Colorado might be known as a modern retreat destination for skiers and hikers, but for hundreds—even millions—of years, the Centennial State has attracted a wide variety of historic figures and events. Discover the state’s heritage up close at these wondrous destinations.
Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave
William Frederick “Buffalo Bill” Cody, an iconic figure of the Old West, was buried atop Lookout Mountain by Golden, Colorado. Visitors flock to this historic destination along the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains to pay tribute to the legendary Buffalo Bill’s life and bison-hunting exploits. The museum on site houses a vast collection of personal items and insights accumulated by the man’s friend Johnny Baker. Even if you don’t know anything about Buffalo Bill, this destination is the perfect place to learn about him. For more information, visit http://www.buffalobill.org/.
U.S. Olympic Training Center
Historic destinations don’t just have to do with ancient cultures or wars. The United States’ official Olympic Training Center was established in Colorado Springs in 1978 to provide facilities and amenities for hundreds of athletes and their coaches. However, you don’t have to be training for the Olympics to visit. Daily public walking tours are given, providing glimpses into the country’s athletic legacy at the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame and current feats at the training complexes and gymnasiums. The Visitor Center even has its own art gallery. To learn more, visit http://www.teamusa.org/about-the-usoc/training-centers-and-sites/colorado-springs/visit.
Mesa Verde National Park
Although Native Americans do not reside in the same dwellings they used to hundreds and thousands of years ago, their incredible cliff-side dwellings remain throughout this park in southwestern Colorado. Designated a World Heritage Site, Mesa Verde contains paved paths that offer picturesque views of the abandoned Anasazi/Puebloan buildings carved out of the massive rocks. For more information, visit http://www.nps.gov/meve/index.htm.
Long before people inhabited Colorado, dinosaurs were leaving their mark on the grounds. Trace the history of Colorado before mankind’s appearance by taking an unforgettable walking tour through dinosaur tracks, bones and fossils. First discovered in 1877, the archeological site has since been identified as the Morrison Expansion, stretching from the south part of the United States up to Canada. The most fascinating stretch is the 1.25-mile trail with posted signs that guide your expedition. To discover more, visit http://www.dinoridge.org/.
Colorado State Capitol Building
No historic tour of Colorado would be complete without a trip to the capitol center in Denver. Architecturally breathtaking with its towering gold dome and stained glass windows, the state capitol building has housed numerous historic people, events and decisions over the years. Guided tours are available to learn more about the building’s place in Colorado history, as well as the veteran memorials on the building’s grounds. For more information, visit https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cga-legislativecouncil/tours-0.
Colorado has more than its share of picturesque and entertaining places, but truly getting to know Colorado can only come by witnessing its historic sites. By reliving the past, Colorado will truly come alive for you.
This article is presented by Perkins Motors in Colorado Springs, Colorado.