Estes Park Museums
After a visit to one of our five museums, you might be surprised at how much history this small, seemingly ordinary town has. Make sure to add to your Estes Park, Colorado activities a visit to one of these museums during your vacation.
The Estes Park Museum, founded by volunteers in 1962, is an opportunity to see some true local history—one of their past exhibits featured a selection of butterfly samples from the town’s first mayor. Exhibits change throughout the year, so even if you’ve stopped by in the past, there may be something new for you to see today.
Open to the public from June through August, the MacGregor Ranch offers guided museum tours, exhibits of horse-drawn machinery, agricultural activities, and nature trails that would be especially good for visiting families. The ranch is the last working cattle ranch in Estes Park and has an original historical collection and structures that have remained unchanged since 1873.
Most famous as the inspiration for Stephen King’s novel The Shining, the Stanley Hotel is also permanently tied to the history of Estes Park: to build it, F.O. Stanley also had to start the power, sewer, water, roads, clinic, and bank that makeup Estes Park’s infrastructure today. Details of this history can be found at the Stanley Museum while a separate center about the Historic Fall River Hydroplant, built to power the hotel, is open to the public from Memorial through Labor Day.
Check out our other family-friendly activities in Estes Park.