Many of our clients enjoy traveling with their dog! We thought why start a series highlighting places we have been with our own dogs! First up is Colorado! Enjoy taking your off leash trained dog to one of the most dog friendly states with so much to see and do together!
Denver, Pike’s Peak, and the Red Rocks Amphitheater, these are some of the tourist destinations that many correlate with a trip to Colorado. But, there’s more to this beautiful state than these hot-ticket attractions. Just take Castle Rock, Colorado for example. Located just 20 minutes south of Denver, this town, named after the well-known castle tower-shaped butte near the center of town is known for its Old West charm and was ranked 17th on the America’s Best Small Cities list by CNN Money in 2012.
But, to understand its current allure, it’s important to take a look at the past and the events that brought Castle Rock, Colorado to be what it is today!
First and foremost, Castle Rock, Colorado got its name in 1859 when David Kellogg, a gold seeker, named the prominent rock after its resemblance to a castle.
Now, that’s just the name, the big-picture story of Castle Rock, Colorado began with a rumor. A rumor that this area that was located in the Colorado Front Range foothills and was inhabited by Native Americans was home to a plethora of gold on land that was made available through the Homestead Act of 1864.
At that time, the surrounding cowboy town had no more than a few buildings that were meant for miners, laborers, and farm hands.
It wasn’t until 1874 when county lines were redrawn and Castle Rock became the home of the Douglas County government. At that time, six main streets were created in the center of the town around the Douglas County courthouse.
Shortly thereafter, a train depot was introduced to Castle Rock, Colorado and that system paired with a fixation on rhyolite extraction began to draw more and more people from all over the world into the area. This same train depot introduced Denver and the Rio Grande railway to the area as well.
Here’s a little fun fact! Rhyolite is a stone that’s commonly used for the exterior of buildings. Many of the buildings in old town Castle Rock are made from this material.
Ever since then, Castle Rock has evolved into the largest town in Douglas County that recorded more than 77,000 people in its city limits in 2014.
Now that we have some context about the origins of the area, it’s time to get to the crux of this article, the list of five things to do in Castle Rock, Colorado!
Let’s dive right in, shall we?
Obviously, we’re kicking this list off with the main attraction, Rock Park. The current site of Rock Park spans an expansive 62.3 acres of land. If you’re a fan of the great outdoors and hiking on difficult terrain, Rock Park is a must-see! If you plan on hiking Rock Park, you can enjoy a climb on the looped single-track trail system and from these trails, you can make your way to the base of the Rock and take in stunning views of downtown Castle Rock, Pike’s Peak, and the Front Range. That being said, you definitely want to make sure that you pack your camera so that you can capture these jaw-dropping sights! You can enjoy the open space of Rock Park with your friends, family, and even Fido! There are plenty of picnic areas and trails to keep your crew occupied and entertained for hours! Rock Park is perfect for people who love immersing themselves in nature and taking in the sights and sounds of Mother Nature.
Golf enthusiasts will be happy to know that Castle Rock, Colorado lends itself to not one, not two, but EIGHT, highly-desirable scenic golf courses that were designed by famous golf architects like Jack Nicholas, Jim Engh, Tom Weiskopf, and Pete Dye. With picturesque backdrops and pristine greens, these courses will have you packing up your golf clubs faster than you can say “Fore!” Let’s take a quick look at the list of these courses:
The weekend after Labor Day is synonymous with the Colorado Artfest at Castle Rock that has been running for 29 years and counting! Whether you’re an avid or novice fan of art, this Artfest is a sight to see as artists from all across the country converge in one place to showcase their pieces and creativity. There’s live entertainment, exhibits, food and beverages and more. This is Castle Rock, Colorado’s biggest event and one you don’t want to miss out on.
Attention all adrenaline junkies, this attraction was made for you! If you love to get your blood pumping and explore the sights of a city in a different way, look no further. Castle Rock Adventure Park is the place for you! Castle Rock Adventure Park touts a 10-line Zip Line Tour, EPIC Adventure Tower, EPIC Sky Trek, a Ninja Warrior Course and White Water Rafting.
History buffs, the Cherokee Ranch & Castle is the attraction for you! This attraction is situated on 3,400-acres of secluded sanctuary. It touts a gorgeous, natural environment and 22 historic structures for you to experience. The big-ticket item of this attraction is the 1450s Scottish-style castle that was built in the 1920s. Within the walls of this fantastic castle is a collection of art, high-end furnishings, and collectibles from around the world. Let’s not forget that the Cherokee Ranch & Castle offers visitors unbelievable views of the Rocky Mountains.
If you’re in the midst of planning your next vacation out west, we highly suggest that you consider adding Castle Rock, Colorado to your list! Though these were only five of the many attractions, this part of Colorado is steeped in history and is the perfect destination for families and curious individuals who bask in the glory of all that Mother Nature and has to offer.