Driving To Durango


Durango is located in southwest Colorado, 20 miles north of the Colorado-New Mexico border, at the crossroads of US Highways 160 and 550. While a Durango vacation is an escape from the ordinary, it’s surprisingly easy to get here!

Driving to Durango from Denver & the north:

Driving to Durango from Denver is a beautiful, six and a half hour drive. Take US Hwy 285 south from Denver for approximately 173 miles. Turn right on CO State Hwy 112 W for 13 miles until you reach Del Norte. In Del Norte, turn right onto US Hwy 160 W. Follow US Hwy 160 W for 118 miles. For a longer, more scenic drive, take I-70 West from Denver to Grand Junction, then take US Hwy 50 E toward Montrose. US Hwy 50 merges into US Hwy 550 S; follow US Hwy 550 S through Ouray and Silverton to Durango. Note: this route takes you on part of the scenic "San Juan Skyway," and adds approximately an hour to your drive time.

San Juan Skyway: Colorado’s “Road to the Sky”

The San Juan Skyway is a 233-mile National Scenic and Historic Byway that offers access to Durango as well as to high elevation recreation, dramatic views of 14,000-foot peaks in the San Juan Mountains, quaint Victorian mining towns, and Mesa Verde National Park. The San Juan Skyway is one of the most scenic drives in America, spanning elevations from 6,200 feet outside of Durango to just over 11,000 feet at Red Mountain Pass. The entire loop takes about 7 hours to drive, and makes for a fabulous 2-3 day road trip through southwest Colorado. Durango is located at the southeast corner of the Skyway, at the intersection of US Hwy 160 (east/west), and US Hwy 550 (north/south). 

Driving to Durango from Albuquerque & the south:

The drive from Albuquerque to Durango takes a little over three and a half hours, and takes you through beautiful desert landscapes. From Albuquerque, simply take US Hwy 550 N approximately 215 miles to Durango.

Driving to Durango from Phoenix & the west:

Follow I-17 N/US Hwy 60 W from Phoenix for 140 miles, then take US Hwy 89 N for approximately 62 miles. Take US Hwy 160 E for 154 miles to Durango. If arriving in Durango from other areas to the west, you will also enter Durango via US Hwy 160 E, passing through Cortez, Mancos, and past Mesa Verde National Park on the way. 

Be sure to stay aware of current road conditions and construction projects. For information on rental car companies, please visit our Transportation & Motor Vehicles page.