Travel Guide for Colorado Springs and Pikes Peak Area

Free Things to Do in Colorado Springs

Looking for FREE things to do in Colorado Springs?

Now more than ever people are looking for entertainment on the cheap. Luckily, this fine city has plenty to do in the way of the affordable.

If you love natural beauty, sunshine, history and adventure, you won’t have any trouble finding free activities in the Pikes Peak region.

Here are several things to do in Colorado Springs, at absolutely no cost to you.

That’s right. Zero. Zilch. Nada. Nothing. Totally and completely FREE.



TOURS

The US Olympic Training Center gives free guided tours every hour on the hour. Walk through the campus, see the sports centers, maybe meet an Olympic athlete or two. You can even take a photo next to the flags and torch.

The United States Air Force Academy has free, self-guided tours available. Visit their beautiful Chapel, see the aircraft memorials in Honor Court, or spend some time learning about cadet life at the Visitor’s Center.

MUSEUMS

Starsmore Discovery Center. This visitor center at the entrance of North Cheyenne Canon city park has many interactive exhibits, a bookstore, and even a climbing wall. Great place for kids to enjoy science.

Colorado Springs Fine Arts Museum: Free admission every third Tuesday of the month. Roam the galleries to see paintings, sculpture, photographs, blown glass and more.

American Numismatic Association. A.k.a The Money Museum. Learn about the art, history, science and nature of money. Exhibits are shown in three main galleries. Over 250,000 objects to view. Located right downtown on 818 N. Cascade Ave.

Pioneers Museum. Discover the history and culture of the Pikes Peak region at this beautifully restored building in the 1903 El Paso County Courthouse. Over 60,000 objects including quilts, pottery, and art. 215 South Tejon St.

FESTIVALS

Colorado Balloon Classic. Held at Memorial Park over Labor Day weekend. Highlights include watching over 100 hot air balloons ascend at once, and the ‘night-glo” spectacular when pilots light up their ballons after sunset. Food, music, and kids activities.

Territory Days. Old Colorado City is the place to be in the last weekend in May. This street festival features food, drink, cowboys, vendor displays, and historical costumes. 100,000 visitors usually find their way over the three day weekend. You should too!

CITY PARKS

Colorado Springs has some of the most beautiful City Parks in the country. And we aren’t talking your garden variety parks with tennis courts, swingsets, and a place to throw your frisbee. (Although we have lots of those too, with mountain views to boot).

The city parks in Colorado Springs include places like the enviable Garden of the Gods. This gorgeous setting features sandstone monolith hundreds of feet tall, bizarre rock formations like Balanced Rock and Siamese Twins, and stunning views of the Front Range and Pikes Peak. Drive, walk, bike, or ride horseback. Also fun to visit (for free) is the Garden of the Gods Visitor's Center and the Garden of the Gods Trading Post.

Another popular city park is Palmer Park. Located right in the middle of the city, it’s like an oasis of natural quietude. Hundreds of miles of trails make it a great place for hiking and mountain biking. Or, just park your car at one of the lots and gaze out over the city.

If you like to skate, skateboard, or BMX, don’t miss the Memorial Park Skateboard Park. A “destination” skateboard park, with 40,000 square feet of concrete to play on.

One of the most visited places in the Colorado Springs area is the Manitou Incline, an extremely challenging hiking trail in nearby Manitou Springs. Free for the conquering.

Other favorite parks include Red Rock Canyon Open Space, Bear Creek, Monument Valley, North Cheyenne Canon, and Ute Valley Park. Visit each one for their unique landscapes which include streams, waterfalls, rocks, mountain trails, and meadows. See our hiking trails pages for photos and descriptions.

Keep in mind, these are all great places to visit for family vacations. Not only are they free, but kids love them and dogs do too.

WINDOW SHOPPING

One of our favorite free things to do in Colorado Springs (or any city for that matter) is walking through shopping districts to people watch and spot deals we might come back for later. Downtown has plenty of places to do just that, especially along the bustling Tejon Street.

The Old Colorado City neighborhood on the west side has four full blocks of unique shops, plus Bancroft Park with its shade trees and band shelter. Around Christmas you can watch the horse carriage rides, and in January you can enjoy their annual Ice on the Avenue festival.

Manitou Springs is a wonderful place to visit when searching for free things to do in Colorado Springs. Technically it’s a couple miles west of “the Springs,” but has a very unique vibe, with plenty of cute and unusual shops to stroll through.

Make sure to visit the Arcade while you’re there, although you might quickly get out of the “free” realm with over one city block’s worth of pinball machines, video games, and amusement rides.

NATURAL SPRINGS

Manitou Springs also has a very special free activity available—the Mineral Springs Walking Tours. Throughout the town are several natural springs that you can drink from, each with their own mineral concentration. Some taste like seltzer, and one even has lithium in it. Several shops carry the free maps in the summer. Plan an hour or two to find them all and taste from each one. 719-685-5089.


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Hope you enjoy the many free things to do in Colorado Springs. Thanks for visiting!

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