Boulder and North Central Colorado

We’ve compiled the best of the best in Boulder and North Central Colorado - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Anheuser-Busch Fort Collins Brewery

    Winery/Brewery/Distillery

    Learn about the large-scale Budweiser brewing process at Anheuser-Busch during one of the free tours, which start every 45 minutes and last...

    Learn about the large-scale Budweiser brewing process at Anheuser-Busch during one of the free tours, which start every 45 minutes and last about an hour and 15 minutes. You can also go behind the scenes on a two-hour Brewmaster Tour (fee, reservations required). Relax in the Biergarten and take in the mountain views. On special occasions, you can meet the famous Clydesdales.

    3823 Mountain Vista Dr., Fort Collins, Colorado, 80524, USA
    970-490–4691

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free; $35 for Brewmaster Tour, No tours Tues. and Wed.; Biergarten and gift shop closed Tues.
  • 2. Chautauqua Park

    City Park

    For some of Boulder's prettiest views, follow Baseline Road west from Broadway to Chautauqua Park, nestled at the base of the Flatirons. Grab...

    For some of Boulder's prettiest views, follow Baseline Road west from Broadway to Chautauqua Park, nestled at the base of the Flatirons. Grab a picnic or ice cream cone at the General Store and relax on the lawn, or use the park as a launching point to 40 miles of hiking trails. Historic Chautauqua is also home to a tasty restaurant, the historic Chautauqua Dining Hall, open year-round for brunch and dinner. Or attend a lecture, silent film, or concert at the auditorium, which hosts the Colorado Music Festival and internationally renowned concerts every year. For a bird's-eye view of Boulder, keep going west on Baseline (which turns into Flagstaff Road) 1 mile to Panorama Point, and then 3½ miles to Realization Point.

    Grant St. and Baseline Rd., Boulder, Colorado, 80302, USA

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free
  • 3. Downtown Boulder Historic District

    Historic District/Site

    The late-19th- and early-20th-century commercial structures of the Downtown Boulder Historic District once housed mercantile stores and saloons...

    The late-19th- and early-20th-century commercial structures of the Downtown Boulder Historic District once housed mercantile stores and saloons, but today the stores here cater to modern tastes, with fair-trade coffees and Tibetan prayer flags. The period architecture—including Queen Anne, Italianate, and Romanesque styles in stone or brick—has been preserved.

    Boulder, Colorado, USA
  • 4. Fiske Planetarium

    Observatory

    This dome on the University of Colorado campus puts on planetarium shows and star talks, as well as laser shows choreographed to music by the...

    This dome on the University of Colorado campus puts on planetarium shows and star talks, as well as laser shows choreographed to music by the likes of Pink Floyd, Bob Marley, and Queen. Showtimes vary somewhat, but generally laser shows take place on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights; and star shows are sprinkled throughout the week, including some family matinees. The planetarium hosts live talks on Thursday evenings. The Sommers–Bausch Observatory is open for free public viewing every Friday, weather permitting, when CU classes are in session.

    2414 Regent Dr., Boulder, Colorado, 80309, USA
    303-492–5002

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $10
  • 5. Pearl Street

    Neighborhood/Street

    Between 8th and 20th Streets in the downtown area, Pearl Street is the city's hub, an eclectic collection of boutiques, bookstores, art galleries...

    Between 8th and 20th Streets in the downtown area, Pearl Street is the city's hub, an eclectic collection of boutiques, bookstores, art galleries, cafés, bars, and restaurants. From 11th and 15th Streets is a pedestrian mall, with plenty of good people-watching and some of the most outrageous street performers you'll ever see. Regulars may include fire-eating contortionists, a man who plays the piano while hanging from his feet in a tree, and steampunk-style street bands.

    Boulder, Colorado, USA
  • 6. 1879 Avery House

    Historic District/Site

    The stately sandstone Avery House was built in 1879 by Franklin Avery, who set the tone for Old Town's broad streets when he surveyed the city...

    The stately sandstone Avery House was built in 1879 by Franklin Avery, who set the tone for Old Town's broad streets when he surveyed the city in 1873. You can tour the inside on weekends. The Avery House is just one of 36 sites on the Poudre Landmark Foundation's historic walking-tour map, which includes several self-guided options.

    328 W. Mountain Ave., Fort Collins, Colorado, 80521, USA
    970-221–0533

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free, Closed weekdays
  • 7. Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art

    Museum/Gallery

    View local and worldwide contemporary art exhibits and performance art at this innovative museum with frequently changing exhibitions. Admission...

    View local and worldwide contemporary art exhibits and performance art at this innovative museum with frequently changing exhibitions. Admission is free during the farmers' market, which takes place in front of the museum from May to November on Saturday 8 am–2 pm, and from May to October on Wednesday 4 pm–8 pm. The museum usually closes every quarter between exhibitions.

    1750 13th St., Boulder, Colorado, 80302, USA
    303-443–2122

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $2 (free during farmers\' market), Closed Mon.
  • 8. Carousel of Happiness

    Amusement Ride

    No visit to Nederland is complete without a dollar spin on the nonprofit Carousel of Happiness, a restored 1910 carousel featuring 56 hand-carved...

    No visit to Nederland is complete without a dollar spin on the nonprofit Carousel of Happiness, a restored 1910 carousel featuring 56 hand-carved, hand-painted animals running around to the sounds of a 1913 Wurlitzer band organ. The complex includes a gift shop and a puppet theater.

    20 Lakeview Dr., Nederland, Colorado, 80466, USA
    303-258–3457

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $2
  • 9. Celestial Seasonings

    Tour–Sight

    Spicy aromas greet you in the parking lot of Celestial Seasonings, North America's largest herbal-tea producer (the company seals 10 million...

    Spicy aromas greet you in the parking lot of Celestial Seasonings, North America's largest herbal-tea producer (the company seals 10 million tea bags daily). The factory offers free 45-minute tours that include a jolting trip into the famous "Mint Room," waking your senses and clearing your sinuses. Before the tour, check out original paintings of tea-box art and sample more than 80 varieties of tea. You can also grab a bite to eat at the on-site café.

    4600 Sleepytime Dr., Boulder, Colorado, 80301, USA
    303-530–5300

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free
  • 10. Colorado River Headwaters Scenic & Historic Byway

    Scenic Drive

    Whether you're staying in Grand Lake or merely stopping on your way to another destination, the 80-mile (one way) Colorado River Headwaters...

    Whether you're staying in Grand Lake or merely stopping on your way to another destination, the 80-mile (one way) Colorado River Headwaters Scenic & Historic Byway between Grand Lake and State Bridge is worth a side trip. The route takes you along the Colorado River, past hot springs, ranches, and reservoirs, through wide spaces with views of mountains, along deep canyons, and through a seemingly incongruous sage-covered desert. Along the turnouts within Gore Canyon, you can get a good look at the roaring Colorado River and train tracks below. Stop by the viewing platform at the Gore Canyon Whitewater Park at Pumphouse to see paddlers and boarders playing in the waves.

    Grand Lake, Colorado, USA
    303-757–9786
  • 11. CU Heritage Center

    Museum/Gallery

    The mission of this museum is to document the history of the University of Colorado and alumni accomplishments. It has seven galleries dedicated...

    The mission of this museum is to document the history of the University of Colorado and alumni accomplishments. It has seven galleries dedicated to such topics as Glenn Miller, who was a swing music pioneer and has a campus ballroom named after him; notable alumni; space exploration, including a moon rock sample and wreckage of the Space Shutte Challenger, which had alum Ellison Onizuka on board; and athletics.

    Old Main Bldg., Third Floor, 459 UCB, Boulder, Colorado, 80309, USA
    303-492–6329

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Mon.–Sat. 10–4
  • 12. Eldorado Canyon State Park

    Park (National/State/Provincial)

    With steep canyon walls, a rushing creek, verdant pine forests, 10 picnic sites with multiple tables, and 12 miles of trails, this park attracts...

    With steep canyon walls, a rushing creek, verdant pine forests, 10 picnic sites with multiple tables, and 12 miles of trails, this park attracts thrill-seekers and nature lovers alike. Rock climbers scale the sandstone walls, kayakers charge the rapids of South Boulder Creek (if stream flow allows), and anglers cast lines for brown and rainbow trout. The Streamside Trail parallels South Boulder Creek for ½ mile (wheelchair accessible for 300 feet). The 1-mile (one-way) Fowler Trail is wheelchair accessible, with interpretive signs and great views for climbers. For Continental Divide views, take the 3½-mile (round-trip) Rattlesnake Gulch Trail, which climbs 800 feet. Snowshoeing is popular here in winter. Mountain bikers crank on Rattlesnake Gulch Trail and the Walker Ranch Loop (accessed from the Crescent Meadows trailhead off Gross Dam Road). Hikers can climb the 3½-mile (one-way) Eldorado Canyon Trail to Crescent Meadows. The park is frequently at capacity on weekends and holidays, so weekday and evening visits are recommended.

    9 Kneale Rd., Eldorado Springs, Colorado, 80025, USA
    303-494–3943

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $10 per vehicle
  • 13. Environmental Learning Center

    Nature Preserve/Wildlife Refuge

    CSU's Warner College of Natural Resources' Environmental Learning Center conducts educational programs primarily geared toward school groups...

    CSU's Warner College of Natural Resources' Environmental Learning Center conducts educational programs primarily geared toward school groups and summer camps, and offers a few family-based activities. You can also explore the peaceful 200-acre nature preserve on your own via two trail loops—one is 1¼ miles and the other ¾ mile—meandering alongside wetlands and the banks of the Cache La Poudre River.

    2400 S. County Rd. 9, Fort Collins, Colorado, 80525, USA
    970-491–1661

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Daily dawn–dusk, Reservations essential
  • 14. Estes Park Museum

    Museum/Gallery

    The museum showcases Ute and pioneer artifacts, displays on the founding of Rocky Mountain National Park, and changing exhibits. It also publishes...

    The museum showcases Ute and pioneer artifacts, displays on the founding of Rocky Mountain National Park, and changing exhibits. It also publishes a self-guided walking tour of historic sites, which are mostly clustered along Elkhorn Avenue downtown.

    200 4th St., Estes Park, Colorado, 80517, USA
    970-586–6256

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free
  • 15. Fort Collins Museum of Discovery

    Museum/Gallery

    The museum entertains and informs visitors of all ages with interactive science, history, music, and natural history exhibits. The OtterBox...

    The museum entertains and informs visitors of all ages with interactive science, history, music, and natural history exhibits. The OtterBox Digital Dome Theater screens a mix of planetarium space shows and captivating educational films on its 35-foot dome screen. Also, meet the two resident black-footed ferrets. This is the only museum in the world to host these endangered animals.

    408 Mason Ct., Fort Collins, Colorado, 80524, USA
    970-221–6738

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $12.50
  • 16. Gold Hill General Store

    Historic District/Site

    Stop at the much-photographed Gold Hill General Store, on the National Register of Historic Places, for a tasty, made-to-order sandwich and...

    Stop at the much-photographed Gold Hill General Store, on the National Register of Historic Places, for a tasty, made-to-order sandwich and a bowl of hearty homemade soup before driving the last few miles to the Peak to Peak Byway. The green chile served with tortillas is excellent—spicy and savory, but not so hot that you won't be able to enjoy a house-made pastry and espresso drink for dessert.

    531 Main St., Gold Hill, Colorado, 80466, USA
    303-443–7724

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Weekdays 11–3:30, Sat. 10–4, Sun. 9–4
  • 17. Grand Lake

    Body Of Water/Waterfall

    According to Ute legend, the fine mists that shroud Grand Lake at dawn are the risen spirits of women and children whose raft capsized as they...

    According to Ute legend, the fine mists that shroud Grand Lake at dawn are the risen spirits of women and children whose raft capsized as they were fleeing a marauding party of Cheyennes and Arapahos. Grand Lake is the largest and deepest natural lake in Colorado. It feeds into two much larger man-made reservoirs, Lake Granby and Shadow Mountain Lake, and these three water bodies as well as Monarch Lake and Willow Creek and Meadow Creek reservoirs are called the "Great Lakes of Colorado."

    Grand Lake, Colorado, USA
  • 18. Hot Sulphur Springs Resort & Spa

    Resort

    Soak or pamper yourself with a massage, wrap, or salt glow at the Hot Sulphur Springs Resort & Spa. Twenty-one open-air pools are sprinkled...

    Soak or pamper yourself with a massage, wrap, or salt glow at the Hot Sulphur Springs Resort & Spa. Twenty-one open-air pools are sprinkled up the hillside, with temperatures ranging from 95°F to 112°F. The seasonal swimming pool is just right for recreation, at a comparatively frigid 80°F, and the resort also has four private, indoor pools (two reserved for spa treatments). Bring sandals if you have them, especially during snowy months when rock salt is used on icy walkways.

    5609 County Rd. 20, Hot Sulphur Springs, Colorado, 80451, USA
    970-725–3306

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $18.50
  • 19. LaVern M. Johnson Park

    City Park

    Located along the banks of the St. Vrain River, this lovely park has something for everyone, from picnic areas and a playground to a winter...

    Located along the banks of the St. Vrain River, this lovely park has something for everyone, from picnic areas and a playground to a winter-season ice-skating rink. Bird-watchers come from all over to see eagles nesting in the sandstone cliffs here. There's also a white-water park for kayakers and tubers, a splash pad, tubing on the river, and camping.

    600 Park Dr., Lyons, Colorado, 80540, USA
    303-823–6622
  • 20. Leanin' Tree Museum of Western Art

    Museum/Gallery

    This is one of the country's largest privately owned collections of Western art, with more than 250 paintings of Western landscapes, wildlife...

    This is one of the country's largest privately owned collections of Western art, with more than 250 paintings of Western landscapes, wildlife, and pioneer life, and 100 bronze sculptures. See work by renowned artists such as Bill Hughes, Allan Houser, and Frank McCarthy. The museum sells a wide variety of its own greeting cards as well as gifts in its unique shop.

    6055 Longbow Dr., Boulder, Colorado, 80301, USA
    303-530–1442

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free, Weekdays 8–6, Sat. 9–5, Sun. 10–5

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