The Best Things to Do in and Around Denver, Colorado

Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre hosts everything from concerts to yoga
Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre hosts everything from concerts to yoga | © Ed Buziak / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Daisy Dobson
14 September 2020

Denver is home to world-class craft breweries, sprawling parks and enough indie boutiques to keep the most discerning shoppers happy. Culture Trip’s local insiders share their favorite things to do in and around the capital of Colorado, from the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo to the Glenwood Hot Springs Pool.

Brewery tour

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© Cephas Picture Library / Alamy Stock Photo
Colorado is known for its breweries, with more than 400 throughout the state, and that isn’t counting amateur home brewers. And Denver is an excellent place to take a brewery tour, with its drinking establishments having something to suit every taste, whether you want an IPA or prefer a sour. If you want a DIY day, start at the Briar Common Brewery + Eatery before (sensibly) drinking your way around the neighborhood. For a memorable day out, book an eight-person Pedal Hopper to ride between the breweries. Recommended by local insider Rose Corbett

Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

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The  ferocious American grizzly bear can grow to weigh 400, 500, even 700 pounds. One can observe this robust specimen at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo in Colorado Springs, Colorado
© Alpha Stock / Alamy Stock Photo

Admire giraffes, stroke elephants and watch the rhinos at snack time at this mountainside zoo with a difference. The Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, approximately 76mi (122km) south of Denver, offers top-notch experiences and cherishes its animals. There are plenty of opportunities to get up close and personal with your favorite critter, with feeding and handling pop-ups found throughout the zoo. Take the ski lift for the best views of the Colorado Springs area, and arrive early or late when most of the animals are awake. Recommended by local insider Lily Shipman

Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre

Music Venue, Natural Feature
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© Efrain Padro / Alamy Stock Photo

A natural amphitheater cut into the rocks of Colorado, Red Rocks is a unique venue that hosts high-profile gigs from the latest chart-topping stars, film screenings and even yoga. While it offers some reserved seating, general admission is also available, so show up early if you want to grab a great spot. You can even bring your own food. It can get a little chilly in the evenings, so wear layers if needed. Recommended by local insider Lily Shipman

Glenwood Hot Springs Pool

Swimming Pool
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Therapy pool, Glenwood Hot Springs, Glenwood Springs, Colorado.
© Dan Leeth / Alamy Stock Photo

Coloradans love the Glenwood Hot Springs Pool, which has 15 minerals in its water and is about a two-and-a-half-hour drive from Denver. For more than 130 years, it’s been welcoming people who want to re-energize their sore muscles. In the summer, rent a cabana for the full experience. However, don’t rule out winter – there is something special about the hot springs when it snows. Food is available to purchase, and if you forget a towel, it’s possible to rent one. Recommended by local insider Lily Shipman

South Pearl Street Farmers' Market

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© Goran Bogicevic / Alamy Stock Photo

The South Pearl Street Farmers’ Market is best enjoyed in summertime. Spend the day browsing the stalls of handmade jewelry, CBD-infused products and Colorado-related swag. The market closes at 1pm, so get here early to grab a parking spot – it is a very popular neighborhood – and make the most of your day. There’s plenty of delicious food stalls too, so come hungry. Recommended by local insider Rose Corbett

These recommendations were updated on September 14, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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