Attractions in Boulder

Many people associate Boulder with snowy activities. That is not wrong. It is blessed with enough snow to make for a long ski season and snowboarders are happy, too. The outdoor ice skating rink on 13th Street downtown is open mid-November through mid-February for a break from skiing, with or without snow.

Not far from Breckenridge, Vail, and Aspen, Boulder is well stocked with suppliers of athletic goods, clothes, and gear. Horseback riding is a great idea because the scenic trails are awe-inspiring. Hiking has the same benefits with more human work. That may be why hikers also camp; they can hike close to their sleeping bags.

Rock climbing and river rafting are two edgier pursuits in and around Boulder. River kayaking can be fairly intense in some places as well. There are golf courses for more traditional outdoor enthusiasts, and the fishing is rewarding in Boulder as well as in the surrounding national parks.

Part of the charm of Boulder is the many outdoor eating spots and the outdoor Farmer's Market. When living in a snowy area, residents and visitors like to take advantage of the warm weather as much as possible. The Farmer's Market is on Wednesdays and Saturdays and goes from April to November; that is impressive in this snowy climate.

For a wonderful look at the Rocky Mountains, try a hot air balloon ride, also available in town. What better place than this to take in the amazing views of the area's natural assets? A bird's eye view of the city is as good in a balloon as it is from the top of a mountain.

Down on the ground, a Banjo Billy's bus tour of Boulder breweries might be just the thing to ease back into an earthly existence. Whoever can say that five times really fast should get a free drink. The bus begins and ends the tour at the West End Tavern and stops at three breweries where food is also provided. It is a popular activity so advanced reservations are necessary.

The Celestial Seasons Tea Company is right in Boulder and gives tours and tea samples for visitors who want less alcohol in their schedule.

If the kids need more energy release, hit the Gateway Park Fun Center on the north side for indoor and outdoor family activities like miniature golf, go-karts, batting cages, a human maze, and an indoor arcade.