Okay so admittedly this list is a little late BUT you can still do a lot of these things until the end of the year so I thought I would put it up AND there is always next year... so really I am just helping you plan ahead! Since having Jessamyn I have been trying really hard to find fun things to do around the holidays to make the season feel more festive and maybe even create a few new traditions along the way! SO Here are my top 5 things to do with kids in (or around) Denver Colorado. Some of these things are free but a lot of them do have fee's associated... I am only sharing things we actually enjoyed doing and would say whatever you end up doing remember that the weather in Colorado is incredibly unpredictable so bundle up and be prepared!
1. The Denver Christkindl Market: This is something we have been going to since before having kids and is a lot of fun to do with kids along! There is always really good food, pastries, sometimes live music, and always displays with beautiful hand crafted goods. We love to go down and just wander the booths, maybe grab a baked good, and just take in the festive atmosphere. Also there is an ice skating rink right across the street which is also another fun bonus activity! One thing with this is that parking can be kind of tricky since it is downtown... we went on a Sunday when meters were free but another option would be to take the light rail. I remember going to this market when I was much younger and it always has such a magical and festive feel I am hoping to pass that magic on to Jessamyn and Ophelia over the years as well. Also within walking distance is The Market at Larimer Square which has amazing warm drinks and also has pastries and so many lovely things if you need to get in out of the cold for a bit!
2. The Zoo Lights: Okay so I haven't actually been to the Denver Zoo lights in a while but have recently been to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo lights in Colorado Springs and those were pretty awesome so I am assuming Denver will be as well. This one for sure runs to the end of the month and looks absolutely amazing! I feel like wandering the zoo and looking at lights while drinking hot chocolate is basically one of the most festive things you could possibly do.. plus if it started snowing you would basically be set for all kinds of magic and beautiful holiday memories. I would recommend bringing a stroller or good wagon to bundle up your tinies so that they can look but also stay warm as this is an evening activity.
3. Santa's Village at the Botanic Gardens: Every season without fail the Botanic Gardens captures the moment perfectly! This year they have Santa's Village at the Chatfield location and it is absolutely magical! Also another opportunity to see lights if the zoo wasn't your style. There are crafts and a hay ride, you can meet reindeer and get your picture with Santa. One thing that is important to note is that tickets seem to sell out fast.. you can buy them in advance online and I would definitely recommend that! This is another one that would be good to bring a stroller or a wagon along to!
4. The Ice Castles: This one isn't in Denver but actually up at Dillon and is so cool.. so worth the drive. Basically they build giant ice castles with lights and just created to be a really awesome experience. DO buy tickets ahead of time as they are cheaper that way. Also don't expect to be able to bring a stroller as it isn't recommended with the way the ice castles are designed. Seriously thought if you want a one of a kind holiday experience this is the way to go... like for real so cool. Also since your up there might as well make a trip of it... maybe go skiing (Breckenridge, Copper Mountain, and Keystone aren't too far away), stay the night.. Dillon and just Summit County in general is a really beautiful area with a lot of different things to do!
5. The Broadmoor: Another one that isn't in Denver but definitely worth the drive! Every year they set up the most beautiful gingerbread display and it always is just amazing. The Broadmoor is a resort but you can go up and walk around, there are lights and a coffee shops where you can get hot chocolate. We love going every year and just wandering about the resort and enjoying the beautiful holiday displays. If you are feeling really awesome you could even stay the night which we have never done but it is on my list of things to do for sure and would make an awesome tradition!
Okay so those are my top five things to do this holiday season in Denver! I would love to hear what yours are? Where you like to go? What you like to do? I am always looking for new places to explore so please comment!