View from the train after having adventures in Glenwood Springs and favorite travel things

All Aboard for the Best Adventures in Glenwood Springs!

Ready for a little change of scenery and a whole lot of adventure? Book a trip on Amtrak and climb aboard for the beginning of your adventures in Glenwood Springs, Colorado.

Once you arrive in Glenwood Springs, the opportunities of things to do will keep you busy whether you are visiting for a quick weekend getaway or looking for challenging hikes near Glenwood Springs. There are activities that you will love to experience as a couple along with plenty of family-friendly activities.

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Book Train Tickets to Begin Your Adventures in Glenwood Springs

Taking the train is a fun adventure that everyone should experience at least once.

Amtrak offers train service from Denver Union Station to Glenwood Springs, Colorado (and beyond if you are interested).

When selecting your passage on the Amtrak California Zephyr from Denver for your adventures in Glenwood Springs, you have a variety of ticket options:

  • Value Pricing – Coach from $46 per person allows refund options and no change fees
  • Flexible Pricing – Coach from $89 per person offers a 100% refund with no change or cancellation fees
  • Roomette – Sleeper Car from $289* per person
  • Bedroom – Sleeper Car from $866 * per person
  • Family Bedroom – Sleeper Car from $321 * per person

The pricing options for the sleeper cars are from Chicago to Emeryville. If you wish to purchase them for shorter legs, you will still need to pay full price.

*Sleeper cars reservations include lounge access at the train station, daytime seating, nighttime fold down berths, assistance with your meals, complimentary dining, help with luggage, linens for sleeping, a private restroom and shower.

All fares allow access to the Observation Car and the Cafe. The Cafe offers snacks, drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic), and microwavable meal options such as cheese burgers, tamales, breakfast sandwiches, and tacos.

Please note * Dining room access is offered only to Sleeper Car passengers.

The California Zephyr offers one eastbound and one westbound train each day. You can take the train from its origination point in the east starting in Chicago and ride all of the way to Emeryville, California. That complete segment would be a multi-day trip that would last approximately 52 hours.

The train makes stops in Iowa, Nebraska, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, and California.

Denver’s Union Station Becomes the Gateway to Your Adventures in Glenwood Springs

Union Station in Denver, Colorado begins your adventures in Glenwood Springs

Pack your bags for an adventure from Denver, Colorado to Glenwood Springs on Amtrak, boarding at Denver’s Union Station.

Denver’s Union Station is a 100-year old historic landmark situated in the heart of downtown Denver.

You’ll enjoy some of the city’s top local restaurants, bars, and shops as you wait for the Amtrak train to Glenwood Springs, use RTD transportation around town, or simply just pop in for a treat while exploring.

The Crawford Hotel, located above the iconic Denver Union Station’s Great Hall, is a fun yet elegant refuge steps from Denver’s vibrant downtown. Perfect if you want to extend your adventure with a stay at the hotel.

Board the California Zephyr at Denver’s Union Station

You could drive to Glenwood Springs from Denver in about three hours. However, in the winter, you might have to account for bad weather on I-70 and be slowed for winter driving conditions, ski traffic, and accidents. 

The benefit of taking the train is being able to enjoy the beautiful scenery and experience the thrill of a new adventure.

View from the Amtrak outside of Denver on adventures in Glenwood Springs

The Observation Car on the California Zephyr allows for some pretty stunning view (if you don’t mind taking pictures through the dirty windows!)

You’ll have to also account for the reflections when taking your pictures. Having your smart phone handy is perfect for picture-taking on the train.

The standard length of time it takes to get to Glenwood Springs on Amtrak is about six hours. This includes quick stops in Winter Park/Fraser and Granby. 

Find a Great Hotel, Airbnb or VRBO in Glenwood Springs

Hotel Colorado

View of Hotel Colorado in Glenwood Springs

This delightful property in the heart of Glenwood Springs has been operating since 1893. Hotel Colorado is steps away from Glenwood Hot Springs as well as a great starting point for all of your outdoor adventures in Glenwood Springs.

The Hotel Denver

Another beautiful hotel in downtown Glenwood Springs, The Denver Hotel, has been operating since 1915 and offers modern conveniences with historic touches.


VRBO in Glenwood Springs

The VRBO, Chateau Debris, is steps away from your adventures in Glenwood Springs. Whether you are perusing the shops, ordering take out from local restaurants, or crossing the bridge to Glenwood Hot Springs, you’ll be in the heart of it all with this delightful home away from home for two.

The house is less than five minutes walking distance from the Amtrak Station in Glenwood Springs.

Search for: Charming historic downtown apartment steps from train, dining, and hot springs

You’ll also find a variety of Hilton and Marriott properties within Glenwood Springs. Great if you plan to use your hotel points to book your stay.

Relax at Iron Mountain Hot Springs

One of the newer Hot Spring facilities in Glenwood Springs allows you to make 2.5 hour reservations for your hot springs experience.

Iron Mountain Hot Springs is one of the adventures to Glenwood Springs

Iron Mountain features 17 hot pools at varying temperatures.

On a frosty winter evening, you may have to brave the chill hopping in and out of the pools, but at the end of your reservation time, you’ll be sufficiently warm enough to enjoy the cooler temperatures as you walk back to the changing rooms.

This is one of the adventures in Glenwood Springs you don’t want to miss!

While the pathways are heated around the pools, wearing flip flops is recommended.

You decide if you want the hot springs temperatures a little hotter or cooler as you have the option to move from one hot spring pool to another.

Snacks and drinks are available for purchase. You are encouraged to bring your own water and to continue drinking throughout your dips. Water fountains are available for refilling your water bottles.

Note that it is recommended that you sit out of the hot tub every 15 minutes. You can get out altogether and switch pools or simply sit on the side to cool off.

Your 3-hour reservation is indicated by the color of the wristband you receive when you sign in. This band also has an RFID chip the locks and unlocks the locker you choose to use (the locker is included in your reservation).

The address for Iron Mountain Hot Springs is 281 Centennial St, Glenwood Springs, CO. It is located on the bank of the Colorado River.

It is not as centrally located as other adventures in Glenwood Springs but definitely worth the effort to get to it.

Read the FAQs for Iron Mountain Hot Springs. Children 5 and under are not allowed.

Join the Crowd at Glenwood Hot Springs

While Iron Mountain caters more to an adult crowd (children over 5 are allowed in some areas), Glenwood Hot Springs is definitely more family friendly. Good to know when planning your adventures in Glenwood Springs.

Glenwood Hot Springs pool in the evening

There are two huge pools. One at approximately 92 degrees is for swimming, diving, and playing. 

The hot springs pool at Glenwood Springs runs at a whopping 104.8 degrees.  

Lockers are also available by using a code, but you can also take your stuff on deck and leave it there while you soak.

Bring your water bottles again or there are bottles available for purchase in vending machines.

If you are really planning ahead, you might want to wear a robe to ward off the chill in the winter months! 

It is a lot colder getting into the water on a 20 degree night than it is getting out of the water, but it is still a mite chilly. The steam rises off your body and gives you the appearance of “smoldering”.

Did you know that the springs contain 15 different minerals?

These dissolved minerals include: boron, calcium, chloride, sodium, sulfate, lithium, potassium, magnesium, manganese, iron, silica, zinc, fluoride, phosphate and nitrogen.

Some tout a soak in the Hot Springs as restorative, others believe in its healing properties. Whatever your reason for soaking, you’ll love the relaxation.

Visit the Vapor Caves at Yampah Spa

The Yampah Spa Vapor Caves are natural hot mineral water steam baths. The hot mineral water flows through the caves at a whopping temperature of 125° F.

The Vapor Caves consist of three adjoining underground rock chambers.

Visitors descend a stairway inside the main building and pass through a stone corridor into the caves. An atmosphere of well-being pervades throughout the soothing stillness of the caves.

Relax on slab marble benches in the rocky alcoves, and inhale the natural steam vapor in the warm, dimly lit cave chambers. Stress and tension melt away effortlessly.

Cave temperatures average 110-112 degrees F., allowing repeated visits of 10-12 minutes separated by brief rests in a nearby cooling room, or upstairs in the spacious solarium. Cold water and small tubs are also available for cooling off in the caves.

Yampah Spa


Winter scene along the Scout Trail during adventures to Glenwood Springs

There are a variety of hikes near Glenwood Springs with varying levels of difficulty. Most however, will set off at an upward ascent and continue switchbacking up the mountain until you reach the top. 

If you are hiking in the winter, crampons are highly recommended. Even trekking poles would come in handy. Be sure to follow the tips for winter hiking safety.

Don’t forget about the power snacks. Be sure to pack your Built Bars to keep your energy up throughout your hike.

Bonus * Use Code SJTRAVELS at checkout for 10% off your purchase.

Winter or summer, bring plenty of water to stay hydrated.

Hanging Lake is one of the beautiful lakes in Colorado

Hike Hanging Lake. This is one of the can’t miss adventures and hikes near Glenwood Springs. You will need to plan ahead with a reservation.

Enjoy Summer and Winter Sports

Winter anywhere in Colorado offers plenty of sporting activities. It makes all of Colorado a great destination point for tourists world wide. Adventures in Glenwood Springs are equally abundant.

  • Ski & Snowboard
  • Snowmobile
  • Snowshoe
  • Ice Skate
  • Cross Country Ski
  • Relax in the Hot Springs
  • Rafting
  • Fishing
  • Paragliding
  • Golf

Book a Massage or Spa Treatment

If you are the adventurous type and have already finished a couple of hikes, spent the day skiing, or enjoyed an afternoon of mountain biking, be sure to make an appointment with one of the many companies in Glenwood Springs offering massage services.

Massages and spa treatments are a great way to unwind from a day of activity and relax those tired muscles.

Ride the Gondola to Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park

Glenwood Springs claims the fame of having America’s only mountain top adventure park. You likely agree, Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park offers fun for the whole family starting with a gondola ride up the side of the mountain.

There are three ticketing options available:

  • Gondola
  • Gondola and Caves
  • Gondola, Caves and Coaster

Check the website link above to purchase tickets and plan more adventures in Glenwood Springs.

Enjoy a Scavenger Hunt

Book an adventurous scavenger hunt to learn more about the humble beginnings of Glenwood Springs.

You will need your phone to access the scavenger hunt, take pictures, and find clues.

Did you know that Glenwood Springs was once a rough and rowdy destination for miners, gunslingers, and gamblers? Adventures in Glenwood Springs have a long history!


Also learn about the first grocery story, the armory, the Denver Hotel, and the Hotel Colorado.

You may wish to venture into the beautiful Hotel Colorado if you happen to be exploring on a chilly winter day. Purchase a hot chocolate and warm up by the fire in the hotel lobby.

You’ll finish your scavenger hunt at the Glenwood Hot Springs.

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Adventures in Glenwood Springs

Final Thoughts on the Best Adventures in Glenwood Springs

These adventures in Glenwood Springs, Colorado make for an action-packed weekend getaway or extended vacation. Taking the train is an adventure all by itself! And it is perfect for couples, friends, and families.

Whatever time of year you choose to visit Glenwood Springs, you’ll find plenty of activities to keep you busy. If you simply go to soak in the hot springs, well, your time there will still be rewarding.

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Josy A
1 year ago

Fabulous post Jolayne! I love sleeper trains, winter wonderlands and hot springs, so everything you mentioned in Glenwood Springs sounds like heaven!

p.s. microspikes are the best aren’t they! They SUCH a big difference for winter hikes.

Jenn P.
Jenn P.
1 year ago

We just had our first visit to Glenwood Springs in September and we did most of these things! It is a fantastic town… We can’t wait to go back someday!

1 year ago

We loved the Glenwood hot springs when we went a few years ago! Can’t wait to travel that region more

1 year ago

I have driven through Glenwood many times but we’ve never actually stopped there! It looks like such a fun place. I love anywhere with some hot springs 🙂

1 year ago

I love Colorado! I’ve never been to Glenwood Springs, but it sounds like a great place to visit. I would love to check out the hiking opportunities and the hot springs. Thanks for sharing!

Rosemary Palmer
1 year ago

I’m coming to Colorado for the first time in May, Vail and Denver as part of a road trip. Glenwood Springs is a bit far out to add to this trip but oh will have to plan another trip.
I did ride Amtrak from PA to NYC and loved it.

Last edited 1 year ago by Rosemary Palmer
1 year ago

Oh my gosh, Glenwood Springs looks like such a beautiful place! I love that there are different temperatures of hot springs too but my partner and I may end up in different ones haha.

1 year ago

I love travelling by train, this entire trip sounds awesome. I love the idea of the scavenger hunt too – such a fun way to explore and learn.

1 year ago

I absolutely love the idea of a sleeper train, and can’t imagine anything better than spending hours looking at the landscape (a winter one too). Sign me up for a trip to Glenwood Spring, whats not to love?

Cheryl Weeks
11 months ago

I have always wanted to go to Colorado

Tia Carneiro
11 months ago

Wow, it looks and sounds amazing, I have never done a travelling train trip, but this has convinced that I should, I love hotsprings too.

11 months ago

Looks like a good place to visit! I’ve been to Denver for a short visit, would love to make a visit again and take the train going here

11 months ago

Love this. Really great ideas.

11 months ago

I love you took Amtrak for this adventure. What a cute place.

Stephanie Mayo
11 months ago

Glenwood Springs looks fabulous! I love the idea of taking the train there! I once took the train all the way up the Pacific Coast for my month long trip and loved it!!

11 months ago

It looks like such a fun experience to take a train here! I’m going to add this to my list for sure.

Elena Pappalardo
11 months ago

I had actually never heard of beautiful Glenwood Springs before, so I was happy to come across this post! That’s great that you can take the train from Denver and I’d love to check out those Iron Mountain hot springs!

11 months ago

So much to do! Love the idea of a vapour cave and those hot springs sound magical. It might have to go on my bucket list!

11 months ago

what a beautiful and underrated destination it seems like! I haven’t been to Colorado (yet) but I’ll definitely keep Glenwood Springs in mind!

11 months ago

We are looooonnggg overdur for a trip to Colarado! It will be tough to pick our destinations, now with Glenwood Springs added! Thanks for sharing!

11 months ago

I hope I get to experience a train ride like this one once!

11 months ago

Wow! The scenery from the train looks stunning!! And that hot springs is something I would enjoy so much! I didn’t know about this place about reading it on your blog! Thanks for sharing!!

Linda (LD Holland)
10 months ago

We can’t wait to plan a long trip to Colorado. And will make sure to include Glenwood Springs in our plans. The train sounds like a fun way to go. And we would definitely want to spend some time in the Iron Mountain Hot Springs. The 2.5 hours would be a relaxing break! Looks like a great spot in any season.

Lorraine Caputo
8 months ago

I love train travel!

And wonderful information for going any time of the year, no matter the weather!

8 months ago

I just saw a post about Amtrak before and I wish I tried this. I didnt know there was a sleeping train, lol Ive been to Co and Denver and if only I knew and read your post before…

8 months ago

What a beautiful location and so much variety for everyone, the caves sound amazing but then it all does for both winter and summer…makes me wish I was there now…

Carolyn M
8 months ago

I posted about my trip to Glenwood Springs by train in the fall. It was a super fun trip and so relaxing!

8 months ago

This sounds like so much fun! I have been wanting to take my kids on a train trip for a long time.

8 months ago

This is a great post! I took the amtrak sleeper car from Boston to LA and it was fun. Glenwood Springs sounds like the ultimate wellness retreat. The vapor spa caves sound AMAZING! Thank you for sharing!