The Tri-Lakes area and encompassing southern Colorado region offers plenty of outdoor recreational opportunities, cultural activities and attractions. The area’s interesting history lures visitors and residents alike with its choices in great dining, lodging, one-of-a-kind boutiques, breathtaking views and amenities.
Southern Colorado is renowned for its natural splendor and breathtaking views of Pikes Peak. Pike National Forest encompasses over 1.1 million acres. Garden of the Gods, Manitou Cliff Dwellings and the Cave of the Winds all offer magnificent panoramas with distinctive red rock formations. Other popular tourist destinations in the region include the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo (the U.S.’s only mountain zoo, situated at an elevation of 6,800 feet), Seven Falls, the sprawling United States Air Force Academy and a trip up Pikes Peak either driving or on the Pikes Peak Cog Railway. From Monument you may want to trip the ‘scenic route’ to Woodland Park by way of the Mt. Herman Road.
This distinct area has been a part of a rich and complex history, which is preserved and shared in many museums. The Western Museum of Mining and Industry showcases the rich history of mining in the American West, with emphasis placed on the technological history of metal mining and metallurgy. The Lucretia Vaile Museum features photos, historical artifacts and articles from the Palmer Lake, Monument and Palmer Divide areas, and is an ideal place to learn about the history of the Tri-Lakes area.
The area is also home to a thriving artist community. Galleries display the works of local and regional artists, which reflect the character of the area. Notable galleries include Bella Art & Frame and Secret Window Art Gallery in Monument. On the third Thursday of each month, May through September, visitors and residents enjoy the Monument Art Hop. This cultural event features local galleries and other merchants, along with live music and activities for people of all ages.
The arts are supported by groups such as the Tri-Lakes Center for the Arts and the Palmer Lake Art Group, which exhibit local and national works of art in addition to film festivals, concerts, a variety of classes and workshops. Tri-Lakes Views is a community organization dedicated to historical preservation and showcasing the arts. The Artwalls Project showcases area artists on the facades of local buildings in Monument. The first of the projects can be seen at 2nd Street and Beacon Light Road and at the Tri-Lakes Chamber office.
Traveling south, Colorado Springs offers visitors a myriad of further unique attractions and museums. Top tourist destinations include the Pro-Rodeo Hall of Fame, the Olympic Training Center and the Colorado Springs Pioneer Museum. Denver, an hour’s drive north, is another great destination featuring local breweries, professional sports and much more.
Visitors to the Tri-Lakes area can find accommodations within 10 minutes in every direction. Every taste and budget is available. Choices range from elegant business hotels, to bed and breakfasts, to economy motels, all within easy distance of the area’s top attractions.