Central City is blessed with an abundance of activities to keep people busy! Our historic community takes you back to it’s founding by miners in 1859. While here, gaming aficionados will appreciate our 8 casinos which operate 24 hours per day. Other folks can enjoy the abundant wildlife in and around the community. Please explore the Gilpin County Museum, Art Galleries, and of course the historic Central City Opera House. If you like old stuff, go explore the cemeteries located around town or take a tour of the Coure D’Alene or Hidee mines. If those haven’t grabbed you yet, then check the events page for other activities which occur throughout the year! Come visit…we’d love to see you!
Check out what we have instore for you!
The Visitors Center is located at 103 Eureka Street at the Northern End of Main Street in the old Wells Fargo Building. The City Council and everyone on staff is excited to have acquired this beautiful historic building to house the Visitors Center.
Open 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. DAILY (September - Memorial Day)
Open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Memorial Day - August
The Visitors Center is the best place to stop for information about all casinos, historic sites, restaurants, walking tours, cemeteries and anything else fun and interesting in the area.
Stop by and let the Visitors Center Staff welcome you to Central City!
Shuttle - The BH & CC Tramway
Starting January 1, 2016, the Cities of Central and Black Hawk will provide a free joint shuttle between the two areas. Click to view a map of the route. Central City stops include the following:
- Stop 11 - Lawrence Street - near the Johnny Z's Casino
- Stop 12 - Main Street Central City - near the Easy Streeet Casino, Dostal Alley Casino & Brewery, Century Casino & Hotel, Bonanza Casino and many other non-gaming attractions and points of interest
- Stop 13 - Gregory Street - near the Reserve Casino & Hotel
Weekday a bus is estimated to arrive every 30 minutes - hours 10 a.m. - 2:30 a.m. Monday - Thursday
Weekend service will be expanded with a bus estimated to arrive every 15 minutes - hours 12 p.m. - 2:30 a.m. Friday -Sunday
One mile west of Central City (taking Eureka Street) lie three cemeteries with hundreds of ornate stone markers and intricate grill work, with headstones dating back to the 1860s. The three are the Central City Cemetery, the Knights of Pythias and the Catholic Cemetery. Please feel free to visit and wander among the headstones marking early day Central City residents grave sites.
Please remember that these are actual cemeteries and are still in use to this day.
Central City Opera House
Within minutes of leaving the city heat and noise, you will embark on a multi sensory experience that leads to Central City Opera. Feel the cool summer breeze as you take in the lush mountain scenery on your way to one of Colorado’s mountain treasures. When you arrive, explore the scenic and historic offerings of Central City, from tours of the Victorian homes and history museum, to a walk through the art gallery or historic cemeteries. Then, inside the Opera House, sit back and relax in this restored jewel box theater and enjoy the richness of an intimate, innovative opera experience.
Couer D’Alene Mine Shaft House
Developed during 1885, the Coeur d’Alene Mine serves as a constant reminder of Central City’s mining heritage. Perched on the brow of Academy Hill in Central City, the Shaft House produced ore between 1885 and 1940.
Gilpin Arts Association
117 Eureka Street
Gilpin County Arts Association “Art Gallery” in historic Washington Hall across the street from the Central City Opera House at 217 Eureka Street.
The Gallery will host two Art Shows and Sales this season. There will be a “Juried Show” from June 4th to Aug. 25th, and a “Members Show” on weekends from August 29th to October 1st. The Arts Association Gallery auction and opening artists reception will be held on June 3rd, with the gallery opening for the public on June 4th.All art is original and “for sale”. The art consists of paintings, pottery, ceramics, photographs, sculpture, fabrics, jewelry, weavings and woodcrafts.
The historic building, which includes a jail (museum) and outdoor fountain garden, is a very unique gallery. It consists of five rustic rooms displaying 3,800 sq. ft. of art from over 100 artists throughout the Rocky Mountain region. Thick stone walls, hardwood floors and unusual sculptures donated to the gallery are of particular interest. The gallery also displays student art, cards and gifts priced from $5-$75. All net proceeds from sales and donations are used to operate the gallery and support the art program at the Gilpin County RE-1 School.
Gilpin Recreation Center
Please visit our site!
History / Tours and Sites to Visit
Central City...Then and Now!
Gilpin County Historical Society
PO Box 247
228 High Street, Central City, Colorado, 80427-0247
Gilpin County Historical Society Website
Hidee Mine Tours
Located 2.7 miles south of Central City on the new 4-lane Central City Parkway; or 6.3 miles off I-70, take exit 243 on Central City Parkway.
The Hidee Mine lies in a beautiful, scenic canyon filled with native species: bighorn sheep, deer, bear, elk, fox, hawks and eagles have all been seen in this area. Learn geology, mineralogy and history while walking 700 feet underground. The Hidee Gold Mine is a well-lit, dry and safe environment. The average temperature inside the mine is 45 degrees Fahrenheit year-round so a sweater or jacket is recommended.
The mine was located in 1896. It has been worked intermittently from then until the present time. The Hidee sits in the heart of the Virginia Canyon – Glory Hole Area, reputed to be the richest square mile on Earth. The mines in this area all told produced more than $1 billion (1998 prices) in gold and silver since 1859.
The ground is level and wheelchair accessible and the back height (ceiling) is generally above 6 foot. Use a hammer and chisel to carve out your own high-grade gold ore to take home. Tour guides are actual hard-rock miners.
Tours by appointment only. Tours are approximately 45 minutes underground with ample time given to enjoy gold panning or lunch outside the mine.
Reservations are required: Children under 4 free.
Advance reservations are required.
Black Hawk/Central City Tramway
The story of the Gilpin County and the Gold Tram starts in April of 1859 when John H Gregory started up Clear Creek from Golden searching for gold. Gold flakes were being found in the creek, so the question was, where was the gold coming from. Working up the creek and following the north branch of Clear Creek at what is now know as Forks (for years, a station and restaurant, now a traffic light), Gregory found the richest gold dust in what is now called Gregory Gulch above Black Hawk.
The Gregory Lode had been found. The news of gold hit the nation.
By September, a population of 900 in log shanties and tents had invaded the valley. By the summer of 1860 sixty ore mills and thirty arastras (a kind of ore grinding pit) were in operation and the population had risen to 15,000. Soon numerous mining camps had sprung up including Black Hawk, Central City, Nevadaville, Russell Gulch and Apex.