Bucket List item #932 – Manitou Springs
A weekend in Manitou Springs was the first item Dave and I checked off my bucket list and it was a weekend we still talk about to this day. It was our first Valentine’s Day together.
I was still at the Art Institute at the time and had taken a travel landscape class. I had to photograph a lot in Manitou for a project and just fell in the love with the city. However, I wasn’t able to properly enjoy the city because I was too busy photographing it. I badly wanted to go back.
When the Valentine’s Day holiday rolled around and we wanted to do some budget-friendly travel, I hopped on that shit so fast! Dave thought I was silly for being so excited about this little city next door to Colorado Springs, but I proved him so wrong.
We had a jam-packed weekend of constant fun.
We had high tea at Miramont Castle, which to this day is the only time I remember Dave actually being excited by tea AND taking pictures in a castle museum. They even gave us hats and boas to place dress-up for tea! He usually thinks they’re all the same. 😒
We explored the Garden of the Gods and did a little hiking. We also spent some time at their cultural center playing with animals and feeling like we were kids again.
We moseyed through the Cave of the Winds.
We, again, acted like children at the penny arcade. We spent HOURS there. We exchanged our tickets for vampire teeth and bouncy balls.
We explored the city with zeal.
We stayed at the most ridiculous B&B just outside the city with cats crocheted into pillows and the most delicious breakfast.
We just had the best time in the world. Every day was a riot and it felt like every activity made us feel young again. The weekend was so magical for us. I would love to go back, but I’m afraid to spoil the perfect capsule that is my memory. I can even smell that trip. It smells like pine needles and crepes baking. It’s ingrained in my memory.
My biggest takeaway from Manitou was falling more in love with who is now the love of my life. Thank you, Manitou Springs!
Note: if you go the right time of year, Pike’s Peak and the railroad should be your number one priority. We were unable to drive up the mountain because it’s closed for the season in February. Also, there is a theme park called the North Pole on the way up the mountain that I think is still a hoot as an adult, but even better if you have kids and want to pretend it’s Christmas during off season. The cliff dwellings are also a place you should definitely see and if you have some extra spending money, I highly recommend riding a horse through Garden of the Gods with the Academy Riding Stables. You can find more information via the Pikes Peak link.