Wondering about the coolest places to visit in Colorado? We’re covering five of our favorites — from gorgeous national parks to fun, urban hubs — plus offering details on how to get the most out of your Colorado trip.
Where should I go for my first time in Colorado?
Colorado has something for everyone, so there’s no easy answer here. Planning a Colorado bachelorette party? You might enjoy Denver’s trendiest neighborhoods.
Looking for the best Colorado resorts for families? There are great choices all over the state.
Or perhaps you’re simply searching for an outdoorsy adventure in Colorado. There are ski resorts, incredible national parks and much more.
Obviously, your interests are going to have a big impact on your list of best places to visit in Colorado. And the time of year is a factor, as well (see our guide to the best time to visit Colorado).
As always, we can help you decide which destination makes the most sense for you. All you have to do? Book your trip with Fora. (P.S.: it literally costs the same as booking online by yourself.)
The 5 best places to visit in Colorado
Read on for five of our favorite places to visit in Colorado.
1. Rocky Mountain National Park: scenic hiking trails, an abundance of wildlife & more
Rocky Mountain National Park is possibly Colorado’s most famous park, and for good reason. Here, snow-capped mountains rise above evergreen forests, with lovely (and sometimes challenging) hiking trails interspersed throughout. The park is filled with interesting wildlife, including beavers, elk, coyotes and mountain lions (don’t worry, they almost never approach people). And in colder months, Rocky Mountain becomes a wonderland for snow sports — just come prepared for the frigid temperatures.
Need more intel? Check out our Rocky Mountain National Park itinerary.
2. Aspen & Snowmass Village: one of the best places to visit in Colorado for skiing
Image courtesy of The Little Nell
Aspen and the lesser-known Snowmass Village are among the best places to visit in Colorado for skiing and other snow sports. The former is also home to tons of upscale boutiques, art galleries and fancy eateries. Winter is generally the best time to visit (see our Aspen winter itinerary), but in warmer months, the town becomes a hub for exploring Colorado’s picturesque mountainscapes.
Plan and book your trip with Fora to level up your stay at The Little Nell.
Fora Perks at The Little Nell:
$100 food / beverage credit.
Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.
3. Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve: a beautiful & unique escape into nature (and a fun alternative to Rocky Mountain National Park)
Great Sand Dunes National Park doesn’t have the same name recognition as Rocky Mountain National Park, but it’s every bit as interesting. The namesake Great Sand Dunes are among the biggest in the Americas, and offer a stunning contrast to the typical landscapes Colorado is known for.
Here you can enjoy sandboarding and sledding from April to mid December, explore lovely hiking trails and, perhaps above all else, catch a glimpse of the Milky Way at night. How so? The park is accredited by the International Dark Sky Association as one of the few remaining places on Earth where light pollution levels are so low you can actually see our surrounding galaxy.
Fora Advisor Laura Vander Neut says, "a quick drive to Zapata Falls offers amazing panoramic views of the sand dunes, especially at sunrise or sunset. Hikers who brave the half-mile hike in colder months will be treated to an up-close view of a frozen waterfall."
4. Denver: the absolute best place to visit in Colorado for an urban adventure
Image courtesy of Thompson Denver
Denver isn’t just one of the coolest places to visit in Colorado, it’s one of the western United States’ coolest cities, period. The nightlife here is probably the best (or at least the most diverse) in Colorado, and the city has built a reputation as a foodie-slash-brewery haven. Our guide to Denver has the full lowdown, but overall, the city is a mecca for culture and entertainment junkies (nearby Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre is definitely worth checking out).
Wondering where to stay in Denver? The city has excellent options for every budget and travel style (our guides to luxe hotels in Denver and boutique hotels in Denver have you covered). Thompson Denver, for example, is a fantastic choice in the heart of the city that offers stylish accommodations.
Denver is also about 90 minutes from Rocky Mountain National Park, if you want to inject some scenic nature into your urban vacation.
Ready to travel? Connect with Fora to plan and book your Colorado trip.
Fora Perks at Thompson Denver:
$100 hotel / resort credit.
Upgrade & early check-in whenever possible.
5. Colorado Springs: a relaxed alternative to Denver with relaxing mountain resorts
Elite mountain resorts like The Broadmoor are a big reason Colorado Springs is among the best places to visit in Colorado. The hotel has pampered guests with luxurious amenities amidst incredible natural surroundings for the better part of the last century.
Laura also says, "Garden of the Gods is a must-see when visiting Colorado Springs, with stunning red rock formations set against a classic Colorado blue sky. Visitors also shouldn’t miss a drive up to the summit of Pikes Peak, one of only two Colorado “fourteeners” (peaks over 14,000 feet in elevation) that can be reached by car."
As for the city itself, Colorado Springs has a quaint feel compared to the metropolis that is Denver. The downtown area is especially charming, with many casual restaurants, coffee shops and bars.
Our guide to hotels in Colorado Springs has more options, too.
Want more places to visit in Colorado? Connect with Fora
There are many more great places to visit in Colorado. Need more options to round out your itinerary? Plan and book your trip with Fora.
Not feeling Colorado? Here’s some more travel inspiration for your reading pleasure: