I’m a big fan of fall, and every September you’ll find me running around the state with my Canon in hand. However, I must admit that Colorado’s summers are truly outstanding. I just got back from Vail where the season is in full swing and it was a colorful reminder of how gorgeous the mountains can be at this time of year.
What’s better than a summertime soak in one of Colorado’s most beautiful hot springs? A soak with a view. Ouray’s newly remodeled hot spring pool offers views of the stunning mountains that make this town so strikingly original. There’s a reason it’s called “The Little Switzerland of America”— there’s just no other place quite like it.
While in town, be sure to book a 4-wheel drive outing with Alpine Scenic Tours. This luxury outing in a comfortable tour truck is an experience no one in your family will forget.
The person who coined the phrase “Colorful Colorado” must have visited Vail in the summertime. The beauty of this town’s flowers is truly breathtaking. I can’t walk the village without stopping 20 times to take photographs. Right now there’s a cornucopia of columbines but later in the season hundreds of other flowers will bloom across this iconic Colorado town.
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Schedule a trip around one of their many festivals or the Vail Farmers’ Market. The market is one of the best and largest in the state.
With a lush and shady riverwalk and a rock that resembles a castle, it doesn’t get more summery or photogenic than Golden, Colorado. While this town is a great year-round getaway, it blossoms into the perfect summer town, and its proximity to Denver, just 23-minutes, makes it an optimal weekend destination.
Pick up fruit, veggies and bread at the Golden Farmers’ Market and book a suite at Dove Inn. This boutique hotel is right in the middle of everywhere you want to be.
Pagosa Springs, Colorado
This Colorado town that feels more southwestern than Rocky Mountain and that means that time really slows down here. Whether it’s eating a taco at Kip’s or soaking your cares away in at one of the town’s three hot springs destinations or floating the San Juan River, this place is all about relaxation.
I’ve already mentioned Kip’s Cantina’s tacos, which are amazing, but you should also grab an ice cream cone at the Malt Shoppe in Pagosa Springs. We stop even when we’re just passing through.
While it’s not technically a city and not a town, Denver comes alive in the summer; throngs of people browse Laramie Street and Coors Field is always exciting, win or lose. The best place to experience summer in Denver is at the Botanic Gardens. One of my Colorado Happy Spots, these gardens are a must-see when visiting Denver at any time of year, but they are especially vibrant during the summer.
I’ve been to the gardens a lot, but never early in the summer like I did this year, and the riot of color nearly paralyzed me with delight.