Affordable Vacation Ideas Around Denver, Colorado


Living in the Mile High City provides Denverites with a balanced mix of urban excitement and stunning natural beauty. While Denver is an obvious destination for outsiders to vacation for this reason, those who live there sometimes need a change of pace too. Luckily, residents have access to a wide variety of incredible out-of-town destinations, perfect for a budget-friendly vacation. In this article, we'll explore some fantastic out-of-state vacation options for Denverites and share tips on scoring affordable flights to make your escape a reality. Even if you are not a resident of Colorado, you may still find some of these tips and trip ideas useful!

Finding Cheap Flights from DEN

A flight departing from Denver Airport

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The trick to finding cheap flights is the same no matter where you are going or coming from. Follow these tips, and you will be able to get the cheapest flights from Denver available. Be flexible with your dates, book in advance if you can, and keep an eye on pricing with fare-alerts. When it comes to dates, sometimes prices vary dramatically from one day to the next. So check any date that could work for your trip and see how they differ, and also consider different airports if your destination is close enough to more than one airport. Fare-alerts will help with knowing what the price usually is, as well as helping you to know when they drop. You can sign up for fare-alerts whenever you complete a GoLastMinute flight search to any destination. It can also be a good idea to package flights with hotels, so look for any such deals before locking in your flight plan.

Moab, Utah

The magnificent Arches near Moab, Utah

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Just a few hours' drive from Denver, Moab is heaven for outdoor enthusiasts. Hidden away in the heart of red rock country, this beautiful town features awe-inspiring scenery and a variety of cheap and free activities. Spend a day at Arches National Park, take a ride on the Slickrock Bike Trail, or hike through the surreal landscapes of Canyonlands National Park. Camping is always an affordable option, but if you prefer a bed to sleep in, you can also find budget-friendly accommodations in town. While driving might be the most economical option, consider searching for flights to Grand Junction, Colorado, a nearby airport, to see if you can score a great deal.

Santa Fe, New Mexico

Santa Fe at twilight

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Santa Fe is a charming and culturally rich destination that is perfect for a weekend getaway. It is roughly a six-hour drive from Denver, so flying is probably your best option, unless you enjoy a bit of a road trip. Santa Fe Municipal Airport is a convenient option for those who prefer to fly (Look for deals on flights and consider booking in advance for the best prices). Known for its iconic Pueblo-style architecture, vibrant and lively arts scene, and mouth-watering Southwestern cuisine, Santa Fe has everything you need for a memorable vacation. For some cheap activities, wander the historic Plaza, explore art galleries, and enjoy the distinctive flavors of green chile dishes.

Cheyenne, Wyoming

The Capitol building in Cheyenne

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For a quick nearby escape, head to Cheyenne, which is just an hour's drive from Denver. Given the short distance, driving may be more convenient, but you can also explore flight options from Denver to Cheyenne Regional Airport. This overlooked city showcases Western heritage with such attractions as the Cheyenne Frontier Days Old West Museum and the Wyoming State Capitol. You don’t want to miss the famous Cheyenne Frontier Days rodeo in July, so consider visiting during that time.

Boulder, Colorado

A woman hiking a mountain trail

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For another nearby destination, Boulder is a mere 45-minute drive from Denver. Driving to Boulder is a breeze, so you won’t have to worry about finding a flight. Located next to the stunning Flatirons, Boulder features incredible hiking trails and other outdoor adventures, providing plenty of free activities for you to enjoy. Do some window shopping and people watching at Pearl Street Mall, spend an afternoon at Celestial Seasonings tea factory, or take a leisurely stroll along the scenic Boulder Creek Path.

Colorado Springs, Colorado

The Garden of the Gods

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For a slightly longer road trip within Colorado, Colorado Springs is about an hour and a half drive from Denver. This lively city is famous for the gorgeous Garden of the Gods, the United States Air Force Academy, and the always awe-inspiring Pikes Peak. You can also visit the historic district of Manitou Springs nearby if you have a history buff in your party. All of these activities are free or very cheap, and really only scratch the surface of what Colorado Springs has to offer.

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