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7 Outdoor Activities Near Denver

Denver City Park

With over 300 days of sunlight, the beautiful state of Colorado offers plenty of time and opportunity to explore its great outdoors. Whether you are visiting or a Colorado native, the Rocky Mountain region boasts some of the best hiking and outdoor activities in the country. The city of Denver additionally has its own parks and green spaces, and its location on the Front Range provides easy access to outdoor adventure.

From plains to foothills to 14ers, you will find a vast number of options close to downtown within an hour. We’ve compiled our suggestions to get you started on your Denver adventure! And If you need more convincing, here are 7 reasons why you should visit Denver.

River in Denver

  1. Picnic in a Park

Denver has many parks and green spaces, all with plenty of room to hang out with friends, hammock, or play spike ball. Grab your dog, pack a picnic, and relax in one of Denver’s city parks. Many parks even host recreational sports leagues, including volleyball, frisbee, or kickball. The biggest and most popular parks include:

  • Washington Park
  • City Park
  • Cheesman Park
  • Sloan’s Lake

Picnic in one of Denver's parks

There are also many other smaller parks and green areas scattered throughout the city; Don’t be afraid to wander through a neighborhood and see where you might end up! If you don’t want to pack a picnic, all of these parks are located near restaurants, offering a variety of food and take-out options.

  1. River Tubing

Denver and its surrounding areas offer several options for floating and tubing on local rivers. Our top 3 rivers for tubing include the Colorado River, Boulder Creek, and Clear Creek in Golden. AVA also runs relaxing scenic half or full day float trips on the Upper Colorado River from our Kremmling outpost, one hour and 45 minutes from Denver. These trips allow for plenty of time to soak in Colorado’s scenery, swim, and relax on the water. This is also a great option for those visiting from out of town, as we provide all the equipment, including rafts, inflatable kayaks, or stand-up paddleboards for your adventure! If you choose to tube in Golden, please read the Clear Creek map for tubing locations, and be sure to check out where you can rent a tube if you do not have one.

River tubing

  1. Aerial Adventures

Fly through the trees or climb high into the cliffside on an aerial adventure! Our Idaho Springs outpost, just 30 minutes from Denver, offers exciting Zipline and Via Ferrata trips. Choose our Cliffside Zipline course and soar across 6 lines above Idaho Springs and the Chicago Creek. This course includes several bridges and an opportunity to race your friend or family member on a dual race line!

Our Mount Evans Via Ferrata course offers an opportunity to level up your adventure, as you climb across iron rungs and bars built directly into the cliffside and experience Colorado from an entirely new angle. On this course, you will even be able to additionally fly across several lines of our zipline course!

zipline through trees- Idaho Springs

  1. Whitewater Rafting

Our Idaho Springs outpost additionally offers opportunities for Whitewater Rafting, ranging from the mild to the wild. Paddle our 1/3 day Gold Rush trip for an introductory experience to milder rapids, or soar down class V rapids on our full day Phoenix trip. On all of our Idaho Springs experiences, you will paddle the Clear Creek, experiencing views of Idaho Spring’s mining valley and even have the opportunity to spot some local wildlife.

To make the most of your Colorado and Denver outdoor adventure, package your whitewater rafting trip with an aerial adventure! This full day experience will allow you to explore the best of Colorado’s outdoors, save money, and maximize your time in Denver!

Whitewater Rafting Clear Creek

  1. Hiking and Biking

Denver and the surrounding areas offer opportunities for road and mountain biking, as well as hiking. The Golden area is about 15 minutes from Denver and offers flowy trails great for mountain biking or running. Our favorites include North Table Mesa Trail, Apex Park, Green Mountain Trail, and William Frederick Hayden Park. Check out AllTrails for a complete list of local trails, and be sure to check rules regarding bikes before you go! The City of Denver additionally has opportunities for road biking, with trails including the Cherry Creek and the Platte River Trail that span across the metro Denver area.

mountain biking trail

  1. Visit Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre

Catch the best outdoor concert experience of your life amidst the natural beauty of Denver’s Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater. Such artists as Sting and the Beatles have performed at this venue, and with outstanding acoustics, this space will make your concert dreams come true! Check out the event calendar and start planning your visit to Red Rocks. In addition to concerts, the venue also hosts Film on the Rocks, Yoga, and opportunities for hiking in the surrounding area.

Red Rocks Park and Ampitheater

  1. Cheer on the Rockies

Denver is a huge sports city, and in the summer, there is nothing like going to a Colorado Rockies game at Coors field! It’s great place to experience our Rocky Mountain sunsets, while participating in America’s favorite past time. Enjoy relatively cheap tickets, a hot dog, and your drink of choice, while showing your Denver pride.

Rockies Coors Field

  1.  Try Stand up Paddleboarding

SUP is a popular activity, and Denver has more than a couple of locations surrounding the area that you can paddle at, including Cherry Creek State Park, Sloan’s Lake, Bear Creek Lake, Chatfield, Evergreen Lake. Some of those locations also offer rentals. If you are looking for a guided experience with gear included, check out our Stand Up Paddleboarding trips. We offer a half day Stand Up Paddleboarding experience from our Kremmling, Colorado outpost, one hour and 45 minutes from Denver. You will paddle down the Upper Colorado River and through the Little Gore Canyon on mild class II rapids, while enjoying the best of Colorado scenery.

scenic float trip

The Denver area hosts a plethora of outdoor adventures, in the city of Denver and throughout surrounding areas. Check out even more Colorado adventures and get your Colorado vacation started today!

Written by Sarah Wagner, Contributing Member of the Sales and Marketing Team

Edited by Rosa Canales, Marketing Specialist

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