DURANGO, CO--(Marketwired - Jun 4, 2013) - Nestled in the San Juan Mountains in southwestern Colorado, Durango boasts a "Dozen Vacations in One Destination!" Cool mountain nights offer an escape from the heat and sunny daytime adventures are yours to make memories. Here are a dozen ideas to help you plan this summer's Durango vacation. Visit www.durango.org for even more ideas.

1. Old West Heritage. Step back in time and bring the Wild West to life. Enjoy the Bar D Chuckwagon, a dude ranch, take a History Hunt self-guided walking tour; visit the Animas Museum, Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum, Durango Discovery Museum, Center for Southwest Studies, or the Southern Ute Cultural Center. There are gunfights, carriage rides, and Melodrama at the Strater Hotel. The Wild West is alive!

2. Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. Ride a historic steam train through the remote wilderness to the mining town of Silverton. Explore the wilderness with a hike from the Needleton stop or book a day of zip line thrills at Soaring Tree Top Adventures. Treat your family to the Dinosaur Train™ or True West Railfest.

3. National Parks & Monuments. Durango is the gateway to culture and history: Mesa Verde National Park, Chimney Rock National Monument, archaeological sites at Hovenweep and the Aztec Ruins; Four Corners National Monument and the Anasazi Heritage Center.

4. Outdoor Recreation. From rafting the Animas River to mountain biking over 200 miles of single-track trails, zip lining, jeep tours and rock climbing to hiking, back packing, golfing mountain courses, horseback riding and paddle boarding. There is an adventure just out your door!

5. Summer on the Mountain. Durango Mountain Resort, the best value ski spot by TripAdvisor for 2012/2013, is also a summer adventure destination. The Total Adventure Ticket features an Alpine Slide, scenic chairlift, mountain bike uplift, miniature golf, and activities in the Plaza. New activities include the Sky Hike Adventure Ropes Course and Water Runners. Try Diggler Mountain Scooters, Purgatory Plunge Zipline, disc golf, climbing walls, bungee trampolines, mechanical bull and bounce house. Home to the first World Mountain Bike Championships in 1990, Purgatory features 10 mountain bike trails for all ability levels and offers mountain bike rentals on site.

6. Arts & Culture. A hidden jewel in the arts world, Durango is home to over a dozen art galleries that carry treasures from contemporary, western and southwestern art represented with sculptures, jewelry, pottery, baskets, photography and furnishings. The classical summer music festival, Music in the Mountains, runs July 7 - 28. Enjoy outdoor public art, Tour of Carvings at Vallecito Lake, the Melodrama at the Henry Strater Theatre and live theatre at the Durango Arts Center, outdoor concerts, and a wide array of live music including the Community Concert Hall at Fort Lewis College.

7. Outdoor Sportsman. Southwestern Colorado is a sportsman's playground with hunting, guided hunting outfitters, pack trips, horseback riding, fly-fishing on the Gold Medal Waters of the Animas River and on Vallecito Lake, 4x4 trails and jeep tours. Include a visit to the Durango Fish Hatchery and Wildlife Museum.

8. Leisure and Affordable Luxury. Choose from over 80 restaurants for fine and casual dining, three historic hotels, and 5 craft breweries for award-winning craft brews. Soak at Trimble Spa & Natural Hot Springs, relax at a spa, stroll historic downtown for boutique shopping, picnic by the river, play a round of golf on courses with breathtaking views... rejuvenate your soul.

9. Touring and Diverse Ecosystems. Southwestern Colorado is collection of diverse ecosystems and climates. On a motorcycle or by car, the scenic San Juan Skyway winds through mountain, alpine and high desert regions on a 233-mile scenic byway. For recreation on a pristine high mountain lake visit Vallecito Lake. Durango offers cool nights and over 300 days of sunshine per year.

10. Agritourism. An unforgettable rural experience in a breathtaking location; where vacation and agriculture meet. With the increased awareness of sustainability and health, agritourism is a growing travel trend. The new El Moro Spirits & Tavern celebrates history and agriculture with farm-to-table dining in a renovated saloon. Where does your food come from? Visit James Ranch farm tours, Linda's Local Café, Honeyville, farm-to-table dinners, Farmer's Markets, five craft breweries and much more!

11.  Special Events. Celebrate at our (almost) weekly summer festivals, parades and celebrations including: Coffee Fest, San Juan Brew Fest, Iron Horse Chef at the Durango Farmer's Market, Animas River Days, Music in the Mountains, Fiesta Days, La Plata County Fair, Four Corners Bikers Rally, Salute to America, True West Railfest, Apple Days...

12. Education, Meetings, Sports. From educational trips, group meetings, business retreats to family reunions and sporting team events, Durango provides a venue that creates a memorable and unique event. Bring your children for a soccer summer camp, art lessons, organize a dude ranch retreat, or take your business meeting on the river. Think outside.

Over a dozen ideas to inspire your summer vacation. Packages, lodging and information for planning your trip available at: www.durango.org. Like us at "visitdurango" on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

The Durango Area Tourism Office is a not for profit organization operating with the mission to promote Durango and La Plata County's multitude of tourism attractions, events and services. 1-800-GO DURANGO, www.durango.org

Contact Information:

Anne Klein
Public Relations
Durango Area Tourism Office
Phone: (970) 749-0991
E-Mail: anne@durango.org