Your Atlanta to Denver road trip has all the elements to elevate a long-distance drive into an adventure. The city of Atlanta is a great starting point, and your route will continue on through several more states. You will get to experience the culture of the South at the start of your trip and continue into scenic Midwestern states like Kansas. As a beautiful and mountainous area, Colorado makes a wonderful conclusion to your journey. You won't be able to see and do everything, but one place you should definitely mark on your itinerary is Rocky Mountain National Park, which is conveniently located near your final destination of Denver.
There are many unique national parks throughout the South and Midwest. However, Gateway Arch National Park and Rocky Mountain National Park are two parks that are easily accessible from your Atlanta to Denver RV road trip route.
Gateway Arch National Park
Gateway Arch National Park commemorates the journey of Lewis and Clark to explore the western lands between St. Louis and the Pacific coast and all the subsequent pioneers who followed their path. At this park, you'll see exhibits and sites relating to President Thomas Jefferson, the Lewis and Clark expedition, westbound pioneers, and Dred Scott, who sued for his freedom in the Old Courthouse. The Gateway Arch has been greeting western travelers and all other visitors to the city since the 1960s. Its towering, 630-foot presence on the banks of the Mississippi River is the largest archway in the world. This is a fitting place to stop and see on your journey west across the United States.
Rocky Mountain National Park
Rocky Mountain National Park is close to Denver, the final destination on your road trip. This majestic park is a quintessential symbol of the Western United States, and everyone should visit this national treasure if possible. While in the park, you will experience multiple habitats like lofty mountaintops, alpine tundra, subalpine woods, rivers and waterfalls. More than 100 peaks in the park are more than 11,000 feet high, like the 14,259-foot Longs Peak, which is one of Colorado's "fourteeners"—mountains that rise above 14,000 feet. The Continental Divide intersects the park, and the Trail Ridge Road is a popular scenic route for both drivers and hikers to access the park areas. Visitors can catch views of animals like mountain goats, bighorn sheep, mule deer, marmots, elk and more all throughout the park.
There are many state parks you can visit along your road trip from Atlanta to Denver. Whether you enjoy fishing, swimming, boating, hiking, or just relaxing in a natural setting, any one of these parks is a worthwhile stop.
Radnor Lake State Park
Radnor Lake State Park encompasses 1,368 acres of woods and river areas near Nashville. There are 7 miles of nature trails that are available for hiking and wildlife viewing. Pets are allowed on the Otter Creek Road Trail, and the Lake Trail is accessible for people with disabilities. Radnor Lake State Park offers wonderful opportunities to see many species of birds, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians throughout the park, and you may even see mink and otter. Common plants include ferns, mosses, and wildflowers. There are periodic ranger-led activities, like night hikes to see the stars. This park is a day-use facility only.
Castlewood State Park
Lying along the Meramec River, Castlewood State Park used to be a popular entertainment area for the people of St. Louis in the early 1900s. The dance halls are no more, but the park is still a common destination for many. Visitors can bike on mountain biking trails that are rated as some of the best in the region or hike along one of the many nature trails. You can fish at multiple spots along the river or ride your horse. You'll enjoy a respite of a day taken at this fun, day-use-only park in St. Louis.
Lake Pueblo State Park
Lake Pueblo State Park covers 60 miles of shoreline, spreading over 10,000 acres in Pueblo County, Colorado. Visitors will enjoy sailing, paddling, boating, fishing, tubing, skiing, and swimming on this large and pristine lake. You can launch your boat out on the lake from either of the two available marinas or take a hike through one of the many nature trails. Pikes Peak to the north offers a wonderful backdrop for the park, which is about a 90-minute drive south of Denver.
There are several unique attractions that you will definitely want to include on your road trip itinerary from Atlanta to Denver. If possible, try to take a few days to visit these fun attractions.
The Atlanta Aquarium is one of the largest aquariums in the U.S. It is home to more than 500 species and around 100,000 total creatures. There are a number of fantastic exhibits to view, like the Cold Water Quest, Ocean Voyager, Tropical Diver, and Aquanaut Adventure. Overall, you can visit more than 60 habitats. The largest exhibit is 284 feet long and 30 feet deep and holds 6.3 million gallons of water. This tank has four whale sharks, four manta rays, and a multitude of swimming inhabitants. The second-largest exhibit houses the beluga whales, which number five adults and one calf as of 2020. Another fun area is the dolphin exhibit, which features an underwater dolphin viewing window.
Grand Ole Opry
The Grand Ole Opry is a must-see attraction for music lovers in Nashville. This venue is home to the longest-running radio show in the U.S., and it's dedicated to honoring country music, both historical and modern. Today, the Grand Ole Opry showcases familiar country music legends and current popular musicians with a mix of musical acts and comedic performances.
Pikes Peak is commonly referred to as "America's Mountain" and is the inspiration for the song "America the Beautiful." The mountain is located next to Colorado Springs, which is about 70 miles south of Denver. Visitors may access Pikes Peak by means of the Pikes Peak Highway or a ride on the cog railway. Once you arrive, you can hike up the mountain on one of the many nature trails. A popular trail choice is the Barr Trail, which gains 8,000 feet in elevation as it climbs 13 miles to the summit.
The drive to Denver from Atlanta is a long one, so you'll want to stop and rest at some of the cities along the way. Fortunately, your route will take you through many major cities that lie along the interstate highways.
The city of Nashville is an obvious stop along your road trip from Atlanta to Denver. Not only is it home to the Grand Ole Opry, but it also has many other fun and interesting attractions. You will enjoy strolling through the Parthenon Grecian replica or visiting the Adventure Science Center with the kids. The Johnny Cash Museum offers an interesting glimpse into the life of a country music legend. The Nashville Hop-on Hop-off bus and trolley tours are a fun way to see the city, and you can always find good eats in the city. As for campgrounds located near Nashville, you'll love staying at Fall Hollow RV Park and eating their home-cooked breakfasts on the weekends. If you need a dump station, there are many choices near Nashville.
St. Louis is home to the famous Gateway Arch, a must-see landmark that lies along the Mississippi River. Visitors can stroll around the base or take the 630-foot ride to the top. Other fun places to visit are the Union Train Station and the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial that marks the starting point of the Lewis and Clark expedition. Six Flags St. Louis is a popular destination for those who love thrill rides. St. Louis RV Park, the only regional RV park in downtown St. Louis, is within walking distance of many local attractions. There are various dump stations in the nearby areas that are convenient to use.
Colorado Springs began life as a quirky winter resort town in the mountains, but it has become much more over the years. Home to the United States Olympic Committee and well-known sports training facilities, Colorado Springs has fun amenities for all tastes. It's also a gateway to Pikes Peak and the Garden of the Gods. Visitors can enjoy the city comforts and also branch outside to visit the nearby sights. The Pikes Peak RV Park is a quiet and restful campground near Colorado Springs, and you will appreciate the peaceful setting. If you need a dump station, you can find many choices throughout Colorado.
Your road trip from Atlanta to Denver will take you from the Deep South to the pioneering West. You will pass through states such as Georgia, Tennessee, Missouri, Kansas, and Colorado. Since you may be in these areas only once in your lifetime, you should try to experience this road trip as fully as possible. Hop in that RV and get ready for an exciting adventure.