What is the best route for driving into Estes Park?
Every route leading to Estes Park offers a beautiful drive. As soon as you’re off the major interstate you’ll pass green fields, bodies of water, and towering canyons.
- Lyons: A fast route to get to Estes Park from Denver International Airport (DIA) is through Lyons. Exit DIA on Pena Blvd. Merge onto I-70 West. Take I-270 West (signs for Fort Collins). Merge I-25 North (signs for Fort Collins). Continue on I-25 North. Take Exit 243 for CO-66 towards Lyons/Estes Park/Rocky Mountain National Park. Continue on CO-66, which turns into US 36. Continue through the winding canyon to Estes Park!
- Loveland/Big Thompson River Canyon: If you have a little more time, go further north on I-25 and go through Loveland. Past Loveland, this route offers a beautiful drive through Big Thompson River canyon. Exit DIA on Pena Blvd. Merge onto I-70 West. Take I-270 West (signs for Fort Collins). Merge I-25 North (signs for Fort Collins). Continue on I-25 North. Take Exit 257 for US-34 E (sign says Greeley). Turn left on US-34 (west). Continue on US 34 all the way to Estes Park. You’ll go through Loveland, Drake, and enter Estes Park on its northeast side.
- Boulder/Lyons: Go through the charming town of Boulder. Explore downtown and grab a bite to eat. Exit the DIA on Pena Blvd. Merge I-70 West. Take I-270 West (signs for Fort Collins). Continue on US-36 West (signs for Boulder). Continue on US-36 to Lyons, then Estes Park.
Denver International Airport (DIA) is where you’ll begin your journey to Estes Park. From here, rent a car or grab a shuttle. Enjoy a scenic drive to your destination.
- Airport Code: DEN
- Distance from DIA to Estes Park: 75.5 miles
- Airlines: Aeromexico, Air Canada, Air Tran Airways, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, British Airways, Continental Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, Great Lakes Aviation, JetBlue Airways, Lufthansa, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, US Airways.
Do I need a car to explore Estes Park?
There are plenty of options with Estes Park Transportation!
You can rent your own car or shuttle around.
A car is not necessary for exploring downtown and some trails in Rocky Mountain National Park. Downtown Estes Park is small, and everything is within walking distance. Free daily shuttles run through Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park. If you want to go on a scenic drive, there are great bus and charter tours. Some guides will even take you on a tailored trip!
A car is convenient if you want to drive up Trail Ridge Road at your own leisure. Wake up at 3am to drive to Longs Peak Trailhead. Go to Boulder for the day. Or, take your kayak to a drop-in on St. Vrain River. There are plenty of wonderful places to explore outside of Estes Park!