Durango’s National Parks

Jeff Reynolds
Jeff Reynolds
Published on February 15, 2018

Tristan and I have spend many hours exploring the Four Corners Area. Durango is located in the hub of adventure, and we love living here!

Below I have listed some of our favorite places to explore… All are within a day’s drive! Let me know if you have any questions, as I’m happy to share my own Durango Lifestyle experiences with you.

Arches National Park

3 hours from Durango

“Visit Arches to discover a landscape of contrasting colors, land forms and textures unlike any other in the world. The park has over 2,000 natural stone arches, in addition to hundreds of soaring pinnacles, massive fins and giant balanced rocks. This red-rock wonderland will amaze you with its formations, refresh you with its trails, and inspire you with its sunsets.”

Mesa Verde National Park

45 minutes from Durango

“Mesa Verde, Spanish for green table, offers a spectacular look into the lives of the Ancestral Pueblo people who made it their home for over 700 years, from AD 600 to 1300. Today the park protects nearly 5,000 known archeological sites, including 600 cliff dwellings. These sites are some of the most notable and best preserved in the United States.”

Canyonlands National Park

2.5 hours from Durango

“Canyonlands invites you to explore a wilderness of countless canyons and fantastically formed buttes carved by the Colorado River and its tributaries. Rivers divide the park into four districts: Island in the Sky, The Needles, The Maze, and the rivers themselves. These areas share a primitive desert atmosphere, but each offers different opportunities for sightseeing and adventure.”

Great Sand Dunes National Park

3 hours from Durango

“The tallest dunes in North America are the centerpiece in a diverse landscape of grasslands, wetlands, conifer and aspen forests, alpine lakes, and tundra. Experience this diversity through hiking, sand sledding, splashing in Medano Creek, wildlife watching, and more! The park and preserve are always open, so plan to also experience night skies and nocturnal wildlife during your visit.”

Hovenweep National Monument

1.75 hours from Durango

“Once home to over 2,500 people, Hovenweep includes six prehistoric villages built between A.D. 1200 and 1300. Explore a variety of structures, including multistory towers perched on canyon rims and balanced on boulders. The construction and attention to detail will leave you marveling at the skill and motivation of the builders.”


Bryce Canyon National Park

7 hours from Durango

“There is no place like Bryce Canyon. Hoodoos (odd-shaped pillars of rock left standing from the forces of erosion) can be found on every continent, but here is the largest collection of hoodoos in the world! Descriptions fail. Photographs do not do it justice. Bring your sense of wonder and imagination when visiting Bryce Canyon National Park.”

Bears Ears National Monument

3 hours from Durango 

*No longer a National Monument. Check out the link above to see Patagonia’s take on the development.* 

Grand Canyon National Park

4.5 hours from Durango

“Unique combinations of geologic color and erosional forms decorate a canyon that is 277 river miles long, up to 18 miles wide, and a mile deep. Grand Canyon overwhelms our senses through its immense size.”

Zion National Park

6 hours from Durango

“Follow the paths where ancient native people and pioneers walked. Gaze up at massive sandstone cliffs of cream, pink, and red that soar into a brilliant blue sky. Experience wilderness in a narrow slot canyon. Zion’s unique array of plants and animals will enchant you as you absorb the rich history of the past and enjoy the excitement of present day adventures.”

Petrified Forest National Park

3.5 hours from Durango

“Did you know that Petrified Forest is more spectacular than ever? While the park has all the wonders known for a century, there are many new adventures and discoveries to share. There are backcountry hikes into areas never open before such as Red Basin and little known areas like the Martha’s Butte. There are new exhibits that bring the stories to life.”

Thanks for taking a look at my list. Southwest Colorado is truly spectacular, and I enjoy sharing my experiences with you. Ready to have your own Durango adventure? Call me any time to discuss your options.



Jeff Reynolds




Durango’s National Parks
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