Adventure Vacations

Visiting Rocky Mountain National Park

Last updated 16th October 2017

Why Go?

Mountains are spectacular and stunning and Rocky Mountain National Park offers a beautiful and safe way to introduce family members of all ages to this incredible landscape. With scenic drives, accessible viewpoints, nearby lodging, car camping, countless family friendly day hikes to alpine lakes and mountain peaks, and hundreds of miles of trails for backpacking, this park offers a lifetime of exploration options. But it’s worth noting that spending time at elevation can be physiologically taxing  for some. Most of the park entrances are above 8,000 feet and the high point of the road connecting the two reaches 12,183 feet. While this needn’t really be a concern for passive activity like sitting in a car driving, it does need to be taken into consideration for more active pursuits like hiking.


Real adventure-seeking families will love white-water rafting and the backcountry camping tour where you can go on a llama into the untouched wilderness and sleep under the stars. Placid and naturally comfortable at altitude, llamas are the perfect furry partners for camping.

For less structured activities try a walking hike: pack a magnifying glass for close-up bug examinations and binoculars to spot the elk and bighorn sheep that come down from the mountains during late spring and summer.

When children need time away from grown-ups, let them escape to the Rocky Junior Rangers, an onsite kid’s club focused on animals and park preservation.

Don’t miss: See if you’d survive in the wild with a fishing trip, you may even catch a trout for supper. 

The Lowdown

Where to stay? Many Rocky Mountain visitors base themselves in Estes Park, an eastern gateway with lodging options to suit everyone (cabin, campsite or luxury hotel suite). There you can plan activities and it’s just an 8 minute shuttle to the park.