Christmas in Durango

Santa Claus on the Mountain at Purgatory Resort

It’s almost Christmas. Seriously, it’s three weeks away. There seem to be two types of holiday people: Those who finish all their shopping before Labor Day, and people who hate those people those who are always scrambling with last-minute shopping, decorating and planning.

To top it off, if you have kids, they’ll be out of school and sooooooo bored, or if you have family visiting for Christmas, they’ll be sooooooo bored if you don’t find fun things to do for Christmas in Durango.

Purgatory Resort

Skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, horse-drawn sleigh rides — sure, those are amazing things to do at Purgatory Resort. But for extra-special holiday fun, don’t miss Santa on the Mountain from 2-3:30 p.m. Dec. 23 at the base area. Santa and Mrs. Claus will be handing out candy canes and taking last-minute gift requests — but only if you’ve been nice! That same day, Purgatory is offering free holiday wreath-making classes at Durango Mountain Institute from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

It that’s not exciting enough, take your kin on a scenic snowcat tour on Saturday, Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. Visitors will first ride the chairlift to the mountaintop then take a ride in a snowcat while taking in panoramic views and sipping hot cocoa. The tour is $50 per person and reservations are required. Tickets may be booked by calling 800-525-0892.

People can also leave the Christmas Eve cooking to the pros at Purgatory with a family-friendly holiday buffet at Purgy’s Slopeside from 4-9 p.m. on Christmas Eve. The smorgasbord includes a dessert buffet, a Christmas cookie station and a build-your-own hot chocolate bar.

Downtown Durango

Downtown Durango manages to be both hip and happening while also being cute and quaint. The historic downtown promises some of the city’s best shopping at boutiques and specialty shops, art galleries and wineries, natural products stores and shops that peddle the three Cs: candy, chocolate and coffee.

Some of the major sights to see in downtown include the Durango train depot and the historic Strater Hotel. Enjoy a tasting flight at Four Leaves Winery, get an array of sweets for those stockings at Fuzziwig’s Candy Factory or browse any number of art galleries and markets. Check out the Winter Solstice Artisan’s Market at the Durango Arts Center that runs through Saturday, Dec. 23. The annual market features more than 40 artists who were selected to show and sell their artwork and creations, such as ceramics, glass, jewelry, textiles, photography, paintings and more.

On Christmas Eve morning, head over to the Henry Strater Theatre to ring in Christmas with the Patrick Crossing Band playing Celtic Christmas tunes and Christmas songs.

Durango Hotels

While you’re spending Christmas in Durango — or if you have people visiting for the holidays, and you can’t (or don’t want to) have houseguests — stay with us at the Econo Lodge Inn & Suites Durango. We’re located on Main Avenue, just a few blocks from the hub of downtown, and Purgatory is only a short drive straight north from our front door. Come check out our newly renovated lobby and warm up by the fireplace! Book your holiday stay with the Econo Lodge Durango today.

Top Winter Activities in Durango, CO

Top things to do during the winter in Durango, Colorado:

  1. Purgatory Ski Resort

Purgatory offers a variety of ski and snowboarding activities. With beautiful runs, multiple restaurants, and less than 30 minutes from town you can’t go wrong.

Call the Econo Lodge in Durango to learn how you can

Ski Purgatory, & Stay Free– (970)247-4242.

  1. Polar Express

Take you and your little ones on a memorable ride to the North Pole on Durango’s very own Polar Express. Spend a magical evening in your PJ’s, drinking hot coca, and listening to stories on board the Durango Polar Express train. Visit the North Pole, and even meet Santa himself, all included with your ticket. Make things even easier by booking your train and hotel all at once! Click here for train and hotel package.

  1. Snowdown

Durango’s very own 5-day winter festival takes place the end of every January. With over 100 events, and days of festivities, this is one of the largest winter event in Colorado, and trust me, you won’t want to miss it. Check out more info on this years theme and schedule before you arrive (you wouldn’t want to show up under-dressed).

  1. Durango Train to Cascade Canyon

The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gage railroad continues to travel 26 miles along the Animas River during the winter season. This ride offers breathtaking mountain views and river scenery, so be sure you pack your camera. Also, don’t forget the special event trains like: the New Year’s brunch train, Christmas Tree train, and Snowmobile packages with your train ride!

  1. SnowCats & Snowmobiling

There are many ways to experience a true snow adventure with breathtaking winter landscapes. The two best experiences that tie of these these both together would be snowmobiling, and snowcat adventures. Durango and the surrounding areas offer BOTH of these  winter adventures, now you just have to decide to do just one, or both.

Experience a unique ride in a snowcat with breathtaking views of the San Juan Mountains. Purgatory offers multiple different snowcat adventures including: Dinner tours, snowcat and skiing and scenic tours.

Want to feel the wind in your face, while exploring the back country? Snowmobiling may be the perfect adventure, and the best part is that Durango offers multiple snowmobiling options. Here are a few of the most recommended snowmobiling adventures:

  1. Snowshoeing

Explore the beautiful San Juan mountain trails in the snow this winter. Durango offers many self-guided trails for snowshowing. Not an experienced at snowshoeing? No problem! Purgatory Resort offers guided tours and rentals all in one package!

  1. Sleigh Rides

Enjoy the brisk mountain air, and the jingle of the horses bell on a customized sleigh ride through a winter wonderland. With this adventure you can take a romantic ride, visit Santa, enjoy the beautiful Needles mountain range, and more. Pick the ride that most suites you and your party with either the Rapp Corral or Buck Livery sleigh rides.

  1. Dog Sledding

Head over to Durango Dog Ranch for a trip of a lifetime dog sledding through the San Juan Mountains. This family friendly activity is available for whole day and half day trips. Book your adventure at:

Don’t forget to book your room for your next Durango adventure. Click here for rates and availability at the Award Winning Econo Lodge Inn & Suites.