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The place to Eat, Keep, and Play

At 5,280 toes above sea degree, the Mile Excessive Metropolis affords tradition, historical past, galleries, nice eating places, and brewpubs. A weekend in Denver is the proper strategy to pattern what town has to supply. Denver is called the Napa Valley of craft beer, it’s the place consuming and consuming rank up there with biking and mountaineering.

With a backdrop of the snow-capped Rocky Mountains, Denver labored its magic on me greater than three a long time in the past, and I’ve known as it dwelling ever since. It’s enjoyable for me to brag concerning the Mile-Excessive Metropolis and its eateries, brewpubs, neighborhoods, and almost on a regular basis sunshine. I would like guests to like my metropolis as a lot as I do.

So, order an IPA and prepare to smile.

weekend in denver
The place to Eat, Keep, and Play 131

Nuts and Bolts for Your Weekend in Denver

The skinny air within the Mile Excessive Metropolis could make guests really feel light-headed. Keep in mind to hydrate! It’s possible you’ll wish to do this electrolyte drink combine that helps you acclimate to the altitude. The altitude may improve the results of alcohol. One Wynkoop Railyard Ale can equal two at sea degree. Denver eating apparel is informal, and denims are acceptable in any respect however the most interesting eating places. Neighborhoods like RiNo, Cherry Creek, and Lowry are straightforward 10-15 minute drives or Uber from downtown.

Go to Denver is the very best useful resource for extra info.

Map of My Advisable Weekend in Denver Spots

To make your time in Denver simpler, right here’s a map you should use to get round with my favourite spots listed. You’ll see that not every little thing is downtown. As a substitute, I wish to encourage guests to department out and transcend the traditional stops in downtown Denver. In any case, that’s how the locals do it!

Day One In Denver – Downtown is The place it’s At

Morning – Location, location, location

Begin your weekend in Denver at Union Station, at 17th and Wynkoop Streets. Exploring a prepare station could not sound rousing, however Denver’s “lounge” is an exception. The open-air, historic centerpiece of Denver affords the very best in people-watching, eating, consuming, and lodging. Union Station underwent a significant transformation and renovation in 2012 and opened to tremendous critiques in 2014.

Verify into Union Station’s Crawford Lodge with rooms which are small however well-appointed. Then discover the station, with retailers to browse together with a small model of Denver’s well-known Tattered Cowl Guide Retailer, the place they often provide blissful hour and encourage buyers to convey a cocktail into the shop and get a reduction on books. Throughout the holidays, a 40-foot tree with some 7,000 lights fills the atrium of Union Station.

Start your day at both Mercantile or Snooze an A.M. Eatery, each wildly in style in Denver. Snooze has a number of places in Denver, and there’s a line across the nook for every.

Eating places in Union Station vary from primary to dear. My husband and I like to sit down in a big picket sales space with a basic bacon burger and a craft beer on the Terminal Bar. You’ll additionally discover one other favourite, Stoic and Real. It’s possible you’ll not even discover the octopus graphic on the partitions, since you’ll be digging into the Thai inexperienced curry mussels or lobster roll. Curious concerning the identify? The 2 house owners described their personalities in a phrase, and Stoic and Real have been born.

Verify costs and availability for The Crawford Lodge at Union Station | Learn critiques for The Crawford Lodge on Journey Advisor | Seek for different accommodations in Denver

Afternoon – Calling All Foodies

Meals excursions are among the finest methods to get to know and meet different vacationers. Scrumptious Denver Meals Excursions is my favourite. My buddy Donna and I joined this husband/spouse firm on a tour of a few of Denver’s most attention-grabbing eateries in 2019.

At the same time as a neighborhood I realized about eating places I hadn’t been to, like Biker Jim’s.

As we walked into Biker Jim’s, onions sizzled in a big skillet within the open-air kitchen, and the place buzzed with individuals laughing, consuming, and speaking motorbikes. And, sure, Jim is an actual individual. He initially owned a scorching canine stand on Denver’s sixteenth Avenue mall and located fame after Anthony Bourdain (RIP) stopped on the stand and devoured a canine on his present No Reservations. The record of kudos for Biker Jim’s consists of being voted the very best Colorado scorching canine, by Folks journal.

Our group had a lot enjoyable on the tour that half-hour after the tour ended, we have been nonetheless hanging out and exchanging e mail addresses.

In 2021, Denver Scrumptious Meals Excursions served over 7,000 visitors, and since 2017, they’ve spent $500,000 at native eating places and bars. Costs run between $69-$100 per individual and the assembly level is walkable from Union Station. Excursions final three hours. Additionally they have a night cocktails tour, a RiNo meals tour, and a Saturday wine stroll. Donna liked the tour a lot that she purchased present certificates for her household.

Different Denver Meals & Beverage Excursions

Afternoon Tradition – Books and Artwork

Photo of Free Shuttle Ride in downtown Denver
RTD’s free mall journey on Denver’s sixteenth Avenue Mall (Picture by Sherry Spitsnaugle)

After the meals tour, catch the free 16th Avenue Mall shuttle to Broadway and stroll two blocks south by way of Civic Heart Park to 14th Avenue. Denver Artwork Museum is on Bannock. The newly reworked museum opened to the general public in June 2020. With $175 million in renovations, the museum dazzles.

Uncover all of the enjoyable issues to do in Denver

DAM is situated subsequent to Denver Central Library with its personal newly reworked Youngsters’s Library and famend Western Historical past & Family tree Division that pulls students and historical past buffs from all over the world. The Central Library is present process its personal main renovation so some flooring are closed to the general public; nevertheless, many providers are nonetheless obtainable. The museum and library anchor the Golden Triangle neighborhood.

Night – RiNo and Rhino Artwork

Your weekend in Denver simply obtained even higher. RiNo (River North) is the vacation spot this night. The very first thing to find out about River North is that to get there, it is best to bike, Uber, or Lyft. There’s development on seemingly each road and little parking. In addition to, you’ll have had an alcoholic beverage this afternoon, and you’ll take pleasure in one other with out getting behind the wheel.

River North is Denver’s latest and trendiest group and has all of it: galleries, meals courts, jazz golf equipment, breweries, espresso roasters, wine-makers…and rhinos.

Search for rhino artwork and murals as you stroll the streets of this group that Lonely Planet named one of many high ten neighborhoods to go to within the U.S. Or try this Denver strolling tour that features each road artwork AND beer stops!

Dine at Safta, situated within the Supply Lodge and Market Corridor. Safta serves a mix of Israeli and Mediterranean delicacies. Opened in 2018, Safta’s hummus is a world away from what you’ll have eaten from a plastic container. Pita bread is constituted of flour bought from a farm in Kansas (you’ll scent the beautiful aroma of wood-fired pita earlier than you arrive). Safta is the phrase for grandmother in Hebrew, and Chef Alon Shaya named the restaurant for his beloved NaNa. There’s even a NaNa martini.

Day two in Denver – Try the Close by Neighborhoods

Most Denver itineraries don’t transcend the downtown and RiNo space, however as a neighborhood, I wish to take you additional and discover among the hidden gems that solely the locals find out about!

Morning – North Cherry Creek for Excessive-end Retail and an Reasonably priced Burger

You might spend hours or weeks exploring the boutiques, galleries, and high-end shops in Cherry Creek North. Start your day at Aviano with an espresso or chilly brew, pastry, and people-watching. This woman-owned store with its trendy design and prime location is a neighborhood favourite

Sign that reads Cherry Cricket
The signal on the Cricket could have seen higher days, however this place brims with character. And good beer and burgers (Picture by Sherry Spitsnaugle)

Lunch is at Cherry Cricket, a vigorous native bar with 20 decisions of beer together with Guinness on faucet. The cricket burger and hen wings are crowd-pleasers. The always-packed Cricket is within the coronary heart of the motion in Cherry Creek North and was voted Finest Burger in 2021 by 5280 journal readers. If you wish to take it up a notch, there’s additionally North or True Meals, which each have patios subsequent to the sidewalk.

Cross the road from Cherry Creek North to First Avenue and enter Cherry Creek Procuring Center, one in every of Denver’s high vacationer locations, which brings in some sixteen million guests a 12 months. With Neiman Marcus, Luis Vuitton, Saks Fifth Avenue, and dozens upon dozens of outlets and eating places, you’ll discover no drawback spending time-–and cash—right here.

Afternoon – Pedal the Metropolis

Mile Excessive Bike Excursions leads riders on excursions round Denver’s neighborhoods on three-speed cruisers. Teams are ten individuals or fewer and also you’ll bike about 9 miles, so it’s a reasonably gentle day. Guides take riders on the superb bike path system in Denver. Wheel Enjoyable Leases has nice cruisers to lease for the complete household for those who favor to do a tour by yourself. They provide info for a wonderful self-guided tour that takes you from their location at Metropolis Park by way of city through the Cherry Creek Bike Path.

If bicycling doesn’t sound good, go to REI, an outside recreation retailer that’s a vacationer attraction all by itself. The flagship retailer is situated on the Platte River at Confluence Park, west of downtown. REI has an indoor climbing route designed to resemble Boulder’s Flatirons.

On the lookout for someplace to remain in Denver? Verify costs and availability for The Ramble Lodge | Learn critiques for The Ramble on Journey Advisor | Seek for different accommodations in Denver

Afternoon – Salute a Gin & Tonic in Former Lowry Airforce Base (simply following orders)

Lowry, a neighborhood a 15-minute drive from downtown Denver, has eating places, a beer backyard, and one in every of my favourite locations, Copper Door Espresso Roasters. Proprietor Hanna Ulbrich, grasp espresso roaster, is aware of her caffeine and is obsessed with her product. She even chairs the U.S. Espresso Roasting Committee.

Previously Lowry Airforce Base, the Lowry neighborhood celebrates the historical past of the bottom with locations just like the Officers Membership. My buddy Donna and I began going to the Officers Membership mid-pandemic. It grew to become habit-forming, and now, you could find us on the “membership” about as soon as every week. Right here, you will get the very best gin and tonic of your life. Merely known as “The Gin,” the efficiency of this good concoction is within the ice cubes. Made with top-shelf gin with a contact of lavender, you’ll salute this cocktail.

Officers Club in Lowry
Have a drink on the patio on the Officers Membership within the Lowry neighborhood as a part of your weekend in Denver (Picture by Sherry Spitsnaugle)

Different cocktails embody the “Flyboy,” (gin, lemon juice, lavender) or “Main’s Drugs,” (rum, pineapple, and orange juice served in a tiki glass). The “O Membership” additionally makes a wonderful Previous Usual and has a year-round, flower-filled patio. The Basic’s bacon burger additionally instructions a salute.

Night – Larimer Sq.

Larimer Sq., situated between Fourteenth and Fifteenth Streets on Larimer, was as soon as a disreputable and derelict space. At present, refurbished brick Victorian buildings, flower baskets, and stylish cafés fill the oldest block in Denver.

Table covered with white linens and holding two cocktails with view of Larimer Street
Capital Grille serves glorious gin and tonics when you watch individuals stroll by on Larimer Avenue (Picture by Sherry Spitsnaugle)

It’s laborious to determine between my two favourite eating places in Larimer Sq.: The Capital Grille and Bistro Vendome.

With wealthy, basic décor and impeccable service, Capital Grille exudes a clubby vibe. Enterprise lunchers energy up on steak or lobster bisque, however my favourite factor to do is sit on the patio on a heat (or chilly, doesn’t matter) night and feast on their basic burger. Because the pandemic, the road is blocked to automobile site visitors, so you possibly can watch the parade of individuals strolling by sporting every little thing from night robes and stilettos to denims and cowboy boots.

Bistro Vendόme is like your individual little nook of Paris. Tucked in a nook simply off Larimer Avenue, the bistro serves quiche with black truffles for brunch, steak tartare, escargot, and salmon grilled with artichokes, capers, and sun-dried tomatoes. Search for the pink awning. Oui.

For dessert, Wednesday’s Pie is a hidden treasure in Larimer Sq.. Search for stairs that lead right down to pie heaven. Right here, you possibly can order a slice of do-it-yourself pie, similar to Grandma made, and savor it on the spot on this little place with a classic really feel and checkered flooring. Why Wednesdays? Initially, the pie place was open solely Wednesdays. Luckily, you possibly can enjoyment of a bit of chocolate peanut butter pie any–or each–day of the week.

Extra Sights on your Denver weekend

Meow Wolf, the four-story immersion artwork exhibition, opened in Denver in September 2021 and has created a enjoyable stir, in its extraordinary manner. You simply should go to see for your self.

Denver Heart for Performing Arts (DCPA) brings Broadway to Denver. Until you wish to see Hamilton or The Lion King, tickets are straightforward to return by. The DCPA additionally affords smaller, however glorious reveals resembling “Rattlesnake Kate.” 

Stanley Market is a former aviation manufacturing unit turned collective with greater than 50 retailers and eating places beneath one roof. You’ll discover every little thing from a cooking faculty to the Denver Biscuit Co. to Candy Cow Ice Cream. Technically, Stanley Market is situated in Aurora, however it’s only a stone’s throw from Denver.

When you’re on the town in January, the Nationwide Western Inventory Present, billed as the very best 16 days in January, is the place to see rodeo at its most interesting. The Grand Champion steer takes middle stage within the foyer of the Brown Palace, the identical place the place visitors collect for prime tea.

The place to Keep in your Weekend in Denver

Lobby of Hotel Clio in Cherry Creek
The foyer of Lodge Clio in Cherry Creek North (Picture by Sherry Spitsnaugle)

If you wish to spend the evening in Cherry Creek North, Lodge Clio is the place. A part of the luxurious assortment of Marriott, Lodge Clio is within the location previously occupied by JW Marriott. Even the air smells pretty within the lodge, and the service is impeccable. Friends could take part a contented hour day-after-day at 4 p.m., with epicurean themes resembling nice guac with the Chef or Latin wine-tasting.

Verify costs and availability for Lodge Clio | Learn critiques for Lodge Clio on Journey Advisor | Seek for different accommodations in Denver

The historic Brown Palace and Spa, Autograph Assortment, downtown Denver, embraces guests with allure. Ship Tavern serves their well-known prime rib, or you possibly can “take tea” within the lodge’s beautiful atrium foyer the place visitors sip correctly steeped Earl Gray in a Bone China teacup and nibble dainty sandwiches and scones with Devonshire cream.

Denver Brown Palace
Brown Palace

Verify costs and availability for The Brown Palace Lodge and Spa | Learn critiques for The Brown Palace on Journey Advisor | Seek for different accommodations in Denver

Extra Denver Consuming and Eating Choices

Deviation Distilling is situated within the non-public alley of Dairy Block. (Enter the alley off of 18th or nineteenth Streets) House owners Cindi and Bob Wiley are obsessed with their craft and what they do. This husband-and-wife staff excels at not solely the product however making visitors really feel welcome. Deviation doesn’t serve meals, however visitors can convey their very own.  Pizza, a charcuterie tray, or a burger and bag of chips are all advantageous. When you’re there try Deviation Distilling’s coffee-flavored whisky.

Wynkoop Brewing Firm. This place hops. Former Denver Mayor (and Governor, now Senator) John Hickenlooper based this brewpub in 1988. The Wynkoop brews glorious beer and serves basic pub grub, together with burgers, fish and chips, and shepherd’s pie.

Denver RINO street art
The place to Eat, Keep, and Play 132

And now for an actual native hidden gem – Magill’s World of Ice Cream, situated in a small strip mall in Lakewood, is a 15-minute drive from downtown Denver. You received’t discover this on another Denver Weekend record! To expertise a store that feels prefer it’s proper out of the Fifties, that is it. My sister, niece, and 13-year-old great-niece go to Magill’s about as soon as a month throughout winter and some instances every week in the summertime months. When temps are scorching, the road stretches out the door.

Examine Ottsworld’s favourite distinctive issues to do in Denver – this isn’t the traditional record you see in every single place else!

Servers dish out big scoops of do-it-yourself deliciousness. For a nostalgic really feel, sit in one of many cubicles. Magill’s celebrated 40 years of enterprise in 2021, and it appears like they haven’t completed a lot if any, reworking since they opened. The lots approve. That features my 13-year-old great-niece who likes to order a scoop of double darkish chocolate fudge crunch and a scoop of rocky street. My private favourite is 2 scoops: mango sorbet and vanilla bean.

Cuba Cuba Cafe & Bar is a little bit of Havana in Denver and is located in two Caribbean-style houses painted in crayon colours with a steel palm tree close to the doorway. A superb buddy and I consider Cuba Cuba as our place and meet right here a number of instances a 12 months to catch up. One sip of the signature mojito, the cocktail that originated in Cuba with rum, lime, sugar, and mint leaves, and I really feel higher already. Cuba Cuba serves plantains and scrumptious black beans and rice. (I don’t understand how a easy dish like black beans and rice will be extraordinary, however it’s.) Add a killer mojito and stir.

photo of restaurant named Cuba Cuba with sign in front for dining option for weekend in Denver
Cuba Cuba serves glorious rice and beans. And mojitos! (Picture by Sherry Spitsnaugle)

Shanahan’s Steakhouse in Denver’s Tech Heart is a few 15 to 20-minute drive or journey from downtown Denver however the service and steaks are well worth the time and $$. My rancher cousin and his spouse from western Kansas and my husband and I dined at Shanahan’s in January. My cousin—who is aware of a scrumptious, succulent steak—mentioned it was the very best he’d ever eaten. Shanahan’s entertains Denver’s movers and shakers, and Mike Shanahan makes the occasional go to.

Extra Denver Day Excursions To Verify Out

The Finest Time to Go to Denver for a Weekend Getaway

Denver Capital Building
State Capitol

Despite the fact that winter sports activities appeal to throngs of tourists to Colorado, my favourite months in Denver are the hotter months, when eating exterior is wonderful and evenings are lengthy. Temperatures are typically gentle between April and October, though we are able to most undoubtedly get chilly and snow. If there may be snowfall, it often disappears by the next day.

Tips on how to Get Round Throughout Your Weekend in Denver

Denver union station
Denver Union Station RTD

Denver is a walkable, bike-friendly metropolis. That’s the easiest way to get the texture of a spot anyway. When it’s worthwhile to Uber or Lyft to a vacation spot, you received’t have any points, except it’s a day when the Denver Broncos play. Then, you may need some competitors. Attending to Union Station from Denver Worldwide Airport obtained simpler as soon as the Denver Airport Rail opened in 2016. The A-Line connects vacationers from DIA to its closing cease at Union Station in about 40 minutes. An Uber or Lyft takes about the identical period of time, however the prepare is cheaper and extra enjoyable.

Discover these Denver hikes for guests

Denver Guidebooks for Even Extra Info

Try the next guidebooks for extra details about Denver and the Rocky Mountains. I personally know every of those authors, who’re locals and love Denver as I do. They’ve stellar reputations in addition to good style in IPA. That’s you, Wealthy Grant. Along with his guidebook he co-authors with Irene Rawlings, Grant writes the weblog Strolling and Consuming Beer. Rely me in.

100 Issues to Do in Denver Earlier than You Die, by Wealthy Grant and Irene Rawlings. Now in its second version, this e book will steer you in the appropriate course. Grant, former director of communications for Go to Denver, is aware of his beer and his metropolis. Rawlings’ credentials embody writing for publications that embody Hemispheres and Nationwide Geographic Traveler and internet hosting an award-winning present on iHeartMedia radio.

60 Hikes inside 60 Miles: Denver and Boulder, together with Fort Collins and Rocky Mountain Nationwide Park, by Mindy Sink. Writer Sink isn’t solely a neighborhood however an knowledgeable hiker and author. This e book will lead you to scenic overlooks, well-loved hikes, and unknown trails.

Distinctive Eats and Eateries of Denver, by Chad Chisholm, affords beautiful images (Chisholm is a industrial photographer) and enjoyable descriptions. The headline for Saucy Noodle reads, “When you don’t like garlic, go dwelling!”

The place to Go Past Denver

In fact, you wish to get out and discover these lovely Rocky Mountains surrounding Denver! You’ll want to try these 7 day journeys from Denver for journeys deep into the mountains and again!

Denver Blue Bear

Pikes Peak Grandeur

Colorado Springs is simply an hour’s drive south of Denver on I-25 and isn’t your grandfather’s Colorado Springs. Brewpubs, eating places, and an impressive panorama could shock right now’s guests. Nature offers lots of the enticements that lured explorers way back and captivate guests right now.

Zipline over Seven Falls with Broadmoor Outfitters, journey horseback or Segway by way of Backyard of the Gods, or discover caves at Cave of the Winds with Adventures Out West. As a child, I skilled all these points of interest after I traveled with my mother and father and siblings from our dwelling in western Kansas to “the Springs,” however by no means through horse, zipline or Segway.

Verify into the elegant, AAA 5-diamond Broadmoor or the centrally situated Wyndham property (with a spa!) Mining Change. One other enjoyable possibility is Kinship Touchdown, which has a custom-made discovery desk with maps to plan your journey weekend in addition to lovely hand-crafted wooden furnishings. The Broadmoor’s Fly-Fishing Camp blends world-class fly-fishing with luxurious and wilderness. Right here, visitors fish for rainbow trout with an knowledgeable information.

Verify costs and availability for Kinship Touchdown | Learn critiques for Kinship Touchdown on Journey Advisor | Seek for different Colorado Springs space accommodations

Go to Pikes Peak Area for extra details about Colorado Springs.

Summer season in Vail

Vail village
Vail Village

June by way of August are wonderful months to go to Vail Village, which seems like a replica of an enthralling ski city in Bavaria. Mountainside chalets and enormous picket clock spires, with the occasional glitterati sighting, make up this city 100 miles west of Denver.

Verify into the Tivoli Lodge, situated within the coronary heart of Vail Village, and discover the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, or attend the Vail Worldwide Dance Pageant or Bravo! Vail Music Pageant, within the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheatre, situated subsequent to Gore Creek. Attending to Vail from Denver is straightforward on Bustang, a roomy coach with restrooms, massive home windows, and better of all, knowledgeable driver.

Verify costs and availability for Tivoli Lodge | Learn critiques for Tivoli Lodge on Journey Advisor | Seek for different accommodations in Vail

Be sure to spend a day in Vail’s hidden secret – Piney River Ranch!

piney lake vail canoe rental
Piney River Ranch

Go to Vail Summer season for extra details about Vail.

5 Journey Necessities to Tackle Each Journey

Klean Kanteen 16oz (w/ Café Cap)

One of many issues I like about Klean Kanteen is that they’ve a system the place you actually simply have to buy one insulated bottle after which use their interchangeable caps on your totally different wants; caps for sipping drinks, straws lids for chilly drinks, or chug caps. One bottle is de facto all you want!

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09/28/2022 12:05 am GMT

My high decide

Journey Important

Eagle Creek Packing Organizers

Packing organizers are the important thing to packing happiness – they flip your bag into a bit of furnishings. I take advantage of mine to prepare my several types of garments, similar to I might a dresser; one has t-shits, one has pants, one has sweaters. You get the thought – it’s packing bliss. I take advantage of and love Eagle Creek packing options.

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Favourite Model – Girl Owned

Wallaroo Hats

I like all of their types and usually at all times have a minimum of 2 of their totally different hats with me on each journey I take! All of their types provide excellent solar safety. The Pores and skin Most cancers Basis recommends the fabric of each Wallaroo hat with a UPF score and a 3+ inch brim as an efficient UV protectant. Plus – they’ve so many modern types!

Use my Low cost code, OTTSWORLD20, for an additional 20% common priced gadgets!

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Peak Design Tech Pouch

Whether or not storing cables, on a regular basis gear, or journey necessities, Tech Pouch affords unequalled group and ease of entry. Origami-style pockets create huge spatial effectivity, letting you pack extra right into a smaller area whereas preserving your gadgets neatly organized and simple to seek out.

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Sherry Spitsnaugle writer

Meet the Writer: Sherry Spitsnaugle has lived in Denver for 3 a long time and is the writer of 4 editions of Fast Escapes Denver, 25 Weekend Getaways in and across the Mile-Excessive Metropolis. Sherry is a guidebook writer, journey author, spouse and canine mother, first expressed her urge to discover at age 4 when she packed up her little pink wagon and took off for an journey— across the block. At present, she continues to meet her journey bug tendencies, exploring and writing about her experiences.
Instagram: sherryspitsnaugle



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