- About the Festival
- Experience Palisade
- Special Events
Palisade is a rich, agricultural and outdoor recreational area that lies on the “western slope” of the Rocky Mountains. As the Colorado River emerges from DeBeque Canyon, the Book Cliffs and Grand Mesa provide towering backdrops for Palisade. A pastoral setting of orchards and vineyards on East Orchard Mesa surrounds Palisade to the south.
From Colorado’s uplands, early-morning winds funnel through the canyon. These winds, referred to as the “Million Dollar Breeze,” significantly reduce frost conditions and provide a temperate climate.
The lifeline of Palisade’s agriculture, the Colorado River, has continually changed its course over millions of years through the Palisade area, leaving rich sediments behind. An extensive system of irrigation canals built by hand at the turn of the last century evened out the flood and drought cycles. With a reliable source of high quality water, combined with the sunny 182 day growing season, agriculture bloomed.
Palisade is the Peach Capital of Colorado: Satisfy your hunger to eat fresh and local! A highlight of summer is ripe, chin-dripping juicy Palisade peaches. This area produces a wide variety of fruit and produce, as well as packaged fruit products, which are abundant at area roadside stands and orchards.
Wine tastings and tours: Also known as the Wine Capital of Colorado, Palisade has the state’s greatest concentration of wineries and vineyards. Every winery offers tastings, award-winning wines, and unique gifts. Take a self-guided tour and sample these wines yourself. Or hire a tour guide and leave the driving to them so everyone can enjoy the tastings. Wines include Merlots, Chardonnays, Rieslings, Cabernets, Ports and more.
Agri-Tours: Educational, tasty and fun. Take your pick of tours - orchards and farms, vineyards and wineries, a brewery and a distillery. More information
Biking: Explore a variety of trails and roads for mountain bikes, road bikes and easy cruiser bikes. Mountain bike trails range from beginner rides like on Horse Mountain to challenging climbs up Palisade Rim Mountain Bike Trail that cascades down from Grand Mesa and overlooks the Grand Valley. Rentals and bike sales are available in Palisade.
Fruit & Wine Byway: For driving and bicycle road touring or cruising, take one of three routes of the Fruit & Wine Byway. Choose either 5 or 7 mile loops along the Colorado River and Palisade town region, or the 25 mile loop through orchards and vineyards on East Orchard Mesa, and visit a few wineries along the way. Map
River Floats: Experience a relaxing float down the Colorado River surrounded by stunning scenery. Trips start from Palisade’s Riverbend Park and float to James M. Robb Colorado River State Park at Corn Lake. Watch for blue herons and eagles! Guided float trips, raft, kayak and stand up paddle board rentals, lessons and sales are available in Palisade.
Hiking: For the best views of the valley, hike the Mt. Garfield Trail. Four miles east on Interstate 70, trails lead up Coal and Main Canyons into the Little Bookcliffs Wild Horse Range - one of three federally-protected wild horse areas in the U.S. The Pictograph Trail has some of the Grand Valley’s finest pictograph panels.
Disc Golf: Play the 18-hole course on the west end of Riverbend Park, considered one of the best courses in the state. Rentals available in Palisade.
Sightseeing: Choose a drive through the area’s vineyards and orchards along the Fruit & Wine Byway, visit the majestic canyons and monoliths of the Colorado National Monument, or ride up the Grand Mesa National Scenic Byway. At over 10,500 feet, Grand Mesa is known as the world’s largest “flat top mountain,” and is home to moose, bear and elk, and more than 200 lakes.
Skiing: With an average snowfall of 250 inches and a vertical drop of 1,650 feet, Powderhorn Mountain Resort is located on the Grand Mesa. It offers great skiing and riding for all abilities. Nordic skiing includes more than 50 miles of groomed trails atop the Grand Mesa at Skyway, County Line, and Ward Creek trailheads.
Downtown Palisade: The place to go for local restaurants, shops, art galleries, pottery studios, or have a drink at a microbrewery, distillery or winery. Palisade is becoming known for its dining. Restaurants range from cafes to bistros, and include American, Asian, Italian, Mediterranean and Japanese cuisine.
Pick up a Historic Walking Tour brochure. Take a self-guided tour of storied buildings and grand Victorian-era homes. Stop by the Palisade Chamber of Commerce office or the Palisade Historical Society at 311 S. Main St, and pick up the brochure.
Accommodations: Stay at comfortable motels, inns, charming bed & breakfasts, or the 80-room luxury Wine Country Inn situated in a “Napa Valley-like” setting among the vineyards.
Whatever your pleasure - world-famous peaches, fresh fruit and produce, award-winning wines, great outdoor adventures, sightseeing and tours, or a downtown Palisade crawl, your visit is certain to leave you with memories of a rich, rewarding Palisade Experience.