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You won’t hear Crested Butte mentioned alongside resorts like Vail and Aspen, and that’s exactly what makes it so great.

The skiing is steep, the town is extremely cute, and in the summer, it evolves into a go-to mountain bike destination with more than miles of trails. If you time it right, you might even catch the wildflower season — yet another thing the town is known for. If you don’t want to stray too far from the city, head to Manitou Springs, which is an easy, minute drive from Colorado Springs.

Manitou is just far enough outside the city to provide that mountain-town feel without losing its accessibility. You can make your way up Pikes Peak a 14,foot mountain and visit the Manitou Cliff Dwellings just as easily as you can hit up Manitou Avenue’s hip boutiques before grabbing a bite at Swirl , a local wine bar.

It may be just 15 minutes by car from Aspen, but Snowmass Village has a feel all of its own. In the winter, life revolves around its ski area, which is part of the four-mountain Aspen-Snowmass family. And in the summer, it’s all about biking and hiking in the Elk Mountains, which is arguably the state’s most beautiful mountain range.

Make the Limelight Snowmass which is ski-in, ski-out in the winter your home base and enjoy exploring the quaint village before jumping into the day’s adventure.

In addition to high altitude Silverton clocks in at 9, feet , you’ll find high peaks surrounding this historic mining town, which has a population under 1, Estes Park isn’t too far from the city of Boulder around one hour by car , but thanks to its location among the protected lands of Rocky Mountain National Park and Roosevelt National Forest, it feels like a completely different world.

Its position makes national park access easy, while wildlife lovers will enjoy visiting in the fall, when the town celebrates the annual elk rut — a mating ritual where the bull elk spar for mating rights. Down in southwestern Colorado near the New Mexico border lies this small town, which is best known for its natural hot springs.

Here, mineral-rich waters are a given. Either way, don’t miss a visit to the Pagosa Baking Company for your morning coffee and a sweet treat or three. Carbondale is a town full of people who live for outdoor adventure. The town makes it easy to pass a day fly fishing in the Roaring Fork River, biking the Prince Creek trail system, or cross-country skiing at Spring Gulch. But even the most adventurous need a rest from time to time, which is where a night at the Marble Distilling Co.

Steamboat Springs is one of the few places in Colorado where you can soak your legs in geothermal hot springs after a full day of epic skiing.

But in addition to natural hot springs and skiing, Steamboat is well loved for its distinct Western feel, Gold Medal fishing waters, and myriad hiking and biking trails. Colorful, restored historic buildings line the short but very pretty main street, Sixth Street. If you are interested in mining history you can take a tour of the historic Capital Prize Gold Mine, and take a trip on the Georgetown Loop Railroad on a steam locomotive that passes several old gold and silver mines.

Georgetown Lake is a great spot for water sports like SUP and kayaking, and it is stocked with brown trout you can fish here too make sure to get a permit. For vacation rentals, stay at The Cricket tiny house on Clear Creek, or in this super affordable and cozy one-bedroom condo. This former gold mining town has a strong Western flair with historic brick buildings in town and lots of cowboy paraphernalia around the place.

It is nestled in Clear Creek Valley, at the base of the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, and it is a gorgeous sight. There are so many hiking and biking trails around Golden with many of them accessible from the middle of town — I wrote a post about the best hiking trails in Golden.

For vacation rentals, stay at this historic carriage house or this charming studio in a historic home — both close to downtown Golden. Where to Eat in Golden: Start your day with a southern-style breakfast at Sassafras on their riverside patio. Golden Mill is a new food hall with five food vendors that include sushi, chicken, and tacos as well as New Zealand ice cream and pour your own beer taps. Sherpa House is a cozy spot for excellent Himalayan food and it is also a cultural center. They usually have food trucks at the breweries most days.

Miners Saloon is also a great place to grab a drink and Golden Moon Speak next door is a speakeasy and distillery that serves up handcrafted cocktails. Evergreen started as a ranching community in the s and has been a popular summer escape for Denverites since the late 19th century. The historic downtown has a more rustic feel compared to the more polished look of Georgetown and Idaho Springs, and I really like it for that. Make sure to explore the compact main street with its antiques, consignment stores, and galleries.

The lake is the perfect place to walk — it is 1. There are a number of other hiking and biking trails nearby too, so Evergreen is a great base for adventure. For vacation rentals, stay at this cozy studio with mountain views, or this beautiful mountaintop one-bedroom apartment. Where to Drink in Evergreen: Revival brews for local beer and elevated bar food, Lariat Lodge Brewing Company for inventive craft beer brewed onsite.

Lovely Morrison is just up the road from Golden and is the closest town to the world-famous Red Rocks Amphitheater. Morrison started life as a railroad town in and has a gorgeous setting in Bear Creek Canyon. This cute town has a tiny but interesting main street, lined with gift shops, antique stores, galleries, and restaurants.

It is definitely worth stopping here to look around the shops and to grab something to eat from one of the excellent restaurants. Morrison is also on the Lariat Loop , a scenic byway that links Golden, Evergreen, and Morrison with lots of places of interest to see along the way. Morrison is only a short drive from the city making it one of the most accessible mountain towns close to Denver so you have no excuse not to visit!

For vacation rentals, this cozy two-bedroom apartment is a good option close to Morrison. Where to Eat in Morrison: The Cow Eatery for casual diner fare, The Fort Steakhouse is an adobe fort just outside of town that serves up steak and game.

Where to Drink in Morrison: Red Rocks Beer Garden for Colorado beers and pizza in a spacious garden, Roof Top Tavern for drinks on a sunny rooftop overlooking the town and surrounding mountains.

Nederland, known affectionately as Ned for short, started life as a trading post during the s, before becoming a mining town.

There are a number of hiking trails nearby — I highly recommend the Indian Peaks Wilderness, the Crater Lakes trail from Moffat Tunnel, and any of the hikes in Golden Gate Canyon State Park, especially in fall when the aspens are in their full golden glory.

Barker Meadow Reservoir is right by town and you can hike there, and fish from the shoreline. This byway is always a beautiful drive but it is spectacular in fall. This festival pays homage to a frozen dead guy who is being stored in a shed above Nederland, his family hoping to one day resurrect him.

The festival includes coffin racing, human foosball, and a costumed polar plunge among other crazy events. I think this event speaks volumes about the kind of quirky individuals that call this townhome, and why you should make sure to visit Ned. Stay at this peaceful two-bedroom retreat with panoramic views, this cozy dual-level apartment , or this studio suite with a hot tub and mountain views. Where to Eat in Nederland: Crosscut Pizzeria and Taphouse for the best pizza in town if not the whole of Colorado, Salto Coffee Works for coffee and tea drinks and cafe fare, Kathmandu Restaurant for very decent Nepalese and Indian dishes.

One of the smallest communities on this list of mountain towns near Denver, Silver Plume is right off I but it is pretty much a forgotten hamlet that you could almost call a ghost town — but not quite, because there are still people living here — around according to the last census.

Silver Plume feels like a ghost town either way. It is super quiet, the short main street has a few historic buildings in different states of repair, with many of them now being private homes.

And that is about it. Like its neighbor Georgetown, Silver Plume is also a historic silver mining town, and it is a stop on the Georgetown Loop Railroad. Clear Creek runs right through town and there is one hike of note, the Mine Trail which offers awesome views over town and the Silver Plume Valley. Stay at this cozy cottage or this beautiful mountain house with a view — both right in Silver Plume. Where to Eat in Silver Plume: The Bread Bar has a limited but delicious menu and handmade cocktails it is temporarily closed , Plume Coffee serves up excellent coffees and baked goods although they are mostly just open on weekends.

Georgetown is only a few minutes drive away so you could grab food and drinks there if nothing is open in Silver Plume. Central City may look like just another pretty historic mountain town, but there is something that sets it apart — behind those historic facades are casinos! Gambling was legalized in Central City and Black Hawk in the s in a last-ditch attempt to save these dying former mining towns, and between them, they now have 24 casinos. The plan worked!

These twin towns are easily accessible from Denver — there are even shuttles that run from Lakewood, on the light rail from central Denver. The latest one comes back just after 2 am so if you want to party, Central City and Black Hawk are the best mountain towns near Denver for you!

For vacation homes, this cozy home with deck and mountain views is a great pick. OK, so Fort Collins is not a mountain town like Denver, it is a city right beside the mountains , but I love it and it is only an hour north of Denver so I wanted to add it to the list. This lively college town has a pedestrian-friendly downtown and is worth at least a couple of hours to explore, checking out the eclectic shops and boutiques.

If you love beer then you should definitely visit Fort Collins, because the best thing to do in Fort Collins is to visit at least a couple of the incredible breweries that make this city one of the best beer destinations in the world. Spend the afternoon doing some brewery hopping to best experience this exciting beer destination. Make sure to stop in at the Benson Sculpture Garden in Loveland on the way up which is free to enjoy, with interesting sculptures scattered through a green park with lakes.

For vacation rentals, this beautiful cottage and this cute one-bedroom unit are both in the Old Town are great choices. So there you have it, the best mountain towns near Denver to add to your Colorado Itinerary. I hope this gives you some inspiration to venture into the mountains from Denver — I think you will love what you find there. If you liked this — check out some of my other Colorado posts:. So great to find someone with some original thoughts on this topic. This website is something that is needed on the internet, someone with a little originality!

Thank you for this list. I love mountains and nature.



– Small towns near denver to visit


Make sure to stop in at the Benson Sculpture Garden in Loveland on the way up which is free to enjoy, with interesting sculptures scattered through a green park with lakes. For vacation rentals, this beautiful cottage and this cute one-bedroom unit are both in the Old Town are great choices.

So there you have it, the best mountain towns near Denver to add to your Colorado Itinerary. I hope this gives you some inspiration to venture into the mountains from Denver — I think you will love what you find there. If you liked this — check out some of my other Colorado posts:. So great to find someone with some original thoughts on this topic.

This website is something that is needed on the internet, someone with a little originality! Thank you for this list. I love mountains and nature. What a beautiful place to visit even now My mom went to high school in Blackhawk. I live in Florida now which is which is a different World. I believe that was a great place to be raised But love brought me to Florida.

So, stfu already. Do you really need the attention? Just stop, people like you really piss me off, thinking you own a place. How incredibly rude! How do you think our state makes money? You give Colorado a bad name. Native Coloradan here — we love visitors. He must feel the hate towards him and is responding accordingly.

Thanks so much for your comment! You are one of the Colorado natives that I love — just like my husband and friends. Someone in your lineage was a Colorado wannabe smart ass and only because of that were you born there, thus making you a native or whatever.

Get over yourself and lose the chip on your shoulder. This attitude in some Coloradans of the last 20 years or so, is a new thing and kinda ugly. This Colorado native bs is divisive and mean spirited and reflects poorly on the state.

And, to Indigenous PJ…stop with the virtue signaling and identity political stuff. Your email address will not be published. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam.

Learn how your comment data is processed. Share Tweet Pin Email. Table of Contents show. Idaho Springs. Walk around and explore, and be sure to stop by the Steinbaugh Pavilion, a concert venue during the Louisville Street Faire in the summer and an ice rink in the winter. Have a drink at the oldest tavern still in operation in Colorado, Front Street. The name was changed by the wife of the founder, Isaac Cooper, in an attempt to make the town more respectable. The town has since then continued to grow and smooth out its rough edges.

Now it continues to draw visitors with its pristine air and mountain town environment as well as its proximity to natural hot springs. An ideal getaway for nature lovers and those in search of relaxation, Glenwood Springs is one of the most walkable towns in America.

Because it is located in a valley and its growth is constrained, there are many pedestrian and bike paths that run through the city, so bring your walking shoes or bikes! Spend the night at the historic Hotel Colorado — Teddy Roosevelt slept here!

A historic town in Summit County, Breckenridge is a summer vacation destination located at the base of the Tenmile Range. Named after the 14th Vice President of the United States, the town hoped to curry favor with the government and gain a post office.

Nowadays, people visit to hike along their many hiking trails, or see the wildflowers. You can fly-fish at the Blue River too, or go mountain biking. Why not rent a boat and head out on nearby Lake Dillon? Or, wander quaint Main Street to check out the historic buildings with clapboard and log exteriors, and to shop at the many different shops along the street.

In the winter, you can ski at Breckenridge Ski Resort. Put your feet up for the night at Wedgewood Lodge and enjoy the mountain air. Creede is located in Mineral County, Colorado. Creede was the last silver town in Colorado, quickly growing to 10, residents.

Several saloon and gambling club owners moved out here to escape the legal reform in Denver for some time and brought more organized crime to town. The infamous Drop City, located north of Trinidad, was the first rural hippie commune, established in , before it was abandoned in the s. Named after the first known English explorer of the area, John W. Gunnison, this small town began to grow in the s; you can learn all about the history and heritage of this place at Gunnison Pioneer Museum.

This year-old festival celebrates the Western way of life, complete with rodeos and a parade. Visiting in the winter months? The old silver mining town of Silverton sits in a valley in the San Juan Mountains.

The town has left its mining days behind and grown to become a popular ski resort luring visitors there with its rustic, remote charm. The slopes become sun-soaked meadows in the summer months and are lace with hiking trails which make their way past gushing waterfalls. Nowadays the town is a booming destination for outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy adventuring among the stunning beauty of the East River Valley. Skiing and snowboarding are what the town is most famous for, but in warmer months rock climbing, hiking, kayaking, and fishing are also extremely popular.

Cross a crevasse, pick your route up Everest, and follow the footsteps of famous climbers as you prepare to hike in Colorado! Based in Idaho Springs, Colorado Adventure Center offers eight zip lines, an aerial adventure park with more than 60 challenging elements and rafting trips on Clear Creek during the warmer months.

Explore the Pikes Peak region like never before! Want to tour Garden of the Gods on a Segway? Or experience the gorgeous Pikes Peak area from a zip line or four-wheel-drive vehicle? Adventures Out West in Colorado Springs has you covered. They also provide hot-air balloon rides.

Distance from Denver: 27 miles 43 km The Lariat Loop is a mile scenic circle in the foothills west of Denver, Colorado connecting the communities of Golden, Morrison, Lookout Mountain and Evergreen. Distance from Denver: 29 miles 47 km The legendary Coors Brewery in nearby Golden can brew up to 22 million barrels and package up to 16 million barrels annually, making it the biggest single-site brewery in the world. The brewery offers guided tours for a fee , a sampling-only experience for a smaller fee or you can just visit the gift shop.

Visit this acre rescue and educational facility, located just 30 miles outside of Denver, where more than large carnivores roam free. The Wild Animal Sanctuary is one of the only places in America where you can see lion prides and groups of other carnivores living in natural habitats.

Distance from Denver: 40 miles 64 km Central City and Black Hawk are home to more than 30 casinos with blackjack tables, craps, roulette, poker games and more than 10, slot machines. The two cities are also known for having some of the best-preserved Victorian architecture in the West. Distance from Denver: 54 miles 87 km The Georgetown Loop Railroad is a reconstruction of one of Colorado’s most famous railroads, which was originally built in Steam-powered locomotives make the climb up the valley and across Devil’s Gate Bridge, giving riders panoramic views and a glimpse into Colorado’s railroad-centric past.

From the open-air viewing cars, it is possible to see bighorn sheep and other wildlife. Distance from Denver: 60 miles 97 km Mount Evans Scenic Byway is the highest paved auto road in North America, snaking its way to the 14,foot 4, m summit. Please note: online reservations are now required for timed slots. The road is open only from Memorial Day through Labor Day, and frequently has snow on it, even in August. The view from the top takes in the entire Front Range.

The summit is 60 miles 97 km from downtown Denver. On your way up the mountain, be sure to stop at M. Walter Pesman Trail maintained by Denver Botanic Gardens for a wildflower hike; you won’t see anything like the rare flowers and 1,year-old bristlecone pine trees anywhere else in the world. The trail winds through subalpine and alpine areas where wildflowers and animals of the fragile tundra live. Volunteer guides from Denver Botanic Gardens give interpreted hikes that follow the trail throughout the summer.


– 10 Best Small Towns in Colorado

Charming towns near Denver · Georgetown, CO , USA · Idaho Springs, CO, USA · Evergreen, CO , USA · Frisco, CO, USA · Silverthorne, CO, USA. Head Out of Denver on a Road Trip to the Towns of Colorado · Crested Butte · Ouray · Creede · Silverton · Estes Park · Durango · Telluride.

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