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7 Best Spots For Photography In Fort Collins, Colorado


by Lee Carrillo


Fort Collins, Colorado, is a picturesque city that offers a myriad of stunning locations for photography enthusiasts. From breathtaking natural landscapes to vibrant urban scenes, Fort Collins has something to offer for every photographer. Whether you’re an avid nature photographer, a cityscape enthusiast, or someone who appreciates architectural beauty, this charming city has it all. In this article, we’ll explore the 7 best spots for photography in Fort Collins, guiding you through the most captivating locations that showcase the city’s unique charm and beauty. So, grab your camera, pack your lenses, and get ready to capture the essence of Fort Collins through your lens.

Horsetooth Reservoir

Horsetooth Reservoir, located at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, offers breathtaking panoramic views that are a photographer’s dream. With its crystal-clear waters and the striking Horsetooth Rock formation in the background, this spot is perfect for capturing stunning landscapes and serene waterscapes. The golden hours of sunrise and sunset provide the perfect lighting for photographers to capture the reservoir’s beauty in all its glory.

Old Town Fort Collins

Old Town Fort Collins is a charming historic district that boasts colorful storefronts, historic architecture, and vibrant street art, providing a myriad of photo opportunities. Whether it’s the quaint alleyways, the iconic Armstrong Hotel, or the lively atmosphere of the pedestrian mall, every corner of Old Town exudes character and charm. Photographers will find endless inspiration in this lively and picturesque area, making it a must-visit for capturing the essence of Fort Collins.

CSU Trial Gardens

The Colorado State University Trial Gardens are a paradise for flower and garden enthusiasts. With a diverse collection of vibrant blooms, including roses, sunflowers, and tulips, the gardens offer a kaleidoscope of colors and textures. This botanical haven provides an ideal setting for macro photography, allowing photographers to capture the intricate details of the blooms up close. Whether it’s the vivid hues of summer or the delicate blossoms of spring, the ever-changing scenery ensures that every visit yields new and captivating photo opportunities.

Cache la Poudre River

The Cache la Poudre River, Colorado’s first National Wild and Scenic River, meanders through picturesque canyons and lush meadows, offering a diverse range of photographic possibilities. From cascading rapids to tranquil stretches flanked by vibrant foliage, the river presents a captivating blend of natural beauty. Photographers can capture the mesmerizing play of light and shadow as the sun dances upon the water, creating stunning reflections and adding depth to their compositions.

Rocky Mountain National Park

Rocky Mountain National Park, just a short drive from Fort Collins, is a photographer’s paradise, boasting majestic mountain peaks, alpine lakes, and an abundance of wildlife. The park’s scenic drives offer access to awe-inspiring vistas, while its extensive network of trails leads to hidden gems waiting to be immortalized through the lens. Whether it’s the iconic Trail Ridge Road, the serene shores of Bear Lake, or the untamed beauty of the backcountry, this natural wonderland provides endless opportunities for capturing the untamed spirit of the Rocky Mountains.

Swetsville Zoo

Swetsville Zoo is a unique outdoor sculpture park that showcases a quirky and eclectic collection of metal sculptures crafted from scrap metal and discarded machinery. From whimsical creatures to imaginative contraptions, the zoo’s artistic creations offer a one-of-a-kind backdrop for creative and unconventional photography. The juxtaposition of industrial materials with artistic vision creates a fascinating tapestry of shapes and forms, making Swetsville Zoo an offbeat yet captivating destination for photographers seeking unconventional subjects.

Fort Collins Trolley

The Fort Collins Municipal Railway Society operates a heritage streetcar line that meanders through the scenic landscapes of Fort Collins. The vintage streetcar, adorned with historic details, provides a nostalgic setting for capturing the bygone charm of an earlier era. Whether it’s the quaint streetscapes, the vintage architecture, or the timeless allure of the streetcar itself, this living relic of transportation history offers a unique backdrop for photographers to weave a visual narrative that transcends time.


Fort Collins, Colorado, offers a plethora of stunning locations for photography enthusiasts. From the picturesque Horsetooth Reservoir to the charming Old Town, this vibrant city provides a diverse range of backdrops for capturing breathtaking images. Whether you’re drawn to natural landscapes, urban settings, or architectural marvels, Fort Collins has something for everyone. With its unique blend of natural beauty and urban charm, this city is a photographer’s paradise. So, grab your camera, explore these seven best spots, and unleash your creativity in the scenic wonders that Fort Collins has to offer.


Q: What is the best time of year for photography in Fort Collins?

A: Fort Collins is beautiful year-round, but the fall season, with its stunning foliage and pleasant weather, is particularly popular among photographers. Spring is also a great time, with blooming flowers and vibrant colors adding to the visual appeal.

Q: Are there any photography restrictions in the recommended spots?

A: While most public areas in Fort Collins allow photography for personal use, it’s essential to be mindful of private property and any specific regulations at certain locations. Always respect signage and guidelines to ensure a positive photography experience.

Q: How accessible are these photography spots in Fort Collins?

A: The recommended spots cater to varying accessibility needs. While some locations may require moderate hiking or walking, others, such as Old Town and the CSU Flower Trial Garden, are easily accessible to all visitors.

Q: Can I fly a drone for photography purposes in Fort Collins?

A: Fort Collins has specific regulations regarding drone usage. It’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the local drone laws and obtain any necessary permits before using a drone for photography in the city.

Q: Are there photography tours or workshops available in Fort Collins?

A: Yes, Fort Collins offers photography tours and workshops for enthusiasts of all skill levels. These guided experiences provide valuable insights into the best photography techniques and opportunities to capture the city’s beauty under the guidance of experienced professionals.