10 Best Things to do in Cañon City

by Apr 22, 2019Journey Quest News0 comments

Cañon City is a high desert town in Colorado that has a lot to offer, despite it being a smaller city. It’s primarily known for two things, the Royal Gorge and its Prisons, so don’t get caught doing anything illegal at the Royal Gorge. Despite the fact it only takes 10 minutes to drive from one side of town to the other, there is a lot to do in Cañon City and much more in the surrounding area. With its small-town feel, great local cuisine, and its great outdoor activities, Cañon City makes for an excellent Colorado Vacation spot that avoids all the big cities and heavy traffic. Here are the 10 Best things you can do in and around Cañon City:

#1 Royal Gorge Bridge and Park

Royal Gorge Bridge and ParkCañon City is home to the famous Royal Gorge. With a maximum depth of 1,250 feet and its narrowest point at 50 feet, the Royal Gorge is a spectacular sight to behold. At the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park, you can walk across one of the highest suspension bridges in the world, ride the Sky Coaster over the edge of the canyon cliffs, zip-line on the highest line in North America, and explore all the history behind the Royal Gorge at the museum. You won’t regret spending the day exploring the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park. Learn More

Cost:    Adult – $28/Child – $23


#2 Whitewater Rafting

Whitewater RaftingA Colorado vacation isn’t complete without a whitewater rafting trip on the Arkansas River. With about a half-million people rafting it every summer, Colorado’s Arkansas River is the most rafted river in North America! From a family-friendly tour through Bighorn Sheep Canyon to a wild and exciting ride through the Royal Gorge, there is a perfect level of excitement for all ages. Journey Quest offers great Family Float trips for families with kids as young as 3 to advanced trips facing Class V rapids through the Royal Gorge. This is a must for every Colorado vacations! Learn More

Cost:    Adult – Starting at $50/Child – Starting at $40


#3 Royal Gorge Route Railroad

Royal Gorge RouteThe Royal Gorge Route is an excellent way to see the Royal Gorge from the base of the canyon. This railroad follows the course of the river at the bottom of the gorge for 9 miles as it meanders through the spectacular and steep canyon walls. Once you’ve gone the 9 miles, the train reverses direction and heads back for another 9 miles. Enjoy excellent food and learn the history of the railroad and the canyon as you ride along, enjoy the scenery, and watch the rafters face the mighty Class V rapids of the Royal Gorge such as Sunshine Falls and Sledgehammer. Learn More

Cost:    Adult – Starting at $49/Child – Starting at $44


#4 Skyline Drive

Skyline DriveSkyline Drive is located just outside of Cañon City and is a must for anyone visiting. Built in 1905, this one-way road climbs 800 feet to a sharp ridge where the road continues for a few miles. The total drive is about 3 miles long and has an excellent view of Cañon City. Even though there are steep drop-offs on either side of the road, Skyline Drive has no guardrails, making it an exhilarating drive. With a few great pull-offs, dinosaur footprint fossils, and a great hike on the ridge, Skyline Drive is an excellent thing to do while you are here in Cañon City. Get Directions

Cost:     Free


#5 Royal Gorge Dinosaur Experience

Royal Gorge Dinosaur ExperienceDid you know that Dinosaur Fossils have been found in the area of Cañon City? At the Royal Gorge Dinosaur Experience, you can go on a self-guided tour or join a tour as an experienced guide walks you around the museum, sharing about each fossil and the history behind the people who discovered them. For an additional fee, experience the thrill of an incredible three-story high ropes course or take a walk on their Dinosaur Wild Walk tour as you pass by life-like, full-size dinosaurs! The Royal Gorge Dinosaur Experience is a great activity to do for kids and adults of all ages. Learn More

Cost:    Adult – $12/Child – $8


#6 Hiking and Mountain Biking

Cañon City HikingColorado is no stranger to beautiful hiking trails and adrenaline pumping mountain bike trails. Cañon City offers a wide variety of hiking and mountain bike trails for adventurers of all ages and skill levels. There are lots of hikes near Royal Gorge Park, Oil Well Flats, and Red Canyon Park. Here are a few of our most popular Mountain Bike and Hiking Trails:


#7 Museum of Colorado Prisons

Museum of Colorado PrisonsCañon City is home to the Museum of Colorado Prisons. Explore the last 140 years of Colorado prison history as you travel through time and get immersed into what prison life was like from the early Territorial Days until now. This museum is unique and shares a stone wall and armed tower with a prison that is still in operation today. See how this 2-story prison operated as you explore the cell halls, offices, kitchen, mess hall, and watch a documentary on the Prison Riots of 1929 and 1947. Learn More


Cost:   Adult – $10/Child – $8


#8 Holy Cross Winery

Holy Cross Winery Join the Winery at the Holy Cross Abbey and taste some incredible award-winning wine. With their mission to provide the best wine in Colorado, you won’t regret stopping by their tasting room to experience some incredible wine. With a wide variety of wines, you are sure to find something that suits your fancy. Learn More

Cost:    Most wines are complimentary with reserves costing $1.00


#9 Rock Climbing

Cañon City Rock ClimbingColorado boasts 300 days of sunshine a year. Great weather like this is perfect for a day at the crags. Cañon City is located just south of Shelf Road. This excellent climbing crag attracts people from all over for its quality sport routes on its vertical, limestone cliffs. With a wide variety of routes and its south-facing walls, Shelf Road offers excellent, year-round climbing for all skill levels. Learn More


If you’ve never been rock climbing before, Journey Quest offers excellent half-day and full-day Rock Climbing & Rappelling Trips at a local crag few know about.


Cost:    Adult – Starting at $65/Child – Starting at $55


#10 Local Cuisine

Cañon City FoodCañon City is home to some exquisite local cuisine and coffee shops. If you are looking to chow down on some pizza with a lively atmosphere, check out Pizza Madness. For a great burger, The Teek, Bunkhouse Burger, and Big Burger World are all great options. If you are looking for something a little more upscale and fancier, check out Le Petit Chablis. Just need a good cup of coffee? The Bean Pedaler or Mugs both offer a great atmosphere and an excellent place to hang-out, get some work done, or read a book.


We hope to see you around on your next Colorado Vacations to Cañon City! 

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