This September I took my first trip to Denver with my boyfriend and one of our good friends. It was our goal to experience all the local highlights, and see the best Denver has to offer. After taking everyone’s suggestions, we packed our days FULL, and here are my official recommendations!
Best Breakfast – Snooze
First things first, you must have breakfast at Snooze. I consider myself a breakfast enthusiast, and this was the best breakfast I have ever had. There are a few locations throughout Denver. We ended up going to two for, uh, research. The original location, and the Union Station location. I think we all preferred the Union Station location. One, they have an outdoor patio, which is always a bonus in my book. Two, it’s right downtown, so we could walk around while we were waiting for our table. There is usually a long wait at Snooze. I think we waited close to an hour and a half. But, they text you when your table is being cleared, so we just walked around downtown for a bit until we got the text, then started walking back.
Best Lunch + Dinner – Denver Biscuit Company
The second best meal I had in Denver, after Snooze. But Snooze is for breakfast, and Denver Biscuit Company is for lunch and dinner – duh! Their food made you feel warm and cozy like good Southern food does. I loved how many vegetarian options they had. I had the Vegetarian Biscuit Pot Pie – the biggest biscuit I have EVER seen, covered in vegetarian gravy, and pot pie fillings. They had a great beer selection with lots of local picks. I made it a mission to ONLY get locally brewed drinks while I was there, and Denver Biscuit Company made it easy. Good food, and good drinks. Need I say more?
Most Fun – Casa Bonita
Maybe my favorite place we went to on our trip. It is…over the top. Like Vegas meets Disney. There’s a 30-foot waterfall, puppet shows, gunfights, magicians, an arcade, and all-you-can-eat Mexican food. Now the food was…totally average. It wasn’t great, but it wasn’t the worst Mexican food I’ve ever had either. But you don’t go to Casa Bonita for the food, you go for the experience. The experience is made better by a couple pitchers of margaritas and maybe a trip to a dispensary first. Don’t let the price of the totally average food scare you off. It’s basically your admission, since you’re getting a free show out of it! Plan to spend a few hours here, request a table close to the waterfall, and it will be worth it.
Best Experience – Red Rocks
The whole reason we went to Denver was because we got tickets to see Vince Staples and Gorillaz at Red Rocks Amphitheater. Definitely try to see a show there if you can. Otherwise, they also have yoga classes, movie screenings, and other activities throughout the week. If you do go to a concert, be sure to tailgate. And don’t forget to take some time to hike the area – Red Rocks is beautiful! The trails are not super difficult, and you’ll get some breathtaking photos. You can read my review of the concert here!
Best for your buck – Rockies Game at Coors Field
We went to a Rockies game for FOUR DOLLARS. The four dollar seats are in a section called “The Rock Pile,” and they’re not the best seats ever, but honestly we never even saw them. There’s enough standing room throughout the field to just find a spot on a railing and enjoy the game from there, which is exactly what we did. Even if baseball is not your thing, sit back, eat a soft pretzel, drink the freshest Coor’s in the world, and enjoy the beautiful view from the stadium.
Favorite thing to do in any city – Exploring the breweries and local bars
This is something I like to do in every new city I go to. We visited many, many local bars and breweries while we were there: Avery, Left Hand, even the Coors facility. Now, I’m not a Coors fan, but their brewery tour was different than most boring brewery tours and actually pretty interesting. My favorite bar we went to while there was a theme bar called “Grandma’s House.” Complete with crochet blankets, hard candies, and a figurine collection. Every little detail was perfectly fitting of the theme, and the beer selection was great too.
Just to say you did – visit the dispensaries
Did you really go to Denver if you didn’t go to the dispensaries? Even if you don’t smoke, check them out anyway, just to see how it’s all done. It’s a fascinating subculture unique to Denver. We talked to a lot of people about the cannabis culture in Denver: a thirty-something man who uses the liquid drops every day for his anxiety, an older woman who uses the lotions and balms every day for her arthritis. It’s not just “stoner culture,” it’s just different than what some of us are used to.