The Royal Gorge is located near Canon City, Colorado and a spectacular example of a granite canyon which eroded in a very different manner than the Grand Canyon. Though owned by a private company this scenic wonder should not be missed. You can raft on the Arkansas River through the canyon if you are 16 years or older and an experienced rafter as I did in 2008. You can walk across a wooden and steel bridge crossing the canyon. There is also an incline railroad, an aerial tram as well as a train that runs through the gorge itself.
For the absolute best view of the gorge, ignore the touristy attractions that line the park and go for the Royal Rush Skycoaster as I did and swing back and forth in a harness a hundred feet above the canyon. It is a thrill not to be missed!