Celebrating our 20th Wedding Anniversary in Telluride

My husband and I are going to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary by attending the Bluegrass Festival for the first time! We are flying into Durango from Columbus, Ohio and driving to Telluride. Would love to get recommendations from locals on things to see on the way, restaurants in Telluride you recommend, etc. and just general tips on the festival.

Was also curious if there was an open market for “space savers” for the tarp run…We won’t get in until later Thursday and are concerned we won’t get a good spot!

First off, I’m no local, and don’t want to come off as if I’m pretending to be one.

If you’re a beer fan and the timing is right, stop in Liquor World (Durango) on the way out of town. No knock to Telluride’s liquor stores, but this store has had a much larger selection of craft beers, in my opinion. I know it sounds kind of weird to tell you to go to a beer store, but, a) there’s nothing quite like Colorado beer, and b) depending on where you’re from, selection of this magnitude is extra fun.

It’s a pretty darn straight (though beautiful) shot from Durango-Telluride by car. There’s nothing much on the way – maybe the locals can chime in here, but I’ve always found myself itching to get to Telluride by the time I’m in D’go.

Telluride has a variety of restaurants, most of which I’m not familiar with – have mainly eaten in Brown Dog Pizza, the taco cart (!!!), Smuggler’s Pub, and inside the festival (where a Killer Flank Steak is a must if you are carnivorous).

It’s a lively place at festival time, though – I’m sure there are some more romantic/anniversary-ish recommendations on the way if that’s what you’re interested in.

Less content than I’d intended (pun).

If you’re not getting in until Thursday there’s not much to see or much time to see anything between Durango and Telluride.
If you had a day or two it would be different.

I wouldn’t worry about a “space saver” your first day as there’s not really any “bad” spots.
If you feel you want a better spot the remaining days then you can get in line for the tarp run each night.

A lot of recommendations depend on your budget. There are plenty of choices from tight budget to class act restaurants all around town.

Welcome, and have fun! :cheers

I love Durango - ski there at least twice a year. Be sure to check out the Strator Hotel (2 bars, usually music in one of them) and the General Palmer (a block away). These are really old, really cool hotels.

I used to go north from Durango to get to Telluride, but I much prefer the western route (it may actually be faster) through Dolores. (take the shortcut from Mancos to Dolores!) Dolores has a very old bar (the Hollywood on the west side of the town square), a very good brewery for both food and beer (if they don’t have the Bock, try the Stout) and is the place to fill up your car before heading over to T-ride. The drive there is absolutely gorgeous. First it’s along the Dolores River, then into Rico (the coffee shop has good organic food), then up over Lizard Pass, past Trout Lake and Mountain Village and into town. Stunning views everywhere you look.

Thanks for all the great recommendations!! I cannot wait to get there!!

Congratulations on your anniversary! You picked the perfect place/way to spend it.

C.L. is correct, you couldn’t do much better. Too many suggestions to mention, though a little tub by the river just after Rico, before you cross the bridge is quite nice. Pass through Rico, hang a right at dirt road, slow, potholes, 1/4 mile, or less, park at next left, walk by shack, to river and soak. Perhaps pick up a cold one or two at Rico’s Leopard Liquors, Happy Anniversary! We’ve tested the natural hot water, and though it’s high iron, it’s clean.