3-Day Guide to Year-Round Fun in Breckenridge, Colorado
Breckenridge is one of the coolest ski towns in the US and has the added benefit of over 300 days of sun a year! Our family has stayed at many other ski resorts on family vacations but Breckenridge stands out as the most "picture perfect" with loads to do both summer and winter. We have lived in Breckenridge since 1996 and raised our children here, where they took up ski racing and had success. We spend winters in Breckenridge and summers in Seward, Alaska. Breck is a nonpretentious, fun and relaxed town nestled in the scenic Rocky Mountains 10 Mile Range. It is known for its world-class skiing and outdoor lifestyle. It has fabulous restaurants, shopping, hiking, biking, skiing and many other activities, including a Main Street filled with activities and yearlong special events.
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Where to stay
Mountain Thunder Lodge
Part of Breckenridge Ski Resort, this modern yet rustic hotel located just a short walk from Main Street offers ski-in, ski-out access and a restaurant.
Hilton Grand Vacations Club Valdoro Mountain Lodge Breckenridge
Set at the base of Breckenridge's Peak 9, this ski lodge offers polished studios and suites.
Grand Colorado on Peak 8
Luxury resort in Breckenridge with posh suites and apartments and a laid-back tavern.
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Day 1: Arrive in Breck
Arrive in Breck and settle into your hotel. Many of the lodges are ski-in and ski-out and skiing is an option day or night as nearby Keystone offers night skiing. Most of the hotels have wonderful amenities like pools and hot tubs, game rooms and restaurants and a few have ice skating outside. Spend the afternoon at your hotel if you have children the kids love the swimming pools.
Another option is to head to Main Street where you could spend hours up and down shopping and more shopping as wells popping in and out of the wonderful art galleries. There is also an upscale "oxygen bar" if the 10,000-foot elevation is slowing you down. Carter Park is a local gem, a wonderful place to take the kids sledding located right in the heart of Breck. Dinner is at Hearthstone known for its high-end dining and exclusive, and creative menu an ideal place to celebrate a special occasion.
Day 2: Outdoor Activity
Skiing is absolutely the main attraction in the winter in Breck but there are many other year-round activities as well as half or full-day tours to indulge in. Here are a few to choose from:
"Good Time Adventure Tours" is very popular for both snowmobiling tours and dog sledding in Breckenridge.
Check out the tubing hill in Frisco. It is called Frisco Adventure Park. It is very popular with families.
The paved bike path that extends from Breckenridge all the way to Frisco makes for a beautiful ride partly along the Blue River when the snow clears.
The snow sculpture contest is very popular in January and attracts sculptures from around the world.
Drive up the winding Boreas Pass Road to take in the views at the top.
Skate at the wonderful Steven West Ice Arena.
Head to the Breck Rec Center for racketball, weightlifting, cardio machines, children's play areas, a climbing wall or swimming - which is ideal for children as there is a huge shallow area for kids as well as a big slide.
Many visitors choose nordic and cross-country skiing at the Gold Run Nordic Center which has 30 miles of skiable terrain. Be sure and wear sunscreen as the sun is very intense at high altitudes even when it is cloudy outside.
Summer activities / adventures in the “perfect mountain town” include hiking, biking, whitewater rafting, fly fishing, stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking, live outdoor music concerts, golfing, horseback riding, summer dog sledding, scenic chairlift rides, gold panning, luge rides...
Enjoy dinner at one of the delicious Tapas restaurants: Twist or Ember.
Day 3: Explore Main Street
Head to our neighbor's restaurant Columbine Cafe, the best in the west....well maybe not the west but certainly Breckenridge! The Fat Bike Beer and Distillery tour is a fun and unique change of pace from skiing and will fill up half a day.
Main Street also has many shops that offer wine tasting such as Breck Cheese and Chocolate or Continental Divide Winery. You will be amazed at what Colorado has to offer in terms of fine local wines.
A short drive to Sapphire Point Overlook is one of my favorite places for a short walk during any time of year, and to feed the many little chipmunks who call this area home, they love sunflower seeds! It is a big hit with both children and adults. There are picnic tables along the circular walk and outstanding views along the way. It is also a popular wedding venue.
Tubing is another option and the snow tubing hill between Breck and Frisco offers a thrilling ride for all ages. My favorite hike in Breck is the Peaks Trail which goes from Breck to Frisco, takes 2-3 hours and is 7 miles long. It is a gorgeous hike in summer or winter through the forest and open meadows.
Dinner is at Briar Rose Steakhouse and Salon, a top-notch restaurant that is sure to please.
Need to Know
For more adventure, check out my 4-Day Itinerary in Seward: Alaska's Gateway to the Kenai Fjords.
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This is part of our ongoing series on travel in Colorado.