Colorado is full of cool, quirky and unique people that you won’t find anywhere else in the world. Colorado is also home to many different fun activities, a lot of which revolve around exploring the nature and man-made structures. There are also a wide range of zoos, natural parks, museums, and gardens that are worth a visit. Here is a list of 5 unique places to see in Colorado:
1) Royal Gorge Bridge: There was a time when this was the highest bridge in the world, an honor now with China’s Sidu river bridge, but Royal Gorge Bridge is still the highest bridge in America. It was built to attract tourists to the gorge. It is 1,200 feet above the Arkansas River with the deck of the bridge suspended at 956 feet above the valley floor. Another amazing fact that makes the bridge a landmark is the construction cost of a measly $350,000 dollars. The bridge is a major attraction of the 360 acre Royal Gorge Bridge amusement park. The entry to the bridge is open daily from 7 am until dusk with the rides, visitor center, and attractions opening at 10 am, depending on the weather.
2) Hanging Lake: This crystal clear lake situated in Colorado Canyon was discovered accidentally by a man in search of gold. It remained as a private homestead until 1910 – since then it has been a major tourist attraction. The Hanging lake is a trout-filled, glacially formed watery haven seemingly suspended from the side of the canyon. The carbonate minerals that have dissolved in the water give the turquoise color to the lake. Another waterfall, Spouting Rock, which jets through holes in canyon walls, is just yards behind the Hanging Lake. To reach the Hanging Lake you need to take a steep hike of about thousand feet to reach the magnificent Hanging lake.
3) The USP ADX Florence Supermax Prison: Florence opened in 1994 and is the only supermax facility in United States penitentiary system. It houses inmates that are described as too violent even for the maximum security prisons. The prisoners at Florence are considered homicidal, manipulative and a threat to national security. Prisoners spend about twenty three hours per day in solitary confinement.The inmates cannot even get a glimpse of the Rocky mountains surrounding the complex as the windows are entirely barred. The most dreaded terrorists and criminals, including the world trade center mastermind and 9/11 conspirators, are locked behind the walls of Florence Supermax Prison. It is constructed in such a manner that it becomes difficult to ascertain direction, general proximity and even time of the day. This set-up prevents a prison break from either side. The place is described as the “Cleaner version of Hell” by one of its former wardens. Although general public cannot go inside the facility Florence Supermax Prison is definitely worth a visit.
4) Pikes Peak Summit House: Pikes Peak, which sits at 14,115 feet above sea level, houses America’s highest deep fryer at Pikes Peak Summit House churning out strange and unique doughnuts. The doughnuts should be eaten at the summit as they may get spoiled in the thicker air at lower altitudes. You can take a ride on the Pikes Peak Cog Railway, drive through the Pikes Peak Highway to reach the top of the summit. The thinner air has an effect on the boiling point of the water enabling the Summit house to serve uniquely baked goods. The Doughnuts and Pastries on the Pikes Peak Summit house are totally unique. Don’t fall in love with them because you won’t find them anywhere else in the world.
5) Bishop Castle: Who among us has not thought of living in a castle, but taking that wish a step further Jim Bishop started building a castle and at 63 is still going strong. The Bishop Castle is the largest self-built castle in the US. The castle is over 16 stories high, it has large cathedral windows and wrought iron walkaways. The Castle is open round the clock, all days a week and round the year. There is also a gift shop present in the premises to buy souvenirs. During your travel to Colorado you should visit the Bishop Castle for its architectural beauty and to witness the spirit and courage of building a castle single-handedly.