Durango vacation - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 08-04-2010, 12:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Well it looks like DS 9 is getting his wish and we are going to Durango for a few days later this month.
We should be doing the train, staying by the river and just wandering the town. Hopefully we can also take a drive one day back up to Silverton and spend more time up there too..

What else do I need to know? I was to Durango one time about 5 yrs ago... What about restaurants, eating, food, we dont have allergies and are pretty traditional in eating...

DS loves outdoor parks..


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#2 of 8 Old 08-04-2010, 01:18 AM
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Don't miss Mesa Verde with the Anasazi cliff dwellings. My daughter went on a trip to that part of Colorado last summer (when she was 10) and loved Mesa Verde.
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#3 of 8 Old 08-04-2010, 07:02 PM
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We used to live there and our fav restaurants are Tequilas for Mexican, and for more fancy we like Ken and Sues or The Palace. Stonehouse Subs is really good for a nice lunch. There are a couple of natural food stores for groceries (nature's oasis and durango natural foods) or there is a city market.

Tons of parks, hikes, drives. Check out Lake Vallecito, stop by the river, hike the colorado trail. Also, stop by the visitor center to get info.

Have a blast!!

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#4 of 8 Old 08-06-2010, 10:20 PM
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Our family looooves Durango!! It's wonderful there!!

When we go (we went last weekend..and go a few times a month it seems) my dp takes the older one tubing on the river (he's 8 and loves it! 6 and 7 yr old liked it, but it was a bit too much for them). You can drop in anywhere (even your hotel, depending on which one you stay at). Tubing from the Rec Center area to Santa Rita Park can take 2-3 hours. Last time dp and ds saw a bear..that walked slowly along the river with them as they floated for 15 mins! Too bad they didn't have a camera! Santa Rita is a great park...playground and plenty of space to run and play, right along the river..plus picnic tables and all that good stuff. I celebrated my 30th birthday there a few weeks ago, eating some yummy cupcakes right on the Animas river!

Last weekend the weather wasn't ideal for putting tubes in the river (storms) so our family all went to the Rec Center. This place rules! Amazing indoor water area...lazy river, splash/wading pool, huge water slide!!!!, etc. My kids seriously love this place. My 1.5, 4, 6, 7 yr olds have gone a few times, 8 yr old just went & they spend hours there!! Plus there is an outdoor splash pad that is wicked fun! So if it's warm enough (no storms) you can still be out and enjoying the sun. You can also bring a lunch and eat it out there (either at the Rec Center outdoor playground or inside..or the splash pad.) Great for picnics! We picnic so much since we love being outside and we're a large family..easier on everyone!

We also go to different parks when we visit. We always meet wonderful locals and last weekend my kids had SO much fun at the little neighborhood playground. Durango has 32 parks and so much to do!

As for food...we hit up City Market when there (we live in a remote ski town 2.5 hrs N of Durango and use these trips to stock up!) and of course, buy lots of picnic/grilling foods. We also go to Natural Grocers. If you are there on a Saturday, be sure to hit up the Farmer's Market. Probably a bit pricey for most (just like our FM here!) but it's a great time and some good eats! It's busy so be prepared for that (parking, etc).

One place I would not eat at again...Fiesta Mexicana in Durango. There are a few locations around and that particular one is not up to par with the others.

Great suggestion to check out Mesa Verde! We go to MV every time we head home...purchased a National Park pass just for it (and this area since there are so many in the SW). It is amazing and all humans should see it one day. Truly amazing. It is located between Durango and Cortez. It is 15 slooooow miles to the Visitor Center from the entrance and also be crowded, keep that in mind. It is very much worth the visit, though!

On the way to MV there are some shops to see and stop at. This area of Colorado is so amazing...we enjoy our trips here very much! Hope you have a wonderful time...I look forward to hearing how it goes!
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#5 of 8 Old 08-10-2010, 04:33 AM
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If you can fit it in, visit the Anasazi Cultural Center ( http://www.blm.gov/co/st/en/fo/ahc.html ) - it's a great museum, we could have spent the whole day there (with a 6 and 3 year old). Good interactive displays etc. It's near Cortes too.

We liked the food (and beer) at Steamworks Brew Pub.

Not all who wander are lost.
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#6 of 8 Old 09-07-2010, 01:36 PM
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I live here in Durango and wow the others have already mentioned lots of fun things to do. The Animas River is awesome, they have expanded the river trail so you can walk from 32nd all the way down to Nature's Oasis (past Santa Rita Park) plus there is of course tubing and rafting.
I love going up to Lemon or Vallecito Reservoirs, so beautiful!
We like Santa Rita park and the rec center has a fun playground too.
We just built a nice new library here; if you have a rainy day the kids area is wonderful.
Children's discovery museum is supposed to be fun too, I haven't been yet though.
On a restaurant note, I heard Stonehouse Subs is closing so that may be a no go. For quick and cheaper lunch I like Zia Taqueria (a qdoba/chipotle type place but local and much much better... I always get carne asada tacos but the fish ones are really good and they also have great quesdaillas and burritos) One of my fav places to eat. If you are into sushi East by Southwest, they also have a Thai restaurant connected to it now, the Golden Triangle which is supposed to be really good. I also love Carver's Brewing, they have pretty good food and the beer is yummy too. Um, let's see. Cuckoos Chicken house has great wings and chicken. Durango Diner for breakfast if you like diner food, and they have pretty good green chile. Gazpachos is a New Mexican Style place and they have good green chile too, I recommend the stuffed sopapilla. If you want pizza I think JBo's has the best pizza in town.
Hope that helps. Oh and I would recommend doing the train one way and the bus return trip. I mean 6+ hours on a train plus the hour or two you have in Silverton is a really long day. It's a little more expensive but worth it imo. Definitely check out Mesa Verde too, very fun and interesting. Bring lots of water!
Purgatory (Durango Mountain Resort), the ski area, has an alpine slide, mountain biking, and a scenic chairlift. There is also a new paintball/zipline place in town (if you have $$ to spend ).

Hope you have fun!!

Cheryl, proud mama to Jackson... and a baby on the way!
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#7 of 8 Old 09-08-2010, 10:49 AM
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I forgot to mention one of my fav places for breakfast, Durango Doughworks. They've got bagels, doughnuts, breakfast burritos, mmmm. Good for a fast pick-up or they have a sit down breakfast too. Thy also have lunch bagel sandwiches, salad bar, and deli. It's good. I'm going there this morning for a breakfast burrito, doughnut and coffee

Cheryl, proud mama to Jackson... and a baby on the way!
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#8 of 8 Old 09-08-2010, 03:58 PM
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Went there with the fam in October 2007. Roadtrip from "Larryville" with a 3yo and 1.5 yo-they did amazing Rode the train for son's 3rd b-day. Drove through a lot of little mountain towns. He still remembers!

Took the steam engine train and the scenery was beautiful. You should take your own sunglasses for the soot-it will get in your eyes--otherwise their glasses you can buy are not a one size fits all. Also, you should be hitting peak foliage season--we had just missed it! The autumn mountain air will be spectacular. Take the Wolf Creek Pass route to see beautiful scenery through Animas? state park.

We stayed at the Lightener Creek Inn-and it was nice-very cute and the breakfast is great We had a great time! We perused shops in Silverton and got some trinkets for home.

Not a lot of "kid-friendly" places to eat--and we are not fans of "kid-fare" cuisine-- it had more to do with accommodations than anything else. We just made it a point to order a regular meal and split it for the kids and we went to one of the nicest places there-was not real impressed with service at the time. Mainly frequented by the retired set. I would avoid the "Mexican" restaurants--it was not authentic. Actually, I have no idea what it was. I am Mexican-I would know-LOL I cook the real deal:P

Definitely go to Mesa Verde--amazing!

It was also neat to see how much CO Springs had grown...stayed at the La Quinta in there as a stop over-was impressed with the cleanliness of hotel and the service at the Outback Res. there across the street.

All I can think of for now since anything else would be duplicating the great info everyone else posted

Have fun and be safe!
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