First off: Let’s talk about Denver:
Denver is a fun lively city with so much to see and do. From sight seeing all of the art, shopping in downtown, and grabbing a bite to eat at one of many restaurants, you could fill an entire vacation in Denver. However, if you are looking to get away from the city and head towards the mountains there are many options for adventures.
30 minutes from Denver: Red Rocks Amphitheater
If you into the music scene, Red Rocks Amphitheater is a popular tourist spot for concerts that is surrounded by natural sandstone rock formations. Red Rocks offers anything from yoga classes and picnics during the daytime to world known music acts at night during the summer season.
40 minutes from Denver: Idaho Springs
For some adrenaline pumping activities you can head to Idaho Springs and hop on a zipline course and a Via Ferrata adventure. These aerial tours are the real deal, not some short small kid activities but awesome cliffside adventures. The cliffside zipline adventure goes through 6 different ziplines of varying length built out of the cliffs and mountains and ends zipping over top of Clear Creek.
The Via Ferrata course is a combination of cliff traversing, rock climbing through ladders and iron rung, rope bridges, and rappelling. This is great for those looking for a little more challenge then ziplining.
Lastly, you can raft through Clear Creek Canyon. You can experience class III – V rapids. This is some of the best rafting in the state and did we mention it is only 40 minutes from Denver.
1 hour and 20 minutes from Denver: Garden of the Gods
Check out Garden of the Gods for another National Natural landmark close to Denver located in Colorado Springs. Created millions of years ago is a collection of red rock formations. The red stone rocks stick out straight from the ground and stretch across 1,000 acres of land. With a backdrop of Pikes Peak this landmark is definitely a must see and offers Jeep tours climbing on the rocks for visitors.
1 hour and 30 minutes from Denver: Mount Evans Scenic Byway
Less than 2 hours from Denver, is a scenic drive on Mount Evans Byway. This byway is one of highest paved roads in the country that allows you drive up to the peak of Mount Evans. Mount Evans is one of the many fourteeners in Colorado, but this is the only one that you can drive up instead of hike.
This road stretches 14 miles long that starts at Echo Lake. You can catch views of mountain goats and big horn sheep all along the drive, and once you get to the top you will not be disappointed by the amazing view.
1 hour and 30 minutes from Denver: Rocky Mountain National Park
Rocky Mountain National Park is one of most visited national parks located an hour and half from the city. The Rocky Mountains have everything from hiking, horseback riding, wildlife, and camping. The park has views of lakes and glaciers and Trail Ridge Road for a pretty scenic drive that will let you truly immerse yourself in the Colorado Mountains.
2 hours and 20 minutes from Denver: Buena Vista
Take a beautiful 2 and half hour driver and arrive in the cool eccentric town of Buena Vista. There is so much to do here from more ziplining and via ferrata to the most rafted river in the US.
Buena Vista is a little more remote compared to Idaho Springs that has views of Browns Canyon National Monument that is surrounded by gorgeous cliff and rock formations.
Looking for some adventure and to escape the city of Denver, the mountains have you covered. An awesome natural music venue surrounded at Red Rocks, scenic drives on Mount Evans, cliffside climbing and zipping through the trees in Idaho Springs and Buena Vista, hiking through Rock Mountain National Park, and sight-seeing landmarks there are multiple adventures for anyone for a great day trip you won’t forget.