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Denver Visitors Guide

Sure, Denver isn't in the mountains but if you are in Colorado it's worth a visit. There are loads of amusement parks the kids will enjoy, dozens of world class restaurants, shopping, and great hotels. There are a lot of things to do in Denver when you're alive.

Denver Attractions & Activities

With mountains to its west, and the Great Plains to the east, Denver is a rapidly growing city with plenty to keep you busy. From city parks to museums, the Aquarium to the art centers, Major league sports and metropolitan shopping centers, the mile high city of Denver has something to offer regardless of your age, interest or background. You can see its sights on foot, by ski train or by booking your place on a Gray Line bus tours.

Are you a patron of the arts and always eager to discover the next great performer or piece of art? If so, then Denver has several places that are a must. At the Arvada center for the arts and Humanities (www.arvadacenter.org ) there are concerts, plays art galleries, a banquet hall and demonstrations as well as a 1,200 seat amphitheater. Outside, you can tour the historical museum which boasts on old cabin and pioneer artifacts. The Denver Art Museum has artwork from virtually every culture and period with an especially nice one of Native American arts. The Denver Performing arts complex is a comprehensive arts center and the largest art center under one roof in American.

The Auditorium Theatre is the home to the Colorado Contemporary Dance and the former host of grand opera, political conventions, minstrel shows and military maneuvers. The Auditorium also has Broadway productions and the Colorado Ballet. Boettcher Concert Hall, America's first fully "surround" symphonic hall, seats 2,630 guest all with 75 feet of the stage and is home to the Colorado Symphony Orchestra and the Opera Colorado. The Helen Bonfils theater company has three theaters, with574 seats around the stage, the 450 seat space and the 195 seat Frank Riketson Theater with its glass facade and sandstone walls.

For art of a different variety, visit Denver's assortment of museums. At the Colorado History museum, you will find dioramas, mining equipment, Native American artifacts, and photographs as well as changing exhibits. At Comanche Crossing there is a restored schoolhouse, and windmill, a homestead and a building with period furnished rooms. The Comanche Crossing also has historic artifacts, memorabilia from the completion of the transcontinental railroad, a caboose and the Strasburg Union Pacific.

For more travelling fun, go to the Forney Museum of Transportation, the Union Pacific’s "Big Boy" Locomotive X4005, the "Gold Bug" Kessel owned by Amelia Earhart, the Rolls Royce that belonged to Crown prince Aly khan and over 300 antique cars, carriages, cycles, sleighs, steam locomotives and coaches.

For antique architectural designs and furnishings be sure to tour the Molly Brown House (1880), the Brown Palace Hotel (1892), the restored Victorian Beyers-Evans House museum, and the Denver Firefighters Museum which has equipment that was used in 1850's.

The Denver museum of Nature and Science is a great place to make learning enjoyable- no matter your age. With 90 exhibits from four continents, earth science exhibits and a Native American collection, there's no limit to what you can learn. If your kids love to learn as they play, then spend some time at the Children's museum of Denver. Here you will find KidSlope which is a year round ski center, a scientific center with numerous hands-on exhibits, and a children’s grocery store.

If you love spending time in the sun, Denver has several parks that you are sure to enjoy. There are over 200 city parks and 4,400 acres of facilities for boating, fishing, and other sports. Washington Park is a 165 acre park with an indoor pool and a large recreation center The Chatfield State Park has a variety of water activities as well as hiking, biking, and bridle trails. There are also Picnicking and camping areas a nature center and interpretive programs. Cherry Creek State Park has the same outdoor activities as Chatfield, but as the added features of a shooting range and a model airplane field.

At Four Mile Historic Park, originally a stage stop, is a living history which has Denver's oldest home, as well as outbuildings and farm equipment from the 1800's. There are guides in period dress a petting area, picnic facilities and on week-ends stagecoach rides.

For beautiful landscapes, visit Denver Botanical Gardens where you will find over 15,000 plants species from around the world. The Conservatory contains 850+ Tropical and Subtropical plants which makes it a favorite for mid-winter guests. One of the most recent additions is the 20x40 foot Cloud Forest Tree that is covered with orchids and rare plants. Other garden areas include the alpine, herb, Japanese shade and especially enjoyed by children, the secret path garden which has mazes and a banyan tree they can climb.

Aquarium — Quest Park

Denver’s world class aquarium is a wonderful place to get up close to the 300+ species of fish, birds, mammals, and invertebrates from around the world. The exhibits show the course of the water from river to ocean and spotlight the various watery habitats along the way. There are several areas which allow for hands-on learning, and there are daily feedings (times posted) which allow for Q&A.

Some of the learning opportunities are the Critters Up close demonstrations, the Tide Pool Treasures touchable display, the Parade of Rays with pet-able sting rays, the AquaPod virtual aquatic adventure ride, and, especially for the youngsters, the SeaFoam Fun Zone play area.

700 Water Street
1-888-561-4450
Hours: Mon-Fri 10am to midnight and Sat.-Sun. 10 am to 11pm

Denver Zoological Gardens

Established in 1896, the Denver Zoo began when a bear cub was given to then mayor, Thomas S. McMurray. The Bear was set up near a haystack in the city park, and the zoo was built around him. The zoo is now a 76 acre complex and is known as one of the most modern in America.

When you visit the zoo, you may choose to walk or ride the Zooliner to view the animals. There are more than 1,300 animals, including a Children’s zoo, a duck pond and an education center. Some features animals are the sea lions, the polar bears, the primates and the felines. You can take along a picnic lunch or eat at one of the restaurants.

In City Park
303-331-4100

Six Flags Elitch Gardens Island Kingdom

Located in downtown Denver, Six Flags Elitch Gardens has great fun for the whole family. There are rides, shows and attractions as well as Looney Tunes characters and DC Comics superheroes. The park has a tropical atmosphere which includes a lazy river, a wave pool, slides and an interactive children’s area.

Crowd favorites include the Tower of Doom which is a 220 foot free fall, Disaster Canyon rapids ride, Boomerang, the flying Coaster family roller coaster, and the Sidewinder shuttle loop.

2000 Elitch Circle
Open: Late April to October
Hours: 10a-10p Sun.-Thurs. & 10a-11p Fri.-Sat.

Hyland Hills Water World

Since the park is in mountain country, many of the rides and slides come from the tops of the hills which make for a more natural appearance.

There are 41 rides including 3 river rides and 2 wave pools with heated water. Some of the rides are the Raging Colorado, the Screamin’ Mimi, the Zoomerang, the Lost River of the Pharaoh’s and the Voyage to the Center of the earth. Other fun can be found at the family interactive area Calypso Cove and, especially for the little one is the water fun at Wally World.

1800 W 89 Ave.
Open: Memorial Day-Labor Day
Hours: 10am-6pm

Lakeside Park

For a bit of nostalgia, visit Lakeside Park, where you will find classic amusement park fun. There is a 1908 wooden coaster s well as new rides like the Cyclone, the Wild Chipmunk and the Dragon. On Weekends there is a steam train and during the week there is a diesel train.

4601 Sheridan Blvd.
Open: Weekend in May: daily June to Labor Day
Hours: Kiddie area 1-10 daily
Adults: Mon.-Fri. 6-11 & Weekends 1p- 11pm

Denver Demographics

Climate- Denver gets 16 inches of rain per year. Snowfall is 45 inches. The number of days with any measurable precipitation is 74.

On average, there are 245 sunny days per year in Denver. The July high is around 94 degrees. The January low is 22. Our comfort index, which is based on humidity during the hot months, is a 57 out of 100, where higher is more comfortable.

Cost of Living/Economy- We used to try and keep up with this, but lately this has been rising and changing quickly. If you're moving to the Denver area it may be less than what you're used to (If you're moving from a place like California), or it may be much more (If you're moving from the South. Check with local real estate agents for housing costs, and don't look in only one area.

Here's a site that keeps up with demographics and cost of living. We'll let them do the work on this one Denver County Demographics