Disclosure: This post is written in partnership with Toyota. All opinions are my own.
A couple weekends ago, the family and I decided to have a quick mountain getaway and play tourist in our own little state. My parents did this when I was a child and I want to give those experiences to my own children, sharing with them the ultimate Colorado Day Trip! What a better way to see our beautiful state than in the all new Toyota Highlander Hybrid.
Stop 1 Clear Lake
We packed up the Toyota Highlander Hybrid with our camera and packed a light lunch. Made sure the car seats we’re in the car securely and loaded up for a day of fun!
After a little over an hour in the car we stopped to have lunch at Clear Lake. It is a stunning lake with amazing views. The kids were dying to play in the water, but we couldn’t stay long since we had train tickets.
We snapped some photos and then sat down to eat our lunch and just relax in the beauty of this area. Clear Lake is just above Georgetown over Guanella Pass and offers camping, fishing, hiking, off road trails and more. Had we left a bit earlier in the day we would have definitely hit up some trails and fishing. Next time!
The views during lunch were incredible and it was just perfectly quiet and still. Even with a slight breeze, the only sounds you heard were the occasional fish jumping and of course my kids shrieking when they saw something exciting! It was the perfect place to start our ultimate Colorado day trip!
Stop 2 Georgetown Loop Railroad
Taking the Georgetown Loop train was actually the reason that we decided to have this ultimate Colorado day trip. I purchased tickets online and we just so happened to have the Toyota Highlander Hybrid, so we figured that we would enjoy an awesome day, in an awesome car!
As a child my parents took us on every train in Colorado that there is. I have rode the Amtrak from Denver to Oregon, the Durango to Silverton narrow gauge railroad, the Rio Grande scenic railroad, the Royal Gorge and of course the Georgetown Loop Railroad! The big draw of the Georgetown Loop is the Devils Gate Bridge that you see behind us in the picture.
The ride itself is quite short, but very scenic with some staged areas for photography. The engine is a steam engine which is an awe inspiring sight when they release the steam. It was the first time my children had been on a train for longer than 10 minutes and it was awesome.
They sat so well and were just enthralled with the experience. We chose to sit in an enclosed car in the area with windows so they could safely look out! As we crossed the Devil’s Gate bridge my kids were all smiles and completely focused on looking around. They could see the river, the train station and so much more!
We definitely brought some snacks and drinks on the train ride as it is not provided and seating is not assigned. The entire round trip ride takes a little over an hour but with 2 little kids, we wanted to be prepared. Overall, we had a phenomenal time riding the train, but our adventure was not done yet!
Stop 3 BeauJo’s Pizza!
Our final stop for the day was at our favorite mountain pie place! BeauJo’s Pizza is located just inside Idaho Springs and is a tasty stop for those that crave incredible pizza!
We parked the Highlander and headed in. We usually have a little wait before we are seated, but surprisingly we were able to get seated and eat pretty quickly. Honestly, I was a little sad we didn’t get to shop the little stores in Idaho Springs. BeauJo’s restaurant pager’s have a block wide distance so you can wait and shop at the same time.
However, the food was worth not waiting for! Between the salad bar with the delicious mini corns that I love and their honey wheat pizza crust topped full with anything your heart desires, we were in heaven. It was a great end to our ultimate Colorado day trip!
Our Ride for the Day
Like I mentioned, the Toyota Highlander Hybrid was our ride for the day. We originally contacted Toyota because we are looking to purchase a new family car as my current daily driver is reaching her limit. After spending time in this car, driving for a week and day tripping, it is going to take a lot of convincing to make me look at any other vehicles outside of the Toyota family of vehicles.
I actually have owned several Toyota’s and love them. However, none of them are as fancy as this incredible Highlander limited edition Hybrid. Honestly, I am in love and found new things to be fascinated with daily. For example, the back up camera. No, this is not your typical back up camera, it contains 365º views of your surrounding and can check out spaces around you.
The sunroof was another feature that I totally couldn’t get enough of. I enjoy a little sun, but this one extends through to the back seats and was awesome. My kids loved looking up while we were driving through the mountains and during the evenings at the stars. It was a great way to see everything around us and start good conversations.
I removed the cars eats but I had to show you the backseat area of this awesome Highlander! Leather interior, heated seats and do you see that awesome cup holder in the center…yeah it is collapsable and stores away easily when it is not being used! Speaking of car seats, it was so easy to move the seats in and out of the car as needed, Toyota definitely was thinking of parents when they designed this car.
The hybrid of course comes with an energy monitor so you can see where your energy is being dispersed. It’s smart technology allows the driver to adjust their driving to the cars energy needs and shows you both on the main screen and your dashboard. I loved this feature! Even after driving a full week, I only went through 1 tank of gas and was getting over 30mpg!
Another feature that made our ultimate Colorado day trip awesome was the built in pull up sunscreens. They pull straight up from the windows and click into place. My kids loved them because they could still see outside but they were not getting pounded with sunlight. I liked that they helped to keep the car cooler and that they were so easy to use.
Our ultimate Colorado day trip was phenomenal and a great way to spend a weekend day. Driving the Toyota Highlander Limited Hybrid was just the icing on the cake. I highly encourage you to take some time, rediscover your city and enjoy a day trip of your very own…and while you are at it, stop at a Toyota dealership and test drive this car!