Getting Here | Where to Stay | Getting Around

Getting Here

Here’s a promise: Telluride is one of the most beautiful places you will ever visit. In early October, the whole valley is on fire with yellow aspens. And we’re high up. Telluride is a box canyon at 8750 feet; Mountain Village is even higher. Box canyon means there’s one road in, and we’re surrounded by mountains.

Here’s another promise: we have no idea what the weather will do at any time of year. It could be snowing, or it could be sunny and warm. Pack accordingly!

There’s always something on at OT, but we also leave time for hiking, biking, a Via Ferrata climb and even just sitting outside Ghost Town coffee to take in the view of the waterfalls.


We will kick off the festival with our first Show at The Big Idea Theater on Thursday late afternoon, and continue with three shows each of Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We also offer so many options outside of The Big Idea – tea ceremonies, yoga, hikes… you name it. And one of our shows this year, for the first time, will take place at the cavernous old abandoned limestone mine above town. It’s going to be wild.

We recommend arriving by Thursday midday, giving you a chance to settle in and drink a lot of water to begin getting acclimated to the high altitude. Monday is best for departures, unless you can stay a few extra days before or after.

Whether you choose to fly into a regional airport or take a scenic drive from Denver or Salt Lake City, now is the time to consider your journey. Still piecing together the puzzle? We're here to help. Let's work together to begin your Original Thinkers experience today.


Flights into the Telluride area are limited and we strongly advise you book immediately. Boutique Air and Denver Air Connection each have two flights per day going from Denver with direct flights into Telluride. We also recommend flying into Montrose Regional Airport for its proximity to Telluride and easy ground transportation. Alternative airports include Durango, Cortez, Grand Junction, Gunnison and Aspen. All of the drives are spectacular, as is driving from bigger, international airports such as Denver, Albuquerque and Salt Lake City. Please click here to see a map of Colorado.

For questions regarding travel, please contact travel expert Sara Silton Spencer at

Airport codes and approximate drive times:

Telluride, TEX, 15 minutes.

Montrose, MTJ, 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Cortez, CEZ, 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Durango, DRO, 2 hours and 20 minutes.

Grand Junction, GJT, 2 hours and 30 minutes.

Gunnison, GUC, 2 hours and 30 minutes.

Denver, DIA, 6 hours and 30 minutes.

Albuquerque, ABQ, 5 hours and 30 minutes.

Salt Lake City, SLC, 6 hours and 30 minutes. 

Airport Shuttles

Telluride Express (800-822-4844) offers ground transportation services from these airports to Telluride/Mountain Village and is Original Thinkers’ preferred transportation provider. They recommend booking 72 hours in advance. While their office is open from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m., there is a dispatcher on call 24 hours/day for any travel emergencies.

Mountain Limo (888-546-6894) is also available and has similar policies.

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Where to Stay

Check out our list of lodging sponsors who support Original Thinkers and our patrons of the festival.


The Peaks Resort & Spa

Mountain Village
(970) 728-6800

Discount Code for OT Guests: OT2019

Accommodations in Telluride


Discount code for 20% off: OT2019

Lumiere with Inspirato

Mountain Village

Discount Code for OT Guests: OT2019

Camels Garden Hotel and Condominiums


Call the Hotel for 20% off

New Sheridan Hotel


The Fairmont Franz Klammer Lodge

Mountain Village

Alpine Lodging Telluride


Discount Code for OT Guests: OT2019

Mountain Lodge Telluride

Mountain Village
(866) 368-6867


Getting Around

The Gondola and the Goose

The Big Idea and all other festival venues are just a short walk away from any Mountain Village hotel.  The gondola runs between Mountain Village and Telluride from 7 a.m. until midnight. On Friday and Saturday during the festival, gondola hours will be extended.  Telluride’s public bus, the Galloping Goose, runs a loop through Telluride every 20 minutes. In Mountain Village, dial 970-728-8888 during gondola hours for Dial-A-Ride services within Mountain Village.

All of these transportation options are free of charge.


Mountain Limo (888-546-6894) is available to schedule rides from 7:30 a.m. until 10 p.m. (their pricing varies by time of ride, distance and number of riders).

ADA Services

The Galloping Goose offers point to point paratransit service privately upon request by calling (970) 728-5700 or every 20 minutes on the regular fixed route.

Festival Locations

Mountain Village

The Big Idea 580 Mountain Village Blvd

Nerve Center Telski Lounge

Wellness 568 Mountain Village Blvd

Brainstorm Stage Heritage Plaza

Wagner Ski Factory 620 Mountain Village Blvd Unit 1B


Synapse Theatre 207 W Colorado Ave

Ghost Town Info Center 210 W Colorado Ave

Telluride Gallery of Fine Art 130 E Colorado Ave