Things to do in
Denver

Bustling bars, breweries, lively music, and a gateway to the rocky mountains await in Colorado's capital.

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Our most recommended things to do in Denver

Denver: Rocky Mountain Half-Day Explorer Trip

1. Denver: Rocky Mountain Half-Day Explorer Trip

The foothills of the Rocky Mountains bear amazing views, dinosaur tracks, and the world famous Red Rocks Amphitheater. Drive along the historic Lariat Loop up Bear Creek Canyon and enjoy closer views of the Rockies.  Take a break along the way in Evergreen for a cup of coffee or a beer. Immerse yourself in some of the Wild West feel that Colorado has to offer.  Make a stop at Lookout Mountain for amazing views of the plains and the continental divide. This is the place where Buffalo Bill, the West’s first superstar, requested to be laid to rest.

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Denver/Boulder: Rocky Mountain National Park Tour

2. Denver/Boulder: Rocky Mountain National Park Tour

Enter the Rocky Mountain National Park and experience the wonders that inspired early explorers to push for the protection of its amazing landscape. See Long’s Peak, the park’s highest mountain, soaring into the sky at 14,259 feet. Admire glacial-carved valleys, filled with aspen and pine trees. From Denver, drive along the Front Range through Boulder with its famous Flatirons Rock Formations. Continue through canyons alive with wildlife up to Estes Park, the charming town at the entrance of the Rocky Mountain National Park. Once you have entered the park your guide will take you to the best spots for wildlife viewing, photographs, walks, or just relaxing. Throughout the summer the tour will take you up trail ridge road to 13,000 feet. In the winter the high alpine road is closed and more time will be spent discovering the valley and its crystal clear alpine lakes.

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Denver: Haunted Walking Ghost Tour

3. Denver: Haunted Walking Ghost Tour

Like the looming Rockies, Denver’s dark history casts a long shadow over the Mile High City. Dive deep into the haunted history at the heart of the city’s oldest neighborhood, Capitol Hill, on a guided walking tour. Choose between a standard 1-hour tour or a 1.5-hour extended tour. Hear stories take you on a journey back to a time of wealth, luxury, and deceit. This collection of stories will unearth the dark secrets that are the foundation on which this iconic city was built. Follow your guide through 8-13 (standard or extended tour) different sites and historic houses around the state’s Capitol building. Find out where the unsinkable Molly Brown, one of the most famous survivors of the sinking of the Titanic, might still show her face. See a side of Denver not often seen by visitors. Take a walk through the beautiful neighborhood that is the heart of the Mile High City while listening to the chilling tales of its past. Have an informative, memorable, and slightly terrifying night on a tour is perfect for first-time visitors to Denver and seasoned locals alike.

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Denver: Full-Day Breckenridge Mountain Explorer Tour

4. Denver: Full-Day Breckenridge Mountain Explorer Tour

Escape Denver and visit one of the most charming towns in the Rockies on this small-group tour. The drive up includes a stop at Red Rocks Amphitheater, one of the most beautiful and iconic concert venues in the world. Weather permitting, drive over the Continental Divide at Loveland Pass. At 11,900 feet, the view is like standing on top of the world. Along the way, pick up insights into Colorado's history and culture from an experienced and passionate guide. Finally, arrive in Breckenridge, one of Colorado’s most indelible mountain resorts. Enjoy free time to walk through the town, sit down for a meal, hike to the famous troll, or have fun in the snow in winter months. You’ll have plenty of time to explore before heading back to the Denver.

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Denver: Rocky Mountain Escape

5. Denver: Rocky Mountain Escape

Explore the grand expanse of the Rocky Mountains with a 4-hour driving tour through off-the-beaten-path areas. After meeting your guide in an upscale car in central Denver, head off for an adventure through some of the country’s most stunning viewpoints. As you ascend towards the mountain peaks, breathe in the mountain air and take time to explore the scenic viewpoints, gazing down at the serene expanses below you. As you move between an array of vistas, your local guide will fill you in on Colorado’s diverse wildlife, as well as the urban culture that makes the state so unique. Afterwards, you'll head back down the mountain, filled with a sense of mountain serenity.

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Denver CityPASS®: Save up to 40% on Top Attractions

6. Denver CityPASS®: Save up to 40% on Top Attractions

Enjoy your choice of admission to 3, 4, or 5 of the most popular attractions in Denver at up to 40% off of regular combined admission. Marvel at the underwater worlds of the Downtown Aquarium, explore an urban oasis at the Denver Botanical gardens, and discover the wonders of nature at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. Other attractions to choose from include The Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus, The Wings Over the Rockies Air and Space Museum, The Denver Art Museum, and The History Colorado Center.

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Denver: BEYOND Light Show and Meditation

7. Denver: BEYOND Light Show and Meditation

Enjoy a fully-immersive experience with BEYOND: A Guided Meditation & Laser Light Experience featuring a guided mediation, enchanting music, wondrous sound, and an awe-inspiring laser and projection light experience designed to elevate the soul. See custom audiovisual art installations created by world-famous artists that explore powerful themes. For those who enjoy thinking and meditating while immersing themselves in music and visuals, this planetarium-style, classic rock laser light show is designed to electrify your consciousness. Each Beyond Light Experience starts promptly at 20 minutes past the hour, every hour, during operating hours. This is a non-consumption, family-friendly experience.

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Denver: 6-Zipline Rocky Mountains Adventure Tour

8. Denver: 6-Zipline Rocky Mountains Adventure Tour

If you are travelling in or near Denver, Colorado and you like a little thrill and adventure, then this Rocky Mountain Zipline Adventure Tour is for you. And, at only 30 minutes from downtown, it's are the closest zip line course to Denver. Nestled in a Rocky Mountain pine forest, at an elevation of over 8,000 feet (about 2,500 meters), you will fly at speeds of up to 50mph (75kph) and 200ft (abou 75 meters) high on zip lines, which altogether total over 6,000 feet (2,000 meters) in length. You’ll soar through pine forests and over mountain meadows. It is a fantastic way to enjoy some fresh air, see some magnificent Rocky Mountain views, and have a whole lot of fun.

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Denver: Glacier Hike and Geothermal Cave Pools

9. Denver: Glacier Hike and Geothermal Cave Pools

Hike up to St. Mary's Glacier, ascending through the stunning Colorado Forest and ending with breathtaking panoramic lake views. With swimming and sledding included, this 1.5-mile hike is a popular hike in Colorado. Afterwards, enjoy lunch at Beau Jo's Mountain Pizza in Idaho Springs, which has been around since 1880 and is one of Colorado's hidden gems. Idaho Springs has a population of 1,717 people, and is a gold-mining town founded in 1859 during the Gold Rush. Following lunch, your tour visits another historic landmark where you can soak in the natural geothermal cave pools, perfect for sore muscles after hiking.

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Denver: Lower Downtown Scavenger Hunt Adventure

10. Denver: Lower Downtown Scavenger Hunt Adventure

Looking for a way to turn Denver’s historic Lower Downtown into a giant game board? This interactive scavenger hunt combines the fun of the Amazing Race with a two-hour sightseeing tour of Denver’s LoDo district. Guided from any smartphone, groups make their way among well-known and overlooked gems of the city, solving clues and completing challenges while learning local history. The adventure begins at a historic building and takes you on a well-designed course through the historic area, Coors Field, Union Station and Confluence Park you discover the rich history, art and culture of the original Denver. Using a smartphone as “the guide” allows participants to start when they want and determine their own pace of play. Since you are the creator of your own schedule, you can stop for lunch midway or for a later cold brew at one of the many hot spots in the area. Offered at a fixed price for a group vs. per person pricing, this city tour/game offers a great value to those on a budget.

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Insider tips: Planning a trip to Denver

Known as the Mile High City thanks to its elevation that is exactly one mile (5,280 feet or 1,609.344 meters) above sea level, Denver is the capital city of Colorado and the eastern entrance to the foothills of the soaring Rocky Mountains. There is so much to do in Denver that we enlisted the travel experts at TravelingMom, a leading family travel website, to share their favorite things to do and tips for making the most of a visit, even if you only have a few days. You can read more surprising facts about Denver here.

What should I do on my first trip to Denver?

With its stunning Rocky Mountain views and its downtown skyline, Denver, the capital city of Colorado, is a great place to visit. Take a stroll on the 16th Street Mall, a mile-long pedestrian walkway, lined with trees, shops, restaurants, and brightly painted pianos, courtesy of local artists. Downtown Denver offers so many kid-friendly experiences, most within walking distance, or short drive away. Our favorites are the Denver U.S. Mint, Downtown Aquarium, and the Denver Firefighters Museum.

What are some hidden gems to see in Denver?

If you're a sports fan, take in a Colorado Rockies home baseball game at Coors Field (April-September season), grab a ballpark hot dog, visit the Dinger's Playground and swing the bat at Kidszone -- it's free. Add a "Behind the Scenes" tour of this classic ballpark in the heart of downtown. Baseball not your thing? Denver has plenty of other options. depending on the season: American football's Denver Broncos, basketball's Denver Nuggets, hockey's Colorado Avalanche, and soccer's Colorado Rapids all call the city home. And of course, include a visit to the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame Museum.

How much time should I spend in Denver?

When planning a trip to Denver, we suggest spending at least two nights to see all the top atrractions in downtown. Add another day or two to your stay to explore Denver neighborhoods or the Front Range's top cities, like Golden, Boulder or Colorado Springs. If you plan to explore the nearby Rocky Mountains to play in the snow or enjoy our mountain towns (and you should!) I'd suggest adding at least two more nights.

What food is Denver known for?

Denver's roots are deeply seated in western culture, so many associate Denver's foodie scene with Rocky Mountain Oysters (breaded and deep fried bull testicles) and cuts of prime bison and beef steak. But Denver is much more than that! The Mile High City was named one of 2021’s Best Foodie Cities in America by Wallet Hub -- and there are a lot of reasons why. As a melting pot of cultures, local neighborhoods dish their family recipes, including cuisine from Mexico, India, Thailand, Italy, and more.

What is the best way to get around Denver?

Transportation in Denver is dependent on where you're based and where you want to go. If you stay in or near downtown Denver, the most affordable and convenient option is walking. Taxis, Uber and Lyft are also convenient options. Fortunately, Denver also offers a public Light Rail system, which is the easiest and cheapest way to get to downtown Denver from Denver International Airport, as well as many of the city's neighborhoods. However, if you want to include a visit into the foothills or Rocky Mountains -- and you should! -- renting a car is your best option.

What are the best months to visit Denver?

Denver basks in the sunshine 245 days a year, so pick a season and chances are good you'll enjoy that Mile High sunshine. During winter, the snow-capped Rocky Mountains are stunning and there are loads of ski and snowboarding options. But the absolute best times to visit Denver are April and May. Our spring is colorful and the mountain air is crisp. The fall, September to October, offers the chance for leaf-peeping and still-warm weather. Denver is a city that likes to celebrate with cool events year-round starting in January with the National Western Rodeo and Stockshow, St. Patrick's Day Parade in March, Colorado Rockies basebal opening day in April, Denver Beer Fest in October, and the Parade of Lights in December.

What is Washington Park known for?

Whether your visit is family-centric or couples, you'll want to include a visit to Washington Park, running north to south from around Speer Boulevard to I-25. This continues to be named as one of the best places to live. Its namesake, Wash Park, highlights what the Mile High City is known for -- its amazing outdoors. This urban oasis features lush grass, colorful flower grandens, and multiple lakes for kayaking, paddleboating, and yes even fishing. Check out the surrounding track for running, walking or biking. Bring a picnic, let the kids romp in a nearby playground, and people watch from its expansive lawns.

What are the best neighborhoods for food?

Downtown's historic Larimer Square is the perfect setting to experience Denver's food scene. Start with Rioja, the Spanish- and Mediterranean-inspired cuisine by Chef-owner Jennifer Jasinski, of James Beard Foundation fame. The nearby south-of-the-border themed cuisine (and tequila!) of Tamaya, restaurant of chef celeb Richard Sandoval and the roof-top patio is worth the wait. The Uptown neighborhood features a wider variety of restaurants, sure to please all palates, ranging from American diners to farm-to-table chefs.

What are the best neighborhoods for shopping?

Known as the ultimate shopping mecca, if you think it, the Cherry Creek neighborhood will fulfill your shopping wish list. Browse its more than 160 shops, boutiques and restaurants (for when you need to rest your wearing shopping feet). For those with a luxury budget, check out the 40 exclusive stores including Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, Tiffany & Co., Burberry, Louis Vuitton and Ralph Lauren.

What neighborhood should I stay in when I visit Denver?

The Union Station neighborhood is a bustling hub of activity, with a prime location next to RTD's Light Rail, Denver's public train transportation. Located in the heart of downtown Denver is the recently renovated train station. Inside Union Station, discover 10 chef-owned restaurants and bars, boutiques and the 112-room Crawford Hotel. Steps away is the new Dairy Block and McGregor Square neighborhoods, featuring even more hotels, restaurants, shops, and Coors Field.

What is the best family-friendly thing to do in Denver?

Discover the Mile High City's largest outdoor space, the tree-lined City Park neighborhood, with miles of jogging and biking trails – and the best sunset over downtown Denver with the Rocky Mountains as a backdrop! This is also home to two of the the city’s most popular family-friendly attractions: Denver Zoo, home to more than 4,000 animals, and Denver Museum of Nature & Science with its T-Rex life-size displays, IMAX and planetarium shows.

Frequently asked questions about Denver

Other Sightseeing Options in Denver

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What people are saying about Denver

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 308 reviews

The tour guide (Nick) was very friendly, helpful and knowledgeable. He provided excellent recommendations, offered to take pictures and made extra stops for us to see more. The trip in itself is great, we saw the Lily Lake, stopped to eat lunch at our own pace and then ventured into the beautiful Rocky Mtns forest. Overall it is a great trip especially in winters where you can sit back and enjoy the snowy scenes and hear all about your surroundings from a great guide!

I cannot recommend this experience highly enough. Our guide, Ariel, was superb and made sure everyone in the group was included. The hike is beautiful with breathtaking scenery and the Geothermal pools help you warm up afterwards! This was the highlight of my trip to Denver and I would definitely do this again. Ariel, thank you for making the day so much fun!

Really cool experience! And definitely good for the whole family. The people were very friendly. The artwork inside the church was beautiful! I highly recommend this as a fun & unique thing to do if you’re in Denver.

Will was a great tour guide and was very knowledgeable, which made the trip even more enjoyable! The views were so amazing in part to him knowing the best spots. So happy we chose to take the tour :)

Clues were fun and bit of history was interesting. Good way to down a few hours with friends.