park like you live here

strategies to get around

Living in a tourist community year-round is a privilege, we get to live and breathe in God's Country every day. Summer is a challenge for many locals, who swear off going downtown and don't leave their living room because it can be... challenging to get around.
Their loss... Downtown Estes Park has the sights, smells and sensation of an American small town, because it still is!

park and walk

The parking garage so far has proven to be a bust. Usage is way below the projections. No matter, you should try it. The walk to downtown is pleasant, and your car wont get snowed on or melted by the sun. Cross the river to the Visitors Center and catch a free local shuttle around town if you're patient. Many locals walk from home or visit downtown after 5 when it quiets down. Plan your timing to improve your experience. Paid parking is enforced from 10am to 6pm 7 days a week.

Do everyone a favor and do not park near Safeway (Stanley Village shopping center) then walk downtown... Use the parking garage- same distance, less intersections, and there's no uphill on the way back to your car.

Arrive early if shopping

Downtown parking is mostly paid (70%) despite the town propaganda. There are free all day spaces, and even some unregulated town owned lots you can use that are not advertised. Both will fill up quickly. Some businesses have modified their business hours to accommodate early and late customers, please support them!

Tip: Drop off your family downtown at the water wheel, park at the garage, walk back to meet them - then work your way through town to the garage at the end of your shopping day.

"secret" lots

The Town owns several empty lots along the future "Loop" highway project which have been designated for parking, but are not advertised, signed, or regulated. They are unimproved gravel lots located at:

Ivy / E Riverside
Riverside / RockwellCrags / Ivy

Park there all day for free. Room for oversized vehicles in these lots.

The lot at E Riverside / Rockwell St is the background image of this page.

These lots may fill up early, the word is out.

drive around traffic

Many visitors love the slow pace downtown, and enjoy watching a small town from their vehicle as they drive through. Head downtown!

On the other hand, you may want to bypass downtown:

South side to NW side of valley
(RMNP Visitors Ctr)
Marys Lake Road

South side to North side of downtown
Moccasin Bypass

East side to NW Side (RMNP Fall River)
Wonderview bypass (Hwy 34)

truly locals only

30 Minutes Free
The Town has offered 30 minutes free parking per day for residents within the Estes Park R3 School District boundaries. Apply for this permit on their website.

Get Vocal
Don't like this paid parking scheme and you can vote? Contact trustees to share your opinion, or complete our parking survey and we will forward your words.

bet you didnt know

To enforce the parking rules and track violations, your vehicle license plate, GPS location and time of stay is collected and recorded every few minutes during enforcement, and at many other times by the little yellow parking car with cameras mounted on the roof. Of course your data is safe with the Town of Estes Park. Data may be shared with police for investigations or other official business.

Creepy or just the 'new normal'?

Read the Town policy on parking data collection, but be advised that Google docs tracks your access to most Town documents. DATA POLICY