Most people visit Colorado in the wintertime to ski the beautiful Rocky Mountains, but Colorado is just as fun in the Summer. So take a few days to visit and explore Colorado’s capital, Denver, also known as the mile-high city. But remember, Denver is hot and sunny in the Summer, so take a lot of sunscreen. A few days in Denver are worth the trip during the Summer. We spent four days in Denver and found many things to do, enjoying our time in the mile-high city.
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Things to Do in Denver
Denver has many unique things to do and places to check out. These are some options.
The original Denver Depot was completed in the year of 1881. The history of Union Station is fascinating, knowing that it was built 40 feet taller after a fire and that the station was vital when trains were used to travel all the time to travel long distance in the West. In 1900, the original building was demolished, and a new train station was built in its place. Denver Union Station opened in 1914.
During your stay in Denver, you should visit the Union Station because it is an essential piece of history and a great place to shop or dine.
When you step through the doors to the station today, it is nothing like the original version. The old train station was turned into a hotel called, The Crawford Hotel. The old waiting room is filled with places to dine and shop inside.
The area around Union Station is popular because of the restaurants and plaza. In addition, the water fountain attracts families and is a good place for visitors to relax.
Walk down the street and arrive at Coors Field, where you can take in a baseball game.
Coors Field Baseball Stadium
Anyone who is a Rockies fan should come to Coors Field to watch a Rockies game at their home field. This 76-acre field opened in 1995 when the Colorado Rockies and New York Mets played the first official game on the field.
Even if you are not a baseball fan, you can see outside the stadium when you pass by. Also, Coors Field is located only half a mile from Union Station and is within walking distance. The field was named after Coors Brewing Company of Golden, Colorado.
Coors Field is a place in downtown Denver that you should definitely visit and watch a Rockies game.
Elitch Gardens is a giant amusement park with water slides, roller coasters, shopping, and restaurants in the center of Denver. The water park includes a wave pool, lazy river, tube rides, and other slides. The theme park has tons of fun roller coasters to ride. If you are not a fan of roller coasters or water slides, there is an indoor arcade area, shops, and dining places just for you.
Spend a day here to cool off in the waterpark. We recommend buying your tickets online and arriving early. The park opens at 10:30 am and closes by 6 pm on weekdays, and the hours are longer on weekends. However, the waterpark is crowded by 2 pm, and the lines are long.
Denver Botanic Gardens
Are you tired of the crowds and heat? The breathtaking Gardens are the perfect place to relax and explore. The Gardens are split into sections, such as the Japanese Garden, Steppe Garden, Fragrance Garden, or the Cactus and Succulent House. During your visit to the Botanic Gardens, you will see many beautiful plants you didn’t know existed.
The Denver Botanic Gardens has music on certain evenings and the Fête des Fleurs gala at the end of Summer.
Next time you come to Denver, visit the Botanic Gardens. It’s away from the main crowds but an easy Lyft or Uber ride. The Gardens are open at 9 am and close at 8 pm.
Dick’s Sporting Goods Field Complex
If you are in Denver for soccer nationals, you will most likely go to the Dick’s Sporting Goods Field Complex. The complex has 21 grass fields, two turf fields, and 15 parking lots. It is also the Colorado Rapids home stadium. The stadium seats over 18,000 people. The complex has special national events held at the stadium. That means you may see the US Men’s or Women’s National Team play on the main field. But, even if you can’t see a national team play, you can stop by to see a Colorado Rapids game.
Places to Eat in Denver
Rocky Yama Sushi
Colorado is in the middle of the country, so finding a good sushi restaurant is hard. But in the Arts District of Denver, you will find a delicious sushi restaurant called Rocky Yama Sushi. The restaurant gets most of its ingredients from Japan and the rest from other parts of the world. This restaurant is worth going to because of the fantastic sushi and friendly atmosphere.
Thirsty Lion Gastropub
This restaurant is only a couple of steps away from Union Station, which makes it easily accessible. A small water fountain in between Union Station and the Thirsty Lion makes a nice view if you are eating outdoors. The food from this gastropub is scrumptious and is worth eating during your stay in Denver. The food and recipes are all made from scratch, and the ingredients are received from local sources. One appetizer we liked was the Scotch Eggs, which we tried for the first time. If you are visiting the Union Station, dine at the Thirsty Lion Gastropub for a delicious meal.
Milkbox Ice Creamery
If you are seeking a place to get a sweet treat, the Milkbox Ice Creamery is the perfect place to go. They have a variety of ice creams and milkshakes, even including two vegan ice cream options. The Milkbox Creamery is located in the Union Station, which makes it convenient for people exploring Denver or staying in the Crawford Hotel.
A good plan is to eat at the Thirsty Lion, have dessert at the Milkbox Ice Creamery, and watch a game at Coors Field.
Motomaki is a sushi restaurant located in the Denver Street mall. This sushi restaurant is influenced by four different cultures to create a unique type of sushi, sushi burritos. The sushi burritos are made using seaweed as the tortilla, while the inside is filled with anything you would find inside a typical sushi roll.
Motomaki also serves delicious poke bowls and gives you the option to make your own sushi burrito or poke bowl. One of our favorite pole bowls is the Nacho Tuna.
If you are shopping in the mall, Motomaki is an accessible restaurant to come to for lunch or dinner.
Sam’s No. 3 Downtown
An iconic place to eat brunch or lunch is Sam’s No. 3 Diner. The diner was first established in 1927 by Sam Aratas, a Greek immigrant. The current version of the diner was reopened in 2013 across the street from the original one in downtown Denver. Two other locations are in Glendale and Aurora, Denver suburbs. The menu is enormous, with more than 100 items.
Have Fun a Mile High: Things to Do in Denver
Denver is a fun place to be in the Summer and winter. If you ski, head into the Rocky Mountains during the winter. But Denver has many things to do in the Summer too. Compared to some cities on the coasts, Denver is not as expensive making it an ideal place to visit on tight budget. If you visit for more than a few days, go to Boulder or the Garden of the Gods. They are short drives and worth the trip.
Thanks for reading Fun a Mile-High: Things to Do in Denver.
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Prakash Kolli is the founder of the Dividend Power site. He is a self-taught investor, analyst, and writer on dividend growth stocks and financial independence. His writings can be found on Seeking Alpha, InvestorPlace, Business Insider, Nasdaq, TalkMarkets, ValueWalk, The Money Show, Forbes, Yahoo Finance, and leading financial sites. In addition, he is part of the Portfolio Insight and Sure Dividend teams. He was recently in the top 1.0% and 100 (73 out of over 13,450) financial bloggers, as tracked by TipRanks (an independent analyst tracking site) for his articles on Seeking Alpha.