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5 Reasons Why Denver is a Winter Lover’s Dream Destination

Written by Suzy Guese

This blog post was updated on December 26, 2019.

The Colorado capital remains a winter lover’s dream, proving ideal for winter vacations. If you love winter and are considering an easy to reach locale, here are a few compelling reasons why you might love to vacation here when the snowfalls.

Merry and Bright City Holiday Lights

Arina P Habich / Shutterstock

Denver appeals to everyone’s inner holiday spirit in that you can’t go far without being surrounded by festive holiday lights. Beginning at the Denver City and County Building, visitors can bask in roughly 600,000 brightly colored floodlights illuminating the historic building in the heart of the Downtown. In addition to the City and County Building, Denver puts on several special light displays at some of its most popular attractions. The Denver Botanic Gardens hosts the Blossoms of Light event in which the gardens are illuminated by thousands of twinkling lights.

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Urban and Country Ice Skating

 RDaniel / Shutterstock

You don’t have to be a skier to appreciate winter in the Denver area. The city also satisfies inner snowmen and snowwomen with ice skating opportunities both in urban and country settings. Right in downtown, you can take advantage of free ice-skating at the Southwest Rink at Skyline Park. The rink sits at 16th and Arapahoe and remains open daily from November through February, so you’ll want to book your flights to Denver sometime during those months if you’re looking for some idyllic ice-skating. Or, you could head to the foothills town of Evergreen (the name of the setting in the film Frosty the Snowman, Colorado’s Evergreen sits just 30 minutes from Denver). The town boasts the world’s largest Zamboni groomed outdoor ice rink on Evergreen Lake. Ice skaters can delight in 8.5 acres of ice set amidst ponderosa pine sheltered mountains.

Plenty of Frosty Mugs of Beer To Drink

Winter Beer Festival


In the Mile High City, you won’t be hard-pressed to find fine, handcrafted beers. Since 2011 alone, over 100 new breweries have moved into Colorado. Denver boasts nearly 50 in its metro area alone. Many travelers begin their brewery tour just outside of Denver in Golden where Coors Brewery calls home, the largest single brewery in the world. Governor John Hickenlooper opened Denver’s first brewpub in 1988. Denver has established such a reputation for its craft beer that it hosts the largest beer festival in the U.S. each year, the Great American Beer Festival.

Parks For Days To Build Snowmen Friends

Bridget Calip / Shutterstock

Denver tends to draw other winter-loving types due to its abundance of parks. The city hosts more than 4,000 acres of traditional parks and parkways. In the winter months, these spaces transform into winter wonderlands after Denver snowstorms, making them ideal spaces for cross-country skiing, sledding, snowshoeing, snowball fights, and snowman building contests. Travelers looking to frolic in the snow can begin at Denver’s City Park, known for its views of the skyline and the Rocky Mountains. Cheesman Park and Washington “Wash” Park are also worth strolling when blanketed in snow.

Playing in the Mountains is Never Out of the Question

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Denver’s backyard boasts some of the world’s best skiing and snowboarding. Just one hour west of Denver in Summit County, skiers and snowboarders will find plenty of ski resorts to play in the snow like Cooper Mountain, Keystone, and Breckenridge. Also within reach of Denver by day is Winter Park, one of the largest ski resorts in Colorado. Winter Park gets about 350 inches of snowfall each year.

 Have any other favorite winter wonderland escapes? Tell us about it in the comments section below.

About the author

Suzy Guese

Suzy Guese is a travel writer from Denver, Colorado. She caught the travel bug after taking her very first flight at just three months old—she was headed for Disney World—and has been a total travel junkie ever since. From family car trips across North America to stints abroad in Europe, Suzy travels the globe with her redheaded temperament in search of sarcasm, stories, and travel tips to share with anyone willing to listen. She blogs about her travels at