United States Mint#14 in Best Things To Do in Denver
Even if you hate the sound of excess change rattling around your pockets, you'll find a tour of the Denver branch of the United States Mint to be an interesting way to spend an hour or so. Having opened in 1863, its purpose was to transform the Gold Rush's findings into coinage. Today, the U.S. Mint in Denver can produce up to 50 million coins a day.
A free guided tour of the U.S. Mint in Denver will allow you the opportunity to learn more about each stage of coin production, from the design and sculpting of each piece to the cutting of each type of coin. Some recent visitors marveled at the coin-making machines, but say that not all travelers will likely find it enthralling.
You'll find the U.S. Mint in downtown Denver near the Denver Art Museum. You can easily get there on foot from the Capitol Hill area and LoDo, or you can hop aboard the Nos. 9, 16 or 52 buses – all of which stop within walking distance of the mint. Admission to the U.S. Mint is free, and open to those age 7 and older but you'll need to contact the mint in advance to reserve your spot on a tour. The mint is open to visitors Mondays through Thursdays (excluding national holidays); tours are offered beginning at 8 a.m. with the final tour departing at 3:30 p.m. You must arrive at least 30 minutes prior to your tour time in order to clear security. You are not allowed to carry any handbags, backpacks, strollers, food or beverages with you when you tour the facility. For more information or to schedule a tour, visit the U.S. Mint's website.
More Best Things To Do in Denver
#1 Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre
With its excellent views of the Rocky Mountains, miles of hiking trails and cinnamon-hued sandstone cliffs, Red Rocks Park is a big draw for outdoors enthusiasts. Occupying 700-some acres, this impressive park offers visitors the opportunity to experience the fascinating geographic transition between the Great Plains and the Rocky Mountains. If you only have a short amount of time here, stretch your legs along the Trading Post Trail; this nearly 1 ½-mile-long path weaves through the rust-colored buttes, making for some spectacular scenery. Before you head out, travelers recommend stopping by the visitor center, which features information on the parks history and trails.
Another big draw is the expansive amphitheater, which has hosted such headliners as the Beatles, Tom Petty and John Denver. You'll soon find (and hear) that the theater – geologically formed by the red rocks – boasts amazing acoustics and an enjoyable atmosphere. But many recent visitors said that no matter the show, the majestic atmosphere makes it a good time. Even if you can't fit a concert into your schedule, many travelers agreed that the theater is worth a stop for the photos alone, while the park's visitor center features displays dedicated to past acts.
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