Billboards and flickering billboards greet you. In the distance you can see the modest skyline of Denver, the capital of Colorado. The city lies on the edge of the famous Rocky Mountains. Liquor shops make way for cozy coffee shops. Via East Colfax Avenue you approach LoDo, the center of Denver. The shiny golden dome of the historic Colorado State Capitol Building welcomes you.
The ‘Mile High City’ Denver is located exactly one mile high, in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains. Denver combines the charm of a bustling city with the mystery of the Wild West. The city was once a settlement of gold miners, but is now a flourishing trade center
Denver is a city with two faces. In the clubs of the hip downtown you imagine yourself in a metropolis. During a picnic in the Denver City Park, the city feels like a village. Start your Denver vacation on a terrace at 16th Street Mall, the city’s largest shopping street. Slurp out of the soup bowl they call a coffee cup in Denver. Not only for your half-liter of coffee, the American motto ‘the bigger, the better’ applies in Denver. The supplied donut is also a super size.
Here are 10 beautiful tips that you should have seen in Denver
Lower downtown & Larimer Square
LoDo for insiders, has a number of pleasant streets with historic buildings. Larimer Square is the oldest part of Denver. You will find old saloons and Victorian houses with shops, wine bars and (star) restaurants. On beautiful days, Larimer Square is where the locals meet and where you can party. A store that you certainly can not miss in Downtown Denver, is Western shop Rockmount Ranch Wear, where you can buy cowboy hats and blouses. Take a look at the renovated Union Station or follow the self-guided Denver Beer Trail through downtown, where there are twenty traditional beer breweries
State Capitol Denver
Central to the city, in the Civic Center Park, is the State Capitol with its recognizable golden dome, which commemorates the nineteenth-century Colorado Gold Rush. In the staircase in front of the building is the ‘mile high step’, at exactly one mile altitude. From Monday to Friday you can participate in a free tour through the building. In Mr. Brown’s Attic is a museum about Colorado’s history and (the construction of) the Capitol.
Denver Art Museum
At the Civic Center Park is the two-part Denver Art Museum. The North Building is stingy, while the Hamilton Building looks like a crystal of titanium, with peaks and excellent shards. It was designed by Daniel Libeskind, who also devised the One WTC in New York. The museum is best known for the extensive collection of art from Native Americans. There is also a large collection of contemporary art.
History Colorado Center
This museum focuses on all facets of Colorado’s history. There are exhibits about indigenous objects and technological innovations related to former mines. You can take a virtual ride in an old-fashioned Ford T, train your skills on the ski-springs simulator and detonate a dynamite in a mine from 1880
Denver Museum of Nature & Science
This fun, interactive museum is about science and nature. In a creative and innovative way you learn everything about dinosaurs, the human body, minerals, space and wild animals. You can do your own experiments or watch a 3D movie in the IMAX theater, for example about elephants, extreme weather conditions or mummies. This museum is located at 2001 Colorado Boulevard and is open daily from 9: 00-17: 00.
Molly Brown House Museum
This museum is located in the beautiful Victorian house of ‘the unsinkable Molly Brown’. Margaret (Molly) Brown was a lady from poor circles, who rose to the rich Denver society, women’s organizations and progessive politics around the turn of the century. She is the most famous survivor of the Titanic disaster in 1912. The Molly Brown House was designed by the famous architect William Lang and built in 1889. You can take a tour of 45 minutes through the house. A guide will then teach you everything about this legend of Colorado. The Molly Brown House Museum is located on 1340 Pennsylvania Street and is open from Tuesday to Sunday.
In Denver there are more than 200 city parks of different sizes. At Confluence Park the Cherry Creek and South Platte River meet. On nice days the locals gather here for a picnic or water fun. From the park you can follow the Cherry Creek Trail to the Cherry Creek shopping center, or the Platte Trail to the southwest – where the Chatfield Reservoir is located. You can kayak or float down the river in an inflated tire.
Denver Botanic Gardens
If you want to escape the city bustle you will visit the Denver Botanic Gardens. In this large botanical garden, local flora is combined with exotic plants from, for example, Australia and Africa. There are 45 different gardens, representing all kinds of different places from all over the world. You might recognize the covered tropical ‘greenhouse’ from the 1973 Sleeper film by Woody Allen.
Red Rocks Park
A half hour drive from the center of Denver you will find Red Rocks Park. In the park is the Red Rocks Amphitheater, which uses the natural acoustics of the rocks. The theater can accommodate 9,000 people. When you climb the 250 steps to the top of the theater, you have a beautiful view of the park and Denver. The theater is used for performances by local bands and major international artists. The most famous stone formations near the amphitheater are Creation Rock in the north, Ship Rock in the south and Stage Rock in the east.
If you want to admire even more beautiful views, go to Lookout Mountain, where Buffalo Bill is buried. If you thought Buffalo Bill was a rough cowboy, then you’re wrong: Bill went through the country with his own fabricated game show. The pieces became world famous and served as a source of inspiration for Hollywood films.
Attend a game at the Broncos Stadium at Mile High (formerly known as Invesco Field at Mile High), also known as Mile High Stadium. This high-altitude sports arena is the home of the Denver Broncos (baseball). Enjoy shopping at the 16th Street Mall, where free shuttle buses from the MallRide stop on every corner. Finally, a kodak moment: you feel small next to the 12 meter high Big Blue Bear on 750-776 14th Street. Want to know more about all the sights in Denver? View Visit Denver’s page
How to explore the city
Whether on foot, by car, by bike, or by light rail, there are plenty of options for getting around Denver. Looking for Downtown Denver transportation to get around the 16th Street Mall? Denver offers free public transportation with the Lightrail. Want to tour the city on a bike? B-Cycle makes Denver even more bike-friendly.
The Climate in Denver
Denver is a sunny city. The sun shines 300 days a year. Despite the location on the edge of the mountains, the climate is surprisingly pleasant. The weather in the winter is mild, with an average day temperature between 6 and 10 degrees. Occasionally there may be some snow, but that will never be long. It is warm in the summer. The average temperature is between 25 and 30 degrees during the day, but in the evening it can cool down and sometimes storms.
Almost 400 millimeters of precipitation falls annually. The wettest months are May to August: there is then between 40 and 60 millimeters of rain per month. Most snow falls in March, November and December; about 20 centimeters per month.
Spend the night in or near Denver
Looking for an overnight stay in Denver? Then you can choose from a diverse range of hotels, apartments and hostels. Because Denver is the starting point for a tour of West America for many travelers, the number of overnight places is large. If you book a camper trip from Denver, then you are required by the US law to have the first overnight stay in the United States take place in a hotel. Therefore, keep in mind that the prices for overnight Denver can be on the high side
Click here for hotels and motels in the Denver area
Looking for a flight to Denver? Click here to search and book flight tickets.
Want to visit attractions in Denver on a cheaper way?
With The Denver CityPass you can visit for free a number of attractions of your choice. This is worth it in view of the high prices that are charged in this tourist city for individual attractions.