Colorado is known for it’s nature, but let’s talk about the city for a minute. For a weekend trip, you really need to pick one or the other – city or country. For this trip we went the city route. Read more to see my favorite spots, and to help plan your next trip to the Mile High City.
Denver City Guide, By Area
Capitol Hill / Central
The ART, a Hotel – Thank goodness for our Airbnb host ghosted on us, otherwise we probably wouldn’t have had the chance to stay here! This hotel was insane. I can’t say enough good things about it. It’s an Instagrammer’s dream, literally. The building is in the heart of the Arts district, and everything about it is artsy af. Don’t forget your camera.
Denver Art Museum – Visit the DAM! There are tons of large-scale sculptures, including a giant broom and dustpan, and these super colorful basketweave lounge chairs you can snap a pic on. Visit their website to see the current and upcoming exhibitions, and schedule around your trip.
Amethyst Coffee – Literally the cutest coffee shop. Just go and thank me later. I had their matcha latte with homemade cashew milk and it was delicious af. Sadly I didn’t have long to spend in here, but it would be a great spot to sit/read/work for hours.
The Living Room – A wine bar and restaurant that’s cozy enough to make you feel like you’re hanging out in your living room, which delicious food and good music.
Denver Botanic Gardens – Definitely check out the Botanical Gardens! Entry is free, and you can see what’s going on as far as events on the online calendar. There are usually themed areas to explore! I like the desert section myself.
Cheesman Park – Huge park with jogging trails and room for your pup to run. You’ll find pizzerias, cafes, and cocktail bars on streets surrounding the park for when you need a break.
LoHi / Highland
Linger – Do you want to brunch at an old Mortuary? If your answer was no you’ll soon change your mind. I think they call this spot an “Eatuary” – get it? Check their Instagram or call to see if the open-air patio is open. There’s a ton of seating indoors too, if you happen to be visiting in the colder months.
Little Man Ice Cream – You literally can’t miss this 28 foot tall “Cream Can” beneath which you can have the best experience buying ice cream. The line wrapped around the block can also give it away. If either of those doesn’t cause you to stop here, the smell of freshly baked waffle cones will.
Goldyn – After brunching at Linger, and grabbing a cone at Little Man, you HAVE to go shopping at Goldyn. The aesthetic of the store is just as top notch as the carefully curated pieces of clothing, jewelry, gifts, shoes, and other “curiosities”. Goldyn carries both major and local designers in small batches, so you can rest easy that you have found a unique item. Even if you are just window shopping, the inspiration in this space is R E A L.
Avanti: A Collective Eatery – I’m a sucker for anything that houses multiple food vendors. Bonus – this spot has amazing views and interiors. I’m in! There are SEVEN different food vendors to choose from at this hotspot, 20 beers on draft, delicious cocktails, and an awesome Happy Hour. Perfect spot for groups, but get there early to snag a spot on the covered or open terrace.
Metalmark Jewelry – I think it was the chartreuse velvet chair that initially drew me into this shop. While browsing this electic Jewelry store, I picked up a free copy of The Scout Guide: Denver. This little guide has all the hot spots in the city, all tucked behind the most chic book cover. TSG has a whole series of city guides, so check them out if you’re looking for a specific destination. Pro Tip: Sign up for emails on the Metalmark website for an instant 15% off!
LoDo / Union Station
Larimer Square – You know those cute photos with string lights you see people taking in Denver? Well this is where you find them. There are tons of independent restaurants and shops to explore in this historic square. It was actually the first square in the city! Wear comfortable shoes and walk around for a couple of hours.
Thirsty Lion – This gastropub has tons of TV’s for watching sports and it’s deceivingly huge inside. You can make a reservation, but I prefer to walk in and sit at the bar. They have HH every day of the week, and I recommend trying the Denver beer flight which gives you a little of everything.
RiNo / River North Art District
Denver Central Market – I already talked about one collective eatery, but DCM is also a winner! They currently have 11 vendors in the building including a local butcher, fish market, bakery, chocolatier, ice creamery, farm to table items, craft cocktails, and Italian! The tables are set up cafeteria style, just sit where you fit. Order at the station(s) of your choice, and sit anywhere.
Great Divide Brewing Co + Barrel Bar – A trip to Denver is incomplete without visiting at least one brewery! This one in RiNo district is known for it’s craft beer selection, charity work, and blends art and brewing (or are they one in the same?) by placing local artwork on their (recyclable) cans.
Stem Ciders – I love beer, don’t get me wrong, but cider is my favorite. Stem has a welcoming storefront attached to their taproom. Here you can sip on their classic dry cider, or seasonal batch like their new Coffee Cider, which “pairs well with S’mores, jerk chicken, french toast, and camping.” Sign me up.
Thanks for reading! Leave me a comment letting me know which spots you want to visit on your next trip to Denver.