Whether you’re making a trip to hit the slopes, or just to find relaxing activities in beautiful, snow-capped mountain towns, there is certainly something for everyone to enjoy in Colorado. We broke down the ultimate guide to winter vacations in Colorado below:
Idaho Springs, Georgetown, Nederland, Evergreen, Black Hawk, Central City
Georgetown Loop Railroad
Loveland Ski Area
You don’t need to travel deep into the mountains to find amazing winter activities here in Colorado! A trip to the front range offers a multitude of fun things to do, including skiing, hot springs, ice skating, and much more. You can find amazing skiing less than an hour outside of Denver at Loveland, and the same can be said for Eldora just about 45 minutes from Boulder.
There’s much more to do beyond skiing in the Front Range. Visit Georgetown for a traditional mountain-town winter experience, and take a ride on the Georgetown Loop Railroad for amazing sightseeing and an experience that will take you back in time. In next door Idaho Springs, you can enjoy some of the finest hot springs that Colorado has to offer, as well as a quaint and charming downtown area. Nearby Black Hawk & Central City hosts classic downtown areas and famous casinos.
Skiing: Eldora, Loveland
Other Fun Activities: Georgetown Loop Railroad, Indian Hot Springs, Ice Skating at Evergreen Lake.
Granby, Frasier, Winter Parky
Winter Park Resort
Hot Sulphur Springs Resort & Spa
Located on highway 40, the towns of Granby, Frasier and Winter Park in Grand County offer a wide variety of amazing views and fun activities for the whole family. Grand County offers two ski areas, Winter Park and Ski Granby Ranch. Winter Park is home to world-class skiing and is a popular destination for local Coloradans and tourists alike. Ski Granby Ranch is a smaller, privately owned resort with terrain that will keep riders of all skill levels entertained.
The largest town in the county is Winter Park, which offers a beautiful downtown area as well as a fun mountain village. Here you will find all the shopping, dining and lodging for you and your family. If you’re looking for a cheaper alternative, you can check out the town of Frasier just a short drive north for more amenities. This is a great tip of our ultimate guide to winter vacations in Colorado!
Skiing: Winter Park, Ski Granby Ranch
Tubing: Colorado Adventure Park & Fraser Tubing Hill (both located in Fraser)
Other Fun Activities: Ice Skating at Winter Park Ice Rink, Hot Sulphur Springs Resort & Spa.
Breckenridge, Frisco, Dillon, Silverthorne, Keystone
Being just over an hour from Denver, Summit County is one of the most visited winter destinations in Colorado. Each town in Summit County offers something unique, and they are all in close proximity of each other so you can explore the whole county easily in one trip.
Summit County is composed of Breckenridge, Frisco, Silverthorne, Dillon and Keystone. There are four ski-resorts in summit county: Breckenridge, Keystone & adjacent Arapahoe Basin, and Copper Mountain (located 10 minutes south of Frisco down I-70). If skiing isn’t your thing, exploring the downtown areas that feature amazing dining, shopping, and stunning views will surely keep you entertained.
Skiing: Breckenridge, Keystone, Arapahoe Basin, Copper Mountain
Tubing: Breckenridge, Keystone, Copper Mountain, Frisco Adventure Park
Ice Skating: Breckenridge Ice Rink, Keystone Lake Ice Rink, Keystone Decrum Square Ice Rink, Copper Mountain Ice Rink
Other Fun Activities: Ice Skating at Winter Park Ice Rink, Hot Sulphur Springs Resort & Spa.
Vail, Eagle, Avon, Edwards
Snow Tubing at Beaver Creek
Located just west of Summit County, Vail Valley is the home to two amazing ski resorts: Vail & Beaver Creek. Both of these locations, situated just 10 miles apart from each other, offer world-class skiing and snowboarding and are a popular destination for people around the world. Vail is also the second largest ski resort in Colorado, with a staggering 5,200+ acres of riddable terrain.
Although both Vail and Beaver Creek lack what you would consider a classic mountain “downtown” area like what you’d find in Frisco and Breckenridge, what you will find here are amazing ski villages that offer all the same amenities such as shopping and world-class dining. In surrounding towns you will find more affordable lodging than staying at the resort, as well as other dining options to consider.
Skiing: Vail, Beaver Creek
Tubing: Vail Adventure Ridge, Beaver Creek Haymaker Tubing Hill
Ice Skating: Vail Square Ice Rink, Beaver Creek Ice Rink
Other Fun Activities: Snowmobile rentals/tours
Glenwood Springs & Aspen
Aspen is one of the most well-known and favorites ski resorts in Colorado, and less than an hour away (and a likely place for you to pass on your way) is the charming town of Glenwood Springs. Glenwood Springs is home to the single largest outdoor mineral hot spring in the world! This popular destination features an array of geothermal amenities that are amazing to soak in during the winter, and are also said to hold healing powers. Sunlight Mountain is an independent ski area right outside of Glenwood Springs that has great terrain for all skill levels.
Aspen is known for two things: It’s amazing skiing and beautiful downtown area. Aspen holds the title of largest ski-resort in Colorado, with 5,500+ acres of terrain to explore. At this resort, you can ski right down from the mountain to the downtown area where you can explore a multitude of dining and shopping options. Aspen is all you can ask for and more in a mountain town, offering amazing views and a charming downtown atmosphere. If you’re looking for cheaper lodging, you can try Carbondale. This is a great tip of our ultimate guide to winter vacations in Colorado!
Skiing: Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Snowmass, Buttermilk, Sunlight Mountain
Hot Springs: Glenwood Hot Springs Resort, Iron Mountain Hot Springs, Yampah Spa and Vapor Caves
Other Fun Activities: Snowmobile rentals/tours, Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, tubing at Aspen Snowmass, Ice Skating at Silver Circle Ice Rink in Aspen
Gunnison, Crested Butte, Powderhorn
Tucked away deep in the in the Rocky Mountains, Crested Butte is a favorite ski-area that offers some of the most advanced & adventurous ski terrain in the country. Don’t let this scare you if you’re a beginner, there’s also plenty of green and blue runs for all skill levels. Beyond the amazing skiing, the downtown area of Crested Butte is a charming, small mountain town that features great dining, shopping and lodging. Powderhorn is a resort that features similar terrain, located a little over an hour south.
Gunnison is another charming mountain town that is located near the famous Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park (although closed in winter). Gunnison offers it’s own unique dining and lodging options, and at only about 35 minutes from both Crested Butte and Powderhorn, making it a great central location between the two for more affordable lodging. This is a great tip of our ultimate guide to winter vacations in Colorado!
Ski Areas: Crested Butte Mountain Resort, Powderhorn Mountain Resort
Other Fun Activities: Waunita Hot Springs, tubing at Crested Butte Adventure Park, Ice Skating at Crested Butte Nordic Center
Strawberry Park Hot Springs
One of Colorado’s most popular destinations, Steamboat Springs offers an amazing variety of shops, restaurants, bars, lodging, and of course skiing! The downtown area of Steamboat is scenic and welcoming, offering all you could ask for in a quiet mountain-town. Steamboat also offers a mountain-village that offers more options for dining, shopping and other fun activities.
Steamboat Springs offers two ski areas: Howelsen Hill Ski Area & Steamboat Resort. Howelsen Hill is the oldest operating ski-area in Colorado, and is home to night skiing, world-class jumps, and has been known as the training ground for over 150 Olympic skiers. The main attraction of Steamboat Resort offers some of the finest skiing in all of Colorado, featuring nearly 3,000 acres of unique terrain and some of the finest tree runs around.
Ski Areas: Steamboat, Howelsen Hill
Snow tubing: Saddleback Ranch Yee Haw Hill, Howelsen Tubing Hill
Hot Springs: Hold Town, Strawberry Park
Other Fun Activities: Ice Skating at Howelsen Ice Arena, Snowmobile rentals/tours
Salida, Buena Vista, Leadville
Monarch Mountain Ski Resort
Central Colorado is home to some classic mountain towns as well as some amazing skiing that offers much less crowds than many of the other classic Colorado resorts. The towns of Salida, Buena Vista and Leadville each offer their own unique downtown areas complete with a multitude of dining, shopping and lodging options.
You can find skiing in Central Colorado at the privately-owned resorts of Monarch and Ski Cooper. Monarch is one of the oldest ski resorts in Colorado and located in Salida. Being right on the continental divide, Monarch is home to one of the snowiest resorts in Colorado and is only about 2 hours from Colorado Springs. Ski Cooper is another classic Colorado resort that is located in Leadville and offers a variety of terrain for all skill levels.
Ski Areas: Monarch Mountain, Ski Cooper
Hot Springs: Salida Hot Springs, Cottonwood, Valley View, Mount Princeton
Other Fun Activities: Snow tubing at Monarch Mountain Tubing Park, Snow Tubing at Dutch Henry Hill & Ice Skating at Huck Finn Ice Rink (both in Leadville)
Telluride, Durango, Cortez, Pagosa Springs, Alamosa
Telluride Ski Resort
Wolf Creek Ski Area
Home to a multitude of ski resorts as well as some amazing mountain towns, Southwest Colorado is a must-explore area featuring amazing scenery & history. In Southwest Colorado you can find remote mining-towns that haven’t changed much in 100+ years, as well as some of the best skiing/snowboarding in the entire state. For skiing, Southwest Colorado offers: Durango Mountain Resort, Hesperus Ski Area, Kendall Mountain, Silverton Mountain, Telluride Ski Resort & Wolf Creek Ski Area.
From hot springs to ancient cliff-dwellings, there is much more than skiing to discover in the Southwest. There’s nothing like staying in a Colorado mining town that offers rich history as well as amazing views, dining options, shopping and more. The towns in the Southwest are remote and sometimes hard to get to in the winter, so prepare accordingly! This is a great tip of our ultimate guide to winter vacations in Colorado!
Ski Areas: Telluride Ski Resort, Wolf Creek, Durango Mountain Resort, Hesperus Ski Area, Silverton Mountain, Kendall Mountain
Tubing: Hesperus Tubing Hill, Durango Snow Coaster Hill
Hot Springs: Trimble Hot Springs, Overlook Hot Springs, The Springs Resort, Orvis Hot Springs
Other Fun Activities: Telluride Ice Skating Rink, Sledding & Ice Skating in Pagosa Springs, Snowmobile rentals/tours
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