How do you take an Instagram-worthy photo? You travel to an Instagram-worthy destination of course! Luckily, Colorado’s San Luis Valley is filled with beautiful locations and breathtaking views for you to choose from. We’ve compiled ten of the most Instagram-worthy spots in the San Luis Valley for you. These gorgeous spots are sure to rake in the likes and impress your followers! Share your favorite San Luis Valley spots with us using the hashtag #VisitAlamosa and follow @alamosa_colorado on Instagram to see more Instagram-worthy photos!
10) Zapata Falls
Tucked away in a rocky crevasse, this 25-foot waterfall is one of Alamosa’s most photogenic destinations. Whether you pose in front of the famous falls themselves, or along the half-mile hike to it, which has sweeping views of the San Luis Valley floor. Tip from a local: While Zapata Falls is stunning 365 days of year, in the winter the falls freeze over and the photo opportunities are endless.
9) The Stations of the Cross
In the town of San Luis, the Stations of the Cross are a series of bronze sculptures dotted along a path on top of a small mesa named La Mesa de la Piedad y de la Misericordia. These beautiful sculptures are just waiting to be photographed. Add in the gorgeous scenery and the beautiful chapel atop the mesa, La Capilla de Todos Los Santos, and you are sure to get an amazing shot.
8) Blanca Vista Park
If you’re looking to take a remarkable photo of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, Blanca Vista Park is the place to go. The sun rises from behind Mount Blanca in the morning, and in the evening the sunset casts a red hue over the mountain range for which they are named. This is also a great place to snap wildlife photos, as the pond is frequented by all sorts of wild animals and birds.
7) Spiritual Centers of Crestone
The town of Crestone is renowned as a spiritual mecca for world religions. With a Hindu temple, a Zen center, a coed Carmelite monastery and several Tibetan centers, there are countless prospects for photos. Add in the beauty of the surrounding mountains, and any picture you take will be a gorgeous addition to your Instagram profile.
6) Wheeler Geologic Area
You can get a ton of great pics at Colorado’s first National Monument. Wheeler Geologic Area is a challenge to reach, but if you get there, the reward is 100% worth it. Comprised of volcanic tuff eroded into many shapes, Wheeler is a sight to behold.
5) Penitente Canyon
This geologic formation, frequented by rock climbers, creates a flawless backdrop for your pictures. Your followers will fall in love with your photos of the unique and colorful geology of Penitente Canyon. Tip from a local: Be on the lookout for Native American pictographs on the rock formations, as well as the blue Modonna left behind by the Penitente Brotherhood of Catholic monks.
4) San Luis Valley Hot Springs
Soaking in geothermal hot springs is so relaxing, but it is also a stellar photo op! No matter which of the San Luis Valley’s four hot springs you choose from, you are sure to snap your new profile pic.
3) Cumbres & Toltec and Rio Grande Scenic Railroads
Add some Old West flair to your profile! Both the Cumbres & Toltec and the Rio Grande Scenic Railroads take you through striking Colorado landscapes that you can only see by train. The picture possibilities along your route are endless. If the charming passenger cars and train machinery doesn’t do it, the stunning views during the ride will! Trip from a local: In September and October, the leaves change on both railroads, and you can capture the beautiful changing colors.
2) Summit of 14ers
What is more impressive than a selfie taken on the top of one of Colorado’s most rugged 14ers? In the San Luis Valley, there are 10 to choose from, each more beautiful than the next. These are the only places that you can grab a rare photo of the San Luis Valley from 14,000+ feet above sea level.
1) The Great Sand Dunes National Park
The tallest sand dunes in North America are also the perfect spot for a photo shoot. The Great Sand Dunes National Park is a place unlike any other. While the famous dune field is usually the subject of photos, the park offers many opportunities to capture an astounding shot. Tip from a local: Early in the morning or late in the evening the dunes cast shadows, and the contrast of the shadows on the sand can create beautiful images.