No matter which way you turn, there’s always something new and exciting to discover in the Mile High City. The streets are brimming with historic landmarks, trending hot spots, unique eateries, one-of-a-kind shops, and inspiring museums and art galleries. You’ve got to see these 11 incredible places to explore in Denver!
1. Union Station
There's certainly plenty to discover at this 100-year-old Denver landmark in LoDo. You can get your fill of shopping, dining, and drinking, then crash in one of their iconic luxury hotel rooms, all without ever leaving this happening hub.
Speaking of hubs, Lower Downtown Denver is a vibrant, thriving area with an unlimited amount of interesting things to see and do. Besides the historic Union Station, there's also Coors Field, Larimer Square, the 16th Street Mall, the Denver Pavilion, and tons of other options for shopping, dining, and nightlife. Rove the roughly 25-square-blocks and see what you can uncover!
3. Tattered Cover
One of the Mile High institutions in LoDo that is not to be missed is the Tattered Cover, which was established in 1971 and is one of the largest independently owned bookstores in the U.S. They've also got a second, equally sublime location on Colfax near City Park where you can spend hours sipping coffee, perusing bookshelves, and skimming pages in one of their many reading nooks. There's definitely much to discover at the Tattered Cover!
4. Museum of Contemporary Art Denver
It just so happens that the awe-inspiring Museum of Contemporary Art Denver (MCA Denver) also resides in LoDo and always has a fresh rotation of exhibits so that no two visits are ever the same. And don't miss out on their charming rooftop cafe and terrace with cityscape views of downtown!
5. Denver Museum of Nature and Science
Another Mile High museum that's sure to bring out the explorer in you is the Denver Museum of Nature and Science at City Park. For more than 100 years, this institution has been peaking the curiosity of the good people of Denver with their exhibitions, planetarium, IMAX, and constant rotation of new and interesting explorations. The current highlight is a fun-filled, interactive showcase called Robot Revolution. Check it!
There are thousands of geocaches in Denver and surrounding areas, including Colorado's state parks, 14ers, and EarthCaches. All you have to do is register for a free membership through the official Geocaching website, grab a GPS device or smartphone, and use the coordinates to locate the hidden treasures. (Although the best part of the hunt is enjoying the scenery and exploring along the way)!
7. Downtown Aquarium
Discover underwater ecosystems at the Downtown Aquarium, which has over a million gallons of exhibit tanks and 500 species of animals. Also at your disposal are a restaurant and lounge, educational programs, and the Mystic Mermaids "Under the Sea" shows. For a family-friendly, interactive indoor outing, check out the Downtown Aquarium!
8. Cherry Creek Regional Trail
Hop on your bike and explore the city via the picturesque 40-mile Cherry Creek Trail that runs from Confluence Park in downtown Denver to Franktown near Castlewood Canyon State Park. And there is much to explore along the route, including the Cherry Creek Shopping District, Four Mile Historic Park, Cherry Creek State Park, and Arapahoe and Douglas Counties.
9. Cherry Creek Shopping District
For a premiere shopping experience, try your hand (and wallet) at the Cherry Creek Mall and surrounding walkable shopping district. There are hundreds of stores containing everything from locally owned artisans to international designers, not to mention a whole host of fantastic restaurants, bars, galleries, and more. Get poppin'!
10. Four Mile Historic Park
Four Mile Historic Park is a unique hidden gem located between Glendale and downtown Denver on the banks of Cherry Creek. Get a taste of our pioneer history at this 150-year-old landmark dedicated to the preservation, education, and history of Denver's western heritage. Check their site to learn more about tours, educational programs, and special events.
11. The Source
This one-stop artisan food and retail marketplace located in a landmark building from the 1880s in RiNo, is just the place to don your explorer cap. With restaurants, bars, coffee roasters, craft brewers, bakers, cheese mongers, floral designers, and more, this lively hot spot is truly a Source for it all!
What do you think are the best places to explore in Denver? Share your thoughts in the comments!