Eco-friendly travel guide to Denver advises how to be a responsible tourist. Learn how to explore the attractions in a sustainable way and how to respect the local people and culture. Make your trip green by supporting locally owned hotels, organic restaurants and other businesses. Read more on how to protect the environment by making conscientious choices and how to travel green in Denver, Colorado, United States of America.
- Air quality: 2.5 / 5
- Exploring by foot: 4.5 / 5
- Exploring by bicycle: 5 / 5
- Public transportation: 3.7 / 5
- Parks: 4 / 5
- Outdoor activities: 5 / 5
- Locals' English level: 5 / 5
- Safety: 3.55 / 5
- Accommodation: US$20 - $800
- Budget per day: US$80 - $1,000
- 1 Responsible Travel
- 2 Air Quality and Pollution
- 3 Respect the Culture
- 4 Top 10 Places to Visit
- 5 Explore
- 6 Eat
- 7 Drink
- 8 Activities
- 9 Accommodation
- 10 How to Get There
- 11 Moving Around
- 12 Sustainable Shopping
- 13 Recycling
- 14 Work and Study Abroad
- 15 See Also
As an eco-friendly traveler, Denver is one of the cities you should consider traveling to; if it's in your interest to visit a city in the northern part of the United States of America. Denver is situated at the confluence of Cherry Creek and the South Platte River and hikers are given an unlimited chance to go hiking and climbing. There are unlimited recreation options for any kind of tourists to enjoy here from the amazing road art murals to the remarkable access to nature. Howbeit, it's worthy to equip yourself with a couple of helpful tips to travel responsibly in the city;
- Be conscious of where you smoke. Almost everyone knows that marijuana is legal in Denver. If you're 21 or older, you are permitted by the law to buy and consume pot if you wish. Nevertheless, it's important that you note that smoking in public is considered to be illegal and this also extends to other places like bars, parks, ski resorts, parking lots, buses, and cars. As a responsible traveler, don't be the guy who starts smoking around kids. Even if you're a marijuana tourist, you shouldn't be among one of those who contribute to the smoke that can be perceived in public places during the summer months.
- Get a Culture Pass for around $30. If you like the idea of discounts on several smaller specialty museums and on the city's bike-share program, you might want to subscribe to the idea of getting a culture pass. For three straight days, you can enjoy visiting the Denver Art Museum and Denver Zoo which are included on the list of the city's seven most popular attractions you can enjoy unlimited access to with the Mile High Culture Pass.
- Beware of altitude sickness. The locals of the city are people who are fond of the outdoors and evidently, one of the things that ring Denver's popularity is the recreational outdoor opportunities it offers for all. Your visit to Denver is likely to involve getting active and it's important for you to know that altitude sickness is common here. Most people, once they're in the city, they tend to start seeing symptoms which may pave the way for fatigue, unquenchable thirst, and headaches.
- People drive quickly here. If you'll be driving around, be informed that most of the locals in this city tend to drive very quickly. However, you shouldn't let this bother you, all you have to do is to obey signs and drive the speed you are comfortable driving as you stay in the right lane. There's no need for you to worry about everyone else and the fact that you already have a firm grasp about this is to keep you settled that you don't need to impress anybody.
- Dress casual for comfort, to fit in, and not to look odd. In this city, if you see someone in a suit, the chances are high that the person is a lawyer. When it comes to dressing up, expectations are greatly lowered compared to that of Los Angeles or New York City. So, as you'll be making plans to move around Denver, don't forget to have your sandals and socks packed because they're the real thing here, and overall, just pack super casual.
Other tips you could use to travel responsibly;
- If you want to bypass the traffic, you can consider renting B-cycle bikes from any of the docks around the city.
- Statistics prove that about 6-7% of downtown employees commute to work by bike as Denver is a highly bike-friendly city.
- There are light rails that connect some suburbs to the city, you can use this as an opportunity to experience some of the suburbs.
- If you'll be renting a car, do well to opt for one that can withstand the city's varied weather conditions and can as well handle more rugged mountain driving.
- For the purpose of accommodating street sweeping, most of the side streets have restricted days for parking, and you should be very careful of where you park.
Air Quality and Pollution
Different independent studies have placed Denver to be ranked among the top 10 worst cities in the United States with the hazardous air pollution due to its day-to-day pollution swings, especially in the winter months. For more than 260 days from 2018-2019, a federal record disclosed that inhabitants of Denver were exposed to breathing air exceeding government standards. More so, Denver was rated 'F' according to the State of the Air report, published yearly by the American Lung Association. As an outcome of the climate inversions in the city, pollution degrees in Denver are naturally higher in the winter than in the summer.
Respect the Culture
Significantly, the number of people living in Denver has increased, and about three million people reside in Denver and its surrounding metro area. In fact, in the last 20 years, more than a million inhabitants moved to the current Denver area. A lot of inhabitants of the city were not born in the United States and it's worthy to point out that ways of life, different beliefs, festivals, and celebrations have made Denver witness and experience people with diverse cultural backgrounds. Respecting the culture in Denver isn't much of a big thing to do for the major thing you have to do is to respect individuals' uniqueness in the city.
In a city like this with a diverse community, it's important that you treat everyone fairly. Recreational marijuana is legalized in Denver and there's a burgeoning LGBT community in the city, and looking at these, it's conspicuous to affirm that the city exerts its respects for individuality. Denver, obviously, is a city that loves and celebrates its diverse residents and, PrideFest and Cinco de Mayo festival are some of the plentiful festivals celebrated in the city, which, of course, reflects the cornucopia of cultures in the city's diversity. Participating in these festivals can also be a great way to show respect for the city's culture and another thing that's common about the locals of the city in general is their love for outdoors so, you should do well to get actively involved in a range of outdoor activities too.
Outdoors is life for most Coloradoans and it's always easy to spot these people enjoying biking, biking, whitewater kayaking, climbing, or engaged in any other rejuvenating activity. However, if you plan to go skiing, you must be well apprised of skier etiquette before skiing because this is a must, except you want to be that person who gets a strange look from everybody. To include, nature is serious business to Coloradoans and the locals in this city take nature in all forms very seriously. There's no joking around here when nature is involved and you risk being featured in a Social Media shame campaign if you mess around in Colorado’s near-pristine wilderness, go rogue, or ignore the rules.
Rounding off, Coloradoans have the penchant for treating dogs as humans, this is a culture that has come to stay and be largely recognized. Dogs are in bars and even some restaurants and you're likely to see these creatures at the base of a mountain, at the river, and virtually everywhere you turn to. So, treat all dogs nicely if you're in Denver as this is a proof of your love and respect for the city's culture.
Top 10 Places to Visit
Learn further about the nicest places to travel to in the city with a list of the leading attractions in Denver. Red Rocks Park & Amphitheater, which is one of the top outdoor concert venues in the United States, is immediately outside the city's borders. Even within the city's limits, there's no shortage of things to accomplish, be it visiting animals at the Denver Zoo, doing some shopping and gallery hopping in Cherry Creek North, in the morning, afternoon, or at night, or wandering the Denver Art Museum. Denver is a visually appealing metropolis filled with different attractions for everyone.
There are numerous places to visit in Denver but here are the few prominent ones that you can visit during your stay in the city.
- Red Rocks Park & Amphitheater: It acquired its name from the impressive red sandstone rock formations set up along the paths that shaped the walls of the outdoor amphitheater. It's a venue for live music. The place is well-known for its acoustics and entices significant live music talents weekly in a season. The Amphitheater is roughly 15 miles away from the center of the city. It's worth commuting as it is the most adorable around Denver. You will find a shuttle that will get you there and bring you back to your destination too.
- The Denver Museum of Nature and Science: It is located at the southeastern corner of City Park. It's also one of the leading cultural attractions in Denver. There is a new thing to catch a glimpse of at the museum because of the frequently changing exhibitions. The imposing dinosaur skeletons are among the most significant exhibitions there. You could also find one of the gigantic nuggets of gold found in Colorado and other collections of minerals that were presented by the Coors Family. An IMAX theater and a Planetarium can be found there.
- The Denver Center for the Performing Arts: It's a huge cultural centre that is situated on the south side of Larimar Square. You can find places to be entertained at night if you wish to go and have fun. The center comprises of multiple venues like Caulkins Opera House, Boettcher Concert Hall, and Auditorium Theater. Different types of major events could be found at the venue. Variations of other performances like Broadway Show or a play could be enjoyed at the Center for the Performing Arts when you go there at night. The Denver Center Academy, the Denver Center Theater Company, and the Denver Center Attractions are all found there. The center offers programs and acting classes, it functions as an educational building, and professional development opportunities as well.
- The Denver Botanic Gardens: It occupies 23 acres next to Cheesman Park and it's one of the largest botanical gardens in the country. The garden emphasizes environmentally credible practices, sustainable, and native plants. Plants across different countries in the world can be found in its distinct gardens. 43 unique gardens are there. Some are laid out in natural landscapes while others are in conventional gardens. Special events including concerts that bring in nationally recognized talents are hosted at the Denver Botanic Garden throughout the year.
- Kirkland Museum: It's a member of the Historic Artists' Homes and Studios. It exhibits a significant collection of decorative arts that range from Arts & Crafts to Pop Arts, and each significant design time is represented there. It also documented regional modernist arts that focus on Colorado with hundreds of artworks. It exhibits the retrospective works of Vance Kirkland, an outstanding Colorado's painter.
- Denver Art Museum: It is a place with a vast collection of artworks from different continents across the world. Pre-Columbian artworks and a collection of Spanish colonial artworks are found there. There are incredibly refurbished and distinguished Native American galleries that cover a vast range of cultures and tribes from Canada and the States. Works that span two thousand years of history and an extensive collection of arts throughout North America have helped the museum gain a reputation, and a different gallery is also dedicated to photography.
- Coors Field: It is a baseball stadium and it's the home of the Colorado Rockies baseball club. By sitting on the spectator chairs there is a possibility of seeing the Rocky Mountains from afar. The tour of the facility is allowed year-round. And that can be an opportunity to know more about the stadium. There are a fixed number of tickets sold to people every day. If you'd like to visit, it's a good idea that you get the ticket ahead. The tour is also accessible to those who are disabled.
- Denver Zoo: The Denver Zoo is an elegant laid-out zoo with enclosures modified to various species. Also, the management of the zoo has been working fervently and endlessly to see that they bring new things there. Primate Panorama, Predator Ridge, and Tropical Discovery are some of the newest exhibition at the Denver Zoo. The modernization of the zoo has made it one of the city's most distinguished attractions in Denver, today.
- Colorado State Capitol: There are incredible views of the city's exact skyline and the Front Range from the viewpoint of the platform on the drum of the dome. Crowned by a gilded dome 250 feet tall on a low hill on the east side of Civic Center Park is the classical-style State Capitol.
- Denver Public Library: It is remarked for its western history and genealogical collections. The Denver Public Library was designed by the famous architect Michael Graves and was commissioned in 1995.
Denver is one of the healthiest cities in the United States of America — all thanks to proximity, an incredible park system, and wonderful natural assets, big financial institutions, innovative technology companies, and a thriving economy that supports major energy producers. Denver remains relatively inexpensive compared to most other major American cities, despite the hastily growing population which is straining the local housing market.
If the thought of exploring Denver sends chills down your spine, it's pretty crucial that you're versed with when to travel to the city because Denver has some of the oddest and craziest unfriendly weather in the United States. Although the severe weather doesn't stop the inhabitants of the city from having a nice time, it's still a must-know for a pleasurable time. If you don't mind some unusual weather here and there, Denver is one of the cities you could visit at any time of the year with lots of activities happening for the whole days of the year.
You're likely to experience dehydration more often when you visit Denver because it is an exceptionally dry place and that's resulting from its height above the sea level and the absence of downpour. Denver has more than 10 months of sunny days which makes it one of the sunniest places in the United States of America - just be sure to move around with water and never stop drinking. Summer and winter are the two climax seasons in Denver.
Summer starts from June to September while winter is from November to March. Also, while summer is the festive and apex hiking season, winter is the period of the year when people from different corners of the world come skiing. Spring, generally in Colorado, is an exceptionally brief period. It's from April to May, which makes some people question when the period is in a year, though it's a fascinating time of the year. In autumn, the atmosphere is still friendly as that's when trees start sprouting new leaves.
The Mile High City is a city with more than 5,000 acres of traditional parkways and parks!
- Washington Park: It is known for its enormous grassy turf and it's one of the most popular locality parks in Denver. It's perfect and smooth for playing virtually every kind of game. The park is usually filled with zealots volleyball players most days in summer, especially on weekends, and the field is often flocked with people with all kinds of hobbies. You can happily jog with fellow runners or joggers at the park because of its smoothness and the distance it covers–3 miles. At the park, there are two admirable ponds that you could be allowed to fish. Within the park, biking is allowed on the roads. There are paddle boats which you can rent too.
- Cheesman Park: it's suitable for relieving tension on a sunny day in Denver. Being built on a former graveyard, the park is rich in history, and Cheesman shows a free movie in the park on distinct summer evenings. The Denver Botanic Gardens is located behind it and that could also serve as an opportunity to see fascinating indoor and outdoor plants exhibition. Most people enjoy the serenity with a picnic, Frisbee, or walk.
- City Park: It's situated next to Uptown and Denver Zoo. It's a park with an excellent combination of trees and broad lawns. You'll find people playing different games from flag football and softball to soccer and kickball virtually every evening in the summer. The park is known for hosting different festivals and the famous City Park Jazz. A Sunday concert series also takes place from June to August. Two ponds are within the park and you can take a fishing rod there.
- Confluence Park: This park is where River Cherry Creek and River South Platte intersected. These two rivers shape and make this park to be unique and it's also a part of the greater Riverfront Park trail system. With a distinct bike-only-lane, biking along Cherry Creek is possibly one of the best things to do. Confluence boasts multiple green spaces for land activities and one could find a slew of the urban park directly beside the city when trekking along the river with baseball fields, soccer, and a dog park. At Confluence Kayaks, one could hire kayaks for usage in the South Platte.
- Sloan's Lake Park: This park is favorable for water sports as it is the largest lake in Denver. In summer, fishing, boating, and jet skiing are days activities that can be enjoyed in the park. You can enjoy unusual views of the Denver skyline and the Front Range. On the paved path around the lake, biking, walking, and jogging are allowed. Soccer fields, tennis courts, and picnic tables are other amenities that could be found there.
- Civic Center Park: The park has quite a number of things that are captivating on all sides. A lot of free festivals like Veterans Day Parade, Cinco de Mayo, and Taste of Colorado take place at the park throughout the year.
- Berkeley Park: This is an elegant park with stunning mountain views and a wide lake. Although it's less attractive than its neighbour Sloan's Lake Park that is located to the south, you will enjoy its pleasant amenities like open fields, a good dog park, and a lakeside trail.
You shouldn't find it surprising that half of the land in the State of Colorado is public land. Denver is one of the nicest urban adventurous outdoors in the country and Colorado boasts being one of the states housing an array of national parks. Here are some of the national parks in and around Denver;
- Rocky Mountain National Park: It is the highest ongoing motorway in the United States. It attains an utmost elevation of 12,183 feet. Trail Ridge Road is a spectacular way for tourists who will like to see it for the first time. As a summer visitor, early in the morning or late at night is the best time to be there. Also, it's the busiest in summer but less flocked in late May and October.
- Mesa Verde National Park: It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and you can see a lot of ancient Native American heritage. The park is home to numerous known archaeological sites and some of the best-preserved Ancestral Puebloans sites in the United States. You'll need enough time to travel down there from Denver. The park is very far from the city. On the Colorado Plateau, the park lies in the southwestern corner of the state. If you're going by car, you'll pass by the Great Sand Dunes National Park so you may stop by.
- Great Sand Dunes National Park: In North America, the park contains the tallest sand dunes. The wind has shaped the dunes over the years and it sprawls across San Luis Valley, Colorado. It is around a four-hour drive south of Denver.
- Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park: It's one of the most underrated national parks in the U.S. The relatively small park comprises one of the most remarkable natural attractions in the United States.
Denver is well-known for its scenic natural beauty endowed with rocky mountains which makes it famous all around the world. To have a delightful appreciation of the city's mild sunny summers and exclusive natural beauty, these beaches ought to be visited. At least once in life, they are all an amazing natural retreat to experience. Without overstretching words unnecessarily, here are some of the finest beaches you'll find in and around Denver;
- Chatfield State Park: At this must-visit Denver beach, there is a well-equipped facility for horseback riding trails, hiking, biking. In summer, you can even enjoy wildlife sightings of birds, deer, and elk. As the warm air becomes perfect for all, the hot air balloons dot the sky in the morning. After a short walk away from Chatfield Reservoir, this popular beach is worth giving some time. You can have a spectacular impression and bask in the warm rays of the Denver’s Rocky Mountain. This beach is one of the most popular destinations in Denver.
- Cherry Creek State Park: If you seek a spot to enjoy adventurous camping and hiking with loved ones, you should consider this place. This park is an excellent location for families to enjoy the sun close to the beaches with a lot of relaxing and intriguing entertainment. Since there are lots of places to camp, it makes for an outstanding spot to lounge. This beach is located close to downtown and it is rated to be one of the most flocked beaches near Denver.
- Confluence Park: If your adventurous spirit is hungry, feed it with a solo-kayak ride in the South Platte River and you'll find this place soothing your mind with its serene, calm air, and blue shades of water. You can as well explore the flora and fauna of the remainder of Confluence Park while you’re beside beaches and their shoreline.
- Ridgway State Park: This well-known beach which is close to Denver is good for families as it provides a playground for children and a grassy space with picnic tables and grills. It's a wide and sandy beach that has cold and warm water in summer. It lies in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado.
Denver has certainly undergone a volatile development since its humble inception. The beautiful city takes pride in its origins and it houses multiple renovated landmarks, monuments, and maintained cultural and historical attractions. Though Denver loves to present itself as a contemporary, successful, and forward-looking city, it has never been short of landmarks.
- Larimer Square: In 1861, it came to be the major street of the city and it's regarded to be the oldest and most historic area of the city.
- The Oxford Hotel: It's the most historic and oldest hotel in the city. It has welcome and amazed visitors since it opened its doors in the year 1891. The Oxford Hotel is just a stone's throw from Union Station.
- Daniel & Fischer Tower: It carries above its observation deck a 2½ ton bell. It possesses a four-sided 20-floor clock tower and it stands at 325 feet. In 1910 when it was constructed, it was the tallest tower at the west of the Mississippi River. In Denver, Daniel & Fischer Tower is one of the most unique landmarks.
- 16th Street Mall: Since its opening in 1982, it has continued to stand as a center for businesses and tourist attractions. This mile-long pedestrian mall starts from LoDo's Union Station to the Civic Center Station Downtown.
- Union Station: It went through a vital renovation that was completed in 2014 and it presently houses great shops, a luxury hotel, and eateries. It has been the major railway station and transportation center for the Mile High City since its establishment in 1881.
Denver museums have upped their game with world-class displays over the years and here are some of the fine museums you'll find around;
- Denver Art Museum: A trip to the Denver Art Museum should be on your must-do list when you pay a visit to this to enjoy an opportunity to glance at some of its outstanding permanent exhibitions. It has a building that is cherished from the interior to the exterior with its numerous constructions comprising the titanium “prow” that reaches across 13th Avenue and the castle-like layout of the North Building. The Denver Art Museum gives a lot to see from inside as well as outside and it's the largest museum in the city.
- Denver Museum of Nature and Science: The museum presents many opportunities to know more about the human body, fossils, and space aside from the revolving displays it offers. Leonardo Da Vinci: 500 Years of Genius, is its latest blockbuster. For offering a diversity of exhibitions, the museum boasts covering the combination of science, nature, and culture, achieving fame over the years for its sensational displays. Denver Museum of Nature and Science extends much more than what satisfies the sight.
- Museum of Contemporary Art: Coming here is a great way to take in art and some of what Denver has to offer. You never know what you could find here with the continuously revolving shows it offers. This little but great museum is a great place to be for art admirers and it's situated in the trendy LoDo neighborhood.
- History Colorado Center: This family-friendly museum is often crowded with residents and visitors. Its focus is on the exploration of the culture and folks that made Colorado the striking place it is today.
- Kirkland Museum: You can visit this museum and then extend your visit to the nearby Denver Art Museum. Visitors can visit the area the popular artist worked on his well-known abstract. Its international decorative art collection spans every important design period since 1870 and this museum is quite unique from other museums in the city. The Kirkland Museum is organized salon-style, showing everything from chairs designed by Frank Lloyd Wright to Andy Warhol paintings.
There's nothing much to talk about in terms of food specialties in Denver because only a handful of restaurants in the city are pushing the boundaries for most of them are basically into the usual old American fare such as steaks, burgers, and the likes. Although there is not much in the way of culinary diversity in Denver, adept chefs in the city expertly prepare food with some very fresh and local ingredients, which is one of the things the city benefits from.
The torta, Whatnot, tacos, and burritos are some of the usual Mexi-American dishes the locals in this city have a flair for; an influence of the large Mexican population in Denver which explains why Mexican food is very popular. You can't actually find much international food in Denver but it's interesting to know that Denver has some of the best meat in the United States of America. Despite the city's diversity, there isn’t much in the way of ethnic food in Denver but good bites are available for all to enjoy.
Traditional Local Restaurants
Some of the best traditional local restaurants in Denver include;
- El Taco De Mexico Eating: On a busy day, this restaurant has a cosmopolitan queue of different people stretching out the door. The great Menudo, green chile sauce, smothered enchiladas, huevos rancheros, chile Relleno burrito, and the tacos, are all served with sufficient sides of seasoned rice and refried beans. It is a classic place with a home-style cuisine at a cheaper price.
- Jax Fish House Denver: The entire rotating menu items are sustainably sourced. The dishes are so nice that one will wonder if the owner has a secret landlocked marina with offers ranging from crawfish to caviar. Inhabitants who know Jax and crave fresh seafood go there to get it. One doesn't know how it's easy for the owner despite how far Denver is from the Ocean.
Vegetarian and Vegan
Vegetarians and vegans in Denver will be glad to drop by at any of these places for a healthy meal;
- City, O’ City Restaurant: The restaurant dishes up a variety of plant-based brunch items, vegan waffles, and savory coffee. If you're awake as early as 7 a.m., you will find them open and they close around 2 a.m. every day. Usually, it’s difficult to find a healthy spot when you’re craving a late-night snack but this restaurant is making a difference.
- Watercourse Foods Restaurant: Its list comprises outstanding vegan desserts and an all-day breakfast menu with a lot of options to choose from and you'll wish to be at this spot every week. Serving up the goods in Uptown, it's Denver’s most popular fully-vegan spot.
- The Corner Beet Restaurant: The diet and beverages at this restaurant will leave you feeling nourished and refreshed. The restaurant has a variety of flavorful juice that you can pair with an opened-faced sandwich or a delectable salad.
- Radha Govinda's Restaurant: The restaurant's mission is to serve the freshest dishes. This restaurant that lies on the café on Cherry St. has different foods. It serves and rotates an international buffet, it's 100% vegan, but offer mostly Indian dishes. it’s the perfect fusion of spices and sweets.
- Comfort Food & Eco Ethics: It often uses fresh local ingredients and its diets are comforting and savory. It serves breakfast all day and the atmosphere is also comfortable. With the beautiful drawings painted on the walls, it looks like one is a kid's storybook. Their menu is friendly for most people despite that it is a vegan restaurant. Their vegan is served with chicken wings, chicken and waffles, and burgers are outstanding.
Serving everything from Vietnamese cuisine to All-American classics, these food joints on wheels offer a hearty fare for residents and visitors alike, and with a plate from one of them, you can get yourself fueled up before you embark on your quest to explore this awesome city.
- Jessie’s Smokin’ NOLA
- The Pink Tank
- Basic Kneads
- The Crock Spot
- Denver Biscuit Company
- Hey PB & J
- Manna From Heaven
- Quiero Arepas
- The Special
When you speak of drink in Denver, what comes to mind is beer because Denver is considered to be the first in all of the cities in the United States of America that produces more beer by volume.
The tap water in Denver is safe to drink.
If you're looking for organic cafés in Denver, a good one you can trust is the Watercourse Foods. In the year 2012, it reintroduces its focus on offering more "vegan offers" for its patrons and it was initially established in 1998 as a vegetarian restaurant - it has been a healthy fan right since its inception. From French toast and weekend brunch to international plates, Mexican fare, tofu dishes, and vegan benedict, it offers a wide variety of plant-based comfort foods for all.
Brewing in Denver is nothing new and the city is a great place to explore a bustling craft brewing scene, much like the West Coast cities of San Diego, Seattle, and Portland. There’s nothing like a refreshing pint in the Mile High City! So, if you would love to get connected with the burgeoning beer culture of America and enjoy the offerings at the very best spots to tap in American and German beers, the breweries in the city are worth stopping by. Any traveler’s thirst will be quenched by the immense spread of craft breweries in Colorado as it's popularly known to many as the beer state. And, with Denver being its prime location, drinking beer just got better with these breweries!
- Breckenridge Brewery: The brewery has five locations, ships to 32 states now, and it as well retains its reputation as one of Colorado’s most reputable producers of a pint. This little brewpub migrated into Denver in the 1990s. After a long day on the mountain, Richard Squire's ales and porters soon became the town of Breckenridge’s après ski drink of choice for athletes. At a ski bum with a knack for home brewing, he founded the brewery in the 1980s.
- Great Divide Brewing Company: To witness the brewing process firsthand, you can tour the brewery floor. It's a great place to drink for customers who want pints to pack a punch and it specializes in strong beers with an alcohol content greater than 7 percent. Having won 18 awards at the GABF, It’s one of the most decorated breweries in the country. It has been a staple of Denver’s beer scene for 20 years with both brewery and taproom.
- Crooked Stave: From its signature Wild Wild Brett series, you can’t go wrong trying any brew. Bringing a refreshing twist to Denver’s beer scene, Crooked Stave specializes in sour ales. A massive warehouse-like artisanal marketplace, The Source, is the place the brewery recently relocated, and inside it is a coffee roaster and art gallery, the brewery and taproom lie adjacent to a bakery. And, it fits right in with Colorado’s quirky, hipster stereotype.
- Trve: Adhering to Colorado’s laid-back vibe, it doesn’t take brewing too seriously. Its beer is far from boring and its heavy-metal, chaotic atmosphere will leave you feeling anything but ordinary. It's pronounced, "True", and its one clear mission is to provide "a rad place to hang out and drink killer beer."
There's no shortage of awesome things to do in this city and Denver offers a little something for everyone from outdoor adventures and top-notch restaurants to craft-booze crawls and unique museums. This amazing city has a stunning combo of the great outdoors, high-class art, tasty eats, epic sports, and many more. And, if you're looking for interesting activities to do in Denver, here are cool suggestions for you;
- Take a Bike Ride on 85 Miles of Paths
- Set sail in a Pedal Boat on Washington Park's Smith Lake
- Swim With Sharks at Downtown Aquarium
- Explore Natural Wonders at Denver Botanic Gardens
- Walk the Mile High Trail in City Park
- Zoom Through the City on a Scooter
- Shred at Denver Skatepark
- Look for Bald Eagles at a National Wildlife Refuge
- Go kayaking in Confluence Park
- Take a Hot Air Balloon Ride
- Visit an Asian Village Populated by Elephants at Denver Zoo
- Hike and Bike at Red Rocks Park
- Cross the Continental Divide at Rocky Mountain National Park
- Go Whitewater Rafting Just 30 Minutes From Denver
- Take a Thrilling Zip Line Tour
- Drive up 14,000-Foot Mount Evans and Visit Echo Lake
- See Large Carnivores at Wild Animal Sanctuary
Yoga and Retreats
Denver is a city repleted with a lot of fitness enthusiasts and if you seek to imbibe yourself in some yoga practices and retreats, these centers in and around the city offer you a quality opportunity to go yoga;
- Shoshoni Yoga Retreat: One-on-one classes may be scheduled if you want to personalize the retreat. Visitors can explore meditation shrines and hiking trails and relax in the hot tub or sauna during their free time. Vegetarian meals are sourced from the organic gardens on the grounds and two meditation and two yoga classes are offered every day. Guests can stay for a weekend, a night, or more. They invite guests to participate in their meditation retreats and yoga and connect with nature.
- Awakening Together Retreat House: It includes special events as one of what it does and it offers a personal retreat led by one’s inner calling. Apart from enlightened teachings and spiritual communion, the retreat house invites guests for respite and solitude. It lies next to the Wahatoya Lake in La Veta near the legendary Spanish Peaks and the Sangre de Cristo mountain range.
- Mt. Carmel Center: Behavioral health, nutrition and exercise, community wellness, community outreach, and spirituality are the five key areas of a wellness program that they offer in partnership with the Las Animas County Health Department and the Mt. San Rafael Hospital. It is a community center that brings a holistic approach to wellness.
- True Nature Healing Arts: It offers a therapeutic spa, conscious gift boutique, workshops, organic cafe, events, retreats, a full schedule of classes, and a bio-dynamic peace garden. It is a sanctuary for self-discovery, connection, inspiration, and more. True Nature is a little slice of heaven in the Rockies.
Some of the lodges in Denver can be quite expensive but you'll definitely find everything from luxury trailers and B&B to apartments, condos, and hotels. Regardless of the size and shape you want, Denver accommodation caters to whatever suits your taste. Hostels in Denver are of high quality and they're great options to consider if you need to stay in a more affordable place and you're traveling to the city on a budget. You'll be spending about $20-$30 per night if you're staying at one of the hotels in the city and you can oblige to Airbnbs if you crave more privacy. If you want to explore the city by foot and be in the middle of the action at all times, Downtown Denver is where all the important attractions are located and it's the coolest place to book your accommodation. First-time visitors in Denver will have a great time staying here.
There's no shortage of green hotels in Denver;
- Sheraton Denver Downtown: This hotel is acknowledged for its practices and policies that protect the environment and through the Green Key Eco-Rating Program, it has won a 4 Green Key Rating. It has high-efficiency machines in place of traditional washing machines. It makes use of eco-friendly cleaning solutions and chemicals only and it has eliminated the use of plastic bottles with its on-site water bottling program. Some of its efforts include recycling of all fluorescent light bulbs, occupancy sensors in all offices, and energy-saving lighting in all rooms.
- Grand Hyatt Denver: It provides AAA Four-Diamond service and spacious rooms for its guests and as well places them close to Denver’s best. It shares a close proximity to Broncos Stadium at Mile High Stadium, Coors Field, and it's situated one block from the 16th Street Mall. Those who seek to lodge in a green hotel and as well stay in the heart of the city's theater, business, and entertainment districts will find this hotel to be a great choice.
- GreenTree Inn: A business center and free parking are some of the amenities it boasts of. It provides a complimentary weekday newspaper every morning, nearby dining discounts, ice and vending machines, and a complimentary in-room coffee at its Tech Center Hotel. From fast-casual to sit-down, you'll find several dining options within a mile of this hotel. You can stroll the trails of Cherry Creek State Park if you desire to opt for a more relaxed pace, easily access the thrilling Elitch Gardens if you're with your family, or wander through the galleries and shops in Denver’s LoDo neighborhood if you're lodged here. This hotel offers convenient access to the top attractions in the area and it's 20 minutes to downtown Denver.
Hostels and Guest Houses
Do well to check out any of these great hostels in Denver if you are looking for social and budget-friendly hostels or guest houses to stay in when you get to Denver.
- Ember Hostel: It has a Spa, Jacuzzi, and an outdoor fire pit with a fun and social atmosphere. It is a short walk from tourist attractions, clubs, restaurants, bars, and more. It lies at the heart of the Capitol Hill neighbourhood and it's one of the best in the city.
- Hostel Fish: Right around the corners, you will find Voodoo Comedy Warehouse and Jagged Mountain Craft Brewery, and there is as well the nearby Ophelia’s with great food and live music. Its cozy bar serves flaming several classic drinks and it has a friendly ambiance. It has two female-only rooms and eleven themed rooms. It is a five-minute walk from the downtown spots in Denver, it has an interesting history, and it's home to both a brothel and salon.
- Mile High Guest House: Their house activities range from Game Nights and pub crawls to BBQ nights. For a comfortable stay, they have both private and dorm rooms. It is in a lovely Denver neighborhood close to downtown in a renovated mansion.
Those who are interested in getting an apartment in Denver should be aware of the possible high price in rent. As Denver gradually experiences an abundance of new developments with a lot of young people trooping in to find jobs, higher rents have become the norm — all thanks to the increase in population and Denver's strong economy. Finding an apartment in Denver is actually not a difficult thing to do; you can seek help from the locals around you or check online for listings on different websites.
Couchsurfing is a great accommodation option for those who are light on cash or probably traveling on a low budget. With Denver being a young, hip, urban, and desirable place for young minds, your chances of finding a host are high but be aware that most of these hosts tend to be very picky so, it's important that you make a good impression.
Camping is a great way to experience Colorado and there are lots of campgrounds situated near Denver, considering the fact that the city itself is an outdoor wonderland. So, feel free to escape city life and find some much-needed time in nature at these fine campsites close to Denver;
- Cherry Creek State Park
- Rainbow Lakes Campground
- Cold Springs Campground
- Guanella Pass
- Chatfield State Park
- Moraine Park Campground
- Bill Moore Lake
How to Get There
Denver has a world-class airport, and there are numerous rental car agencies, shuttles, taxi services, and luxury automobiles available. While the city lets you relax and see everything in vivid color, you will need to take advantage of available forms of travel that are designed to get you in the city.
Denver International Airport is a popular destination with major domestic carriers and it's a hub for Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, and Frontier Airlines. It's one of the busiest airports in the United States of America and it's about 18 miles northeast of Downtown Denver. Often called the DIA, it has free Wi-Fi, battery charging stations, and plenty of public art displays which make it a pleasant place to kill time.
However, private pilots arriving in Denver tend to fly into;
- Centennial Airport
- Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport
There are several long-distance bus travel services 'such as Burlington Trailways, Bustang, Express Arrow, Greyhound & Autobus Americanos, and Regional Transportation District (RTD) serving the city.
In the San Francisco Bay Area and between Chicago and Emeryville, there's a daily California Zephyr service by Amtrak serving Denver. Though delays seem to be frequent because of the long route, westbound trains leave at 8 AM while Eastbound departures are around 7 PM.
Hitchhiking is actually not considered to be illegal in Denver but emphasis is made on safety so, take precautions if you intend to hitchhike your way to Denver.
With the several linking interstates, driving to Denver from other neighboring cities is quite feasible.
The best ways to get around Denver are on foot or by light rail. However, you'll need to be well-acquainted with Denver’s Regional Transportation District, popularly known as RTD if you’re visiting the city and need to get around town often on the cheap. If you wish, you can choose to visit the Denver International Airport to pick up your own set of wheels and this could be very needful if you plan to travel into the Rocky Mountains. You can get into town by opting for a cab ride which you'll have to pay about $50 to $80, take the light rail University of Colorado A-line, or oblige to RTD's SkyRide bus from the airport.
It's worthy to point out that you can get a better feel for the historic neighborhoods and dodge parking and car rental costs when you rely on the city's public transport system; RTD, and this will also save you the stress of scrupulously navigating unfamiliar streets. Most of the attractions are within walking distance of one another in the downtown area and this is why it's more convenient getting around by foot.
Walkers can share the paths and parks that bikers use but it's essential to stay to the right and also be conscious of riders coming behind you. Most of the important venues in the city can be reached on foot and this is one of the things that makes Denver a delightfully walkable place.
Biking is popular in Denver. As the locals do, you can pick up a bike at Denver B-cycle or rent from any number of local bike shops.
Moving around in an electronic vehicle in Denver is pretty much feasible and it will cost you nothing than to rent one from a car rental company that has one.
As a newbie, you might want to consider using the RTD Trip Planner to help you find your way because navigating RTD's extensive system can be tricky. With buses running almost 24 hours every day, the whole of central Denver and nearby communities are served by over 125 bus routes which are operated by the RTD. Fares are to be paid in cash as you board and depending on if you're riding a regional or a local, you could be paying between $2.60 and $4.50 for a one-way trip.
Tram, Train and Subway
The vending machines found at all light rail stations are where you can purchase single-ride tickets. While rides further afield can cost up to $4.50, one-way trips within one or two zones cost $2.60 — the city is divided into several zones. Fares depend on how far you travel and Denver and its suburbs are served by the city's light rail system.
Opportunities abound to shop sustainably in Denver as there are loads of eco-friendly shops around.
Some of the best food markets in Denver include;
- The City Park Esplanade Fresh Market: It holds on Sundays June through November from 9 A.M.-1 P.M. There are a lot of fresh food vendors in the fun, eclectic urban setting. On Sundays, the agricultural market is perfect for finding the best selections of local growers. It holds at the historic Sullivan Fountain amidst the beautiful and majestic architecture of City Park.
- Old South Pearl Street Farmers Market: It opens from May through October on Sundays from 9 A.M.-1 P.M and the produce comes from some local vendors. It is a nice stroll on Sundays, and usually, guests can find two to three food trucks around. It's a great family-friendly venture.
- The Cherry Creek Fresh Market: You can find yourself enjoying chef events, listening to live music at the festive outdoor market, gaining gardening expertise from Master Gardeners with the best food vendors in the Rocky Mountain area and it's considered as one of the best farmer’s markets in town.
Denver is not only known for its many curated open-air markets and eclectic flea markets but also famous for its farm-fresh produce at its local markets.
- A Paris Street Market: It opens from 8 A.M.-3 P.M. The antique market is perfect for finding retro gems you can’t find anywhere else. Here, you can browse through vintage linens, old and new jewelry. Although it is a small market, you can find a plethora of kitchen items, clothes and handmade art, and garden ornaments. Guests can hunt through hand-picked treasures and unique gems on the first Saturday of every month from May through October.
- Horseshoe Market: It opens from 9 A.M.-4 P.M. on some specific days throughout the year and you'll also find food trucks on site. The curated market of vendors and items offers a colorful environment with a vibrant row of tents. You can find quality handmade items and quality vintage goods here. Horseshoe Market is one of the most versatile flea markets in the city area and it's located at 46th Avenue and Tennyson.
Second Hand Stores
There are lots of places to find gently used treasures in Denver. More and more shoppers are discovering the thrill of the hunt and spending more sustainably by shopping at resale and vintage shops. You’re not alone if you tend to eschew “fast fashion” and big-box stores in favor of thrift and secondhand shops. And, here are a few you won’t want to miss;
- Common Threads
- Plum Consignment
- Déjà Blue
- Regal Vintage
- Goldmine Vintage
- Clotheshorse Consignment Boutique
- Rags Consignment
For your eco-fashion in Denver, you can trust any of these places;
- Lovely Boutique
- Omerica Organic
- Green Logic
- Ten Thousand Villages
Alpine Waste & Recycling is responsible for collecting the recyclables for the city of Denver.
Denver Solid Waste Management (DSWM) is endeared with the responsibility of the collection of municipal solid waste from more than 181,000 households within the City and County of Denver.
Work and Study Abroad
You can work and study in Denver and as a matter of fact, Denver is a notable location for work and study abroad in the state of Colorado.
The exchange student program is run by most of the colleges and universities in the city and each school has its respective requirements that must be met.
Au Pairs are somewhat common in Denver and you're likely to find opportunities around if you search intently.
Volunteering opportunities abound in Denver and here are a few places where you can volunteer;
- Denver Public Library
- Denver Parks and Recreation
- Denver Human Services
- Denver Arts & Venues
- Denver Animal Protection
- Boards and Commissions