Ouray, CO, USA

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Ouray, CO, USA

Ouray vacation rentals

Hip-hip-Ouray in the San Juan Mountains

Known as the Switzerland of America, Ouray is a Victorian mining village set under the towering peaks of the Rockies. The area is a world-class ice-climbing destination but you don't need to pack a pick for a weekend in the mountains. You can bathe in hot springs, hike to Box Canyon Falls, or visit the Ouray County Museum and take an old mine tour, while thrill-seekers can try white-water rafting on the Uncompahgre River. Movie buffs will recognize the river as the backdrop to Clint Eastwood's "True Grit." After dark, venture out for dinner and drinks in Ouray's lively downtown.

A mountain Mecca for thrill-seekers

An outdoor enthusiast's dream, Ouray is not a place for relaxing. As the ice-climbing capital of the US, winter draws crowds of ice climbers who come to conquer the region's frozen waterfalls. Visit in summer and you'll find it's a thrill-seekers Mecca, with mountain biking and hiking trails, and hair-raising off-road SUV expeditions. There is one way to relax, however. Visit one of the natural hot springs which surround the town, take your boots off and soothe your aching bones in the bubbling thermal waters.

Gorge on Ouray's history in the Uncompahgre Forest

For a small town, Ouray has a wealth of museums. Learn more about its gold and silver mining history at the Ouray County Historical Museum, which also arranges walking tours of the town's restored Victorian buildings. The Ouray Alchemist Pharmaceutical Museum, an exact recreation of a frontier pharmacy, is a retro lover's dream. For outdoors enthusiasts, head to the Uncompahgre Gorge, a deep canyon formed by the Uncompahgre River. Nearly 200 feet high in some parts, it's scattered with waterfalls that in the winter months freeze over to form America's premier ice-climbing park.

Winter in the Rockies is ice, ice baby

Tucked away in the San Juan Mountains in the Rockies, this small town experiences all seasons, often in one day. Summers are generally warm, but cool at night and with the chance of rain and thunderstorms in July and August. Fall is when temperatures drop dramatically, but the sun still shines. Book a Ouray vacation rental in winter, and you could experience freezing temperatures and extreme snowfall, so pack for the Arctic. Spring is the nicest time to visit, with mild temperatures, a glimpse of sun, and rarely any rain.

There's an Ouray of wildlife in the Colorado mountains

Ouray is a small mining town surrounded by the towering peaks of the San Juan Mountains, part of the Colorado Rockies. Moments from the main drag is the entrance to Box Canyon Falls Park, home to a 285-foot waterfall. There is an entrance fee between May and November, but the rest of the year it's free to enjoy. Birders come to spot the rare black swift, which migrates here each summer. Further afield you'll find the San Juan and Uncompahgre National Forests. The arid plains is where you'll find large herds of elk, mule deer, and bighorn sheep.