Travel Diaries- Denver, Colorado, USA

March 3, 2021

Each year, I make it a tradition to visit one new place and explore the area. Colorado has always been on my bucket list, and when the opportunity to travel to Denver for a week was presented, the trip was booked and the countdown began.

One of the first places we visited to soak up some of the Southwest culture was called Garden of the Gods. Garden of the Gods is a 1,300 acre public park located in Colorado Springs that is full of sandstone formations and hiking trails. These beautiful rock formations have been built up naturally and are formed from red, pink, and white sandstone, along with limestone and conglomerates. 

Lauren Gray

Wild Fyre Co. | Kansas City, MO

All images by Lauren Gray | Wild Fyre Co
Cover image: Manitou Cave Dwellings, Manitou Springs, Colorado, USA

Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA

The park received its name in 1859 when two surveyors were exploring the land and came across the sandstone formations. The two men joked how it would be a perfect place for a beer garden, but thought it was better fit as a place for gods to assemble, and has been named ever since. Garden of the Gods was designated a natural landmark in 1971 and is free to visit. 

Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA

Following the hike throughGarden of the Gods, the next place on the list was the Manitou Cave Dwellings. The dwellings are located in Manitou Springs, which is roughly only five miles west of Colorado Springs. The Manitou Cave Dwellings were originally located in McElmo Canyon. Parts of these ancestral Puebloan cliff dwellings were relocated in 1904 as a way to preserve the original ruins, and opened to the public in 1907 as a natural history and archeological preserve.

These reassembled structures allow us to appreciate and learn about the history and culture of the Anasazi tribes. Tours are offered to learn more about the way of life, and the dwellings are open to explore around.

Manitou Cave Dwellings, Manitou Springs, Colorado, USA

I could not have left Denver without visiting the Denver Botanic Gardens. As soon as you enter the gardens, there is an Alice in Wonderland feel in the air with hedges and many directions to choose from. This feeling was elevated when a rabbit hopped along by.

Denver Botanic Gardens, Denver, Colorado, USA

Denver Botanic Gardens offer 24 acres of plant collections from arid showcases to Internationally inspired gardens. There are places to stroll to visit aquatic gardens, and trails covered in shady trees and plants. The botanic garden is also home to the Helen Fowler Library, which offers classes and education to the public.

Denver Botanic Gardens, Denver, Colorado, USA

The Southwest United States is such a unique location full of culture, rich history, and nature, and Denver offers an experience of a lifetime. I hope to be lucky enough to make my way back out to the mountains and see the city through a new perspective.