Despite recent news reports of wildfires in southern Colorado, RV travelers shouldn’t be discouraged from enjoying some of the Centennial state’s most spectacular attractions in areas untouched by blazes. Take Cañon City, for example.
Although parts of nearby Royal Gorge were hit by fire, Cañon City continues to beckon visitors with its small-town charm.
Near the geographic center of Colorado, about two hours south of Denver and 45 minutes west of Colorado Springs, Canon City is located in a mountain bowl along the Arkansas River valley as it flows east from the Rocky Mountains and the mouth of the Royal Gorge. A combination of unique geography and an elevation of 5,300 feet above sea level protects the city from harsh weather conditions, making Cañon City “the Climate Capital of Colorado,” with temperatures generally 10 degrees warmer than other nearby Colorado communities.
Locals say Cañon City is one of only a few cities along the Front Range that has predominantly maintained its small town feel. Residents of this third oldest city in Colorado are proud of their history, proud of their setting among beautiful natural features and proud of their community.
Cañon City’s downtown area is listed on the National Historical Register for its abundance of turn-of-the-century architecture. The architecture is classic and not many Colorado downtowns have this historic flavor. RVers can submerge themselves in the ambiance of another era as they enjoy local dining, boutiques, music and art galleries.
One of the town’s popular attractions is the “Old Max,” a former Colorado Territorial Correctional Facility that has been converted to a museum. A stroll down Main Street will introduce you to the city’s cultural and social center. Shoppers will find small busines owners offering books, fresh flowers and jewelry.
Coffee shops and restaurants featuring Mexican, Italian, Chinese and down-home cuisine, as well as a variety of watering holes, are abundant along Main Street. Visitors and locals sit side by side on bar stools devouring burgers and ice cold microbrews after a game of pool.