What to do in Denver this summer

Check out the art galleries and museums in Denver's RiNo District

The RiNo District of Denver has a thriving art scene with unique galleries and museums worth exploring. Nestled between downtown Denver and Five Points, RiNo (River North Art District) has transformed old industrial warehouses into contemporary art spaces filled with colorful street murals and trendy restaurants.

The Museum of Contemporary Art Denver features cutting-edge art in a sleek 29,000-square-foot facility with indoor and outdoor exhibits. Check out the Zip 37 Gallery or K Contemporary, which showcases emerging and established artists for more eclectic works. If you're there on the first Friday of the month, you can hop between open galleries during the RiNo Art District's First Friday Art Walk. With stunning street art at every turn, RiNo is a cultural destination showing Denver's creative energy.

Explore all the hiking trails and outdoor activities near Denver

Denver is an outdoor lover's paradise, nestled between the Rocky Mountains and the High Plains. With over 200 miles of hiking and biking trails, abundant wildlife, and stunning vistas, you'll have no trouble finding exciting ways to explore the scenic landscape surrounding the Mile High City. Some recommendations for your trip include:

  • A half-hour west of Denver, Rocky Mountain National Park offers scenic courses of varying difficulty, including the popular Bear Lake and Emerald Lake trails, which wind past alpine lakes and granite peaks.
  • Whitewater rafting down Clear Creek. Just 30 minutes west of Denver, Clear Creek is a popular spot for whitewater rafting and kayaking, with rapids ranging from beginner to expert levels.
  • This 4,000-acre state park sits in the Denver metro area, with 880 acres of natural space to spot deer, birds, foxes, and other wildlife. It offers hiking and biking trails, as well as horseback riding.
  • Cycling the Cherry Creek Trail. This paved trail runs alongside Cherry Creek for over 12 miles, connecting downtown Denver to Cherry Creek State Park. It's a scenic place to cycle, walk or run, with parks, public art, and mountain views.

Catch some live music or comedy shows at Red Rocks Amphitheatre.

Red Rocks Amphitheatre is a legendary open-air venue outside of Denver that hosts incredible live music and comedy shows with the scenic Rocky Mountains as a backdrop. Nestled between 400-foot sandstone rocks, the natural acoustics of the space make every performance an unforgettable experience. Throughout the summer, you can catch your favorite bands and musicians performing against the stunning sunset over the foothills. Or check out some big-name comedians telling jokes while the city sparkles in the distance. With a lineup of hundreds of shows each season ranging from folk and jazz to pop and electronic, you will find an entertaining evening at this iconic Colorado landmark.

Sample craft beer at one of the many local breweries

With over 100 craft breweries in Denver, beer lovers are spoiled for choice. Some popular spots include Great Divide Brewing Co., Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project, and Ratio Beerworks. You can sample innovative flavors at these breweries, like Great Divide's Yeti Imperial Stout, Crooked Stave's Wild Wild Brett series using wild yeasts, or Ratio's easy-drinking session IPAs and crisp lagers. The open, industrial-chic taprooms are perfect for whiling away an afternoon, meeting new people, and enjoying perfectly crafted Colorado beers with friendly locals and fellow beer fans.

Join an outdoor fitness class or yoga session in one of the city's parks.

Denver is an outdoor lover's paradise with ample opportunities to enjoy physical activities amidst nature. One popular way to soak in the gorgeous scenery while getting in shape is to join a group fitness class in one of the city's many parks. Whether you prefer high-intensity interval training, cycling, yoga, or boot camp-style classes, you can find an outdoor session to fit your interests. City Park and Washington Park are two scenic spots that offer free group exercise classes on a drop-in basis throughout the week, allowing you to get your workout in a while surrounded by swaying trees, flowers, and fresh air.

Denver may only be the 25th largest city in America, but it packs a punch of exciting possibilities for those that visit. From exploring the interesting galleries and museums in the RiNo District to getting back to nature through some of its hiking trails, Denver has something for everyone. And if the sights don't entirely take your breath away, then the sounds of Red Rocks Amphitheatre surely will. So after a long day of outdoor fitness classes and yoga sessions, satisfy your taste buds with local beer from one of the many breweries or try out a comedy show for an unforgettable vacation experience. No matter what kind of adventure you're looking for in Denver, you'll never have a dull moment!

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