There is endless natural beauty to be explored here in Colorado. But if you’re looking for some sightseeing a bit more nostalgic, odd, or off the beaten path, then you will want to add these Colorado roadside attractions to your summer bucket list!
Where: 35901 WCR 31, Eaton, CO
Not too far from Fort Collins, avid collector Lee Maxwell has gathered more than 1,000 vintage washing machines, many of which he’s restored to working condition. Dozens of brands and types are represented, along with other old-school household appliances like dishwashers, refrigerators, and vacuum cleaners. To see the museum, though, you’ll have to arrange for a tour by phone or email.
Where: State Street & E. 10th Avenue, Antonito, CO
Cano’s Castle is a set of four gleaming towers. It was built single-handedly by Donald “Cano” Espinoza, a Native American Vietnam vet. Built largely out of beer cans and other metal refuse, for Espinoza the castle serves as a thanks for having his life spared during the Vietnam war. Cano’s castle is actually four separate structures. The King, The Queen, The Palace, and The Rook. The four story King house, covered in gleaming beer cans and hubcaps, is his crowning architectural achievement.
Where: 9162 W. Co Road 9 N., Mosca, CO
Colorado Gators is a family oriented, reptile rescue. Every visitor has the opportunity to meet, pet, hold, and take pictures with a little alligator! For $2.00 visitors can buy a bucket of “Gator Chow” to feed the alligators, and occasionally there will be dead fish available to feed to the alligators as well! Some of the other reptiles you can see at Colorado Gators Reptile Park are: fearsome Nile crocodiles, Burmese pythons, a 17′ reticulated python, anacondas, red tail boas, 3 species of rattlesnakes, monitor lizards, tegus, geckos, iguanas, box turtles, snapping turtles, and caiman.
Where: 12705 CO-165, Rye, CO
Bishop Castle is a monumental statue made of stone and iron. Three full stories of interior rooms complete with a Grand Ballroom, soaring towers and bridges with vistas of a hundred miles, and a Fire-Breathing Dragon make Bishop’s Castle quite the unforgettable experience! Visitors are always welcome free of charge, and the castle itself is always open.
Where: 149 Main Street, Bailey, CO
There are few things in Americana as mysterious and captivating as the search for the elusive creature known as Bigfoot. At The Sasquatch Outpost, they’re dedicated to solving the mystery for themselves, and they welcome anyone and everyone who’s ever been interested in Sasquatch to visit them in Bailey – just a short drive from Downtown Denver. They have a museum and retail shop dedicated to the creature, and they also host regular meetings to share sightings and stories with other enthusiasts! They’re equal parts researchers and admirers, after all, and they love documenting your sightings.
Where: 6249 S. Turkey Creek Road
It’s just a short drive west of Denver into the foothills to spend the day among the kid-sized buildings, riding the train, enjoying the fresh air while the kids frolic on the playground, and then relaxing with your picnic lunch or something from the snack bar while the sound of the breeze in the tall pines washes your stress away.
Where: 4801 E. Harmony Road, Fort Collins, CO
This “zoo” is a cross between a junkyard and a sculpture garden, featuring animals you won’t see anywhere else. Instead of lions, tigers and bears, Swetsville offers massive metal spiders built from Buicks towering high in the air, castles built from concrete, and nostalgic characters greeting visitors of all ages. Alongside the classic dragons and trains are aliens and dinosaurs, and some things that don’t have names at all.