6 Best Views of Garden of the Gods

Last updated: October 20th, 2023 | Originally published: October 20, 2023
Best Views of Garden of the Gods

Garden of the Gods is considered the best city park in the United States of America. It sees 4.5 million annual visitors, more than all but three of our National Parks. The reason why is clear: How many places of such astonishing beauty reside in the middle of a large city (that is an hour away from an even larger city)? Honestly, we don’t know the answer. It was rhetorical. What we do know is that we are talking about the best views of Garden of the Gods.

Garden of the Gods is a National Natural Landmark, not a National Park, and is therefore free to enter. The highlights are dramatic views of 300′ sandstone fins that protrude from the ground like a stegosaurus spine. In the Central Garden you can stroll amongst the largest of the rock formations, and from the perimeter trails you can take in views of the garden from every angle.

Best Views of Garden of the Gods
View MAP — Best Views of Garden of the Gods

The garden is an easy-to-visit, easy-to-love kind of place; surreal and beautiful like a walkabout daydream. No matter how many times you stroll within those odd and lovely formation you’ll never grow tired of their otherworldly ambience.

In this short article we’re gonna tell you about the 6 best views of the Garden of the Gods. There are countless “good” views, but these are the very best ones we found. We hope you enjoy.

6. Mesa Road OverlookBest Views of Garden of the Gods

Best Views of Garden of the Gods
Best Views of Garden of the Gods

Garden of the God’s most famous view is from Mesa Road. Here you can indulge a broadside vantage of the primary rocks of the central garden.

To get there, drive north on N 30th St. past the Visitor Center and make your first right, a hairpin turn onto Mesa Road. A few hundred yards up the road you’ll see parking on the right side. MAP

5. High Point — Best Views of Garden of the Gods

Best Views of Garden of the Gods
Best Views of Garden of the Gods

Another fantastic vista is from the High Point Overlook. This is a popular place to watch the sun rise, or even get married. The choice is really up to you. There is picnic seating as well as plenty of seats on the red rocks.

Getting there is a bit tricky, so here’s a MAP with driving directions.

4. Susan Bretag Trail Best Views of Garden of the Gods

Best Views of Garden of the Gods
Best Views of Garden of the Gods

This is a personal favorite of ours and definitely one of best views in the Garden of the Gods. The Susan Bretag trail runs on the east side of the central garden, just outside the Juniper Way Loop (MAP). It is a similar vantage on the central garden as the Mesa Road viewpoint, but the angle is from a lower elevation which makes it much more impressive.

Park in the main parking lot (P2), and walk across Juniper Way Loop to the north. The trail is right there, so take a right and enjoy the views!

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3. High Point South of Three Sisters Plaza

Best Views of Garden of the Gods
Best Views of Garden of the Gods

This is perhaps the prettiest view in the park. At the far end of the central garden is the High Point of Three Sisters Plaza. It doesn’t necessarily show up on googlemaps, but here’s a general gist of where you’ll find it (MAP).

What makes this view so pleasant is the balance of the rocks with the trees and the hills. When you reach the high point you’ll notice a large, red rock formation that the trail encircles. You can scamper up the rock to the tippy-top, and scooch out the the very end. It’s room for one only, but this is the absolute best view.

2. Main Parking Lot Overlook

Best Views of Garden of the Gods
Best Views of Garden of the Gods

The easiest big view in the park is from the main parking lot (P2) — it is staring you down the moment you exit your car. There is a viewing deck at the trailhead. Arrive shortly after sunrise for the most beautiful looks.

To get here, follow Juniper Way Loop and park in the first big parking lot you see.

WARNING: Arrive as early as possible. Parking is limited and the lot fills fast. Once full, parking is a real pain.

1. Cathedral Valley Overlook

Best Views of Garden of the Gods

We think this is the best view of Garden of the Gods. It is similar to the high point view at three sisters plaza — there’s just more of it. An added bonus is, you can spy it from the road.

To get here just follow Juniper Way Loop along the north end of the park, and when the road turns south you will see cars parked on the left side of the road. Parking is very limited, so you might have to drive around the park if no spots become available while cars are stacking up behind you.

An Honest Conclusion: Best Views of Garden of the Gods

Best Views of Garden of the Gods

We really enjoyed the Garden of the Gods. Hiking is easy and the rocks can be viewed at sunrise or at sunset for different effects. The whole city of Colorado Springs is highlighted by this unusual geologic feature that is viewable from almost anywhere in the city.

The crowds are formidable, especially on the weekends, and parking is tight in the summer. There’s no sugarcoating the viewpoint competition going on here — 4.5 Million annual visitors. Our best advice is to arrive at sunrise and get the heck out by 11:00 (at least in summer).

We also recommend visiting the park multiple times because, while the park is relatively small, you’ll want to explore the surrounding trails. Those who stroll the central garden and/or drive the loop only get a much less satisfying experience.

If you are looking for something awesome to do in Colorado Springs, try the Manitou Incline, AKA, Satan’s Stairmaster.

Thank you for stopping by our website! We are the Hoffmann family, a full-time RV family that has split residence in Seattle, Washington and San Antonio, Texas. We have special needs children that we homeschool, and work travel assignments for the Veteran Affairs Hospital. If you would like to learn more about us, check out our Start Here and Biography pages. In the meantime, God bless and travel happy!

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