“Where trees are hung with golden bells”
Coronado Heights receives its name from Francisco Vasquez de Coronado, who visited central Kansas in 1541, looking for the Native American community of Quivira, where he was told "trees hung with golden bells and ... pots and pans were beaten gold."
Was off the beaten path atop a hill had a spectacular panoramic view of the surrounding area plus as a bonus Smoke Hill Cemetary at the base of the hill and restrooms (rock outhouse) plus picnic area with benches top of hill near castle. All in all worth the trip!
I loved this stop. Was traveling on I-70 and it was well worth the detour. A gorgeous view from the top and a beautiful Kansas plains drive to the site. Would be a great place to have a picnic and relax for awhile.
From Wikipedia: "Coronado Heights is a hill northwest of Lindsborg, Kansas. It is alleged to be near the place where Francisco Vásquez de Coronado gave up his search for the seven cities of gold and turned around to return to Mexico.
In 1915 a professor at Bethany College in Lindsborg, found chain mail from Spanish armor at an Indian village excavation site a few miles southwest of present Coronado Heights and another Bethany College professor promoted the name of Coronado Heights for the hill. In 1920 the first road known as Swensson Drive was constructed on the hill with a footpath known as Olsson Trail. In 1936, a stone shelter resembling a castle was built on top of the hill as a project of the Works Progress Administration. In 1988 a sculpture by John Whitfield with an engraving stating "Coronado Heights “A Place to Share”" was placed half-way up the hill."
***Now Closed for Construction *** We went today, June 2016, and there is a chain link fence surrounding the main building/castle with tractors and construction trucks inside the fence as well. Though you can't go in the castle, you can still park by it and hike around the area, or picnic at one of the many cool tables that all have amazing views. The wind is pretty intense at times, so you may want to hang onto any napkins and plastic/paper cups and plates! The views were worth the drive and the cemetery at the bottom by the entrance is nice. Not sure if they're renovating or what, but if your main reason was for the castle, you may want to check back later, otherwise go for the awesome views!! I think it was about a 10 to 15 minute drive from the highway. Pretty cool, just wish the castle was open.
We (two ladies) arrived about 9 a.m. And went inside the main building to find lit candles on the table. It was too odd to stay. We circled the hilltop and took photos from the car window. I wish we had felt safe enough to stay and look around.
A must see! 5 min off interstate!
It was easy to find. A nice stop would be a great place to have a picnic
4774–4784 W Coronado Heights Rd
Lindsborg, KS 67442
United States...please follow this address instead of their direction!
This castle sits on a hill. You pass a cemetery to get to the entrance on a dirt road. We passed a dead armadillo on the road, not something you see in Ohio. There was ample parking at the top of the hill. The views were amazing! There's an outdoor stone fireplace and benches. The castle/fort that sits on the top is not big, but still provides more awesome views. I would recommend you be careful on the steps, as I slightly sprained my ankle coming down them. It's sort of like winding lighthouse steps. The top is paved and provides many opportunities for good photos on all sides. This was one of our favorite stops on our way to Colorado from KC. It's definitely worth a stop if not far out of your way.
Pretty tough to drive here in our rented RV, but we made the trip anyway. Nice to walk around the site and climb the "castle." I'd say worth it if you have a car that drives well on dirt roads, otherwise, I wouldn't make the trek.
**Construction Repairs Completed**
Oct 2016 fence is gone - can explore everywhere as you like.
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Coronado Heights Park
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