Buena Vista is not just a Sleepy Mountain Town
Buena Vista has come a long way in the last many years. What used to be a small town to visit for the day has become a fun family destination. With a population of under 3,000 people, Buena Vista, otherwise known as BV, is located in central Colorado in Chaffee County. It lies along the Arkansas River and is eclipsed by the Collegiate Range off in the distance. Getting there from Colorado Springs is simple. You just hop on Hwy 24 West and stay left to stay on Hwy 24 West/US Hwy 285 South. Turn right onto US 24 West and then right onto Main street. It takes about two hours to drive to BV and the scenery changes dramatically based on the season.
Endless and Exciting Adventures
Being situated on the Arkansas river makes BV a great place to stay if you are looking to go white water rafting. Several rafting companies are located within a 30-minute drive. Some of the largest are Performance Tours Rafting, Wilderness Aware Rafting, and Brown’s Canyon Rafting. Most companies run both half-day and full-day rafting tours and can help you decide which to pick based on the ages of your kids and the experience of the group.
There are also fantastic hikes within a short drive from Buena Vista. Huron Peak is a Colorado 14er known for being a good first 14er. It has an easy-to-follow trail and no scrambling. The road to get to the trailhead is a bit treacherous so it’s advised to park in one of the lots further away. To get to the trailhead from BV, you take a right out of town onto US 24 West and turn left onto Co Rd 390. Make another left onto Co Rd 390/Forest Rd 390 and you’ll begin to see other hikers parked along the road. As with any lengthy hike, make sure you start early, bring water, snacks, and be prepared.
One of the best things about Buena Vista is its proximity to Mt. Princeton Hot Springs. After all of your outdoor adventures it’s worth taking a quick trip to soak in the natural hot springs located in Nathrop, CO. You can get a day pass to use all of the different pools as well as the natural river spa pools. There is even a pool with waterslides that is open in the summer months.
Places to Eat
Another thing you’re bound to do after all of this activity is work up an appetite. There are so many places to eat in Buena Vista so be prepared and go hungry! BV is split up into two main areas. There is Main Street and then the new area called South Main Street. Both are filled with places to check out.
House Rock Kitchen is a great place for the entire family. You order at the counter and then find a seat either inside or outside on their large patio. They have everything from burritos to burgers as well as a kids menu.
Simple Eatery & Spoon It Up is another great spot on Main Street. This gem has both a patio and is attached to a great outdoor shop. They have salads, sandwiches, and even baked goods.
Eddyline is a brewery located on the south main street part of town. It’s a great place to get a beer and some bbq. Eddyline is also located next to a park so kids can run around and burn off some energy while you sit and relax.
The Midland Stop is a cute little coffee and gelato shop located near Eddyline. It’s a great place to fill your caffeine needs and it’s in a beautiful area.
Little Engine Eatery is a fabulous place to grab a quick bite if hot dogs are your thing. The best part about this stand is that it’s a 501 (c) (3) whose mission is “to provide a sustainable lifetime community of excellence for teens and young adults with learning disabilities by providing social and cognitive skills training, job training and employment for this population learning disabilities”. It’s a great way to support the local community and fill your belly.
Where to Stay
The Inn at BV Railroad and Main is a cute place with a great location. It is within walking distance to the entire town and is located in a historic building that has been fully restored so it’s not just your run-of-the-mill inn.
Surf Hotel and Chateau is another hip spot in the newer area of town. It’s actually located along the Arkansas river which makes it a truly beautiful place to stay. Surf Hotel has its own restaurant and bar as well so it’s a good option if you don’t want to have to go out.
Airbnb is your friend in BV! There are some amazing rentals in town. Buena Vista would be a really great place to go with multiple families so renting an entire house is also a possibility.
Adventure and Solitude Await
Buena Vista is a perfect family destination and with its close proximity to Colorado Springs is an easy trip to take. It’s a quiet mountain town in a quaint, picturesque setting. BV is a great place to start an adventure or a nice place to get away and relax. Remember that you’re surrounded by all sorts of outdoor activities so check out the chamber of commerce for even more information including any local events. Have a great trip and enjoy the views!