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A Nature Lover's Dream: Taking a Budget Vaction in Denver

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Say you’ve used your fare alerts to find a cheap, last-minute flight to Denver and are wondering if you should book a vacation. Well, the great thing about vacationing in Colorado is that the wilderness provides all your entertainment and activities, meaning that most of it will be cheap or free. Aside from a park entry fee or two and maybe the cost of renting a kayak or canoe, you won’t have to worry about shelling out much cash. You will, however, have to have a car to get around, as all the best attractions are a bit of a drive. But with car keys in hand and a lunch packed for a picnic, you will have everything you need to take a budget vacation in the majestic Rocky Mountains! 

Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre

A lone woman sits in the rafters at Red Rocks

(Image provided by Unsplash)

Red Rocks Amphitheatre is well known as a concert venue, perhaps even as one of the most iconic in America. While you certainly can enjoy it just as a concert venue, it sits in the most awe-inspiring park in Denver. Here you can walk among dozens of sandstone formations protruding from the ground, displaying what millions of years of tectonic collusion can accomplish. From atop these hills, you can get an unforgettable view of the Denver skyline far in the distance, making for the perfect opportunity to flex your photography skills. While concert tickets here can get expensive, the park is free to visit, and it isn’t far from downtown Denver, making this an unmissable destination for any Denver vacation.

Mount Evans Scenic Byway

A mountain road swerves around like a snake

(Image provided by Unsplash)

One of the great things about a trip to Colorado is that simply driving through the mountains and taking in the natural beauty is a worthwhile activity all in itself, and the best place to do just that happens to be about an hour’s drive west of Denver. The Mount Evans Scenic Byway reaches an elevation of 14,130 feet above sea level, which makes it the highest paved road in the US. Along the way you will find spots to stop and take in the lush forests, rocky landscapes, and stark tundra. Check out scenic spots like Echo Lake and Summit Lake for a good spot to grab a few pics. At the summit, you will be treated to a panoramic view of Colorado wilderness that will make you marvel at its unparalleled beauty. 

Rocky Mountain National Park

A tranquil lake at the foot of majestic mountains

(Image provided by Unsplash)

Rocky Mountain National Park is about an hour and a half’s drive to the northwest of Denver, and it is a paradise for hikers and nature lovers. Within the 415 square miles that the park comprises you will find meadows, mountains, forests, and rivers teeming with a diverse ecosystem of flora and fauna. Over 300 miles of hiking trails offer a practically endless adventure that could occupy you for a lifetime. The park offers different scenery depending on when you visit, but any time of year is a good time to visit. If you come during the winter, you will be treated to snow covered mountains and stark landscapes. Come in last spring or early summer and you will see fields full of mountain wildflowers. There is an entrance fee and reservations may be required (see National Park Service for details), but it is well worth the cost!

Chautauqua Park

The Flatirons towers over a field

(Image provided by Unsplash)

Chautauqua Park is a gorgeous haven that sits at the base of the majestic Flatirons in Boulder, a little more than an hour’s drive from Denver. This tranquil park captures the rugged beauty of the mountains and offers scenic landscapes any time of the year. Here you can partake in numerous outdoor activities, like hiking, rock climbing, kayaking, canoeing, and fishing. Anyone who is a fan of outdoor fun will have a field day here. The terrain is, for the most part, easily traversed, so visitors of all skill levels should not feel intimidated. If you are considering a Colorado wedding, it will be hard to find a spot more perfectly matched!

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