Leadville Travel Guide

Saddled with a name which hardly conjures up images of urban splendor, Leadville is in fact one of America’s most interesting cities from a historical perspective, having grown prosperous off the back of what was once a silver mining camp. It is also notable for being North America’s highest city, sitting at an elevation of 3094 meters.

Evidence of Leadville’s mining past can be seen in a variety of historic sites and structures which are now protected so as to continue to preserve the town’s rich and fascinating heritage. The silver that was initially mined from the area was naturally deposited in a lead compound and it’s from this characteristic that inspiration for the town’s name was taken.

Designated a National Historic Landmark District, Leadville is home to 70 square blocks of original Victorian architecture as well as a 20 square-mile traditional mining area. On the city’s main street, there are more than 50 late 19th century buildings, among which are Colorado’s only remaining Tabor structures.


National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum: takes a look at the lives of the men and women responsible for pioneering some of the US’s earliest mining techniques and programs.

Historic Main street: the town’s largest avenue provides a walking history lesson with its fine collection of 19th century buildings including the Tabor Opera House and the Tabor Grand Hotel.

Heritage Museum: learn about Leadville’s days as a lawless mining camp to its transformation into the state’s second largest city.

Matchless Mine: see the spartan huts in which entrepreneur Horace Tabor’s second wife Baby Doe lived out her last days.

Leadville, Colorado and Southern Scenic Railroad: take a picturesque ride Fremont Pass from the depot on Seventh street, a journey of 2 hours, 30 minutes.

Tabor Opera House: tour the stage which was once graced by Oscar Wilde and check out the atmospheric dressing rooms which are straight out the 1800s.