Known as the "Mile-High City" due to the proximity of the mighty Rocky Mountains, Denver is the fastest growing city in the United States. Originally founded as a mining settlement by gold prospectors in 1858, the city has far outgrown those humble beginnings to become a thriving metropolis, recently voted the best place to live in the entire United States.
The city's unique combination of urban living and the great outdoors makes it an excellent tourist destination. Denver has all the conveniences of a modern global city: the culture, the shopping, the entertainment and food and drink. However, its location means that it's also a great base for tourists wanting to get out there and be adventurous, taking on the many winter sports that the Rockies have to offer (indeed, the city was due to host the Winter Olympics, but declined due to environmental concerns).
Things to Do
Famously, there's a film called "Things To Do in Denver when You're Dead". However, there's plenty here for the living to enjoy. Indoor or out, physical, cerebral or just plain pleasurable -- there's something for everyone.
For the outdoors types
Set out on foot or explore the city on one of the many hire bikes available on a city-wide system. The City's surrounded by some of the most breathtaking scenery imaginable. Take advantage of one of the many organised trips to local spots to hike or test yourself at winter sports. For more sedate strolling, try the beautiful, 24-acre Botanical gardens. For those who prefer to watch, Denver is synonymous with their NFL team: the three-time Superbowl champions the Broncos.
Noted for its laid-back yet cosmopolitan vibe, there's a lot to check out in the city. Try the achingly cool LoDo district, with its mix of grand old architecture with hip modern restaurants. For the shoppers, it's worth checking out the city's many independent shops; there's a far more individual feel here than in your average city. Denver is also noted for its craft beer, as befits the host of the Great American Beer Festival; no trip to Denver is complete without a trip to one of its many brewpubs.
Makes you think...
The city has more than its fair share of cultural highlights too. It's home to an annual Shakespeare festival as well as the Cowboy Poetry Festival. Dozens of galleries are free to view and there are many interesting, individual and quirky museums like the Molly Brown House Museum, the former home of a Titanic survivor, and the unique Kirkland Museum of Fine and Decorative Art.
Calendar of Events
There really is always something happening in Denver, any month's a good time to visit.
- The Annual Colorado Cowboy Poetry Festival. A gathering of poets and musicians celebrate the rich literary, musical and artistic heritage of the Western US -- a truly unique event.
- St Patrick's Day Parade. The biggest St Pat's day parade outside of New York turns the city into one huge party as seemingly everyone gets into the spirit.
- The Great American Beer festival. A celebration of the craft beer phenomenon. every September the city plays host to the widest selection of beers on the planet. Cheers!