Monte Vista, CO is one of the larger towns in the Great Sand Dunes area. There are numerous places to eat, sleep and shop in town.
This San Luis Valley town resides at an elevation of 7,664 feet in Rio Grande County. It has the motto: “Experience the Full Monte.” Monte Vista had a recorded population of 4,444 in 2010. The town was incorporated on September 27, 1886.
Historic District – Downtown Monte Vista is a designated National Historic District. There are several blocks of shopping, dining and manmade landmarks to explore.
Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge – Four mile auto tour leads you through this scenic refuge. Whooping crane and sandhill crane migrate here annually before flying north.
Read about the best things to do in Monte Vista.
- Rio Grande National Forest to the west offers numerous campgrounds and dispersed camping options.
- Read about the camping near Monte Vista and Alamosa.
- Terrace Reservoir is one of the closest lakes to town.
- LaJara Reservoir State Wildlife Area is located about an hour and a half away.
Hotels and lodging:
- Best Western Movie Manor – It’s a unique three star hotel with two drive in movie theater screen on-site. One of them guests can see from some of the rooms. All overnight guests receive free admission to the movies, which show from mid April through October.
- Read about the best hotels in Monte Vista.
Mar – Crane Festival – Witness 20,000 sandhill cranes migrate to the local wildlife refuge. It’s held annually in early March.
Aug – San Luis Valley Potato Festival – Summer Saturday honoring the San Luis Valley potatoes, which make some of the best spuds around.
Activities near Monte Vista
Cross Country Skiing:
- Alamosa National Wildlife Refuge (22mi)
- Great Sand Dunes National Park (48mi)
- La Garita Wilderness Area
- Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge
- Rio Grande National Forest
- Rio Grande River
- Sand Dunes Pool (29mi)
- UFO Watchtower (29mi)
State Wildlife Areas:
- LaJara Reservoir (47mi)
- Russell Lakes State Wildlife Area (24mi)
- Terrace Reservoir (22mi)
- Alamosa (17mi)
- Antonito (42mi)
- Bountiful (32mi)
- Capulin (22mi)
- Chama, CO (62mi)
- Conejos (42mi)
- Creede (51mi)
- Del Norte (13mi)
- La Garita (23mi)
- La Jara (29mi)
- Manassa (39mi)
- Pagosa Springs (74mi)
- Romeo (36mi)
- Salida (80mi)
- Sanford (33mi)
- South Fork (32mi)
- Colorado Gator Farm (29mi)