With over 300 days of sunshine, Colorado is definitely a year-round destination known for its nature, city life, food scene and lots of hot springs.
Did you know? Colorado is called the Centennial State because it became a state in 1876, the 100th anniversary of the United States independence.
To experience all that Colorado has to offer, a road trip is a must! And that’s exactly what we did on our 7-day trip to Colorado, visiting Denver, Estes Park, Steamboat Springs, Glenwood Springs, Snowmass, Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs.
Love road trips? Check out this 4 Day Road Trip in Kerala, India!
Based on our road trip, here’s an ultimate travel guide that covers the entire itinerary for 7 Days in Colorado including over 40 best things to do, places to eat and stay!
Planning A Trip to Colorado
Things You Should Know About Colorado
Spring (March 20- June 21): Average temperature during the day will be anywhere from 13-24 °C (55-75 °F). During the night expect anywhere between -1 to 10 °C (30-50 °F)
Summer (June 21 – September 22): Average temperature during the day will be anywhere from 21-35 °C (70-95 °F). During the night expect anywhere between 4-15 °C (40-60 °F).
Colorado has the highest mean altitude in the USA with a mean elevation of 6,800 feet above sea level. For example, Winter Park has elevations above 9,121′ ft. (2,780 m). Many of Colorado’s mountain towns are at elevations above 8,000 ft. (2,438 m).
Altitude sickness is very common from the abrupt change in weather, very dry air or dehydration. You have to prepare for it.
Climatize yourself before the trip so your system is not shocked with the altitude change.
Always stay hydrated! Signs of dehydration are dizziness, headache, disorientation, fever, all of which will be heightened by altitude.
It’s encouraged to begin your hydration a couple of days prior to departure. Always drink more water than you think you need.
The standard tip in Colorado is 15-20%. For any organized or guided activities, be prepared to tip anywhere from $10-$15 per person, depending on the activity (customary is 10-20%).
Be sure to ask where smoking is permitted. There are many attractions and destinations in Colorado that are Smoke-Free Zones, including many towns that don’t allow any smoking next to entryways.
Similarly, smoking is prohibited in National Parks and National Forests due to fires that can start in an instant which may cause a forest fire.
The drinking age in Colorado is 21 years old. Since most, if not all, restaurants or bars will ask for proof of age, be sure to bring an Identification Card or Passport.
WiFi and Cell Signal
Plan for having no WiFi or Cell Signal. Depending on where you are in Colorado, WiFi and Cellular Services may not always be available.
Especially when going on a road trip, there will be times with very limited or no cell or Wi-Fi services due to mountainous terrain.
Be sure to do everything you need to do online when it’s available and before hitting the road. Wi-Fi might only work in locations with known WiFi or hotspot connections like the cities/towns, hotels, restaurants, Welcome Centers, etc.
Travelling Foodie Tip: If you’re doing group travel, Tep Wireless Pocket Wifi allows connection from up to 5 devices! Use Code TRAVELLINFOODIE for 10% OFF.
What To Pack For Your Colorado Trip
Layers of clothing and a light jacket. Given the weather changes, doing layers and a light jacket is more recommended than a heavy jacket (unless it’s winter).
Throughout the road trip, you might experience very hot to very cold extremes. Even on hot days, temperatures get chilly after sunset, especially at high elevations.
Comfortable walking/hiking shoes. Since Colorado is a very outdoorsy and nature-heavy State, even if you’re not hiking, you will be walking.
Reusable water bottle. You always need to be hydrated in Colorado to avoid altitude sickness so having a refillable water bottle like Swell is recommended.
You can refill the bottle with tap water because it is clean and perfectly safe to consume in Colorado.
Sunscreen. Colorado can be quite hot especially at high altitudes. It’s recommended to always wear and reapply sunscreen throughout the day, especially during activities.
Swimsuit. One of the best things to do in Colorado is visiting the many Hot Springs found all around the State. You’ll definitely want your swimsuit ready for this, or if you simply want to soak in the hotel’s hot tub or swimming pool.
Sunglasses and Hat. More protection from the heat, and you’ll definitely want to protect your eyes.
Jeans. Colorado is a very casual state. Denim is acceptable attire nearly everywhere.
Bug Spray. When going on nature hikes, you’ll want to have bug spray handy.
Fun Facts about Colorado
The name Colorado comes from the Spanish language for “Colored Red” (color rojo).
Colorado is known for the 14ers, which are mountains/peaks that exceed 14,000 feet in elevation, and there are 58 of them. At an elevation of 14,433 feet, Mount Elbert is Colorado’s highest peak and the second highest peak in the lower 48 states.
The white colored tents over the terminal at Denver International Airport that you see from outside represent the 14ers.
Colorado’s drink scene is quite strong with 330 breweries, 140 wineries and over 90 distilleries. In fact, the annual Great American Beer Festival is the biggest convention in held Denver. It is also the largest beer festival in the USA and one of the largest in the world.
There are over 1500 ghost towns in Colorado and most of them are now attractions.
The Grand Mesa in Western Colorado is the largest flat-topped mountain in the world!
Colorado has their version of Green Chile (Chili Verde) which uses Pueblo Chile from Pueblo, Colorado unlike New Mexico’s Green Chile which uses Hatch Chile. There is much debate on which one is better.
One of the most exotic things you can eat in Colorado is Rocky Mountain Oysters. They are not the typical shellfish oysters you’re thinking of. They are deep-fried bull testicles that are skinned and coated in flour, pepper and salt.
7 Days in Colorado: 40+ Things To Do, Places To Eat and Stay
Colorado Day 1 Itinerary: Denver
Day 1 of your 7 Days in Colorado is at Denver. From Denver International Airport, drive about 40 minutes to Denver.
With about 700K in population in the city proper, Denver is called the Mile High City because it is exactly one mile above sea level at 5280 feet or 1609.3 meters.
Did you know? Denver’s Colfax Avenue is the longest street in the USA!
For beer aficionados, there are more than 150 craft breweries in Denver to try! Denver has been named the #1 Microbrew Beer City in the USA by Travel + Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler.
Don’t expect much late-night scene as most establishes closes at 11pm. They make it up with their outdoors scene. People wake up early to enjoy nature and outdoor activities.
Once in Denver, first order of business is lunch/brunch at Avelina.
Located in Denver’s LoDo (Lower Downtown), Avelina specializes on seasonal New American cuisine offering dinner, lunch and weekend brunch, along with a happy hour.
Brunch is served Saturdays 11am-3pm and Sundays 10am-2:30pm.
Green Chili (Chili Verde) is a staple in Colorado restaurants. The one at Avelina is more like a pulled pork style than a stew.
The restaurant has an open kitchen concept, a relaxed dining room, a bar and an open patio.
Website / Address: 1550 17th St, Denver, CO 80202
Denver Union Station
Opened first in 1881, rebuilt in 1914 and then renovated in time for 2014, Union Station is a major landmark and attraction.
One of the best things to do in Denver, the Union Station is the gathering place for both locals and tourists with big public spaces, local restaurants (including Mercantile Dining & Provision from a James Beard Award winning Chef), bars and cafes, and one of newest hotels in the city, The Crawford.
Website / Address: 1701 Wynkoop St, Denver, CO 80211
Ultimate Urban Denver City Tour with eTuk Denver
One of the best Denver city tours is the Urban Denver City Tour with eTuk Denver for a behind-the-scenes and historical look at the Mile High City. What makes it unique is you go around the city in a tuk tuk (yes, the one known in Thailand).
Did you know? The tuk tuk is 100% electric and built locally in Denver by eTuk USA!
From the pick-up point, you’ll be exploring Denver’s local hot spots and hidden gems. This tour is a great way to visit Denver’s top sites for photo-ops.
You’ll be stopping in front of the Colorado State Capitol.
You’ll be checking out the most iconic sculpture in Denver, the “I See What You Mean” sculpture, or commonly called as the Big Blue Bear. Made with blue clay, the Big Blue Bear is looking inside the Colorado Convention Center.
Did you know? In Denver, big buildings are required a public art installation that costs 1% of the cost of the building.
The Brown Palace Hotel is known for having famous people stay in including The Beatles and all the US presidents except Obama and Trump.
Other highlights of our tour include:
- Golden Triangle, the Main Museum area and one of Denver’s largest Creative Districts
- Poets Row where all buildings are named after poets
- Larimer Square, Denver’s Most Historic Block with 300 Alley cat sculptures
Our last stop was at RiNo Neighborhood and Graffiti Murals. Known for breweries and street art, RiNo (River North) is the most expensive part Denver because that’s where most of the young ppl are.
My favourite mural is this one made by Chad Bolsinger for The Crush Walls 2018. I love the intricate details and vivid colors! He even incorporated the water drain pipe at the bottom left as part of the mural.
Website / Address: Multiple Locations
Work & Class Restaurant
You must have dinner at Work & Class, one of the best restaurants in Denver. This no-frills restaurant in Denver’s River North (RiNo) neighborhood is driven by the motto, “a square meal, a stiff drink, and a fair price.”
Travelling Foodie Tip: To find the restaurant, look for this eye-catching sculpture.
For cocktail lovers, try their unique barrel-aged cocktails.
And at Work & Class, ewe definitely must try their Coriander Roasted Colorado Lamb. Tender and flavour slices of lamb!
Other favorites include the blue corn empanada, rosemary red wine sausage, Wisonsic cheddar mac and cheese.
For dessert, get the warm chocolate brownie!
Website / Address: 2500 Larimer St, Denver, CO 80205
Le Meridien Denver Downtown
Stay the night at Le Meridien Denver Downtown, conveniently located within walking distance of many of Denver’s top attractions.
On the lobby of Le Meridien Denver Downtown, there’s a restaurant (Corinne Restaurant), a cafe/bar (The Lobbyist) and a tapas eatery (AC Kithcne).
I stayed at the King Guest Bedroom with floor-to-ceiling windows and city views. The stylish rooms have free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs and coffeemakers.
I highly recommend checking out the rooftop cocktail bar, 54thirty, with mountain views.
Next morning, have breakfast at Corinne Restaurant before heading to Estes Park.
Website / Address: 1475 California St, Denver, CO 80202
Colorado Day 2 Itinerary: Denver to Estes Park
Day 2 of your 7 Days in Colorado is at Estes Park, which is 1.5 hours drive direct from Denver. However, we are making a detour to Red Rocks Park, extending the drive by 30 minutes.
With an elevation of 7,500 feet, Estes Park is a town that got its name from its first permanent residents, Kentuckian Joel Estes and his wife Patsy.
Did you know? The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park is the inspiration to Stephen King’s 1977 bestseller The Shining’s Overlook Hotel. In fact, the popular author and his wife spent a night there.
Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre
One of the best things to do in Colorado for music and nature lovers is the Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre!
This world-famous outdoor venue is the only naturally-occurring, acoustically perfect amphitheater in the world with frequent star-studded concerts.
Check out the Visitor Center which features the Colorado Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame, interactive educational displays, a short film on the geologic and musical history of Red Rocks.
Colorado is aptly named “Colored Red” because of the red sandstone rocks and soil throughout the state. This is evident when you visit Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre.
Website / Address: 18300 W Alameda Pkwy, Morrison, CO 80465
Seasoned – An American Bistro
When you arrive at Estes Park, head for brunch at Seasoned – An American Bistro, one of the best restaurants in Estes Park with a seasonal menu featuring food cultures of the Americas and seasonally grown products.
Note: Check their website for days and hours. In case they only serve dinner and Sunday brunch, you can come here for dinner and do lunch at the dinner place on the itinerary.
One of the other reasons for the name Seasoned is because Owner and Chef Rob Corey is a seasoned chef who has worked under fourteen Michelin stars.
It’s no wonder you’ll find most dishes here are homemade from scratch including their pasta dishes. Be sure to also add a side of braised bacon and thank me later.
Website / Address: 205 Park Ln, Estes Park, CO 80517
Outside Seasoned – An American Bistro, walk around Bond Park which is surrounded by beautiful mountain backdrop. If you’re looking for things to do in Estes Park, you’re covered at Bond Park, located at the center of the town.
This open space is known to have events year-round from the town’s famous Elk Fest to regularly scheduled art markets, which we got to see on our trip.
Website / Address: 170 MacGregor Ave, Estes Park, CO 80517
Rocky Mountain National Park
With over 4.5 million annual visitors in 2018, Rocky Mountain National Park is definitely one of the best things to do in Colorado. In fact, it is the 3rd most visited National Park in the USA.
Did you know? The elevation changes within the park is very wide, ranging from 7,600 feet to 14,259 feet. Be sure to prepare accordingly!
Though the park itself is open all day and night, the Visitors Center has hours that you can check on its website.
Part of the Rocky Mountains is in Canada in both British Columbia and Alberta provinces. Check out these 8 Best Attractions in the Canadian Rockies!
One of the most popular spots in Rocky Mountain National Park is the Rainbow Curve Overlook which doesn’t require any hiking.
Travelling Foodie Tip: The best season to visit Rocky Mountain National Park is in Fall because of the Elk Rut, when elks would come down from higher elevation to lower elevation.
The most popular times and seasons are summer and fall during 10am-3pm so you have to plan on arriving very early or at night. In Fall, it is recommended to visit outside Friday-Sunday.
Website / Address: Fall River Rd, Estes Park, CO 80517
Price: 1-Day Pass ($25 for Automobile)
Ed’s Cantina & Grill
Have dinner at Eds Cantina & Grill, a locally owned, sustainable cafe serving up traditional Mexican food and drinks.
Try the Bison Enchiladas which is a good fusion of both Colorado meat and Mexican food.
The most unique cocktail I had on the trip was this Avocado Cocktail which tastes like an avocado smoothie but with alcohol.
Website / Address: 390 E Elkhorn Ave, Estes Park, CO 80517
The Ridgeline Hotel
Stay the night at The Ridgeline Hotel, a boutique hotel located minutes from Rocky Mountain National Park.
A great way to unwind is by hanging at the hotel’s Bonefire Pit with some coffee or marshmallows to roast. You can also enjoy the Indoor Heated Pool, Indoor Whirlpool/Hot Tub, Game Room, Pool Table and Shuffleboard.
The next morning, have your breakfast at Latitude 105 inside the hotel before heading to Steamboat Springs.
Their burrito is the biggest breakfast burrito I’ve ever had. And it has Pork Green Chili!
Website / Address: 101 S St Vrain Ave, Estes Park, CO 80517
Colorado Day 3 Itinerary: Estes Park to Steamboat Springs
Day 3 of your 7 Days in Colorado is at Steamboat Springs, a small foodie town with over 100 restaurants! This itinerary has a 4.5-hour drive from Estes Park to Steamboat Springs.
Did you know? The town is called Steamboat because the fur trappers thought the sounds that the springs were making was that of a steamboat.
At an elevation of 6,700 feet, this popular Ski Town has produced the most winter Olympians in North America.
Scratch Deli & Bakery
Due to the long drive, take-out food to have for lunch on the road after breakfast. We had our take-out at Scratch Deli & Bakery, aptly named for serving fresh & scratch-made breakfast and lunch.
If you love meat, get the Pastrami which is homemade and well-marbled.
Website / Address: 911 Moraine Ave, Estes Park, CO 80517
Saint Catherine’s Chapel on the Rock
One of the most unique and beautiful chapels, Saint Catherine’s Chapel on the Rock is a Historic Landmark in Camp St. Malo known for its picturesque setting with the Rocky Mountains as backdrop.
Built-in 1930s and donated to the Archdiocese of Denver, Camp St. Malo’s Chapel on the Rock has survived through the 2011 fire and the 2013 flood.
Did you know? You can get have weddings / blessings of marriages at St. Catherine of Siena Chapel.
Website / Address: 10758 CO-7, Allenspark, CO 80510
Loveland Pass – Continental Divide
Head to Loveland Pass, the highest mountain pass in Colorado at an elevation of 11,990 feet, located on the Continental Divide.
Be sure to prepare for high altitude and for very cold weather here.
Address: Loveland Pass, Colorado 80435
Aurum Food & Wine
Have dinner at one of the best restaurants in Steamboat Springs, Aurum Food & Wine, nestled along the Yampa River.
Opened in 2014, this historic watershed turned restaurant serves seasonal American cuisine in an elegant setting with a bar, dining room and outdoor patio.
This was my favourite meal throughout the trip! Love the variety, the seasonality and the perfect execution of the dishes.
Must-try dishes at Aurum Food & Wine are the Grilled Bison Skewers, Steak Tartare & Bone Marrow and Jumbo Lump Crab Cake.
Asian fusion can be seen with the tender Pork Ribs with Korean gochujang sauce. An interesting yet delicious item to try!
For cocktail lovers, be sure to try the Smoked Orange Old Fashioned. You’ll really taste the smoked orange flavour.
Website / Address: 811 Yampa St, Steamboat Springs, CO 80487
Stay the night at The Steamboat Grand, one of the best hotels in Steamboat Springs, ranked #2 by US News & World Report. For skiers, this luxury hotel is situated near ski areas.
I stayed at the Parlor Room which was my favourite accommodation during the trip. It felt like living in a one-bedroom apartment, including a kitchen, living room, dining room.
Website / Address: 2300 Mt Werner Cir, Steamboat Springs, CO 80487
Colorado Day 4 Itinerary: Steamboat Springs to Glenwood Springs
Day 4 of your 7 days in Colorado is at Glenwood Springs, the 7th city in Colorado to be 100% powered by renewable energy.
Did you know? Glenwood Springs is a resort town famous for its water due to the confluence from two rivers the run through it, Colorado and Roaring Fork Rivers.
It takes 2.5 hours to drive from Steamboat Springs to Glenwood Springs.
Creekside Cafe & Grill
Where to eat breakfast in Steamboat Springs? Located in historic Soda Creek building, Creekside Cafe & Grill is one of the best restaurants frequented by locals. Be sure to come early; otherwise, expect to wait.
An uncommon dish to find for breakfast is Country Fried Steak. I just had to get this because Country Fried anything is not too common in Toronto.
The one here is hand-tenderized, battered and fried!
Website / Address: 131 11th St, Steamboat Springs, CO 80487
F.M. Light & Sons
One of the best things to do in Downtown Steamboat Springs is to check out F.M. Light & Sons to get a taste of Steamboat’s authentic Western heritage.
This historic Western store has been selling authentic Western apparel for at least 113 years and 5 generations!
Did you know? Frank M. Light opened the store on November 9th, 1905. This was only seven months after arriving Steamboat Springs on April 1905.
Website / Address: 830 Lincoln Ave, Steamboat Springs, CO 80487
Strawberry Park Hot Springs
One of the best things to do in Steamboat Springs is the Strawberry Park Hot Springs, nestled alongside Hot Springs Creek.
This spectacular mineral springs is my favourite hot springs from the trip because of how beautiful and raw it is, blending with the natural environment covered in Steamboat’s famous Champagne Powder snow.
It was also my first time doing hot springs in the snow! Surprisingly, once you’re there, you actually don’t feel cold due to the 104F heat from the hot springs.
At night time, Strawberry Park Natural Hot Springs becomes adults-only and clothing optional.
Website / Address: 44200 Co Rd 36, Steamboat Springs, CO 80487
Price: Adults 18+ ($15), Youth 3-17 ($8)
Yampa Sandwich Company
Since it’s going to be a long drive to Glenwood Springs, you’ll be taking out food for lunch on the road again.
We took out sandwiches from Yampa Sandwich Company, known for being one of the best places to eat sandwiches in Steamboat Springs.
Website / Address: 635 Lincoln Ave, Steamboat Springs, CO 80487
Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park
After leaving Steamboat Springs, you’re headed to Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, the first mountain-top renewable energy theme park in the world and one of the best things to do in Glenwood Springs!
Did you know? Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park is the only mountain top theme park in America and the highest (elevation-wise) in North America, making it a unique attraction to visit and perfect for family.
They are known for cave tours which put the “Caverns” in its name. The Kings Row Tour brings you to two caves: The Barn and Kings Row.
The Kings Row was bought in 1961 by the owner then sold for 1.6m to the theme park. It’s called Kings Row because of the 3 stalagmite that looks like the King’s line in chess.
If you want your adrenaline pumping, try the Haunted Mine Drop, considered to be the scariest amusement park ride in USA 2018!
You must do the Alpine Coaster, which was named one of the 10 Best Roller Coaster Rides of Your Life by USA Today and Park World Magazine. The views are just amazing!
Be sure to check out the observation deck for panoramic views of Glenwood Springs! You can also see a big difference on the mountains looking from left (with snow) to right (dry and reddish).
You can spot different mountain peaks from the Rocky Mountains like Mount Sopris and Mount Daly.
Website / Address: 51000 Two Rivers Plaza Road, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
Hours: Sunday-Friday (9am-6pm), Saturday (9am-10pm)
Price: Adult 13+ ($19 – park only; $32 – park & cave), Child 3-2 ($14 – park only; $27 – park & cave)
Where to eat in Glenwood Springs with fun casual vibes? The Pullman in the Railroad District in downtown has you covered for a laid back atmosphere.
Chef-owner Mark Fischer has won numerous national accolades for The Pullman’s emphasis on innovative cuisine.
My most favourite dish was the truffle and parmesan pork rinds, a refreshing change from the usual truffle parmesan fries.
I enjoyed the grilled Angus flat iron steak with the perfectly grilled meat. It was so tender that it cuts like butter. I do recommend asking to have the sauce on the side.
Website / Address: 330 7th St, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
Glenwood Hot Springs Pool
One of the most popular hot springs in Colorado, the Glenwood Hot Springs Pool is the biggest mineral spring swimming pool in the world!
Drawing visitors from all over the world since 1888, this historic thermal spring water has temperatures ranging from 92-104F.
Website / Address: 401 N River St, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
Ask locals for where to stay in Glenwood Springs, and you’ll most likely hear Hotel Colorado. Named one of 25 Must-See Buildings in Colorado by USA Today, this 1893 Historic Hotel is popular for its history and perfect location right in downtown.
Did you know? Hotel Colorado was once the summer White House for President Teddy Roosevelt for a week when he would come to hunt. It was also used as a hospital by the US Navy for 3 years during World War II.
I enjoyed the spacious Premier Parlor Suite Queen with a separate living room and wet bar.
Next morning, have breakfast at the Hotel Colorado Restaurant and Bar, managed by award-winning Chef Aaron Haga.
The most unique dish I saw that I had to try was the Corned Buffalo Hash which uses buffalo meat. It’s quite tender and tasty!
Website / Address: 526 Pine St, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
Colorado Day 5 Itinerary: Glenwood Springs to Snowmass
Day 5 of your 7 days in Colorado is at Snowmass, a renowned winter playground consistently ranked as one of the best ski areas in the world including Aspen Snowmass as #1 “Resort of the Year” in the West for 2019 by Ski Magazine.
It takes about 1-hour drive from Glenwood Springs to Snowmass.
Iron Mountain Hot Springs
Perhaps the best hot springs with a view in Colorado is the Iron Mountain Hot Springs in Glenwood Springs, nestled along the banks of the Colorado River.
The Iron Mountain Hot Springs has 16 soaking pools filled with 100% pure thermal mineral waters ranging from 90-108F. There is also a freshwater family pool with a jetted spa.
There is an on-site restaurant so you can dine with a view for lunch!
Website / Address: 281 Centennial St, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
Hours: 9am-10pm Daily except Thanksgiving and Christmas
Price: Summer Adult ($25/28 Weekday/end), Summer Child ($17/19 Weekday/end), Non-Peak Adult ($20/25 Weekday/end), Non-Peak Child ($14/17 Weekday/end)
Spiral Point (Yin Yang Point)
Snowmass is known for mountain vistas and 2.8 million adjacent acres of open wilderness so hiking is one of the best things to here!
You can do soft hikes to hardcore hikes in Snowmass. I recommend doing the hike to Spiral Point along Rim Trail South which is an easy-moderate 1.5-mile hike (though avid hikers would find this a soft hike).
Did you know? Spiral Point is also called Yin Yang Point because of the Yin Yang symbol on the ground at the top of the point.
At Spiral Point, you are at the approximate top of the Rim Trail, overlooking beautiful views of Snowmass Village!
Website / Address: Rim Trail South
Limelight Hotel Snowmass
Stay the night at one of the best hotels in Snowmass, the Limelight Hotel Snowmass, which opened in December 2018, located at the heart of Snowmass adjacent to Snowmass’ Elk Camp Gondola providing ski-in/ski-out access.
Did you know? Limelight Hotel has Colorado’s largest indoor rock-realistic climbing wall, at 54 feet high, designed by Stonehill Taylor. But my favourite amenity was the two outdoor pool spas (with different temperatures) with spa-side cabanas.
The Grand Deluxe Bedroom at Limelight Hotel was my other favourite accommodation this trip. Sleek, modern and spacious.
I also love the little details they put in the room. Each room has a different book to read and mini-game to play. Also, what about the Smeg retro style minibar?
End the night with delicious food and over glasses of wine at the Limelight Lounge. They are known for wood-fired hand-tossed pizzas.
Favourites that night included PEI Mussels, truffle fries and pork belly rillons.
We actually ordered the truffle fries three times!
You must try their Colorado Lamb dish, which was braised roulade of lamb that had crispy skin outside and tender meat inside.
Overall, this was my favourite place to stay this trip. Next morning, have breakfast at their complimentary buffet before checking-out.
Website / Address: 65 Wood Rd, Snowmass Village, CO 81615
Colorado Day 6 Itinerary: Snowmass to Colorado Springs
Day 6 of your 7 Days in Colorado is at Colorado Springs, Colorado’s second largest city founded as a resort town in 1871.
Did you know? Colorado Springs is home to Pikes Peak, the highest summit of the southern Front Range of the Rocky Mountains at 14,115-feet. You can drive all the way to the top of Pikes Peak, and it was the inspiration to popular song, “America the Beautiful”.
The itinerary has about 4.5 hours of driving from Snowmass to Colorado Springs with stops for lunch and Aspen.
Local Coffee House
Make a short visit to Aspen and re-fuel your body with coffee and baked goods at one of Aspen’s best cafes, Local Coffee House, frequented by both locals and tourists.
They are a small-batch roaster having their own local blend. Be sure to try their Cronuts (croissant + donut) as well!
Website / Address: 614 E Cooper Ave, Aspen, CO 81611
Head to one of Colorado’s most popular attractions, the Maroon Bells, located just 16 miles from Snowmass.
The most photographed place in Colorado, the Majestic Maroon Bells features a lake and two giant snow-striped mountaintops, Maroon Peak and North Maroon Peak.
Did you know? The Maroon Bells area is prone to avalanches. There were 350 avalanches in March 2019 alone.
The money shot is having the reflections of the mountains on the lake when the lake is calm.
Love Nature? Check out these 5 Must-See Attractions in Washington for Nature Lovers!
Address: Maroon-Snowmass Trail, Aspen, CO 81611
Woody Creek Tavern
Have lunch at a local’s favorite in Snowmass, Woody Creek Tavern, a small bizarre yet vibrant bar that opened in 1980 as a gathering place for locals. You’ll find a lot of interesting things on the wall along with hundreds and hundreds of photos of customers.
They are known for Mexican food with a twist and I highly recommend their Fresh Tilapia and Homemade Chips! While you’re at it, try their fresh squeezed lime margarita.
Website / Address: 2858 Upper River Rd, Woody Creek, CO 81656
By the time you arrive Colorado Springs, it’s time for dinner! Head over to Lincoln Center for a taste of Scandinavian food at Smorbrod.
It’s not common to find Scandinavian cuisine in North America so I was glad to see one in Colorado Springs. At Smorbrod, they specialize in smorbrod, which is an open-faced sandwich on rye bread.
Did you know? The restaurant has over 20 Nordic-inspired smorbrod sandwiches to choose from!
Aside from smorbrods, they also have other popular Scandinavian dishes.
They also have rotating feature Oyster menu.
Website / Address: 2727 N Cascade Ave #111, Colorado Springs, CO 80907
SCP Hotel Colorado Springs
Stay the night at one of the most unique hotels in Colorado, SCP Hotel (Soul Community Planet) that has a concept centered around holistic hospitality, where guests stay consciously and value personal wellness, social good and the environment.
I stayed in the Queen Bedroom which was minimal and spacious. The usual room amenities are eco-friendly or healthy.
They also have a 2,300 square-foot creative co-working space, the SCP Commons, providing an eco-friendly and fun place to work with a pool table.
Website / Address: 2850 S Circle Dr, Colorado Springs, CO 80906
Colorado Day 7 Itinerary: Colorado Springs & Manitou Springs
Last Day of your 7 Days in Colorado is spent in Colorado Springs and its neighbour, Manitou Springs.
Start your morning with breakfast at Ivywild Kitchen inside the Ivywild School, a former elementary school turned into a community hole with gathering spaces, local cuisine, art and gardens.
Ivy Kitchen features comfort food with a twist on a seasonal menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
As usual in Colorado, you’ll find pork green chile even for breakfast!
Website / Address: 1604 S Cascade Ave, Colorado Springs, CO 80905
Academy Riding Stables
You cannot go to Colorado without doing anything cowboy related. And one of the best things to do in Colorado Springs is horseback riding at Garden of the Gods Park with Academy Riding Stables, a popular Colorado stable since the 50s.
Did you know? If you don’t want to ride a horse, you can also do a Jeep tour of the Garden of the Gods Park.
The one-hour scenic trail ride is led by a knowledgeable cowboy guide who will explain the trail and its history.
Before climbing into the saddle, you’re expertly paired with one of the horses based on ability level, weight and height.
Website / Address: 4 El Paso Blvd, Colorado Springs, CO 80904
Drive 10-minutes to Manitou Springs and explore its downtown and get a taste of some natural mineral springs. The downtown is very walkable so just find parking then walk.
Did you know? There are 8 different springs spread around the town that’s open to public. Each has its own flavour and properties.
Website / Address: Manitou Springs, CO 80829
The Broadmoor’s Restaurant 1858
Head to lunch at one of Colorado Springs’ best restaurants, The Broadmoor’s Restaurant 1858 which features Colorado cuisine set in a beautiful rustic setting nestled in the Cheyenne Canyon with views of the Seven Falls.
The must-try is the delicious Colorado Rocky Mountain Trout with fresh fish on a cast iron pan. The trout had a crispy skin, and the small pieces of bacon added extra flavour to the fish.
I also enjoyed the Vidalia Onion Rings which were big thick-cut pieces and incredibly sweet. It was also here that I had the best version of Pork Green Chili in the trip.
Website / Address: 1045 Lower Gold Camp Rd, Colorado Springs, CO 80905
The Broadmoor’s Seven Falls
Didn’t I say you get views of Seven Falls? The Seven Falls, and its 181-foot drop of falling water, is right outside the restaurant itself!
Situated in a 1,250-foot-wall box canyon between the towering Pillars of Hercules, this majestic series of seven waterfalls is one of Colorado’s most captivating natural wonders.
You can take an elevator to the observation deck which offers complete view of the Seven Falls.
Travelling Foodie Tip: You can climb 224 steps to the top of Seven Falls with views of valleys, rock formations and the banks of streams that feed Seven Falls.
Address: 1045 Lower Gold Camp Rd, Colorado Springs, CO 80905
When in Colorado Springs, you’ll have to check out its most luxurious hotel and resort, The Broadmoor, a Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five-Diamond Resort.
This iconic and historic Colorado Springs resort has been stayed and visited by celebrities and public figures with its perfect getaway of outdoors and nature mixed with modern luxury.
Website / Address: 1 Lake Ave, Colorado Springs, CO 80906
The Springs Signature Cocktail Tour with Rocky Mountain Food Tours
For lunch, you’ll be doing one of the best food tours in Colorado Springs, Rocky Mountain Food Tours. We did the Springs Signature Cocktail Tour which highlights the cocktail scene in downtown Colorado Springs.
You’ll be visiting 4 drink stops with food pairing while learning about the prohibition in Colorado Springs and the history behind some classic cocktails.
Love food and drink paired tours? You might also enjoy reading about the Brews N Browse Tour by Great Tasting Tours in DeLand, Florida!
Started off with a Welcome Champagne at The Mining Exchange and met our knowledgeable and friendly guide, Noel.
First stop was at Colorado Springs’ most sought-after speakeasy, Brooklyn on Boulder Street of Lee Spirit’s Distillery. With the tour, you get to visit here when it’s closed to the public. Now that’s VIP experience!
Here, you’ll get to try the Aviation Cocktail paired with Cheese and Charcuterie from The Wild Goose Meeting House.
Second stop was at Odyssey Gastropub for their take on Paloma Cocktail and Crispy Brussels Sprouts which they go through 200lbs of daily.
Third Stop was at Four By Brother Luck, a Chopped Finalist and winner of Beat Bobby Flay, for some unique Pear Ginger Beer and highly addicting bacon fat chipotle popcorn.
Did you know? Even though the prohibition started in 1919, it was already illegal in Colorado Springs in 1872 because of the Quaker beliefs of the city founder Gen. William Palmer.
The last stop is at The Archives, a basement bar that is a reminder of the bar that would’ve been when alcohol was illegal. Here you’re having their Classic Mint Julep Cocktail and Beef Sliders.
By this time, you might be slightly tipsy from the cocktails and have built up an appetite from all the walking, right? No problem because dinner is just upstairs!
Website / Address: Multiple Restaurants
Colorado Craft Social
Head upstairs for dinner at one of the best bars in Colorado Springs, Colorado Craft Social featuring the best of Colorado’s breweries, distilleries, farms and purveyors in a modern restaurant.
The seasonal menu features a diverse range of cuisine from comfort food with a twist to Italian food fare.
Love seeing different ways the Pork Green Chile is used and loved the Green Chili Tots here!
Website / Address: 15 S Tejon St, Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Hope this Colorado travel guide helps you plan on things to do, where to eat and stay for 7 days in Colorado. Now, it’s time to plan that Colorado road trip!
Even if you don’t have 7 days or are simply visiting one destination, this guide still helps you with the best attractions and activities, restaurants and accommodations in the destination you’re visiting whether it be Denver, Estes Park, Steamboat Springs, Glenwood Springs, Snowmass, Colorado Springs or Manitou Springs.
Huge thanks to Visit Colorado Tourism for having me on the press trip! As usual, 100% of reviews/opinions are my own.
A big thanks as well to the support of Colorado’s tourism partners that made the trip possible: Visit Denver, Visit Estes Park, Steamboat Springs Tourism, Visit Glenwood Springs, Snowmass Tourism and Visit Colorado Springs!