best summer vacation in colorado – Summer is the perfect time to marvel at national parks, do outdoor activities, and explore Denver.
Colorado is one of the most beautiful states to visit in the United States. It is famous for being home to the country’s top ski resorts in the fall and winter, but the destination also offers beautiful attractions in the summer.
Andrea Blankenship, Director of International Tourism for the Colorado Office of Tourism, invites Mexicans to visit the state this season.
“People know Colorado for skiing, but we want them to stay in the summer. Summer in Colorado is magical. I think it’s my favorite season, and I recommend experiencing it, ”she says in an interview with Vive USA.
Summer is the perfect opportunity to marvel at the national parks or engage in outdoor activities like rock climbing, biking, horseback riding, and visiting museums.
Even the ski resorts have an attractive tourist offer. Summer transforms Vail into a destination with endless scenery, food festivals, concerts, and kids’ activities. “It’s like an adventure park,” shares Blankenship.
If you’ve been to Colorado before, this is also a great time to come back and enjoy new experiences like glass-roof train tours, going to national monuments, seeing the wildflowers at Yankee Boy Basin, or Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride.
These are five experiences worth visiting Colorado in the summer.
1. National parks
The state of Colorado has truly memorable landscapes: from deserts and forests to endless lands of dunes. If you’re about to visit, take some time to tour its national parks. You will recover the capacity of amazement and return with beautiful postcards in your memory.
There are four national parks:
1) Rocky Mountain National Park is a tribute to the beauty framed by the Rocky Mountains with deep forests, crystal clear lakes, and wildlife.
2) Mesa Verde National Park is very popular in the United States because, for more than 700 years, the ancient Anasazi people built adobe houses, some of which are preserved to this day.
3) Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve was named in 1992 to protect the largest dunes in North America. However, there are also grasslands, forests, and tundra.
The great sand dunes are accessible all year round. You can camp at Piñon Flats, sandboard, scale mountain peaks, and marvel at lakes.
4) Gunnison’s Black Canyon National Park has steep cliffs. It is estimated that this canyon began to form two million years ago when the wind and the Gunnison River eroded the rocks.
It is also an International Dark Sky Park; you can bring your telescope to gaze at the stars. Summer is an ideal season for fishing, hiking, horseback riding, or kayaking.
Summer days in Denver range from hot to rainy. However, when the sky is clear, summer is a great time to explore this city on foot, thanks to its regional trails. Mile High City also boasts more than 5,000 acres of parks and traditional parkways.
The Beer Route and the restaurants in Larimer Square will delight foodies. In addition, there are terraces and bars with spectacular views.
For art lovers, nothing better than visiting the Denver Art Museum, which renews exhibitions every season. Until September 5, 2022, Carla Fernández Casa de Mod presents “A Mexican Fashion Manifesto”. There’s also Modern Women/Modern Vision: Works from the Bank of America Collection with more than 100 images by women artists.
It’s also worth going to Red Rocks Park & Amphitheater, an open-air concert hall built into a rock structure 10 miles from Denver. There is no other in the world like the one that forms naturally here. Concerts, presentations, and fun nights attract tourists from the United States and the world.
Summer is the festival season in Colorado. Some are the Lavender Festival (June 24-26), Pride Festival (June 25-26), Arts Festival (July 1-3), and Street Arts Festival (July 15), among others.
4. Roadtrips and outdoor adventure
Colorado has 26 scenic byways ideal for a road trip to visit historic sites and acres of majestic scenery encompassing “red rock canyons, Rocky Mountain peaks, and sun-kissed prairies.”
5. Train rides
Tourists can experience Colorado’s innermost natural wonders on train rides, including dining, entertainment, and glass ceilings, so you don’t miss any of the scenic postcards.
Those who prefer to learn about the history and culture of the state can also take train rides while enjoying the best wines and beers in the region. In this link, we tell you which are the most popular rides
VAIL AND BRECK ACTIVITIES: SUMMER VACATION IN THE COLORADO MOUNTAINS
Following the water cycle is a good idea to take advantage of summer vacations in Vail and Breckenridge. When the snow melts in the mountains of Colorado, the most famous ski resorts in the Rockies offer activities such as whitewater rafting, stand-up paddle boarding, and hiking accompanied by lakes and waterfalls.
Vail and Breckenridge are two titans in the world of winter sports, with their mountains ranking among the top ten largest ski resorts in America. The duo’s international fame is all about snooty cable cars and après ski, but that doesn’t mean the fun always depends on the snow. In these mountains of Colorado, summer vacations offer water sports, animal watching, and mountain climbing for all levels.
During the warmer months, Colorado ski resorts swap snowboarding and skiing for activities like rock climbing, mountain biking, and hiking.
On land, because if we consider the things that can be done on the water, the offer is doubled. Challenging rapids, calm float dams, and caves that hide waterfalls are some of the summer attractions in the Rockies.
Both Breck and Vail are understood with canoes and stand-up paddle boards. You don’t need to leave the villages to row and float. Colorado’s mountains reveal challenging rivers, little-known lakes, and thundering waterfalls. It’s not for nothing, but people come to Vail and Breckenridge for the winter, but they stay for the opposite.
SUMMER IN BRECKENRIDGE:
STAND-UP PADDLE ON THE ROCKIES
Like many Colorado mountain towns, Breckenridge was born in the mining fever of the 19th century. Canteens with swinging doors, buildings with wooden porches, and pointy boot shops are the legacy of a not-so-distant past. But, of course, the cowboy essence of the place is not at odds with progressive ideas. In Breck, as the locals call it, the Old West lives side by side with rainbow flags, thrift stores, and a devotion to nature.
This corner of the Rockies traded gold for greenery long ago. Even so, Breck’s iconic prints present the connection between mining and nature. Fed by a tributary of the Colorado River, the artificial lake Maggie Pond hides an old open pit mine. You no longer need picks and shovels to profit from your wealth. Instead, renting a stand-up paddle board is enough to float between gold leaves and the highest ski center in the United States.
Summer vacations in Breckenridge combine music festivals, cookbooks from around the world, and plenty of opportunities to see animals that live in the Colorado mountains. In a relaxed plan, a town tour is enough to find parks on the banks of the Blue River and local breweries such as Broken Compass. On the bold side, Breck’s tour offerings include mountain biking, rock climbing, and hiking to climb a fourteener.
SUMMER IN VAIL:
RAPIDS IN GORE CREEK
Breck and Vail are less than 60 kilometers apart. However, Vail’s history has nothing to do with stagecoaches or mines. Instead, it was born as a tourist town. Designed in the 1960s, Vail and its ski resort are enamored with chic shops, monumental wine cellars, and luxury hotels.
In the mountains of Colorado, this corner has a reputation for hedonism. And yes, when it comes to eating, drinking, and sleeping like the nobility, few towns of 5,000 have the same high life as Vail. Behind its alpine-inspired facades, this town hides distant sparkling wines and precious stones, but that doesn’t mean that cashmere kills nylon. A summer vacation in Vail promises as many pleasures as adventures.
The mountain offers bike trails and rope courses, but it is in the town where the summer cools. With Sage Outdoor Adventures tours, the creek that runs along the banks of Vail becomes a descent of class III rapids. It is worth clarifying that the flow of Gore Creek is fed by melting ice and the season lasts only four weeks per year. With Matsuhisa’s apology, wetsuits and paddles are more hotly contested than sushi and sake.
SUMMER IN THE COLORADO MOUNTAINS:
PINEY RIVER RANCH AND SUP ON THE COLORADO RIVER
It’s a fact that you don’t have to leave Vail and Breck to enjoy a summer vacation in the mountains of Colorado. That said, the Rockies take up about half of the state, and this pair of ski resorts are just a taste. Exploring Rocky Mountain National Park and immersing yourself in nature takes several days of travel. Luckily, not far from Breck and Vail are less tame lakes, rivers, and forests.
Piney River Ranch, a private preserve north of Vail, combines wild landscapes and accessible nature. The offer of activities includes canoeing, stand-up paddle, and walks. On a more active note, a 10-kilometer loop through the foothills of the Gore Range reveals the Piney River Falls. The ranch is open in the summer and offers rustic cabins to spend the night, but it also welcomes visitors who come for the day with open arms.
A bit further north, near the town of Bond, Stand Up Paddle Colorado offers stand-up float tours on the longest river in the state. Thanks to its calm flow, the section in the question of the Colorado River lends itself to paddling rapids on a board. In exchange for sacrificing infrastructure, this hermit corner offers unspoiled nature, hardly traveled roads, and natural hot springs. Although it is better not to talk about the latter, locals say that Radium Hot Springs is a secret.
Steamboat Springs, another of the state’s most popular ski and snowboard destinations, can be a winter wonderland in the year’s colder months. Still, summer brings an endless landscape of greenery dotted with vibrant wildflowers. Here, this Wild West town really comes to life, with visitors enjoying fly fishing, inner tubing and rafting on the Yampa River, endless scenic hikes and mountain bike trails, and natural hot springs that are ideal for soothing inflamed muscles. Suppose you can visit in late June/early July. In that case, you can join the legendary Hot Air Balloon Rodeo and Art in the Park Festival, which features an extensive display of colorful balloons and some fifty artist-vendors, entertainment, food and drink dispensers, and an interactive children’s art corner.
CHEAP VACATION PLACES IN COLORADO
Are you looking for cheap Colorado vacation ideas where you can have a great family trip without breaking the bank? From world-class ski resorts and plenty of outdoor adventure activities to cultural attractions and picturesque state parks, you’ll find a little bit of everything on a Colorado vacation on a budget.
You may be surprised to learn that there are so many cheap places to live in Colorado. So many people from neighboring states (such as California and Texas) are moving to Colorado for better, more affordable living. Colorado has so many affordable ski resorts, hotels, and free attractions, and you can save a lot of your hard-earned money when you visit these cheap places in Colorado.
Whether you’re traveling alone, with your family during peak season, or off-season, here’s our list of the cheapest places in Colorado where you can have a ton of fun without burning a hole in your pocket.
Located in San Juan County in southwestern Colorado, this small mountain town, Silverton, is an ideal place to unwind for people longing for an affordable Colorado vacation. Fewer crowds, cheap activities, and a host of inexpensive hotels and cheap scenic campgrounds make it one of the cheapest cities in Colorado.
Silverton offers many recreational activities year-round, from hiking and mountain biking in the summer to skiing and snowmobiling in the winter. The best thing about this mountain town is that Silverton still retains its authentic old charm.
CHEAP OR FREE THINGS TO DO IN SILVERTON
Stroll through Historic Downtown Silverton. This pretty center comprises shops, restaurants, old taverns, museums, beautiful churches, and more.
Hike the 7-mile round trip Ice Lake Trail. It is one of the best hikes in Colorado, offering stunning views of several waterfalls and meadows filled with wildflowers.
Drive down Colorado’s Million Dollar Highway. This historic highway is famous for its scenic route as well as its challenging winding and narrow alleyways.
Explore the old mining towns that are located in remote areas. Anima Forks is one of the best mining towns in the Silverton area.
SUGGESTED BUDGET FOR SILVERTON
Hotel (2 people): $100-150
Are you looking for cheap Colorado vacation ideas? Then, visit Estes Park in Mile High; it’s a hidden gem in Colorado and one of the most popular weekend getaways from Denver. There are many fun and inexpensive things to do in Estes Park, so budget travelers definitely want to visit this place for a weekend adventure.
Plenty of affordable lodging options are available within 2 miles of the park. You can save more on lodging by reserving a campsite at the Estes Park KOA Campground. Book early to save some money for your romantic Colorado cabin getaway.
CHEAP OR FREE THINGS TO DO IN ESTES PARK
The Estes Park Visitor Center should be your first stop after arriving at this park. Local guides get free maps, the latest information, and weather forecasts.
Take a romantic walk with your significant other along the Estes Riverwalk. Along the way, you can also explore the city center.
The Estes Riverwalk eventually meets Lake Estes, where you can walk your dog or ride your bike. See wildlife and fish, and spend some relaxing time with your family.
Discover the ruins of a stone cabin located a short distance from the center. It also offers spectacular views of the Rocky Mountains.
Attend free events and festivals in the city center almost every weekend in the summer.
Drive through the picturesque Peak to Peak Scenic Byway and enjoy the color of the leaves in the fall season.
SUGGESTED BUDGET FOR THIS PARK
CHEAP OR FREE THINGS TO DO IN FORT COLLINS
It is not necessary to buy a ticket to access the free zone of the Fort Collins Museum of Discovery. Instead, see the restored grand piano and learn more about local history by viewing its extensive collection of books, photos, and maps.
If you are a cartoon lover, you can watch the cartoons at Cine Letras from 10 am to noon.
Participate in free events hosted by the Poudre Valley Library District. You’ll find plenty of free events, from story time and special art classes to modern gadgets or website design.
Sign up for free brewery tours and learn about the brewing process in detail from a talented brewmaster. Even you can try on this free tour. New Belgium Brewing Company, Odell Brewing Company, Anheuser-Busch Brewery, and Fort Collins Brewery offer free tours.
Visit the Fossil Creek Reservoir Nature Area to watch for bald eagles. Volunteer teacher naturalists share the history of these eagles and help visitors spot them with binoculars.
SUGGESTED BUDGET FOR FORT COLLINS
The Denver airport is 170 kilometers from Breck and 195 kilometers from Vail. It receives direct flights from cities such as Cancun, Mexico City, Panama, and San José de Costa Rica. The Eagle Regional Airport is 55 kilometers from Vail and offers connecting flights to cities such as Dallas or Denver.
The Sebastian, a member of Preferred Hotels & Resorts, is a luxury classic in the heart of Vail. The Bivvi, a hybrid between hostel and hotel, is an alternative very much in line with the relaxed spirit of Breck.
In Breck and Vail, the distances are short, and public transport is efficient and free. You can get there from the Denver and Eagle airports with a shuttle service. However, if the idea is to get out of the towns and explore the mountains of Colorado, it is necessary to rent a car.
Little Breck produces gin, rum, vodka, and whiskey. The world’s tallest distillery is self-proclaimed; Breckenridge Distillery offers spirits tastings, plant tours, and a devoted BBQ restaurant.
In Colorado, each community legislates on the opening and location of its marijuana stores. At Breck, there’s no place for grass downtown, and there’s no place for grass at Vail, period.
In the United States, they call fourteeners to the mountains that exceed 14 thousand feet in height, something like 4,267 meters. With 58 mountains on the list, Colorado ranks number one. Take it, California and Alaska.
Pocahontas was one of the first Disney movies to be dubbed in two different Spanish. Speaking of rivers and lakes, the song we know as “What will it be? I want to know” in Latin America it’s called “Río Abajo” in Spain. In any case, the Pocahontas story takes place in Virginia and has nothing to do with Colorado.
We hope you enjoy your vacation in Colorado!