Colorado Springs

Overview

Introduction

Colorado Springs, Colorado, has been a popular resort town since the 1870s. It is the second largest city in Colorado and is the seat of El Paso County. Located only an hour south of Denver near the base of Pikes Peak—a soaring mountain whose summit is famous for inspiring Katharine Lee Bates to write "America the Beautiful" in 1893—Colorado Springs is much more than a mere mountain escape.

Colorado Springs is important to the U.S. military. The U.S. Air Force and Army have nearby bases, as does the North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, located somewhere inside Cheyenne Mountain. The area is also an important base for Christian conservatism and several major evangelical megachurches.

Tourism, however, is the reason Colorado Springs was established, and it continues to be a prime part of the economy. There are so many things to do and see in Colorado Springs and the nearby mountains that you can spend weeks there without getting bored. From jaw-dropping natural attractions such as Pikes Peak, Garden of the Gods and Cave of the Winds to a plethora of man-made attractions that include ancient Manitou Cliff Dwellings, a host of eclectic museums, and The Broadmoor historic hotel and Glen Eyrie Castle—you'd be hard pressed to find another area with so many family-friendly things to do.

In Colorado Springs, Old West history lurks around every corner, and many visitors focus on visiting ghost towns, old gold mines, cowboy camps and dude ranches. Of course, this is also a modern city and there are fine arts, performing arts, competitive sports, and a wonderful bike and trail system. Colorado Springs is also the site of one of three U.S. Olympic Training Centers, open to complimentary tours year-round. A broad range of accommodations and restaurants serve your basic needs between adventures.

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