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Fort Collins is the largest city in northern Colorado that is often overlooked by travelers due to its destination away from the Interstate-70.
And yet, Fort Collins has so much to offer!
The city was named one of the best places to travel in 2019, and it’s often considered one of the most happening new destinations for Colorado tourism. Fort Collins combines a vibrant art and fabulous restaurant scene and offers many outdoor opportunities.
Once you come here, you will quickly realize that the hour-long drive from Denver to Fort Collins is well worth it!
✅ Check my complete guide to the best Denver tours
How far is Fort Collins from Denver?
Denver is 65 miles from Fort Collins. The drive is straight shot along Interstate-25 that connects Colorado with Wyoming.
How long does it take to get from Denver to Fort Collins?
Your time on the road depends on your mode of transportation. I’ve made a drive in just over one hour, however, if there’s traffic, it could take you longer. Buses are normally the slowest way of transport, but because there’s no airport in Fort Collins, flying to Cheyenne, Wyoming, won’t save you much time.
How do I get from Denver to Fort Collins without a car?
The best way to travel to Fort Collins without a car is by taking a bus. The trip takes about 1 hour 20 minutes and buses to Fort Collins departs hourly from Denver.
Denver Airport to Fort Collins transportation options
The fastest way to get from to Fort Collins from the Airport is by taking Uber. It’s going to cost between $100-130, but you will save a lot of time. If you plan on visiting more places in Colorado, you could also rent a car.
The cheapest way to get to Fort Collins from Denver International Airport (DIA) is by taking Groome Transportation, which offers services from DIA to Loveland, Fort Collins and Southern Wyoming. A one way ticket costs between $50-60 and you can choose a specific pick-up time when booking your ticket.
What’s the best way to get from Denver to Fort Collins?
Most people drive to Fort Collins, but there are options, and we are going to look at them in this article.
Denver to Fort Collins by car
Fort Collins is one of the best day trips from Denver. It’s a perfect weekend getaway from the Mile High city that doesn’t see the tourist crowds that you can see in places like Aspen, Breckenridge or Boulder.
The easiest way to visit Fort Collins is by renting a car a in Denver. You can rent a car at the Denver International Airport, but you will need to catch a ride to get there from the main terminal. Some car rental companies provide a transportation from the airport to their offices.
Where to rent a car for your trip?
I recommend renting a car with Discover Cars, my favorite platform for car rentals that offers good selection of vehicles of different types and sizes and flexible rates. I’ve rented a car with them several times and always liked their services. Unlike many other car rental platforms, they have no hidden fees and you can easily browse available cars on their website.
Check my complete guide to renting a car in Denver!
Denver to Fort Collins shuttle
Taking a bus to Fort Collins is the most economical way to travel. Greyhound is a platform where you can buy tickets online. Buses from Denver depart daily and price range depending on the day and time. Sometimes, you can take advantage of seasonal offers and special prices.
You can also check the tickets on busbud.
Bustang offers regional buses in Colorado that connect Denver with many cities along Interstate-25 and Interstate-70. Bustang operates shuttles to Fort Collins from Denver 7 days a week and a single ticket costs $10.
Bustang buses depart from the Union Station in downtown Denver, make a stop in Loveland and arrive in Fort Collins Downtown Transfer Center.
You can check Bustang schedule online.
Uber is the most expensive way to travel to Fort Collins. It might be a good option if you are traveling with a group of friends and you can split the expense, but if you are traveling by yourself, it will be pretty pricey.
✅ Read: Uber in Denver Airport
How much is Uber from Denver to Fort Collins?
Depending on the time of the day, Uber from Denver to Fort Collins should cost between $90-125.
Flying to Fort Collins from Denver
Although Fort Collins doesn’t have an airport, it’s also possible to travel to Fort Collins by plane. However, you will need to catch a ride to Fort Collins from the airport.
The closest major airport to Fort Collins is Cheyenne Regional Airport (CYS) in Cheyenne, Wyoming about 42 miles away. There are two daily flights from Denver to Cheyenne, and tickets range between low $70-80 to a few hundred dollars for a one way trip depending on when you buy them.
Check tickets ahead your trip online to avoid paying more later!
Another option is Laramie Regional Airport (LAR) in Laramie Wyoming which is 59 miles away from Fort Collins.
What stops can I make on my way from Denver to Fort Collins?
A drive from Denver to Fort Collins is pretty straightforward and it takes you along the highway up north. Once you get on Interstate 25, you will pass several northern suburbs of Denver like Thornton, Northglenn and Dacono. It’s not as scenic or famous as other drives in Colorado, but there are still a couple of places you can check out.
Loveland is a perfect base for your adventures in northern Colorado. This small city is known for its thriving arts community, b funky shopping districts, and breweries. The area also boasts plenty recreational opportunities like Round Mountain and Devil’s Backbone Open Space.
Just to the west of Loveland is Estes Park, the gateway to the Rocky Mountain National Park. Although it’s not directly on the way to Fort Collins, it’s a perfect stop if you have a little bit more time and want to check out one of the most beautiful national parks in the United States.
Best things to do in Fort Collins
Fort Collins boasts a charming downtown with a thriving art and restaurant scene, as well as cool outdoor places such as Cache La Poudre River Canyon and Horsetooth Reservoir, one of the most beautiful lakes in Colorado that is less crowded than popular spots along Colorado’s front range.
Begin your adventure in Fort Collins by taking a car ride at the signature Fort Collins Municipal Railway that runs on summer weekends and continue by sampling local beer at Fort Collins breweries or taking a bike tour through town.
Fort Collins is often overlooked by travelers but it’s easily one of the best towns in Colorado thanks to its friendly atmosphere, plenty of culture and great outdoor scenery.
Where to stay in Fort Collins?
Fort Collins has a good selection of hotels, so you can spend a night or two here. Some of the best options are:
- The Armstrong Hotel – One of the best places to stay in Fort Collins thanks to its location in the historic part of the city.
- The Elizabeth Hotel – If you a slightly bigger budget, book a stay in the Elizabeth Hotel in downtown Fort Collins that boasts uniquely designed rooms and wonderful amenities.
- La Quinta Inn – A great hotel located near Interstate-25 that offers convenience and good prices
Is Fort Collins worth visiting?
Fort Collins is the largest city in Northern Colorado that’s definitely worth a stop. Despite being away from the main travel route, Fort Collins offers everything that Colorado is famous for: craft beer, relaxed atmosphere and indy art scene. It’s also home to Colorado State University, that is known for its research programs.
Is Fort Collins safe?
Fort Collins is a safe destination to visit. You can safely walk around the city’s downtown and go hiking during the day time. Even though the risk is low, always be aware of your surroundings, lock your car and keep an eye on your belongings when you are in public places.
Fort Collins is one of the most overlooked road trips in Colorado. It’s a fun, short trip that will bring you to the gateway to all adventures in northern part of the state. If you want to enjoy the outdoors and escape the busy Front Range, taking this road is a must!