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Fall by Rails & Trails in the San Luis Valley

Fall by Rails & Trails in the San Luis Valley
3 days
Fall weather in the San Luis Valley is ideal for visiting and enjoying the Great Sand Dunes National Park with fewer crowds, mild temperatures and colorful trees in Alamosa, Hooper, Del Norte and Fort Garland.

Sustainability Activity

How to Give Back to These Special Places:

San Luis Valley Great Outdoors works to protect and maintain trails throughout the San Luis Valley. Connect with them to see how you can contribute.

Day 1
Activity

Rio Grande Scenic Railroad Fall Color Train

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The train departs from the depot in Alamosa at 9:30am and travels to La Veta. Enjoy the views of the changing leaves and bring the camera for colorful photos as there will be multiple stops along the way. You'll have lunch on the train and arrive back in Alamosa around 6pm.

Insider's Tip

Lunch with a View: Enjoy your lunch abroad the train.
Activity

Downtown Alamosa ArtScape

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Take a stroll in downtown Alamosa. As you make your way from the train to dinner, enjoy sculptures spread around from various artists. In its second year, there are 19 pieces throughout the area in front of businesses and on street corners.
Dinner

San Luis Valley Brewing

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Offers the finest in craft brews and fine food in an inviting atmosphere. Read More
Lodging

Fairfield Inn & Suites

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Set 2.7 miles from the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad, this contemporary hotel is also 3.2 miles from the Cattails Golf Course. Read More
Day 2
Breakfast

Campus Café

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Campus Cafe is the local favorite. American food, amazing breakfasts, you have to try the cinnnamon roll! Great lunch menu too. 

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Activity

Los Caminos Antiguos Scenic and Historic Byway

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Los Caminos Antiguos traverses the cradle of the San Luis Valley. This route takes you through historic Colorado and along the scenic route that goes by the Great Sand Dunes National Park &... Read More

Insider's Tip

Stop in Fort Garland: As you trek along the byway, stop in the historic area of Fort Garland for lunch before heading on to the wee town of Hooper.
Lunch

All-Gon Pizza

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Located in the heart of historic Fort Garland, our family-owned restaurant is known for fine dining, delicious home-style cooking, and comfy rustic hospitality. Read More
Activity

UFO Watchtower

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The watchtower is a 10-foot-tall viewing platform that takes advantage of the remote area’s high elevation. Pass the time with your eyes on the sky, checking out the Healing Garden or even camping... Read More
Dinner

Mile Deep Grille

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Located on the campus of Sand Dunes Recreation near Hooper off Hwy 17. This grill is known for their burgers and salads. After dinner, swing into the Greenhouse for a beverage in this adult-only... Read More

Activity

Sand Dunes Recreation

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A family friendly oasis in the San Luis Valley.  Large family pool maintained at 98 degrees, 25-person hot tub, 2 on-site restaurants,  gift shop, The Greenhouse, an adults-only tropical escape... Read More

Insider's Tip

Stay the Night: The Sand Dunes Swimming Pool offers multiple lodging opportunities with RV spots, camping sites and cabins, so you can finish your journey here for the day. Reserve early!
Day 3
Breakfast

Milagros Coffee House

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Drink Coffee....Love Others!  Milagros Coffeehouse not only serves a full line of delicious espresso and coffee drinks, teas, and baked goods, we also support the efforts of La Puente Home in... Read More

Activity

Mountain Biking at Penitente Canyon

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Stop by Kristi Mountain Sports in Del Norte for bike rentals and local advice to hit the trails. The length of the variable trails is 25 miles all together and ranges in difficulty depending on the trail. It has interconnecting loops in a maze that can take from 1 to 5 hours to ride.
Lunch

Three Barrel Brewing Company

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One of Colorado's smallest microbreweries that's been in business for over 15 years. Located in the heart of Del Norte, Colorado, we that utilizes local ingredients in all beers and foods at the... Read More

Activity

Del Norte Quarry Trail

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Burn off the lunch calories with a hike or bike along the trail just southeast of the town. This trail offers a setting with a high-desert environment and near the area where the Old Spanish Trail turned north from Santa Fe. This trail is 4.5 to 6 miles round trip.
Dinner

Windsor Hotel & Dining Room

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Nestled at the base of the picturesque San Juan Mountains, Del Norte, Colorado has a rich history from the gold and silver boom town days of the 1800's.  The Windsor Hotel established in 1874 is... Read More

Activity

Wildwood Sounds

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Great music, great acoustics, great fun. We bring in a variety of artists year-round with an intimate venue focused on bringing people together through the universal language of music. Read More
Lodging

Windsor Hotel

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One of Colorado's oldest hotels, the Windsor occupies nearly one half of a city block in the heart of Del Norte. The Windsor became the main social and commercial center of the area and remained... Read More