each year with 4 people driving the coffin and one “Emma” inside the coffin. Each year, thousands of people gather to watch the thrilling race and turn of events.
7. Mueller State Park
Located early 30-40 minutes away from Manitou Springs, Muller State Park is the ideal location at the foot of Pikes Peak where you can enjoy nature while getting your share of fun-filled activities. Be it hiking, horseback riding, camping, or mountain biking during the summer, or skiing and snowshoeing during the winter, Mueller State Park offers its fill of adventurous activities all year round.
8. Escape Manitou Springs
Have an inkling towards finding clues and solving puzzles? Then the escape rooms at Manitou Springs are a must-try! In 60 minutes, you will have to solve your way out of the locked room, definitely a geeky adventure!
Apart from the adrenaline-charged activities, Manitou Springs is known for its several mineral springs that you can taste. Each of these springs has a unique taste due to its distinctive mineral composition. You can also enjoy healing waters by soaking in a hot tub with mineral springs.
Manitou Springs is also home to several dining, drinking, and shopping options for tourists. You can also taste several varieties of Colorado wine here at wine bars, thus making Manitou Springs the perfect getaway for a relaxing yet exciting trip.
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