11 Best Things To Do in denver, Colorado 2022
Denver, the capital of Colorado, is an American metropolis dating to the Old West era. Larimer Square, the city’s oldest block, features landmark 19th-century buildings. Museums include the Denver Art Museum, an ultramodern complex known for its collection of indigenous works, and the mansion of famed Titanic survivor Molly Brown. Denver is also a jumping-off point for ski resorts in the nearby Rocky Mountains.
- Area: 154.7 mi²
- Weather: 33°F (1°C), Wind N at 3 mph (5 km/h), 80% Humidity weather.com
- Local time: Friday 10:32 PM
- Population: 705,576 (2019)
- Area code: Area code 720
- Mayor: Michael B. Hancock
- Metro population: 2,963,821 (Metropolitan statistical area)
Want to visit Denver but don’t know where to start? This article will tell you about some of the best things to see in Denver (Colorado). When we think of the old west, we never imagine that the city of Denver, in Colorado, is currently one of the most picturesque metropolises in the United States.
It has always been a mandatory visit for foreign and local tourists since the legend of Buffalo Bill was born there; this and other tourist attractions make it a charming place, where they have been inspired for great western film productions. Surrounded by National Parks from Denver, you can access spectacular natural landscapes in just 2 hours by road.
- 1. Visit the Denver Art Museum
- 2. Vibe with professional league sports
- 3. LoDo, Denver’s oldest district
- 4. Shopping and leisure in Downtown
- 5. Bars and restaurants in Denver
- 6. Civic Center Park and Colorado State Capitol
- 7. Denver Botanic Gardens
- 8. Santa Fe Art District
- 9. RiNo Art District
- 10. Try the local beer at Coors Brewery
- 11. Rocky Mountain National Park
- 12. Mesa Verde National Park
1. Visit the Denver Art Museum
The Denver Art Museum – DAM is one of the essential things to see in Denver. Starting with its architecture, the museum has been expanding over the years, constructing several buildings. The most recent and modern, built-in 2006, is the work of the Polish architect Daniel Libeskind, although it could ideally be the work of Frank O. Gehry.
The museum offers the public a vast collection consisting of 9 departments: Architecture, Design, and Graphics; Asian art; modern and contemporary art; Native Arts (African, Oceanic, and American Indian); The new World; Painting and sculpture (European and American); Photography; Western American Art; Textile Art and Fashion. It will undoubtedly be an enriching visit, and if your visit coincides with the first Saturday of the month, access is free!
- Monday-Thursday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
- Saturday-Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Adults: $13.
- Retirees and students: $10.
- Children (under 18): free access.
- Free entry on the first Saturday of each month.
Vibe with professional league sports city of Denver has several teams from different disciplines playing in professional leagues. So, whether you like baseball, football, ice hockey, or are more into basketball, the chances of attending one of these games are pretty high.
You can choose between the NFL’s Denver Broncos, who play at Empower Field at Mile High, and the MLB’s Colorado Rockies, who play at Coors Field. They also have the Denver Nuggets, their basketball team in the NBA league that plays at the Pepsi Center stadium. And finally, with his ice hockey team, the Colorado Avalanche.
2. LoDo, Denver’s oldest district
LoDo -short for Lower Downtown- is the oldest neighborhood in Denver and, at the same time, a modernized area, where you will find art galleries, clothing boutiques, and a large concentration of restaurants, bars, and cafes. Located in the heart of Downtown, it is headed by the iconic Union Station building, Denver’s train station. Another attraction in the neighborhood is the Denver Millennium Bridge, which crosses the train tracks to connect Commons Park with the main commercial artery of Downtown, the 16th Street Mall.
In the LoDo neighborhood, you can also find the MCA Denver -the Museum of Contemporary Art- an essential thing to see in Denver if you appreciate modern art. The museum encompasses a wide range of works by regional, national and international artists. Coors Field is home to the Colorado Rockies baseball team at the eastern edge of the neighborhood. And turning to Downtown, Larimer Square is a bustling nightlife area full of gastronomic venues.
3. Shopping and leisure in Downtown
The Central Business District, popularly known as Downtown, is a bustling commercial area with the 16th Street Mall as its backbone. It is a very long avenue covering about 11 blocks from the LoDo neighborhood to the end of Downtown to touch with Civic Center Park. It is an area where shops and malls such as Denver Pavillion, bars, and restaurants are concentrated.
In addition to the commercial district on 16th Street Mall, between 14th and 15th is full of event and convention halls such as theaters, cinemas, and opera houses. You will find the legendary Paramount Theater. The area is also full of luxury accommodations such as the Four Seasons Hotel Denver (5*), Le Méridien Denver Downtown (4*), Hyatt Regency Denver (4*), or the Sheraton Denver Downtown (4*).
4. Bars and restaurants in Denver
There are many types of bars and taverns in this city, some with a more familiar atmosphere than others but very good. An example of these is the Grizzly Rose set as the Wild West has two mechanical bulls and a dance floor, with a perfect atmosphere to go as a couple and spend a different time. They have live music shows that will make you forget about all your problems enjoying good music.
One of the busiest restaurants in Denver is Solutions, with a more industrial and steam-punk style, offering a slightly more modern alternative without neglecting the rustic character that characterizes the area. It is an attractive option to share with your family or friends, famous for its Escapology game rooms where you have to escape by solving riddles and puzzles. Of course, do not forget to make a reservation through their website.
5. Civic Center Park and Colorado State Capitol
In the Capitol Hill neighborhood, you will find the Civic Center Park, a large green area that serves its locals daily to play sports, walk or have picnics. And that throughout the year, it hosts several celebrations and massive events, such as music festivals, open-air markets, etc. You’ll find the Colorado State Capitol to the east of the park, an imposing neoclassical-style building.
The Capitol and its beautiful dome can be visited for free with a guided tour. From Monday to Friday, every hour from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., there is a tour that starts at the Visitor Services Information Desk (on the first floor in the north part of the building).
- Tour hours:
- From Monday to Friday, every hour on the hour, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
- Free access.
6. Denver Botanic Gardens
Located east of Capitol Hill, you will find the Denver Botanic Garden, a perfect oasis to escape from the hustle and bustle of Downtown. Its almost 10 hectares of gardens, shady areas, flowers, and plants from all corners of the planet, will make your visit a pleasant walk surrounded by color and fresh air.
Do not miss its water gardens, such as the Four Towers Pool or the Monet Pool, two beauties both on a natural and architectural level, or the Asian greens, which provide so much peace and tranquility thanks to their «feng shui.»
- daily from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
- Adults: $15.
- Retirees and students: $11.
- Children (under two years): free access.
7. Santa Fe Art District
Located south of downtown Denver you’ll find the Santa Fe Arts District. It is a street that covers about five blocks from 5th Ave to 10th Ave, ideal for those who love urban art, art collectors, or lovers of handicrafts. You will find many colorful murals along its facades, lots of art galleries, Latin corners, street musicians, restaurants, literary cafes, and much more.
If you need a break after strolling down Santa Fe Drive, you can grab a coffee at Joe Maxx or a beer at Next Stop Brew Co. If you’re interested in murals, in addition to finding them in Santa Fe, I recommend checking out the Love this mural. City” at N Broadway at Park Ave. W or the “…why don’t we boycott killing each other?” at Curtis Street at 21st.
8. RiNo Art District
RiNo Art District is another essential thing to see in Denver for those who love alternative and urban art. Located northwest of Downtown, RiNo – short for River North – includes four historic neighborhoods: Globeville, Elyria-Swansea, Five Point, and Cole. Here you will find coworking spaces, craft shops, art and design galleries, and dozens of gastronomic venues along Larimer Street and its adjoining streets.
If you visit it on the first Friday of the month, you will find “open doors” in many of its premises, with special events and music concerts. Between 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. is when there is more atmosphere. In the Five Points neighborhood, you will also find The Denver Central Market, one of Denver’s most popular fresh produce markets.
9. Try the local beer at Coors Brewery.
Another exciting activity is a guided tour to see the beer production process and taste the renowned brand such as Coors Beer. This tour lasts half an hour, and they teach you from step one in the preparation of the beer to the last step, which is the packaging for distribution.
There is no doubt that for beer lovers, and it is more than a dream to see the entire process of this product, this tour is only for adults with legal permission to drink alcoholic beverages. Be guided through this beautiful experience by the friendly folks at Coors Brewery, and don’t forget to pick up something from the gift shop so you’ll never forget the moment.
10. Rocky Mountain National Park
Just an hour and a half drive from downtown Denver, you’ll find the spectacular Rocky Mountain National Park. If you like outdoor activities, it is perfect to go hiking, whitewater rafting, or spend a night camping.
If you don’t have much time, with this half-day excursion to the Rocky Mountains, it will be enough to appreciate the beauty of these places. The first stop is at the famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre, known worldwide for its massive concerts. You’ll ride the Lariat Loop to Bear Creek Canyon, where you’ll get an up-close look at the boulders. The visit ends with panoramic views and the grave of Buffalo Bill.
11. Mesa Verde National Park
Denver has a host of national parks within a few hours’ drive. Mesa Verde National Park is one of the essential things to see in Colorado. Declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1978, it is a protected area of 212.40 square kilometers, located in Moctezuma County in the southwest of Colorado.
It has structures from the ancient Anasazi civilization and still preserves many of the architectural evidence of these inhabitants, which makes it unusual and attractive. You will also enjoy a diverse fauna.
Is there anything fun to do in Denver?
- Visit Rocky Mountain National Park. …
- Go on the Denver Foothills Tour to see Red Rocks Amphitheatre. …
- Visit Mount Evans Scenic Byway. …
- Discover Pikes Peak and the Garden of the Gods. …
- Denver Botanic Gardens. …
- Denver Zoo. …
- Downtown Aquarium. …
- Denver Museum of Nature & Science.
What should I not miss in Denver?
Denver bucket list: 9 things you can’t miss
- Red Rocks Amphiteatre.
- Crawford Hotel, Denver.
- Coors Brewery Tour | Flickr CC: daveynin.
- Mt. Evans Scenic Byway is the GOAT.
- Historic Larimer Square in Denver, Colorado.
- The Denver Art Museum | Flickr CC: Ray Tstang.
- Elitch Gardens | Flickr CC: RLEVANS.
- Source Hotel + Market Hall.
What to Do in Denver When You’re bored?
FOOD + DRINK
- Eat at Illegal Pete’s.
- Take a picture in front of the neon sign at Urban Farmer.
- Have a drink + play a game of shuffleboard at Union Station.
- Go wine Tasting at Balistreri Vineyards.
- Eat at an old mortuary.
- Eat at a Frank Bonanno Restaurant.
- Go on a brewery tour.
- Watch the cliff divers at Casa Bonita.
How can I spend one day in Denver?
You’ll visit some of Denver’s charming neighborhoods, stroll the 16th Street Mall, admire art in a museum of your choice, and visit the Civic Center monuments.
- 16th Street Mall. …
- Lunch. …
- Pick a Museum. …
- Colorado State Capitol. …
- Denver Public Library. …
- Denver Civic Park.
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