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Family-Fun Day in Denver

by Angelique Platas

Jan 21, 2020

Photoquest | Dreamstime.com

Travel Tips

The sprawling and diverse landscape of Colorado offers a bit of everything: You can ski and snowboard on some of the best trails in the world, enjoy the great outdoors on epic hikes and take in the splendid natural beauty of the rugged state, or head to the cities for endless metropolitan attractions, shopping and nightlife.


Bring the family and make it a vacation, or enjoy a couple’s getaway — either way, be sure to make a pit stop in Denver.


If you only have a day or two before or after your flight into the city, we have a few expert ways to get the most of the city, even on a time crunch.


Get an early start — real early — and head to Red Rocks Amphitheater to watch the sunrise. You can get a family workout in running/walking up and down the theater risers while taking in the spectacular views, or just sit back, relax and enjoy the multitude of colors in this peaceful setting. When you have a bit more time, check out local events at Red Rocks, including film screenings, and purchase tickets. Otherwise, the sunrise will do for now.

Denver, Colorado, downtown skyline viewed from Red Rocks at dawn. Photo: Sean Pavone | Dreamstime.com


Now that you’ve earned your breakfast, head back to the city, about a 20–30 minute drive or Lyft/Uber ride.


Speaking of breakfast, Urban Farmer is a great option for ambiance and assortment. With an industrial-meets-repurposed, but cozy vibe, the menu offers a blend of hearty meat-lover options, innovative foodie options (think cauliflower steak) and old staples like farm-fresh eggs and homemade bread.


The restaurant also happens to be a short walk to Union Station, a beautiful historic building for commuters and tourists alike. Stop in the station’s various bookstores, coffee shops and attractions. For families looking to grab-and-go, there will be a slew of stops along Wazee Street (where Urban Farmer is) and within Union Station, so check and check.


Continue down Wazee Street and visit blocks of high-end galleries and quirky boutique shops. Check out indigenous art and locally sourced goods and crafts to take home.


Enjoy all the quaint shops and attractions LoDo, also known as Lower Downtown, has to offer. Adult children and parents, bond over a beer from one of the many breweries and pubs, just like a local. Keep it moving and take a walk over the bridge to the Highlands, another idyllic neighborhood, where families will find ice cream shops worth walking for.


Head back toward REI’s flagship store and buy some gear for a hike later in your Colorado family adventure, or keep moving to make the most of the day.


Enjoy the mix of greenery and water with a view of Elitch Gardens. Head over for a few rides in the city’s beloved theme park, or catch a ride to the bustling River North Art District, more commonly known as RiNo, for dinner and drinks. Larimer Street and Square is literally lined with incredible dinner options, unique bars, shops and spaces boasting live music and clubs.


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