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Boulder’s Best: Top 10 Things to Do

Photo things to do in boulder

Boulder, Colorado is a picturesque city nestled at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. Known for its stunning natural beauty, vibrant art scene, and farm-to-table cuisine, Boulder is a must-visit destination for outdoor enthusiasts, art lovers, and foodies alike. With its unique blend of outdoor adventure and cultural experiences, Boulder offers something for everyone.

Key Takeaways

  • Hike to the top of Boulder’s iconic Flatirons for breathtaking views of the city and surrounding mountains.
  • Explore Boulder’s vibrant art scene, from galleries to street murals, for a creative and inspiring experience.
  • Savor the flavors of Boulder’s farm-to-table cuisine, featuring fresh and locally sourced ingredients.
  • Take a stroll through the Chautauqua Park Historic District, a charming and picturesque area with stunning architecture.
  • Discover the beauty of the Boulder Creek Path, a scenic trail perfect for walking, biking, or jogging along the water.

Hike to the Top of Boulder’s Iconic Flatirons

One of the most iconic features of Boulder is its Flatirons, a series of rock formations that jut out from the mountainside. Hiking to the top of the Flatirons is a popular activity for both locals and visitors alike. The hike offers breathtaking views of the city and surrounding landscape.

The difficulty level of the hike varies depending on which trail you choose. Some trails are more challenging and require scrambling over rocks, while others are more moderate and suitable for beginners. It’s important to come prepared with proper hiking gear, including sturdy shoes and plenty of water.

To have a successful hike, it’s important to plan ahead and check the weather conditions before heading out. It’s also recommended to start early in the morning to avoid crowds and to bring a map or guidebook to navigate the trails. Additionally, be sure to follow Leave No Trace principles and respect the natural environment.

Explore the City’s Vibrant Art Scene

Boulder has a thriving art scene with numerous galleries and museums showcasing a wide range of artistic styles and mediums. The city is home to many talented artists who draw inspiration from the natural beauty that surrounds them.

Some must-visit art galleries in Boulder include the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, which features rotating exhibits by local and national artists, and the Dairy Arts Center, which houses multiple galleries showcasing visual arts, theater performances, and film screenings.

In addition to galleries, Boulder also hosts several art events throughout the year. The Open Studios Fall Artist Tour allows visitors to explore the studios of local artists and see their creative process firsthand. The Boulder International Film Festival showcases independent films from around the world, while the Colorado Shakespeare Festival brings the works of Shakespeare to life in an outdoor theater setting.

Savor the Flavors of Boulder’s Farm-to-Table Cuisine

Restaurant Name Location Menu Items Price Range Customer Rating
The Kitchen Downtown Boulder Roasted Beet Salad, Grilled Colorado Lamb, Seasonal Vegetable Plate 30-50 4.5/5
Black Cat Boulder Roasted Carrot Soup, Braised Beef Short Ribs, Seasonal Vegetable Tasting 50-80 4.7/5
Arugula Bar e Ristorante Boulder Roasted Beet Salad, Housemade Gnocchi, Grilled Colorado Trout 20-40 4.3/5

Boulder is known for its commitment to sustainable and locally sourced food. The city’s farm-to-table cuisine emphasizes fresh, seasonal ingredients that are sourced from local farms and producers. This ensures that the food is not only delicious but also supports the local economy and reduces the carbon footprint.

Some of the best restaurants in Boulder for farm-to-table cuisine include Black Cat Bistro, which has its own farm where they grow their own produce and raise their own animals, and The Kitchen, which focuses on simple, ingredient-driven dishes made with locally sourced ingredients.

In addition to restaurants, Boulder also hosts several food festivals and events throughout the year. The Boulder Farmers Market is a popular weekly event where visitors can sample and purchase fresh produce, artisanal products, and prepared foods. The Taste of Pearl is an annual event that showcases the culinary talents of local chefs and restaurants.

Take a Stroll Through the Chautauqua Park Historic District

Chautauqua Park is a historic district located at the base of the Flatirons. It was originally established in the late 19th century as a summer retreat for cultural and educational activities. Today, it is a popular destination for hiking, picnicking, and enjoying the natural beauty of Boulder.

A walking tour of the Chautauqua Park Historic District allows visitors to explore the charming cottages that were built in the early 20th century. These cottages were originally used as accommodations for guests attending lectures and performances at the Chautauqua Auditorium.

The best times to visit Chautauqua Park are during the spring and fall when the weather is mild and the crowds are smaller. It’s also recommended to arrive early in the morning to secure a parking spot, as the park can get crowded on weekends and holidays.

Discover the Beauty of the Boulder Creek Path

The Boulder Creek Path is a scenic trail that follows the banks of Boulder Creek for over five miles. It offers a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of the city and provides opportunities for walking, biking, and picnicking.

Along the path, visitors can enjoy beautiful views of the creek, as well as lush greenery and wildlife. There are also several parks and picnic areas along the way where visitors can relax and take in the scenery.

The best times to visit the Boulder Creek Path are during the spring and summer when the weather is warm and the creek is flowing. It’s also a popular spot for fall foliage viewing, as the trees along the path turn vibrant shades of red, orange, and yellow.

Visit the University of Colorado Boulder’s Campus

The University of Colorado Boulder is a prestigious public research university located in Boulder. The campus is known for its stunning architecture, beautiful grounds, and vibrant student life.

Some must-see spots on campus include Norlin Library, which features a beautiful reading room with stained glass windows, and Macky Auditorium, which hosts a variety of performances throughout the year. The CU Art Museum showcases a diverse collection of art from around the world, while Folsom Field is home to the university’s football team.

The best times to visit the University of Colorado Boulder’s campus are during the fall when the leaves are changing colors or in the spring when the campus is in full bloom. It’s also recommended to visit during weekdays when classes are in session to get a true sense of campus life.

Experience the Thrill of Rock Climbing in Eldorado Canyon

Eldorado Canyon is a popular destination for rock climbing enthusiasts. Located just a few miles outside of Boulder, it offers a wide range of climbing routes for all skill levels.

Some of the best spots for rock climbing in Eldorado Canyon include the Bastille, which offers challenging multi-pitch routes, and Wind Tower, which has a variety of routes ranging from beginner to advanced. It’s important to come prepared with proper climbing gear and to have experience or go with a guide if you’re a beginner.

For those who prefer to admire the climbers from the ground, there are also several hiking trails in Eldorado Canyon that offer stunning views of the canyon and surrounding landscape.

Immerse Yourself in Nature at the Boulder Reservoir

The Boulder Reservoir is a popular spot for outdoor recreation and relaxation. It offers opportunities for swimming, boating, fishing, and picnicking.

Visitors can rent paddleboards, kayaks, and canoes to explore the reservoir or simply relax on the sandy beach. There are also several picnic areas with grills where visitors can enjoy a meal while taking in the beautiful views.

The best times to visit the Boulder Reservoir are during the summer months when the weather is warm and the water is inviting. It’s important to check the reservoir’s website for any closures or restrictions before visiting.

Attend a Concert at the Iconic Red Rocks Amphitheatre

Red Rocks Amphitheatre is a world-famous outdoor concert venue located just outside of Boulder. Carved into the side of a mountain, it offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape and provides an unforgettable concert experience.

Throughout the summer months, Red Rocks hosts a variety of concerts and events featuring both national and international artists. From rock and pop to classical and jazz, there’s something for every music lover.

To make the most of your concert experience at Red Rocks, it’s recommended to arrive early to explore the park and take in the views. It’s also important to dress in layers, as the temperature can drop significantly after the sun goes down.

Shop Local at the Pearl Street Mall’s Eclectic Boutiques

Pearl Street Mall is a pedestrian-only street in downtown Boulder that is lined with eclectic boutiques, restaurants, and street performers. It’s a vibrant and lively area that offers a unique shopping experience.

Some of the best boutiques to visit on Pearl Street Mall include Two Hands Paperie, which specializes in handmade paper and stationery, and Art Mart, which features a wide selection of locally made art and crafts.

In addition to shopping, Pearl Street Mall also hosts several local events and festivals throughout the year. The Boulder Creek Festival is a popular event that features live music, food vendors, and arts and crafts booths. The Downtown Boulder Fall Fest showcases local artists, live music, and a beer garden.

Boulder, Colorado is a must-visit destination for outdoor enthusiasts, art lovers, and foodies alike. With its stunning natural beauty, vibrant art scene, and farm-to-table cuisine, Boulder offers a unique blend of outdoor adventure and cultural experiences. Whether you’re hiking to the top of the Flatirons, exploring the city’s art galleries, or savoring the flavors of farm-to-table cuisine, Boulder has something for everyone. So pack your bags and get ready to experience all that Boulder has to offer.


What is Boulder?

Boulder is a city located in the state of Colorado, United States. It is known for its scenic beauty, outdoor activities, and vibrant culture.

What are some popular things to do in Boulder?

Some popular things to do in Boulder include hiking in the Flatirons, visiting the Pearl Street Mall, exploring the Boulder Farmers Market, and touring the Celestial Seasonings Tea Factory.

What are the Flatirons?

The Flatirons are a series of five rock formations located in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains near Boulder. They are a popular destination for hiking and rock climbing.

What is the Pearl Street Mall?

The Pearl Street Mall is a pedestrian mall located in downtown Boulder. It features a variety of shops, restaurants, and street performers.

What is the Boulder Farmers Market?

The Boulder Farmers Market is a weekly market held on Saturdays and Wednesdays from April to November. It features local produce, artisanal products, and live music.

What is the Celestial Seasonings Tea Factory?

The Celestial Seasonings Tea Factory is a tea production facility located in Boulder. It offers free tours that showcase the tea-making process and allow visitors to sample a variety of teas.