Family Vacation Ideas
Parents, grandparents, and kids activities - there's lots to do and activities for everyone during a Colorado family vacation in Estes Park.
Before you come:
- learn more about Rocky Mountain National Park by watching The Living Dream - a movie available in DVD & Blue Ray. Ordering info.
- explore these hikes online via Google Trekker
In the Park, Rocky Mountain National Park rangers and naturalists conduct numerous summer and year round programs for children and families. Popular programs include:
- campfire talks
- ranger-led daytime and full moon hikes
- programs and videos at the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center
- ranger talks and Tuesday Discovery Days at the Fall River Visitor Center (beginning in June)
- the Junior Ranger program
- naturalist talks
In the wintertime, there's an evening program at headquarters every Saturday and guided snowshoe treks on weekends.
Get this great guidebook, Outdoor Family Guide to Rocky Mountain National Park for lots of ideas and specifics on hikes and walks, picnic sites, fishing holes, mountain biking, rock climbing, horseback riding, and river rafting. Click the title above or the cover image at right to buy it online from Barnes and Noble.
The walkway around Lake Estes is accessible for all ages all year round. It is paved, level, and easy to navigate by foot, wheelchair, or bicycle. In fall, you'll probably see elk enjoying the grass!
There are hundreds of miles of hiking trails in Rocky Mountain National Park. Shorter trails with little gain in altitude are particularly suited for families with younger children and hikes with kids.
The surprise of finding a wild native in your yard or along the roadside is a special treat for all ages. This can happen any time of the year, but spring, fall, and winter are easiest times for spotting wildlife. Elk, deer, and bighorn sheep are the most numerous. Don't worry, bear and mountain lions are rarely seen.
Come have fun geocaching as a family, exploring Rocky Mountain National Park, as well as the mountain towns of Estes Park and Grand Lake with the Across the Divide GeoTour!
Imagine the excitement of reeling in a trout and taking it home for supper! A mountain fresh trout is the ultimate taste treat. There are countless public lakeshore and riverbank fishing areas in Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park. A fishing license is required for those 16 and older. Licenses aren't required at the popular private summertime trout ponds — pay by the inch for the fish you catch — and a good catch is a sure thing! This is a great kids activity!
What could be more fun on a warm, inviting afternoon than a family picnic. Pack your own basket, or stop at a local deli, restaurant, or store and have them prepare one for you. Picnic areas abound in Rocky Mountain National Park, Roosevelt National Forest, and on the south shore of Lake Estes.
Estes Park stables have well-trained horses and experienced wranglers to take your family on a trail ride in the Park or Forest during the spring, summer, and fall seasons. Pony rides around the corral are a thrill for the youngest children.
Choose an easy float trip for younger children or a whitewater run for older adventurers. Either way, it's a wonderful, memorable time together on the water!
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