Colorado Scenic Drives

Colorado scenic drives include mountain views that provide stunning vistas, access to largely untouched wilderness areas, and clear, starry nights. Take to the scenic byways by car, motorcycle, or bike, but leave plenty of time to explore on foot -- every scenic byway offers hikes for all skill levels as well as visitor sites, towns, and museums.

The links at the bottom of this page will take you to articles containing in-depth information on seven Colorado scenic drives. Included are photos, highlights, and detailed maps of each Colorado scenic drive. Here's a look:


Frontier Pathways Scenic and Historic Byway

From Colorado City, this path reveals how early settlers survived the high country. Today's visitors bring mountain bikes and climbing gear and set aside time for sightseeing at small museums.

Gold Belt Tour Scenic and Historic Byway (Gold Belt Scenic Byway)

Dirt roads and old stagecoach routes lead to five historic towns. Explore gold mining history, see fossil beds, and tour a working gold mine, or take advantage of outdoor recreational opportunities along this scenic drive.

Grand Mesa Scenic and Historic Byway (Grand Mesa Scenic Byway)

Lookouts from 11,000 feet above sea level allow visitors to see mountains 90 miles away. The Lands End Observatory and the Grand Mesa Mountain's flat top are two of the region's beloved attractions.

San Juan Skyway

Allow plenty of time to visit the cliff dwellings and stone villages at Mesa Verde, and enjoy a scenic drive past waterfalls, hot springs, and the ski slopes at Telluride.

Santa Fe Trail Scenic and Historic Byway (Santa Fe Trail Scenic Byway)

An important corridor to the West, this passage has prehistoric origins and features rich Native American culture and history. Don't miss the stunning views on a portion of the road known as the Million Dollar Highway.

Top of the Rockies Scenic Byway (Rockies Scenic Byway)

Visit the highest-elevation town in the country and take on the Continental Divide. Backpack, bike, hike, or ski while here -- backcountry enthusiasts love the challenges presented by the terrain.

Trail Ridge Road/Beaver Meadow Road

Soaring to heights above 14,000 feet, this route is among the prettiest and most protected in the country. Look for teeming wildlife and wildflowers by day and starry skies by night.

For more useful travel information about Colorado and beyond, see:

  • How to Drive Economically: Fuel economy is a major concern when you're on a driving trip. Learn how to get better gas mileage.