Located on the western edge of the High Plains just east of the Rocky Mountains, Denver Colorado is widely known for its natural beauty and is a favorite destination for hikers and skiers. However, there’s much more to the “Mile High City” than gorgeous scenery. Here are a few places that showcase just how diverse Colorado’s capital actually is.
Visit a Museum
Denver might not be known for being a cultural hotspot, but it contains three world-class museums that each deserve a visit. See the dinosaurs at the Morrison National History Museum or check out an astronomy demonstration at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science’s planetarium. Art lovers can also explore the Denver Art Museum, which features renowned international works, as well as a large collection of 19th-century photography chronicling the American West.
Float on the Lazy River at Water World
One of America’s largest waterparks is located less than 10 minutes north of Denver. Water World sits on 67 acres of land with dozens of slides and rides for children young and old. Just make sure to wear heavy duty sunblock; the sun in Denver is stronger due to the city’s higher altitude.
Indulge at The Source
Get your culinary fix at this renovated 26,000 sq. ft., 19th-century warehouse. The Source is a foodie’s paradise and features some cool local microbrewers, bakers, butchers and organic grocers. This is definitely not your grandmother’s farmer’s market.
Walk around downtown
While some mid-size city downtowns can be disappointing or even worse, in disrepair, downtown Denver is an eclectic mix of Wild West and urban sophistication. Check out the 16th Street Mall to visit historic booksellers or to buy some authentic cowboy gear at Rockmount Ranch Wear—birthplace of the snap button shirt.
Go to a concert at Red Rocks
Established in 1914 by the U.S. congress, the picturesque Denver Mountain Parks System is a stunning natural complex which includes Winter Park Ski Resort, Lookout Mountain and the world-famous Red Rocks Amphitheater - widely considered to be one of the best (and most beautiful) performing arts venue in the United States. It is also historic, having played host to a variety of public and private concerts for over a century.
Go on a brewery tour
While many of us know Colorado as being home to the gigantic Coors brewery, Denver is also home to one of the most diverse craft beer scenes in the United States. With dozens of breweries located in Denver, there’s something for everyone. Go on the Denver Brewery Tour and you’ll be taken to 10+ local microbreweries where you’ll get to experience some of Denver’s best brews and learn a bit about local history too.
Drive the Mount Evans Scenic Byway
No trip to Denver is complete without a trip up Mount Evans. Scaling 14,264 feet at its peak, the Mount Evans Scenic Byway is the highest paved road in North America. At 28 miles long, you’ll want to plan a full day to get the full experience, including many picnic areas as well as the Walter Pesman Alpine Garden. Don’t forget to take time to absorb the absolutely breathtaking view from the top. Just make sure to watch out for mountain goats and bighorn sheep as you get closer to the summit; while the mountain goats will likely steer clear of you, the bighorn sheep have been known to bang on vehicles.