Denver is home to many breathtaking places, including the Denver Zoo, Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre, and the Denver Botanical Gardens.
But if you are tired of spending all your time in the city and want to explore something new, you might enjoy a day trip out to some great places nearby.
All you have to do is to get in your car and take a drive to some exquisite places near you.
So, brace yourselves because we have a great list of options for you! Whether you are an outdoorsy person or a soft soul, we can assure you that you will enjoy these 10-day trips from Denver.
Top 10 Day Trips From Denver
Rocky Mountain National Park and Estes Park
Rocky Mountain is one of Colorado’s best national parks at just 90 minutes from Denver.
In winter, the rocky mountain national park is a place with many leisure activities, so go prepared for the cold and fun.
You can choose from snowshoeing, sledging, cross-country, skiing, or if you want to chill out, go for some wildlife watching.
The park roads such as Trail Ridge Road and Old Fall River Road are closed to vehicles during the season; during the off-season, vehicles should watch out for winter driving conditions.
The rocky mountain national park is one of the most popular Denver attractions.
More than the winters, summers would be the best to take in all of the mountains’ beauty. Highway 36 is the most scenic road in the mountains.
Wildlife such as elk, bighorn sheep, moose, bird watching is always up for watching.
Estes park comes along with a rocky mountain, it’s a village right at the entrance, so there is no skipping that. One fun fact about Estes park is shining, which was inspired by the Stanley hotel.
The Pikes Peak
Driving up the winding roads to pikes peak via the pikes’ peak highway or else make use of the shuttle services who know the roads well enough for a thorough ride up the highways.
You can always use the highway for hiking or cycling to your heart’s content. It is known for channeling the western spirit and a viewpoint of Colorado’s beauty.
The mountains act as a scenic background for the beautiful springs of Colorado.
There are alpine views in all directions, such as reservoirs, summits, peaks, and clouds.
There is an annual hill climb event called the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, where experienced racers gather from many places.
One of the best views of Pikes Peak is from the Garden of the Gods as the red rock formations frame the springs making it one of the most beautiful places in America.
Central City/Black Hawk
The black hawk city, made famous for its outdoors, exciting casino gaming, gourmet dining, and relaxing hotels, is perfect for a night or day visit.
Black hawk is known for its mining history set against the Rocky Mountains backdrop. Make use of the free shuttle that travels up and down the main street of black hawk.
The city is also famous for limited stakes gambling and various gaming venues.
Like all parts of Colorado, there are 12 biking and hiking trails.
Of course, do not forget to visit the Central City Opera House for a night of wonderful performances and opera.
Boulder and Nederland are located 17 miles away from each other.
Boulder is known for its fresh outlook on world view.
With the history of mining in Colorado, boulder chose to switch to protecting its flora and fauna.
Meanwhile, Nederland is known for tungsten and silver mining.
The Indian Peaks and James Peak come right after Nederland.
It also hosts a lot of opportunities for fishing.
There is a mining museum located there that shows people what the lives of miners and their families were like.
There is Eldora for your skiing and snowboarding needs.
There are also opportunities for camping and hiking, and even driving tours around Nederlands.
When you visit on the weekend, take your time enjoying live music and try out as many of the restaurants as you can.
Boulder houses the Dairy arts centre, where you can catch dance and theatre performances.
The town of Fort Collins is placed snugly between Denver plains and mountains. It is right before the Wyoming border.
Fort Collins gives the old town’s historic district a visit to a very happening square with bookstores, galleries, shops, and local eateries.
While the name might seem a bit off, it is actually a friendly town that gets many visitors.
Another reason for fort Collins to stand out is that it houses the Colorado state university, which brings a lot of young blood into town.
Usually, all of Denver is a little laid back, but at Fort Collins, there is always something going on.
There are many breweries in town with lots of offers and many sampling opportunities.
If you have a thing for small rustic towns, then Pine is the place to go.
The town is situated amidst the pike national park, a scenic valley with lots of lodging for those who want to stay over.
Deckers is also a tiny village similar to pine in Denver. Like Pine, Deckers also hosts just a few shops and stores.
A specific attraction of Deckers is fishing, as a lot of tourists come down there to try their hand at fishing.
Like all of Denver, biking, hiking and sightseeing are not missed in these towns either.
Deckers also hosts the South Platte River, which is the number one fishing and tubing spot.
The Pike national park is perfect for camping after grabbing a quick bite at Decker’s corner for you and your kids.
This 28-mile scenic has a few things to watch out for, like the terrifying drop-offs without guardrails.
But on a lighter note, if you want to check out the bristlecone pine trees at Mount Goliath Natural Area, it is just on the way for travellers.
Keep note of your hydration levels if you are on your bikes moving up, and pay attention to your brakes along the trail.
Sometimes the Mount Evans scenic byway is not open due to snow and an increase in accidents.
This is a go-to for all Denver locals, especially since it’s just 30 minutes away for some fun in the mountains.
Among the mountains is Clear Creek, which has rapids where you can get inflatable tubes and splash around in the water with your family.
Hiking is another sport for you at Golden, especially if you are a beginner, then the Chimney Gulch Trail is for you, or if you are sure of your hiking skills, then go ahead and give Mt Galbraith Loop Trail a go.
After all, that physical exertion winds down at Golden Moon Speakeasy.
With its lounge-style bar and distillery tasting room, there’s no better way to end your day.
This small pocket city in Denver’s suburbs is known for Coors Brewery and Colorado School of Mines.
One of the other picturesque attractions of Colorado is its high plains.
The eastern plains cover about one-third of Colorado and have an integral place in its history and culture.
As you drive down from Denver through Colorado east via Burlington, you can grab a bite at the I-70 Diner, with its 1950’s décor and friendly staff, it would make you feel right at home.
The beautiful short grass prairie goes on for 40,000 square miles.
During the summers, the heat makes it perfect for you to check out the Jackson Lake and North Sterling State Parks to cool down in the waters.
Eastern Colorado also is ideal for hikers, birders, and horseback riders. As you drive back to Denver during sunset, make sure to keep an eye on the big Colorado sky.
The one-stop destination for passionate skiers! It’s a culmination of 5 major towns/ areas, and of course, it has four world-famous ski resorts.
Summit’s proximity to Denver, its leisure activities, and the amazing resorts make it a trendy tourist spot and also the perfect way to head for a break from Denver.
Even without the snow, summit county has a lot to offer, from a simple mountain getaway or hiking and mountain biking.
At summit county, you can hire a local guide to take you around so that you don’t miss any of that it offers.
It is famous for its winters as well as summer, so anytime you are in Denver, don’t hesitate to drive down here.
Be it the plains, the mountains, or the valleys, these ten-day trips from Denver will give you a load of memories for a lifetime.
There is always a lot you can do in these places to keep your heart and mind healthy.
Remember to follow any guidelines these places may have, and you can enjoy your trips stress-free.
So here’s wishing you a safe and fun journey! We hope you and your family can enjoy these places as much as we loved telling you about them.
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Nikki Ortan | Attractions of America
Nikki is a travel and camping enthusiast currently based in Milwaukee, USA.
She loves exploring beautiful attractions across America which led her to found Attractions of America, a travel site featuring top places to visit in every US state.