Ride a Steam Train to the Best of the West in Durango, Colorado

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Durango at dusk

Durango at Dusk

Voted a finalist in Outside Magazine’s 2016 “Best Towns” category, Durango really lives up to its stellar reputation. Perched at 6,512 feet, this charming historic town has six craft breweries, one distillery and more restaurants per capita than San Francisco. It also has fantastic mountain biking and hiking trails. 

El Moro Spirits and Tavern in Durango, Colo.

El Moro Spirits and Tavern. 

But at its heart is the railroad. Founded by the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad Co. in 1880, the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad attracts approximately 200,000 passengers per year. Find out why this is such a popular attraction by taking the nine-hour round-trip train excursion from Durango to the tiny, historic mining town of Silverton. Or if you have limited time, opt for the Skyway Tour, in which you ride the train one way and a bus the other.

Durango’s best-kept secret? You can access the longest zip line in North America by riding the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad with Soaring Tree Top Adventures based in Durango. 

Get Special Mesa Verde Tickets in Durango

To get an insider view of Mesa Verde's cliff dwellings, purchase your tickets in person for the park's ranger-led tours to Cliff Palace, Balcony House and Long House. Tickets are available up to two days in advance. Buy your tickets at the Durango Welcome Center at 802 Main Avenue before you head to the park. Otherwise, tickets are also available at the Mesa Verde Visitor and Research Center located in the park. 

Durango & Silverton Railroad by the Numbers

Steam engine on the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad.

Steam engine on the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad.


Years of service


Worth of precious metals has been hauled by the train


Gallons of water is used each trip


Pounds of hand-shoveled coal used each trip


Year tracks to Silverton were completed

Source: Durango Area Tourism Office; Silverton Area Chamber of Commerce

For more information
Durango Visitor Center
(866) 631-7009
802 Main Ave, Durango, CO 81301

Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and Museum
(877) 872-4607