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I have been in Colorado for one week and I’m already in love with living “in the mountains.” I haven’t went into the city yet, but I can tell from driving around that this is an amazing place with lots to do. I started doing some research and created a list of ten things I really want to experience in the next year. Mike is always up for an adventure, so I know we are going to have a ton of fun living in Denver.
This is just a starter list, but I think it’s a pretty good one to begin.
1. Visit the Denver Art Museum
I love art museums. I am not some arty smarty, but I like to look at different styles and see what each museum has to offer. Even if the Denver Art Museum doesn’t compare to MOMA, every museum has a unique offering of artwork that deserves to be seen. I can’t wait to take a day to visit.
If you have not seen this amphitheatre, you are missing out. I’ve only seen pictures, but I know that it’s going to be awesome. There’s an annual Easter Sunrise Service here, and I can’t think of a better way to experience Jesus’ resurrection than here.
3. Go to the Denver Zoo.
This is a given. How could we not go to the zoo? I’ve heard nothing but great things and this is something Mike and I love to do. It’s pretty pricey, but that must mean something right? All I can say is… they have okapi. I used to breed those on the computer game Zoo Tycoon!
4. Tour the Denver Botanic Gardens
I am kind of obsessed with plants, so every botanic garden is intriguing to me. I loved visiting the St. Louis gardens and am sure Denver’s Botanic Gardens will not disappoint. Their website has some beautiful photos, and I know Mike and I will love walking the grounds.
5. Walk down Larimer Square
From what I can tell, Larimer Square is supposed to feel like a small town square with quaint shops and places to eat. It’s a top pick on numerous Denver to-do lists, so I feel that we would be foolish not to take an evening to explore the area and grab a bite to eat.
Mount Evans isn’t in Denver, but it’s near the city, so I felt the need to add it. I have been up Mt. Evans, but Mike has not. I think it would be a fun drive for us to take. There were mountain goats everywhere when I went as a kid, and there were gorgeous valleys of wildflowers and green grass. I cannot wait to see this again and snag some great photos.
If you haven’t heard, Denver has a light rail system and it is expanding into the far corners of the region. They have major plans to expand the system into the suburbs so more people have easy commutes into the downtown area, as well as across the whole city. I think taking the “train” into the city would be so awesome. In St. Louis, we always had to drive downtown for events and pay anywhere from $5 to $15 for parking, only to walk another 1/2 mile to get to our location.
When taking the light rail, you don’t have to worry about parking. It stops at several places downtown so you are within walking distance of everything. You can simply park your car at the station. I haven’t tried it yet, but I think this will be our new way of traveling around the city. Plus, military rides free! Savings all around!
8. Watch a football game at the Broncos’ stadium.
I am not a Broncos fan. Never will be. I am a Chiefs fan because I hail from the Kansas City area. My husband is a Packers fan. The important thing here is that I have never been to a football game. I’ve been to baseball and hockey games, but never football – not even in high school (small town probs). I want to see a game here, and I’ll probably hop on the light rail to make it happen!
9. Visit the Blue Demon Mustang
Also known as Blucifer, this giant blue horse statue stands raring it’s fiery head near the Denver International Airport. Some people claim that it’s full of bad luck because a piece of it fell on its creator and killed him. Freaky… Anyways, I want to see this thing for myself. It’s not too far from me, so the drive would be easy. I’ll post pictures here.
10. Hike the Chicago Lakes Trail
The Chicago Lakes Trail was something I discovered when researching Mt. Evans. It’s in the same area and the photos are gorgeous. It could be a contender with Hanging Lake (which Mike and I will hike this summer). The trail is 9.4 miles round trip and rated as difficult. It is dog-friendly, which is important to me, though I’m not sure Mots would be up for something this intense. This is definitely on my to-do list first thing in June.
How does this look for an introduction to the Denver area? Rocky Mountain National Park alone has numerous things to do, but I wanted to start inside and work my way out. Every weekend is going to be jam packed out here. I can’t wait!