The Experience: As you can tell by looking at this meadow of wildflowers, Crested Butte is a beautiful destination. In the summertime, you can paddle-board, fly-fish, rock-climb, hike, mountain-bike, and laze around the river. If you prefer a little more direction while exploring a new place, stay at the Sopris House or Scarp Ridge Lodge, both of which are run by Eleven Experiences, a company that marries upscale lodging, gourmet dining, and curated itineraries with hospitable experts guiding you throughout your entire stay.
All this and more just moments from your dream mountain town home. Or, venture further into Rocky Mountain National Park and nearby high mountain ranges to find scenic drives and trailheads — with wild flower fields, lush basins and snowcapped massifs, world famous hiking, backpacking and mountaineering, pristine trails up bubbling brooks and cascading waterfalls, through chaos canyons to stair-stepping alpine lakes, frozen tarns, imposing glaciers, tantalizing 13’ners and 14,000′ sawtooth ridges — an adventure-filled vacation you’ll always remember.
Whether you like to ski, hike, or just take in the jaw-dropping mountain scenery with a craft beer in hand, you’ll find the perfect weekend getaway in Colorado. From lively cities like Denver and Boulder, to more laid-back locales like Golden and Pagosa Springs—and plenty of world-class ski resorts in between—we’ve compiled a list of 17 of the best weekend getaways in The Centennial State.
The famous hot springs of Glenwood is a must-see and do for all romantics. Located in Glenwood Springs, less than 3 hours from Denver, the historic and local family-owned Hotel Denver spans more than 100 years with many stories to tell, including Colorado immigrants, prohibition, gangsters, world wars, and even a Wild West shooting or two. This Colorado hotel has bragging rights to prime real estate in historic downtown Glenwood Springs, close to the train, many restaurants, shopping, the Hot Springs Pool, and our personal favorite, the Iron Mountain Hot Springs.
Some of the highlights along the way are the towns of Silverton, Ouray, and Telluride. Set at more than 9,300 feet and surrounded by mountains, Silverton has one main street with a few shops and restaurants. In summer, it can be ridiculously busy, but in winter, most of the establishments are closed, and the place can feel like a ghost town. On the edge of town, Silverton Mountain is an old school ski "resort" with great backcountry downhill skiing for advanced skiiers. Ouray, with a sign at the main lookout calling it the "Switzerland of America," is another mountain town, known for its hot springs. If you choose to do the Skyway, you can stop in at Telluride. Known for the Telluride Ski Resort, this is one of the most beautiful mountain towns in America, with a traditional main street and gorgeous mountain scenery. You can take a free gondola up the mountain for a better look over the area.
Nicknamed the “Mile High City,” Denver is a haven for outdoor-lovers year-round, making it one of the best weekend getaways in Colorado for any type of travelers. Bring your camera along to capture views of urban and natural scenery alike—Larimer Square and the 16th Street Mall are two essential sightseeing destinations for first-timers, and Mount Elbert is always looming large in the background. The real Denver attraction, though, is the culture, which you can discover on a walk through the city’s distinct neighborhoods, on a Denver sightseeing tour, or a bike and brewery tour (it doesn’t get more Denver than that).
The Experience: Denver is the perfect urban adventure for anyone who likes midsize cities. It's easy to navigate and manage and doesn't feel at all claustrophobic, but offers endless cultural excursions, gourmet dining experiences, and a fun nightlife you'd expect from large cities. Make sure you visit the Denver Art Museum, check out the breweries in the RiNo neighborhood, and stay at the Crawford Hotel, which is in the old Denver Union Station. For a boutique hotel, stay at The Maven Hotel.