Great weekend getaways from denver
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Travel like a local, not a tourist with this list of weekend trips from Denver. Having personally traveled to every location on this list, multiple times, I know this is these are the absolute best weekend trips from Denver.
From the unbelievable mountain views of the San Juan Range to the family-friendly streets of Breckenridge and Steamboat, there is a weekend trip from Denver for everyone.
You can see quite a bit in just a weekend away from Denver. This map pins the location of each of the weekend trips from Denver that you need to know about. Pack your bags for an ah-mazing weekend trip from Denver.
Nestled in the heart of the San Juan Mountains, this charming mountain locale has everything: waterfall hikes, some of the best alpine lake hikes in Colorado , great eats, an adventurous Telluride via Ferrata , and more.
Afterward, relax in the TK hot springs for a warm soak. Ice Lake Basin is a world-famous hike nearby. The town itself boasts plenty of adorable shops and delicious eats. A must-do weekend trip from Denver for sure! Pro Tip: July is prime time to see the wildflowers blooming in the mountains.
Coupled with dramatic views of red-capped peaks, this place is unbelievable. Snuggled right at the base of the western slope, just before Grand Junction, lies the tiny town of Palisade. For a small locale, this place packs a punch. World-famous peaches dominate the late summer season, while you can enjoy unique wineries throughout the year. This budding little hipster town on the western slope is best known for some of the best mountain biking trails in Colorado.
As an excellent option for a weekend trip from Denver, Fruita often gets overlooked. Colorado is home to four National Parks and the Black Canyon of the Gunnison has to be one of the most unique. Camp along the rim in the national park and enjoy easy rim hikes, a challenging hike to the bottom of the canyon, or explore the trad climbs in the area.
You can also see the canyon by boat — a really unique way to grasp just how large this canyon system is. Relax in the nearby town of Gunnison, known for its classic ranching charm. Eat at High Alpine Brewing for some post-canyon noshing. Breckenridge has to be one of the more famous weekend trips from Denver. During the summer months, there is an endless array of things to do in Breckenridge.
In the summer months, this place is a hiking and road biking mecca. You can even bike all the way to Vail from here. Hikers will literally be in heaven here. There is a vast array of amazing hikes in Breckenridge that take you straight to the high alpine. Local Tip: I traffic is a real nuisance. Frisco often gets overlooked in favor of Silverthorn and Breckenridge.
However, not exploring this small town at the base of the Tenmile Range is a huge mistake. Reservoir access gives you tons of options for water-based recreation. While the bike path literally goes through town. You can road bike on paved trails all over the I corridor.
Hikers will love the easy access to simple hikes right from their lodging. Most locals come to Vail for some of the best backpacking trails in Colorado. For some of the best hikes in Vail , both the Gore Range and the Holy Cross Wilderness bring literally hundreds of miles of challenging trails right to your boot tips.
Yes, the skiing at Vail and nearby Beaver Creek really is that spectacular. And during the winter the Vail Valley boasts some of the most famous mixed and ice climbing in the world. Professional athletes train here, but you can come out and get a taste for the ice with a guided trip. Alternatively, learn to cross country ski at the Vail Nordic Center. In fall, head to the Piney River Ranch for some of the best and less-trafficked fall hiking trails in Colorado. Another popular — yet worthy — way to spend your weekend is to explore Rocky Mountain National Park.
Littered with incredible things to do, Rocky Mountain is a must-see any time of year. For a quieter experience, visit the nearby Indian Peaks Wilderness for a few fantastic views and even more beautiful trails. Wildlife is everywhere here. Or go for an early morning drive along Trail Ridge Road, one of the best scenic drives near Denver to spot the ram in the high alpine. Arrive before sunrise for solitude in Estes Park — even in winter.
Alright, for a quintessential Colorado experience, you should visit Glenwood Springs at least once. Packed with a cool and kid-friendly adventure park, gondola, and plenty of awesome hot springs options, this is a chilled place to spend the weekend.
The town of Glenwood Springs offers plenty of entertainment, with lovely local eating options and a charm that welcomes you with open arms to the great Centennial State.
This place rocks! Sport climbers have to check out Shelf Road. With over 1, routes, this is hands-down one of the best places to rock climb in Colorado. Check out the Royal Gorge. The Royal Gorge fee area is certainly overly touristy and not really worth it in my opinion, but if you want to enjoy a few of the activities like walking the bridge or taking a cable car, go for it.
My personal fave are a few easy hikes in the vacinity totally free. The nearby trails are actually quiet, local, and beautiful. Eat at Pizza Madness in Canon City. Camping options exist at Shelf Road and you can camp almost year-round — the summers get quite toasty. For free camping, simply drive down one of the many dirt roads and find a previously established spot! Just make sure to bring a trash bag, all the water you need for drinking, firewood cutting live trees is illegal , and a proper bathroom kit.
Okay, so you can certainly visit Crested Butte year-round, but the best time to visit has to be the fall. Kebler Pass is the most amazing place to view the aspens. Did you know that each grove is actually a single tree? While the summer is prime time for mountain biking — a Colorado hot spot. The town of Crested Butte is the Colorado mountain town you dream about.
Uber-cute boutique shopping is everywhere and Teocalli Tamale serves up an excellent breakfast burrito. Enjoy that post-hike hunger at the Secret Stash a pizzeria serving up unique flavors with attitude. Wanna break from the I traffic? Head to Steamboat Springs. Located off of the scenic Highway 40, Steamboat offers a relaxed, low-key mountain west vibe.
After a day of high-adrenaline fun, hit up Strawberry Park Hot Springs for a natural soak. Beer lovers need to spend the weekend touring the breweries of Fort Collins. Many people opt to bike from brewhouse to brewhouse. Enjoy live entertainment, special events, and the widest selections of beers in the state. Have a DD and make a weekend of exploring Fort Collins. Pack a few beers and watch the sunset over the famous Horsetooth Reservoir, or climb in the Poudre Canyon. Colorado Springs is home to several of the top tourist sites in Colorado.
Even locals venture down here for a quick weekend getaway. Get up early to beat the crowds and hike along the easy, accessible trails at Garden of the Gods. The zoo offers a kid-friendly atmosphere and you can visit Seven Falls via the free shuttle at the famous Broadmoor resort.
Exclusive luxury shopping, upscale hotels, and three ski resorts put all the high-end entertainment at your fingertips. For the more adventurous crowd, head out on the Four Passes Loop, arguably the most scenic backpacking trip in Colorado. Photographers should wake up early and photograph the famous Bells at Maroon or Crater Lake.
As an alternative to the pricey Aspen, Carbondale delivers the same awe-inspiring scenery without the bougey storefronts and pricey hotels. The first Friday of the month features a budding art scene — where downtown Carbondale turns into a hot spot for local artists. Head up Mt Sopris or go for a gravel bike ride in the mountains to soak in the beautiful scenery.
Even locals need to leave Colorado every now and again. For a quick getaway from Denver, head to Laramie, Wyoming. Nearby Vedauwoo is something from another planet. Hiking trails and camping are abundant and accessible through these huge, lumpy rock pillars.
Trad climbers flock here to try their luck at the brutal off-width climbing. After a day of exploring head to Laramie for endless food options, quirky bars, and fun shopping check out Laramie Basecamp for your outdoor needs. Seriously, there are so many things to do in Moab , your weekend trip from Denver will never be the same twice.
Here are just a few of the activities on offer:. Local Tip: Avoid this place in the summer. Visit in November through March for the slowest season.
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Colorado Springs. Great Sand Dunes National Park.