Best Souvenir Shop - 2011
Garden of the Gods Visitor Center
1805 N. 30th St.
Colorado Springs, CO 80904
The view through the big windows of the Garden of the Gods Visitor Center would be worth the price of admission — but then, admission to both the park and this revamped facility, with its handy bathrooms, comfortable coffee and snack shop, and interesting geological/history exhibits, is already free. Still, we guarantee that you'll exit the place with a lighter wallet, because it contains not one, but two big gift shops, both of which emphasize Colorado-centric items. The first-floor shop is packed with an impressive array of books, jewelry, mugs, knickknacks and keepsakes, T-shirts and sweatshirts, all several steps above what you might find at a Denver International Airport souvenir shop, to pull a sorry example out of the air, and most actually made in Colorado. Even better is the downstairs children's shop, packed with fun, colorful items guaranteed to turn any kid into a junior geologist or anthropologist. If you're into Colorado kitsch, this place is fit for the gods.