Your Guide to Family Fun in Durango, Colorado

Springtime is a wonderful time for a family vacation to Durango, Colorado. In order to get the most out of your trip, we have put together a Four-Day Spring Itinerary full of family activities, adventures, and dining experiences. While in Durango you and your family can do everything from exploring ancient history at Mesa Verde, shop till you drop, host your own pizza party, and discover the many museums, galleries, and exhibits. It’s important to stay busy and get the most out of your Durango vacation, but there are also many enjoyable ways to relax and unwind. 

For an exciting, interactive, and educational spring family vacation, we've created a four-day itinerary perfect for family fun and making memories.

Day 1

Start your first day in Durango with breakfast at Durango Doughworks. Choose from an assortment of classic breakfast items, or try one of Durango Doughworks’ signature dishes. 

After breakfast, it’s time to ride the historic rails with the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Train. This one-of-a-kind train experience is very popular so be sure to book your reservations ahead of time online or by phone. 

Traveling through time on the historic train will surely build an appetite, so after your train experience be sure to grab lunch at Animas Brewing Company - right along the Animas River. This minimalist brewpub located inside a rustic-chic cabin serves Irish-influenced food and house-made craft beer in a fast, casual setting.

Now that you've experienced the historic train in person, it's time to learn about the fascinating history of railroading, transportation, and mining with people from around the world by visiting the Durango & Silverton Railroad Museum. Railroad-related exhibits are added frequently and admission is always free of charge. 

A pizza party is a perfect way to feed the whole family after a busy day exploring Durango. HomeSlice Pizza is a Durango staple with three convenient locations in town. HomeSlice is popular with locals and visitors and enables you and the crew to eat in, carry out, or order delivery. 

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! After dinner, it's time to hit the streets of historic downtown Durango and grab some ice cream from Cream Bean Berry.

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Day 2

It’s going to be another action-packed day in Durango, so be sure to start the day right with a casual breakfast from Oscar’s Cafe. Oscar's Cafe is a 1950's style diner serving award-winning breakfast and lunch.

After breakfast, it's time to discover the Powerhouse Science Center. This interactive science center opened on February 23, 2011, in what was once a power plant. The museum is located in the Durango Light and Power Company building that was built in 1892.

Enjoy a farm-to-table lunch at James Ranch located just 10 miles north of Durango in the beautiful Animas River Valley. James Ranch offers 100% grass-fed and finished beef, whey-fed pork, artisan cheese, and raw milk from 100% grass-fed, grazing Jersey cows, eggs produced from pastured hens, a spruce tree nursery, a regenerative vegetable and flower garden, and a thriving grill and market.

The amazing lunch at James Ranch will surely leave the crew with energy to burn, and there’s no better way for the kids to have fun and get some exercise than the incredible playground at the Santa Rita Park located in the heart of town along the Animas River. After the kids have some fun on the playground the family can take a casual stroll down the paved Animas River Trail.

Durango is home to more than 500 retail stores, so it’s the perfect place to shop till you drop. On Main Avenue alone you can find an incredible assortment of shops for everyone to enjoy. 

When it’s time for dinner after a busy day of activities it is important to find a place for something for everyone and that is why Visit Durango recommends dining at 11th Street Station. 11th Street Station is a collective eatery with permanent food trucks serving diverse fare situated in an industrial-chic setup with open-air seating. 11th Street Station also features live music from local artists. 

After dinner, it is time for dessert. Make your next stop Animas Chocolate Company, a chocolate company dedicated to creating high-quality, handcrafted chocolates.

Before it is time for bed stop by Maria's Bookshop on Main Avenue for something new to read for a bedtime story. This indie bookstore is locally owned and has all kinds of books and gifts in stock.

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Day 3

There is no better way to start the day than fresh-baked bagels from Durango Bagels conveniently located right next to the train station. Durango Bagels is a favorite for bagels, breakfast sandwiches, coffee, pastries, and gourmet deli lunch sandwiches.

Exploring Mesa Verde National Park is one of the most fascinating things you can do when you visit Durango. Mesa Verde is known for its well-preserved Ancestral Puebloan cliff dwellings, notably the huge Cliff Palace. Don’t forget to ask the Park Rangers about the Free Junior Ranger Program where kids can learn more about the park, complete a free activity book, and upon completion they can be sworn in as official Junior Park Rangers. 

Once you get back to town it’s time to relax and unwind and there is no better way to do so than to hang out by the Animas River, skip stones, watch the ducks and try to spot some fish. The family can enjoy the picnic tables, playground, hard surface hiking trail, an open grass area, and more at Animas City Park

When it's time for lunch Grassburger is a Durango favorite for locals and visitors alike for burgers, fries, shakes, and more. Grassburger has taken the great American experience of eating a burger & fries and made it better for you, the animals, and the planet! 

For your next interactive, educational, and fun experience you should visit Honeyville and learn how Colorado Wildflower Honey is made. The kids will love to see the bees at work making honey, and everyone will love the assortment of honey, jams, sauces, and body care products that you can bring home.

Steamworks Brewing Company is another Durango favorite featuring one of the most diverse menus in Colorado. There’s literally something for everyone including craft-brewed beer, soup & salad, sandwiches, burgers, pizza, and other specialty entrees such as fish & chips, smoked brisket tacos, and the famous Cajun boil. There's also an extensive kids menu with everything from cheeseburgers to hot dogs to grilled salmon. 

If anyone in the group has a sweet tooth be sure to visit Fuzziwig’s Candy Factory. Fuzziwig's has all kinds of favorites including handmade chocolates and fudge, giant lollipops, and sweet drinks. There's also an awesome selection of toys and gag gifts perfect for any occasion.

After another action-packed day in Durango be sure to make time for the sunset and stargazing. The view from the top of Fort Lewis is exquisite and one of the best places in town to take amazing pictures and panoramas of Durango, the surrounding mountains, and the setting sun. After the sun sets give it a little time and Fort Lewis is also an incredible place for stargazing. 

Check out all the amazing stargazing locations in and around Durango.

Day 4

A trip to Durango would not be complete without authentic French breakfast pastries from Jean Pierre Bakery where you can find traditional French bread, rolls, baguettes, croissants, and pastries such as eclairs, palmiers, fruit tarts, and other sweet delights.

No vacation would be complete without souvenirs & toys. Be sure to check out Durango's newest business Twilight Toys located at 600 Main Avenue featuring quality toys, games, and constructive activities for kids of all ages. Twilight Toys is another locally owned business and features hand-picked selections of the coolest toys in town. Check out the Souvenir Gift Guide to Shopping Durango for more information and options. 

According to the New York Times Durango's own Nini's Taqueria is a restaurant, "...where the interior is as colorful as the food." Featuring burritos, tacos, quesadillas, salad, soup, gluten free options and more Nini's Taqueria is a funky but casual Mexican eatery that's sure to please the entire family. 

No family vacation to Colorado's southwest would be complete without a horse drawn carriage ride from D & K Wagon Rides. The whole family will love this historic experience, and you'll certainly draw the attention of other folks on Main Avenue as you wave from your horse drawn carriage. This uniquely Durango experience is great for making memories as well as taking photos and videos. 

Serious Texas BBQ is known for their must-have smoked turkey which pairs nicely with the homemade cranberry habanero salsa, as well as the award winning pulled pork sandwich featuring their housemade fruity & fiery cherry-chipotle salsa, but it turns out kids love Serious Texas BBQ for the accompanying mini golf. Be sure to visit either of Serious Texas BBQ's Durango locations for a night filled with tasty food and family fun.

Durango is the Perfect Place for Your Next Family Vacation

Durango is always in season, but the spring is a special time where we transition from our many winter activities to the delights and experiences best enjoyed in the warmer weather. Springtime is one of the best times for your family to visit Durango, and we hope that our 4-Day Spring Itinerary will help your family get the most out of your Durango vacation. We hope that your family makes many incredible memories while visiting Durango and exploring our many restaurants, shops, galleries, museums, activities, and more. 

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