Boulder Travel Guide

USA  #14 in Best Adventure Vacations in the USA
Credit

Courtesy of Stephen Collector/Stephen Collector

Best Things To Do in Boulder

With more than 31,000 acres of parkland  which includes more than 200 miles of hiking and biking trails  Boulder knows how to woo nature lovers. Get your adrenaline pumping on a hike through Eldorado Canyon State Park or Chautauqua Park or brave the trail to (and be rewarded by views of) the Flatirons. If you're looking for a more relaxed experience, spend your days window shopping along the Pearl Street Mall or perusing the works at the Leanin' Tree Museum of Western Art. No matter how you choose to experience Boulder, devote some time to unwinding with a cup of tea or reveling with a pint of local ale.

How we rank Things to Do
  • #1
    Things to do in Boulder
    View all Photos
    #1 in Boulder
    Hiking, Natural Wonders, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Hiking, Natural Wonders, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    These jaw-dropping rock walls flanking Green Mountain have become the symbol of the city, with many Boulder businesses sporting their image as a logo. Flatirons One through Five are the most prominent, but there are also several smaller formations– with more creative names– to explore. Altogether, these picturesque slopes are the most

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  • #2
    Chautauqua Park
    View all Photos
    #2 in Boulder
    Parks and Gardens, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Parks and Gardens, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Perched on the southwest edge of the city, this tiny extension of Boulder Mountain Park offers some of the city's most photo-worthy vistas. Originally established in the late 1800s as a verdant retreat, this National Historic Landmark now hosts a handful of community events like concerts and festivals. Even when

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  • #3
    Pearl Street Mall
    View all Photos
    #3 in Boulder
    Shopping, Free, Neighborhood/Area
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Shopping, Free, Neighborhood/Area
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Stretching from Eighth to 20th streets in downtown Boulder, this buzzing thoroughfare is a shopaholic's Yellow Brick Road. Here, you'll find familiar brand names like Urban Outfitters and Patagonia sharing sidewalk space with local boutiques, trendy galleries and laid-back cafes. If you're not much of a shopper, come to Pearl

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  • #4
    Celestial Seasonings Tea Factory
    View all Photos
    #4 in Boulder
    Sightseeing, Tours, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Sightseeing, Tours, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    No wonder everyone in Boulder seems so relaxed: The city is home to North America's largest producer of herbal tea, which packages and sends more than 8 million tea bags every day. Founded in 1969, Celestial Seasonings has since grown to serve more than 1.6 billion cups of tea (including

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  • #5
    Breweries
    View all Photos
    #5 in Boulder
    Entertainment and Nightlife, Tours, Wineries/Breweries, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Entertainment and Nightlife, Tours, Wineries/Breweries, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    After you've conquered theFlatirons, what better reward than an ice-cold pint of local Boulder ale? Though Denver is often regarded as Colorado's reigning beer city, Boulder can keep up, offering 20 breweries in its 27.8 square miles. To acquaint yourself with the city's suds, embark on the bike-friendlyBoulder Beer Trail(which

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  • #6
    Eldorado Canyon State Park
    View all Photos
    #6 in Boulder
    Hiking, Parks and Gardens, Recreation
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Hiking, Parks and Gardens, Recreation
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Cascading canyon walls, lush pine forests, winding trails ... Eldorado Canyon State Park has much to offer in the way of natural beauty. Its 885 acres provide opportunities to rock climb, kayak, horseback ride and bird-watch, not to mention sightsee. Just don't forget your camera– recent visitors can't help but rave

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  • #7
    Boulder Creek Path
    View all Photos
    #7 in Boulder
    Hiking, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Hiking, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    Ask any Boulder resident for a hiking recommendation and they'll probably point you to the Boulder Creek Path. This 5½-mile-long trail– completely undisturbed by automobile traffic– traces Boulder Creek from Boulder Canyon eastward through downtown to the Stazio Ballfields on the eastern fringes of town. On any given day, you'll come across

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  • #8
    Flagstaff Mountain & Summit Nature Center
    View all Photos
    #8 in Boulder
    Hiking, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Hiking, Recreation, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    If you're looking for a hike the whole family can enjoy, aim for the top of Flagstaff Mountain. Rising out of Boulder Mountain Park, Flagstaff Mountain sits about 5 miles southwest of the city. If you're a novice trailblazer, you may find this mountain challenging due its altitude of nearly

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  • #9
    University of Colorado Boulder
    View all Photos
    #9 in Boulder
    Sightseeing, Sports, Free, Neighborhood/Area
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Sightseeing, Sports, Free, Neighborhood/Area
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    Even if you're not a prospective student, recent visitors recommend you pay a visit to the beautiful University of Colorado Boulder campus, located just minutes from downtown Boulder. When you're not lounging at Norlin Quadrangle (a designated a National Historic District), learn about the university's history at the CU Heritage

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  • #10
    Leanin' Tree Museum of Western Art
    View all Photos
    #10 in Boulder
    Museums, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Museums, Free
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    You don't have to be a hiker, a skier or a rock climber to experience Colorado's scenery. For a more laid-back glimpse at the mountainous landscape, head to the Leanin' Tree Museum of Western Art. This museum houses one of the largest privately owned collections of post-1950s Western-themed artwork. Along

    ...Read More »
  • #11
    National Center for Atmospheric Research
    View all Photos
    #11 in Boulder
    Museums, Tours, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Museums, Tours, Free
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    Most people consider a conversation about the weather to be a desperate attempt at small talk. But at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, sun, rain, wind and snow are always important topics. At this stunning sandstone building atop Table Mesa– a landmark some might recognize from Woody Allen's film, "Sleeper"– scientists

    ...Read More »

Explore More of Boulder

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