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The Best Time to Visit Durango, Colorado in 2024

The Best Time to Visit Durango, Colorado in 2024

What's the best time to visit Durango, Colorado?

The best time to visit Durango, Colorado, is typically from May to October when the weather is warm and suitable for outdoor activities. This period offers the best conditions for hiking, biking, and exploring the San Juan National Forest. Additionally, the fall season brings stunning foliage, making September and October particularly scenic for visitors.

With its unbeatable views, massive mountains, finger-licking food, and rich history and culture, Durango is much more present than any other city on most travelers’ Colorado bucket list. But when exactly is the best time to visit Durango?

Figuring out the best time to visit Durango depends on your weather preferences, budget expectations, recreational activities you may wish to engage in, or the events you hope to attend.

No worries, though — that’s what we’re here for. With this guide, we’ll not only help you find out the best time to visit Durango but also go through FAQ and provide other travel tips that will make your getaway memorable.

The Overall Best Time to Visit Durango, Colorado

Old steam-powered train making its way through the mountains next to the Animas River during the overall best time to visit Durango, Colorado

Layne V. Naylor/Shutterstock

The best time to visit Durango, Colorado, is undoubtedly during the summer months, from late May through August.

This period is characterized by warm, pleasant weather, with average daytime temperatures ranging from the mid-70s to the mid-80s Fahrenheit, making it ideal for outdoor activities. Durango comes alive in the summer with its lush green landscapes and clear, sunny skies.

The town’s proximity to the San Juan National Forest offers endless opportunities for hiking, mountain biking, and camping. The Animas River, a centerpiece of Durango’s outdoor activities, provides excellent conditions for fishing, kayaking, and whitewater rafting.

Summer also sees the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad in full operation, offering breathtaking scenic rides through the Colorado wilderness.

Summer attractions worth visiting include:

Late spring, particularly May and early June, is another great time for a visit. The landscape is lush with blooming wildflowers and the temperatures are comfortably mild, ranging from the high 50s to mid-70s Fahrenheit.

This season is perfect for those seeking to avoid the summer crowds, offering a quieter yet equally beautiful experience in Durango’s natural surroundings.

Finally, don’t forget to wander the downtown area. Historic Downtown Durango boasts a plethora of authentic stores, restaurants, and galleries, and allowing yourself to soak in the beauty stemming from each venue is a great way to explore them all.

Cheapest Time to Visit Durango

The cheapest time to head to Durango is in November, the city’s least expensive month. In November, the average temperatures vary between a high of 43.5°F and a low of 23.9°F.

Not only is November the cheapest month to head to Durango, but also the most beautiful landscape-wise.

With its changing leaves, crisp fall mornings, and golden sunsets, the month is ideal for those hoping to capture some of Durango’s natural beauty on camera. While there are many fall activities you can choose from, the absolute best one is driving through the San Juan Skyline.

The drive is stunning each time of the year, but in fall, it’s absolutely spectacular. To see Durango’s changing colors first-hand, hit the trails and set a day for hiking.

If you wish to take a stroll and unwind, do so by the Animas River and check out surrounding attractions such as Santa Rita Park, Durango Fish Hatchery, and the Powerhouse Science Center.

While most events take place earlier in the fall, going in November secures you versatile accommodation options and lower hotel rates, together with attractive flight ticket prices.

Knowing what a magnificent beauty Durango is in November, we dare say it compensates for the lack of engaging events.

Least Busy Time to Visit Durango

Snow-capped mountains pictured during the winter, the overall least busy time to visit Durango Colorado

Leslie Rogers Ross/Shutterstock

The least busy time to visit Durango is in winter (December–February). Weather-wise, though, it does get quite chilly, with averages between 33°F 13°F.

January is also said to be the most humid month. Put simply, knowing how pleasant Durango’s summer sun is, going there in winter is counter-intuitive for many. That said, visiting in winter allows you to take advantage of the empty-ish city and enjoy winter activities in greater solitude.

Engage in skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, skating, or simply enjoying the snow and observing the mountains, and you’ll find yourself falling in love with wintery Durango in no time.

Plus, you can replicate some spring or summer activities, such as embarking on the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and substituting summer’s greenery with a little winter fairy tale.

Going to some of Durango’s wineries, distilleries, or breweries will keep you warm and happy, hitting the River Trail will enable you to clear your mind (no matter the season), and attending some fun winter events can make your stay much more memorable than anticipated.

Don’t miss the November Singing with Santa date to set you in a holiday mood, Bar D Wranglers Christmas Jubilee to liven up your spirits, and Holiday Farmer’s Market for some Christmas shopping. Lastly, Snowdown is a spectacular party.

Worst Time to Visit Durango

Weather-, crowd-, and price-wise, the worst time to head to Durango is in summer. June, July, and August have average temperatures varying between a high of 73°F and a low of 45°F.

Summer also sees the most visitors, accommodation prices increase, and the city is at its busiest. That said, if you do decide to head to Durango in the summer, you’re still going to have a blast.

You’re bound to find activities that will fill your day from dusk to dawn. Wander along the Animas River by joining a local rafting agency, opt for mountain biking on some of the trails, explore some of the nearby lakes, or simply take it slow in a local bar.

Adventure lovers should head to the well-known Purgatory Resort. In terms of events, bookmark June for Animas River Days, True Western Roundup, and Men Who Grill.

July is reserved for the annual 4th of July celebration, so get ready for some festivities and a lot of fireworks. Once Independence Day wraps up, the Music in the Mountains event begins.

With a fantastic line-up of events and artists, Music in the Mountains provides guests with spectacular music performances and memorable auditory experiences.

Next, there’s the Four Corners Gem and Mineral Show, with a myriad of vendors selling items such as jewelry, fossils, gems, minerals, and so on. In August, a local-favorite annual event, La Plata County Fair, promises fun for the whole family.

Finally, if attending a beer-tasting festival is something you’ve had on your travel agenda for a while, the San Juan Brewfest will help you to finally tick it off.

So, What’s the Best Time to Visit Durango, CO?

Animas River outside of Durango, Colorado

Gestalt Imagery/Shutterstock

To wrap up, the best time to visit Durango is in spring, during the March–May period. The crowds are manageable, the weather’s comfortable, and there’s so much to do and see.

On the whole, whether you head to Durango for the hiking trails, local brews, annual events, the pleasant summer temperatures, or the golden fall scenery, you’ll enjoy every minute of it.

So, with so much to see and do, what are you waiting for — book your trip today and see for yourself all that Durango has to offer. Happy travels!