I went to Denver for the first time when I was around 15 years old, so my infatuation has lasted about 10 years now. It’s a city that has been exciting to grow up visiting, and I love that I’ve been able to experience different parts of it as I’ve gotten older.
Since my first trip, I’ve visited Denver about once a year (with about half as many visits in the four years since I moved to NYC). On a personal level, one of my favorite things about the city is that I’m friends with Colorado-natives, as well as transplants I know from California and Michigan, so I have a pretty amazing group of friends that I’m able to reconnect with every time I visit.
Here’s some of my must-see’s from my most recent trip to the Mile High City:
There’s a ton of relatively budget-friendly options in the city, so I recommend finding a neighborhood that looks the most appealing to you and searching for an accommodation based on that. I opted to stay in RiNo, which is a newer developed area with more off-the-beaten-path options for food and things to do, not to mention a brewery on pretty much every other block (for real). I also really dig the Highlands.
I use AllTheRooms to find a place to stay, and you can read more on my most recent search here. To get to wherever you’re staying from the airport, I definitely recommend grabbing an Uber (which is definitely cheaper than a cab).
- Denver Biscuit Company: It’s been about a month since I was here, and I’m pretty much still dreaming about this place. Disclaimer: I don’t always eat healthy food, so prepare yourself for this brunch-worthy meal. Split the cinnamon roll with friends, and then order The Franklin. Tweet a photo at me, and I’ll be real jealous.
- Sassafras American Eatery: My parents are both from the South, so I love some good comfort food that reminds me of home. Using locally-sourced ingredients, you can’t go wrong with pretty much anything on the menu.
- Happy Leaf Kombucha: I’m not going to lie, there’s a lot of drinking involved when you stay in RiNo (see below, for brewery recs). That being said, take a moment to recharge and grab a flight of kombucha at this cute space.
- Museum of Contemporary Art: MCA is a pretty rad option for getting your dose of arts + culture in the city. A relatively small museum, you can get through the space in an hour or two. MCA focuses on curating one artist at a time, so the rotating list of exhibitions offers something a little different each time you experience the space.
- Boulder: Boulder holds a special place in my heart because I’ve had a handful of friends attend the university there. Even though I don’t have any friends who live in the area anymore, it’s still one of my favorite spots to find a good hiking area.
- Breckenridge: Denver is beautiful, but it’s definitely worth taking a trip out of the city to experience the Rockies. Breck is one of my favorite areas, and easy to get to from Denver. Read some of my recs for art in Breck.
- Avery Brewing: Again (and again and again), there’s about a million options for breweries in the city, but Avery is probably my favorite space. Visit it on your way back to the city from Boulder, sit down for an awesome meal with friends and hang out for a round of drinks.
- Crooked Stave: A close second to Avery, Crooked Stave offers an awesome line-up of different artisanal beers. Try the sours, one of their specialities.
Shot on 35mm, 400 ISO Kodak Portra film
on my Konica t3