Visitor Center: 1575 California Street, Denver, CO 80202
Situated in the South Platte River Valley, this modern city draws openness from the Great Plains to the east and features spectacular Rocky Mountain views to the west. Residents of this mile-high landscape (Denver is exactly 5,280 feet above sea level, or one mile high; 1.6 km for our metric friends) are noted for their sunny dispositions and can-do attitudes.
Easy Access & Walkability
Getting to Denver is easy, thanks to the efficient Denver International Airport (DEN), one of the largest connecting airports in the world. From there, it’s a short, effortless trip on the airport train to Denver Union Station in the heart of downtown. Arriving at Union Station, visitors are greeted with an opulent and fully restored 1914 Beaux-Arts train station, home to swanky bars, restaurants, shops and a boutique hotel. In wintertime, skiers and snowboarders can take the Winter Park Express ski train from the station to the mountains for a unique ski-in, ski-out experience (runs seasonally, Saturdays, Sundays and first Fridays Jan. 5–March 25, 2018). From Union Station, access downtown on foot, by bike, or on the free 16th Street Mall shuttle.
Walk to your heart’s content around Lower Downtown (LoDo) or get your heart pumping by checking out a bicycle from Denver B-cycle, Denver’s citywide bike-sharing system. Explore numerous nearby cultural attractions like the Denver Art Museum, Clyfford Still Museum and the History Colorado Center. With more than 10,000 hotel rooms in the downtown area, and more than 45,000 metro wide, there’s plenty to choose from at all price points.
A Foodie Paradise
Denver is also a hub for chef-owned restaurants. Stroll among the Victorian buildings and boutique shops of Larimer Square and take your pick of culinary talent, then indulge yourself with the many offerings from locally sourced products. Denver is at the forefront of the food hall revolution, including Avanti F&B, where seven rotating casual dining concepts share space with two craft bars and a patio with spectacular views of downtown; The Source, an artisan market housed in a former ironworks foundry; and Central Market, where visitors will find nearly a dozen providers serving everything from wood-fired pizza and charcuterie to fresh-baked breads and gourmet chocolates.
If you really want to explore Denver, delve into its diverse neighborhoods. The River North Art District (RiNo) is “where art is made,” riding a wave of urban revival with art galleries, craft breweries, restaurants and eye-popping street art on nearly every corner. Cherry Creek, just 5 minutes from downtown, is Denver's premier shopping neighborhood with everything from independently owned boutiques on 16 charming blocks in Cherry Creek North to popular upscale brands in Cherry Creek Shopping Center and the nearby Denver Botanic Gardens. Close to downtown is the trendy Highlands neighborhood with Victorian-era homes, hip restaurants, lush gardens, art galleries and a famous ice cream shop in a giant milk can. The Art District on Santa Fe is a haven for art lovers with more than 60 art galleries and colorful murals, highlighting the neighborhood’s Hispanic roots. Uptown has a long stretch of cafés, bistros and pubs with outdoor patios near the city’s largest greenspace, City Park, which also houses the Denver Zoo and Denver Museum of Nature & Science. And in Five Points, the music of jazz legends transcends local clubs. Now it’s a fusion of old and new with coffeehouses, breweries, museums and beloved barbecue institutions.
Thriving Beer Culture
Denver is also known for something other than its high altitude: beer. With more than 100 breweries and tap rooms in the metro area, there is endless variety from pale ales, one-off firkins and daring ingredients, created by a community of passionate artisans crafting some of the most adventurous beers in the country. The Denver Beer Trail, a collection of nearly 30 of Denver’s top beers, can be your guide to this hoppy heaven.
Famous Music Scene
Denver’s music scene has produced big rock bands like the Fray, OneRepublic and the Lumineers. On any given night, you'll find talented artists playing a vast array of genres in clubs throughout the metro area. And at the top of every music lover’s bucket list is Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Just 15 miles from downtown, see gorgeous sandstone monoliths that buttress the iconic stage and go for a hike on the trails in the surrounding park. While you’re at it, take a moment to enjoy sweeping views of the Denver skyline.
The Sporting Life
Home to the three-time Super Bowl-winning Denver Broncos, Denver is as sports-crazy as you think. Three downtown stadiums for football (Broncos), baseball (Colorado Rockies), basketball (Denver Nuggets) and hockey (Colorado Avalanche) means you can catch a game and then head out on the town with ease. And of course, if you come looking for outdoor recreation, you won’t be disappointed. The city offers miles upon miles of paved off-road trails that connect to a vast array of dirt trails and mountain-bike adventures. Indoor and outdoor adventure parks showcase extreme sports — from the Downtown Denver Skatepark to Ruby Hill Mountain Bike Park. The nearby Rocky Mountains boast hiking excursions, rafting, world-class ski slopes and wildlife. Rocky Mountain National Park, one of the top outdoor destinations in the world, is just a 90-minute drive from downtown.