Updated: Dec 30, 2021
Denver is a great place for big city vibes with outdoor luxuries. Quite honestly I didn't realize how much Denver has to offer before I visited. There are so many things to do even just in downtown! Here are the top 5 things to do in downtown Denver:
1. Larimer Square
Larimer Street, which runs through downtown Denver, was the city's main street in the 1800s. Larimer Square, an urban shopping and dining area, was born in 1965 and named a historic district in 1971. Stores, restaurants, and bars line the street with string lights and flags hanging overhead. The square is a nice area to walk around, shop, grab a cup of coffee (or a cup of tea), or enjoy a nice dinner!
2. Denver Art Museum
Incredible exhibitions like "Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Mexican Modernism" and "Treasures of British Art" are housed in Denver Art Museum's modern (quite awesome) Hamilton building. The museum has a collection of over 70,000 pieces of art (in 12 different collections) from around the world! It's a nice place to wander around after lunch and soak in different art forms.
3. Union Station
I'm a sucker for picturesque train stations that take you back in time; Union Station is one of those! The inside is decorated like the 1940s with modern touches. Built in 1914, Union Station is not only Denver's main train station, but it also houses the Crawford Hotel, restaurants (like Snooze AM Eatery!!), and stores. Even if you're not hopping on a train, Union Station is a great place to explore.
4. Confluence Park / Commons Park
Confluence Park and Commons Park are across the street from each other, which is super nice, and both are along the South Platte River. Both parks are great places to walk around, have a picnic, watch kayakers, or play spikeball with friends.
5. Colorado State Capitol
The Colorado State Capitol, which is made of white granite and has a gold dome (copper with gold leaves), opened in 1894. The state capitol building is beautiful with a blue-hued body and contrasting gold dome. There's also a nice park in front with monuments, memorials, and grassy areas! Perfect for an evening stroll after visiting the capitol building!
Right Outside of Downtown Denver:
If you're looking for THE perfect picnic spot with a view, City Park is the place for you! (hehe that rhymed 😁) City Park has big walking paths, lakes, fountains, a pavilion, playgrounds, grassy areas, and more. From the east side of the park near the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, there's an incredible view of downtown with the mountains in the background! City Park is a great place to hang out, take in the views, enjoy a picnic, or go for a walk!
Denver Botanic Gardens
Denver Botanic Gardens is amazing! They have 24 acres with 18 gardens featuring plants from Colorado, gardens inspired by Asia, Africa, and many other parts of the world. There are beautiful water features, artsy structures, and tons and tons of flowers. 😍
Downtown Denver is full of fun activities, great restaurants and bars, and beautiful scenery! Even if you're staying outside of downtown, don't forget to make a special trip to downtown for a day.