S and I just returned from a little Colorado getaway. My company’s headquarters is in downtown Denver so I’m lucky to spend a lot of time there. S decided to join me this time around so he flew into Denver last week and we spent a few nights downtown and then explored Golden and Boulder as well.
Since I’ve spent more time in Denver, my guide for that city is a bit more comprehensive. With that, I figured I’d kick off my travel guides with Boulder! We spent a little over 24 hours in Boulder which was honestly the perfect amount of time. Boulder is a college town, but the main strip on Pearl Street is full of local eats, cafes and cute boutiques for visitors to enjoy. There are a lot of mountains to explore whether you’re e beginner or very experienced. We planned this trip at the perfect time too because there weren’t any tourists flooding the streets or mountains!
Today I’m going to share what to do with 24 hours in Boulder.
1.HIKE MOUNT SANITAS: This is a three mileish loop that is a great challenge, but is perfectly fine for a hiking beginner. The views are amazing. When you first hop on the trail, you can go left to a red rock area that is an easy, short hike. You can also go to your left which is the longer hike with another amazing view. Although we are very active, this was our first time ever hiking. We LOVED it and have made a plan to check off a bunch of New England hiking spots this year. Having one on one time exploring outdoors, while breaking a sweat and finding a breathtaking view was so enjoyable together. As far as Boulder goes, if you’re wanting to hike this spot is great for beginners or experienced hikers alike.
2. HIKE ROYAL ARCHES: We had this marked for our second day hike, but due to the frigid temps that swept in overnight, we hit up Flagstaff Mountain instead. Since this was highly suggested from my ladies on IG (when I asked for Boulder suggestions), I wanted to include it. To get a feeling of the hike, head to Instagram and search this location. It looks super cool and I’ve heard it’s a challenge, but great for hiking beginners.
3. EAT BRUNCH: For breakfast or brunch, 100% go to Snooze. This breakfast spot started in Denver and has now popped up all over Colorado and in Austin, Texas. The interior is eclectic and the food is phenomenal. Even something as simple as apple juice was out of this world. For my Massachusetts readers, it’s similar to Breakfast Club in Allston, but more room and more modern. Anyways, S and I hate repeating restaurants while we travel, but we did this time around! We ate at Snooze in downtown Denver and hit up the Boulder location.
4. EAT DINNER: For dinner, we went to SALT which is a local, farm to table style restaurant. We loved the beet salad, french fries and house lavender lemonade.
5. COFFEE: Anytime I travel, I cafe hop. I love to wake up early, exploring the area before others wake up and grabbing a coffee. Out of the four I tried, my favorite spot in Boulder was Boxcar Coffee Roasters.
6. DRIVE OR HIKE FLAGSTAFF MOUNTAIN: The morning of our flight, we wanted to squeeze in another mountain visit and originally planned on an early AM Royal Arches hike, but the cold temps diverted us to driving up Flagstaff instead. And it was awesome! You can also drive up part way, park and hike which we wouldn’t have done if it wasn’t so chilly. Instead, we drove up, which was so cool within itself, and parked at the varying parking spots to take in all the varying views.
Flagstaff Mountain would really be for anyone because if you’re looking for an intense hike you could take on the whole mountain. If you’re a beginning hiker, you can drive up half, park and hike. Or if you just want the views or the weather is crummy, you can just drive up!
7. SHOP: As much as I love fashion, I’m not much of a vacation shopper. If I do shop around, I like to find little sentimental pieces from boutiques rather than places I can shop anywhere. Pearl Street is the main strip in Boulder which has all the shopping. This strip has some local shops and also main stream stores like Patagonia, Urban Outfitters, Lush and Free People.
I hope this gives you some ideas for your next Boulder trip! This is one place you can totally check off your bucket list with only 24ish hours. If you’ve visited before, what was your favorite spot in Boulder? Xo Mindy
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