Things To Do

Interpreter, dressed in period clothing, presenting guided tour for visitors
Park Interpreter, dressed in period clothing, with a tour group


Guided Tours With An Interpreter

Tours will be offered Daily at 10:00 am and 2:00 pm from Memorial Day through Labor Day, depending on staffing levels.

Take a tour with a Park Interpreter, dress in period clothing, to learn more about the people and activities at Bent's Old Fort in the 1840's. Groups need reservations 719-383-5026. Guided tours are not available during special events.
Trade Room showing trade goods that would have been available in the 1840's
Trade Room with trade goods that would have been available in the 1840's


Self-Guided Tour

Take a self-guided tour of the fort and discover the role the fort played in opening the west. A self-guided tour booklet is available. Interpreters dressed in period clothing are available to answer any questions.
Walking the Santa Fe Trail during a special event
Walking the Santa Fe Trail during a special event


2021 Special Events

The 2021 Bicentennial of the Santa Fe Trail Symposium, September 23-26, 2021, celebrates 200 years of commerce and cultural connections. This is a Santa Fe Trail Association (SFTA) event held at Bent's Old Fort National Historic Site, La Junta, CO and the surrounding area. The event will include speakers, tours and living history. The fort will host a multi-day living history effort set in the year 1843. All the Living Historians have been vetted by the SFTA Symposium Living History Committee. No walk-on Living Historians will be permitted. There will be special presentations on-site during the week that is free to the visiting public. To take part in the bus tours or the presentations at Otero Junior College you must register through the Santa Fe Trail Association. Visit the Calendar of Events for more information.


Tours and Documentary Film

A 1/4 mile (1,275 feet) walk down the trail will bring you to the gate of the fort. Inside you can view the 20 minute documentary film, "Traders, Tribes and Travelers". Self-guided tours and the film are available throughout the year. Guided tours are not available during special events. Once guided tours start, following guidance from the White House, CDC, and state and local public health authorities, organized group tours can be reserved by calling (719) 383-5026.
Bent's Old Fort Hiking trail
Hiking trail


Bent's Old Fort Hiking Trail

Visitors can hike a mile and a half trail that winds its way through the cottonwood trees alongside the Arkansas River. The marsh is home to several species of birds. Interpretive exhibit signs tell the story of the river ecosystem, Santa Fe Trail and Bent's Fort. Contact the park for a bird list.

WNPA Bookstore in fort
The bookstore has a variety of offerings

NPS Photo

Western National Park's Bookstore

The bookstore and trade goods store located at the rear of the fort provides a collection of a number of hard to find items. Adult and children books about western frontier, nature, and local history are available. Trades goods of the period, games, puzzles, videos and music CDs, and children books round out the offerings. Some items are definitely unique and usually hard to find. Call 719-384-2800 for assistance.

Last updated: May 21, 2021

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

35110 State Highway 194
La Junta, CO 81050


(719) 383-5010

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