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COLORADO
Please be sure to call and verify times and rates as they are subject to change

ACTIVITIES     RESTAURANTS     LODGING  Colorado Free Activities List

ACTIVITIES:

BOULDER-  CELESTIAL SEASONINGS TEA CO. TOUR
4600 Sleepytime Dr., Boulder  303.581.1202

www.celestialseasonings.com 
COST:  FREE
HOURS:  Mon - Fri 10 am - 4 pm, Sat 10 am - 4 pm, Sun 11 am - 3 pm (tours start on the hour)
CHILDREN MUST BE 5 OR OLDER TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PRODUCTION AREA / MINT ROOM ON THIS TOUR!  This 45 minute tour is a true factory tour.  Besides a visit to the production floor the tour includes a short video explaining the history of Celestial Seasonings, a gallery of box art and teapots/teacups, an herb garden and the Mint Room which holds crates and crates of peppermint and spearmint.  The tour also includes tea sampling.  Cafe on site.   Groups of 8 or more should call for a reservation.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children thought it was great to be in the actual factory seeing how the tea was made.  They loved the peppermint room (the scent will linger for hours on your clothes!).  The tea sampling was a favorite.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Children under age 5 are not allowed in the production area or mint room.  That makes it difficult for families with varied children's ages.
 

BOULDER-  LEANIN TREE MUSEUM AND SCULPTURE GARDEN OF WESTERN ART
6055 Longbow Drive, Boulder   303.530.1442

COST:  FREELeanin Tree Museum and Sculpture Garden Boulder Colorado
HOURS:  Mon - Fri 8 am - 5 pm, Sat & Sun 10 am - 5 pm
Museum includes an indoor area with 250 paintings and many beautiful bronze sculptures.  Outside is a sculpture garden with lots of fun creations.  There is a gift shop onsite which sells a variety of greeting cards and other small gifts.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The outside garden has lots of hands-on opportunities.  Since it is free, it makes a great quick stop to let the kids enjoy some art while getting some energy out.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The inside area of the museum is hands-off and might be a bit overwhelming for little ones. 


COLORADO SPRINGS AREA-  AIR FORCE ACADEMY
Exit 156B on Interstate 25, Colorado Springs   719.333.2025

United States Air Force Academy - Home
COST:  FREE
HOURS:  Daily 9 am - 5 pm (chapel is closed to public on Sunday)
Learn more about the history of the Air Force and the Air Force Academy at the informative visitor's center.  Take a short walk along a path to the distinctive Academy Chapel.  Sandwich shop in the visitor's center.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The children were interested to some of the displays in the visitor's center.  The walk to the chapel was a favorite as they tried to spot chipmunks.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The displays in the visitor's center did not keep the interest of the younger children for very long.  It was difficult for the adult's and older children to spend the required time to really enjoy the displays since the younger ones were quickly ready to "move on".


COLORADO SPRINGS-  GARDEN OF THE GODS
1805 N. 30 St, Colorado Springs  719.634.6666
www.gardenofgods.com

COST:  FREE
HOURS:  Memorial Day - Labor Day- 8 am - 8 pm,   Labor Day - Memorial Day- 9 am - 5 pm
Drive or hike though the towering sandstone rock formations, including amazing balancing rock and shiprock.  Many picnic areas.  Visitor and Nature Center has an observation deck and interesting hands-on exhibits.  Cafe at the center.
 FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children loved climbing next to balancing rock.  The breathtaking views as we hiked impressed even the youngest member of the family.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-   The visitor center displays did not keep their interest for long.


COLORADO SPRINGS-  GHOST TOWN MUSEUM
400 S. 21st St., Colorado Springs  719.634.0696
www.ghosttownmuseum.com

COST:  $7.50 Adult / $5 Age 6 - 16 (with Adult) / Under 6 Free
HOURS:  June - Aug- Monday - Sat 9 am - 6 pm, Sun 10 am - 6 pm,  Sept - May-  Mon - Sat 10 am - 5 pm, Sun 10 am - 5 pm
Interesting look back at old pioneer towns of the West.  Inside the building you can follow the boardwalk past displays including merchants, a Saloon and a Victorian home.  Hands on fun includes old time arcade machines and panning for gold.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children enjoyed the hands on aspects the most;  panning for gold and the old arcade devices were favorites.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-    You have to watch little ones closely so they do not go into areas that are for display only.

 

COLORADO SPRINGS AREA-  MANITOU CLIFF DWELLINGS
Hwy 24, Manitou Springs   719.685.5242
www.cliffdwellingsmuseum.com

COST:  $9.50 Age 12 and over /$8.50 seniors 60+/ $7.50 Age 7 - 11 / 6 and under Free
HOURS:  Check website for hours
Tucked under a red sandstone overhand are the 700 hundred year old Anasazi cliff dwellings.  Climb around inside and truly experience these historical structures.  Often times there is Native American dancing in the summer months.  Snack stand is available during the summer.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The children loved that they could climb around inside the ancient ruins (unlike so many places where there is a 'look but not touch policy').   


COLORADO SPRINGS-  MONEY MUSEUM
818 N. Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs  800.367.9723
COST:  $5 general admission, $4 senior (55 +), military, students w/ ID
HOURS:  Tues - Sat 10:30 am - 5 pm
Learn everything you've wanted to know about money!  Large exhibit of rare currency.  Hosts a variety of exhibits throughout the year so it's a new adventure every time you visit.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children enjoy the traveling exhibits as they often have something aimed toward young people.  During the last trip to the museum there was an exhibit on money from around the world.  The kids could take a passport to each country to have it stamped.  Educational and fun.

 

COLORADO SPRINGS AREA-  NORTH POLE
5050 Pikes Peak Hwy., Cascade 719.684.9432
www.santas-colo.com

COST:  $19.50 Ages 2 - 59 / Over age 60 and under age 2 Free
HOURS:  Check website for dates
For generations families have enjoyed this Christmas-themed amusement park at the base of Pikes Peak.  The rides are appropriate for a variety of age groups, from an antique carousel and mini roller coaster to the Scrambler and Tilt-a-Whirl.  Scattered throughout the village are shops and restaurants.  Be sure to visit Santa's house to visit with Santa and stop by the ever frozen North Pole. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children love every aspect of the North Pole!  Great variety of rides to keep everyone happy.  The lines are usually short (during some times of the year, there are no lines for the rides).  They enjoy feeding the goats (and mom appreciates the hand sanitizer located nearby).  A visit to Santa Claus is always a highlight of the trip.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Due to the many hills, pushing a stroller to some areas is a challenge.


COLORADO SPRINGS AREA-  PIKES PEAK
10 miles West on Hwy 24, Cascade  719.385.PEAK
www.pikespeakcolorado.com

COST:  $10 Adult age 16 and over / $5 Age 6 - 15 / Under 6 Free / Per Passenger Car $35
HOURS:  Memorial Day to Labor Day 7 am - 7 pm, Labor Day - last day of Sept 7 am - 5 pm, Oct 1 - Memorial Day 9 am - 3 pm
Pikes Peak rises 14,100 feet above sea level.  The view from the top is amazing though be ready for quite a temperature difference (dress appropriately!).  There are three ways to reach the summit;  the Pikes Peak Railway, Barr Trail and the Cog Railway.  Pikes Peak Highway is a 19 mile long partially paved road which is open year round (weather permitting).  Barr Trail is a 13 mile trail.  The Cog Railway travels 8.9 miles up the mountain side.  It is open April - December (weather permitting).
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The view amazes even the younger children.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The trip up can be scary for children who are afraid of heights.  Be sure to dress warmly (even if it's hot when you leave the springs) as it is much colder at the peak.

COLORADO SPRINGS-  PIONEER MUSEUM
215 S. Tejon St., Colorado Springs  719.385.5990
COST:  FREE;  donations appreciated
HOURS:  Tues - Sat-  10 am - 5 pm
The Colorado Springs Pioneer Museum is a great place to learn about the history of the area. The former El Paso County Courthouse has been refurbished and now hosts the museum.  Wander from room to room and see a variety of displays.  There is still an existing courtroom to visit too.  Travelling displays change out;  such as we saw a Rock and Roll display.  Soon there will be an American POW Experience exhibit.  The very friendly staff was happy to tell us about the museum and showed the kids how the old cash register worked.  Though the museum is free, donations are appreciated and very much needed to keep the museum open.  Parking is available in front of the museum;  be sure to bring change for the parking meters.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Friendly staff.  Well laid out;  easy to follow the displays.  Educational and interesting.  Elevator available.  Gift shop on-site.


COLORADO SPRINGS-  ROCK LEDGE RANCH
30th St and Gateway Rd, Colorado Springs   719.578.6777
www.rockledgeranch.com

COST:  $8 Adult (18 - 54) /$5 Seniors (55 +)/ $4 children (6 - 17) / Under 6 Free
HOURS:  June - Labor Day-  Wed - Sun 10 am - 5 pm
This pioneer homestead is a living history museum.  As you travel through the three distinct areas you will learn about the homestead and pioneer life from costumed staff who go about their day as the pioneers would have.  Picnic area.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Educational in  fun, natural setting.  The blacksmith kept the kids' interest for quite a long time.   While waiting for tours at the two main houses there are lawn games for the kids to play.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-   Little ones may find it a challenge to walk through the houses without touching the valuables.


COLORADO SPRINGS-  SEVEN FALLS
2850 S. Cheyenne Canyon Rd., Colorado Springs  719.632.0765

www.sevenfalls.com
COST:  Day-  $9.25 ages 16 and over / $5.75 age 6 - 15 / 5 and under free     Night-   $10.75 ages 16 and over / $6.75 age 6 - 15 / 5 and under free
HOURS:  Apr 3 - May 12-  9 am - 5:15 pm, May 13 - June 2- 9 am - 9:30 pm,   June 3 - Aug 14- 8:30 am - 10:30 pm,  Aug 15 - Sept 5 - 8:30 am - 9:30 pm,  Sept 6 - Oct 29- 9 am - 5:15 pm,  Oct 30 - Dec 31- 9 am - 4:15 pm
Often called the "Grandest Mile of Scenery in Colorado",  the falls flow 181 feet in seven distinct turns.  For an amazing view (and exercise!) there are 224 steps that lead to trails at the top.   Take the mountain elevator to the Eagle's Nest which overlooks the falls and offers a spectacular view of the falls.   The falls are lit at night (certain times of year).
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children loved traveling in the mountain elevator to the overlook.  Another favorite part was seeing all of the fish in the clear stream.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The stairs are difficult for many children.  The restrooms are located on the far side of the parking lot (for water reasons) so it can be quite a hike to use the facilities.
 

COLORADO SPRINGS AREA-  UNITED STATES OLYMPIC COMPLEX
1750 E. Boulder Street, Colorado Springs   719.866.4618

www.usolympicteam.com/12181_19092.htm
COST:  FREE (but donations are appreciated)
HOURS:  June 1 - Aug 1 (call for other months)-  Mon through Sat tours begin every half an hour from 9 am - 4 pm.  Call to make reservations for groups of 10 or more.
Learn all about the complex that hosts many of America's finest Olympic level athletes.  See some of the training facilities and hear stories about some of the famous names who have trained here. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The outside garden area has a lot of fun displays that kept my children interested.  The tour moves along quickly so children do not get bored.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Only restrooms are in the main building at the start of the tour.  There are steps to get into some of the buildings so it is not very stroller friendly.


COLORADO SPRINGS-  WESTERN MUSEUM OF MINING & INDUSTRY
225 North Gate Blvd, Colorado Springs  719.488.0880
www.wmmi.org

COST:  $8 Adult / $7 Military & AAA / $7 Seniors (Over age 60) / $6 Students (age 13 and over) / $4 Child (age 3 - 12) / Under 3 Free with paid adult
HOURS:  Mon - Sat 9 am  - 4 pm (guided tours available twice per day)
This museum offers an interesting look at the history, and impact, of mining in America.  There are a variety of displays, several are hands-on (including a dress-up area and gold panning).
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Friendly staff was willing to answer questions.  The kids loved the burros and the hands-on activities.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-    It did not take long to go through the facility.  The price was a bit high considering the amount of time we spent there.
 

DENVER AREA-  ADAMS COUNTY MUSEUM
9601 Henderson Rd, Brighton   303.659.7103
COST:  FREE;  donations appreciated
HOURS:  Tues - Sat 10 am - 4 pm
Exhibits depict area life from prehistoric through the early 1900s.  There are several replica buildings as well as displays in the main building.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Fun, natural way to learn about history by walking through the buildings.  Volunteers answered the children's questions.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Many areas are 'look but don't touch' which is difficult for the little ones.

 

DENVER AREA-  BERRY PATCH FARMS
13785 Potomac St., Brighton  303.659.5050
www.berrypatchfarms.com

COST:  The produce is paid for by the pound or container
HOURS:  Tues - Sat 8 am - 6 pm
This 40 acre working farm grows a variety of crops that are USDA Certified Organic.  They pick some produce to sell in their shop but have plenty to pick-your-own.  Strawberries and raspberries are very popular.  There are insect, bee, water and soil exhibits in the upper level on the shop.  Picnic areas.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children love to pick the fruit and vegetables and are so proud to eat what they harvested.  The chickens wandering around always keep them entertained for awhile.  The staff is friendly and willing to answer questions.  The children really enjoy the fruit chews that are sold there;  healthy and tasty.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Not very easy to navigate with a stroller. 
 

DENVER AREA-  BOONDOCKS FUN CENTER
11425 Community Center Drive, Northglenn   720.977.8000
www.boondocksfuncenter.com
COST:  Individual activity tickets can be purchased or an unlimited fun pass is available.  See their website for current pricing.
HOURS:  Check website for hours
Boondocks Fun Center offers a variety of fun activities in one location.  They offer a large arcade, laser tag, several types of go-karts, kid's play area, flight simulator, bumper boats, bowling alley and two miniature golf courses.  There is a restaurant on-site which serves pizza, sandwiches and ice cream.  Parking is free.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Fun for the whole family in one easy-to-navigate location.  Stroller friendly.  Activities for the older kids and younger ones close to each other.  The center seems to be very clean and well-kept.   Food in the restaurant was very good and moderately priced.  Employees in the restaurant area were friendly and courteous.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The wait for rides on the weekend can be very very long (about 30 - 45 minutes on rides such as the go-karts).   We noticed some of the employees at the ride areas were quite grouchy with the children.  Also, they were not consistent with height restriction enforcement (one child would be told he could not ride due to height then within minutes a shorter child would be allowed on the same ride by the same attendant).    Parking can be difficult to find on a busy day.  Individual tickets are quite pricey and add up quick for a family.  (Added 10/2008)
 

DENVER AREA-  BUFFALO BILL MUSEUM & GRAVE
987 1/2 Lookout Mountain Road, Golden  303.526.0747

www.buffalobill.org 
COST:  $5 Adult / $4 Over 65 yrs / $1 Children 6 - 15 / Free Children Under 6
MUSEUM HOURS:  May 1 - Oct 31 Open Daily 9 am - 5 pm,  Nov 1 - Apr 30 Open Tues - Sun 9 am - 4 pm
Located on beautiful Lookout Mountain, this museum highlights the life and times of Buffalo Bill.  There are a variety of permanent exhibits as well as temporary exhibits.  The hands-on children's section includes an area to design your own brand, dress as a cowboy, lasso a calf and sit in a saddle.   Outside the museum walk up the hill to the grave site.   Restaurant on site.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children were most fond of the walk up to the gravesite.  There are amazing views along the way.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The museum only kept their interest for a short time even in the children's section.

 

DENVER AREA-  BUTTERFLY PAVILION
6252 W. 104 Ave., Westminster  303.469.5441
www.butterflies.org

COST:  $9.50 Adult / $7.50 Seniors (65 +) / $6.50 Children 2 - 12 yrs
HOURS:  Daily 9 am - 5 pm
This is comprised of three sections;  butterflies, sea invertebrates and insects.  Each display contains factual information.  In the insect room you can hold a tarantula named Rosie for which you will earn a sticker denoting your accomplishment.  The butterfly area is actually a tropical rain forest with ponds, trees and an amazing array of butterflies.  If you are lucky enough to be present during a release time, a staff member will provide information on the butterflies as they release them into their new surroundings.   Be sure to take the time to look for turtles in the ponds.  Outside is a short nature trail.   Snack stand on site.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Favorites are petting the starfish, holding Rosie the Tarantula and trying to spot the turtles in the butterfly tropical forest.    The current special Insects section was also lots of fun.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Rather pricey for a family considering that  children are often  done in an hour or less.  Also, it can be very crowded if there is a school group touring.

 FreeFlys

DENVER-  CHILDREN'S MUSEUM OF DENVER
2121 Children's Museum Dr.,  Denver  303.433.7444

www.mychildsmuseum.org
COST:  $9 ages 2 - 59 / $7 Age 60 and Over / age 1 $7 / Under age 1 Free
HOURS:  Mon - Fri 9 am - 4 pm, Sat & Sun 10 am - 5 pm
Two story museum dedicated to children age 0 - 8.  Divided into a variety of centers that educate and entertain.  Besides its regular exhibits there are often special exhibits and activities available.   Enjoy a game on the kid-sized basketball court, explore the real fire truck or build something from recycled household materials at the Assembly Plant.  Cafe on site.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  There is really something to please any child.  The children happily spent almost an hour in several of the different stations.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  If you have children of differing ages it can be difficult to keep an eye on them all since the museum is divided onto two floors.


DENVER AREA-  COLORADO RAILROAD MUSEUM
17155 W. 44th Ave., Golden   303.279.4591

Colorado Railroad Museum
COST:  $10 Adult (16 - 59) / $8 Over age 60 / $5 Children 2 - 15 yrs / Under age 2 Free
HOURS:  Daily 9 am - 5 pm
Features a museum full of artifacts and photos plus about 70 locomotives and train cars spread over about 15 acres. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children were thrilled that they could climb around in many of the train cars.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS- Watch for splinters from the old wooden cars.  Also, the children couldn't find anyone to answer questions for them while we were touring the train yard.


DENVER-  DENVER MUSEUM OF NATURE AND SCIENCE
2001 Colorado Blvd., Denver   303.322.7009
www.dmns.org

COST:  Museum Only-  $10 Adult / $6 Ages 3 - 18 and Over age 65,  IMAX Only-  $8 Adult / $6 Ages 3 - 18 and Over age 65,  Museum and Either IMAX or Planetarium-  $15 Adult / $10 Ages 3 - 18 and Over age 65, Museum, IMAX and Planetarium-  $20 Adult / $14 Ages 3 - 18 and Over age 65
HOURS:  Daily 9 am - 5 pm
One of the largest natural history museums in the country.  Hours of fun in the many hands-on activities and exhibits.  Areas in the museum include the Hall of Life (a definite favorite-- hands-on health science activities tell how the body works and ways to stay healthy), Space Odyssey (another favorite-  hands-on exhibits and demonstrations), Egyptian Mummies, North American Indian Cultures, and Wildlife exhibits.    There is also an IMAX and Planetarium on site (additional fee as listed above). 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Full of hands on activities that will please all ages.  The Hall of Life is particularly interesting as it teaches about staying healthy.


DENVER-  DENVER ZOO
2300 Steele Street, Denver   303.376.4800

www.denverzoo.org
COST:  April 1 - September 30-  $12 Ages 12 - 64 / $9 Over age 65 / $7 Ages 3 - 11 / Under 3 Free     October 1 - March 31- $9  Ages 12 - 64 / $7 Over age 65 / $5 Ages 3 - 11 / Under 3 Free
HOURS:  April 1 - September 30-  Daily 9 am - 6 pm (admissions close at 5 pm)     October 1 - March 31-  Daily 10 am - 5 pm (admissions close at 4 pm)
Visit nearly 4000 animals on 80 acres in City Park.    There are several Wildlife Encounters throughout the day where you get up close and friendly with a variety of wildlife.  There is a train and shuttle available at an additional charge.   Restaurant and snack stands on site. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children enjoy the wide variety of animals on display as well as the hands-on Wildlife Encounters (last visit they were able to pet a snake). 

 

DENVER-  FOUR MILE HISTORIC PARK
715 S. Forest Street, Denver  303.399.1859
www.fourmilepark.org

COST:  $5 Adult / $4 Over age 65 and military / $3 7 - 17 yrs / Under age 7 Free
HOURS:  Apr 1 - Sept 30- Wed - Fri 12 pm - 4 pm, Sat & Sun 10 am - 4 pm     Oct 1-  Mar 31-  Sat & Sun 12 pm - 4 pm
Located on the banks of Cherry Creek is 12 acres of Denver history.  It includes Denver's oldest standing structure and a variety of pioneer exhibits.   Tour the grounds with a costumed tour guide or attend one of the special events for old fashioned family fun.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The children enjoy learning history as they walk through the old homestead.  The wagon ride is a favorite. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Can be difficult with a stroller due to unpaved areas.


DENVER-  HAMMOND'S CANDY FACTORY TOUR
5735 N. Washington St, Denver     303.333.5588
www.hammondscandies.com
COST:  FREE
HOURS:  Mon - Fri 9 am - 3 pm,   Sat 10 am - 3 pm (tours start every 20 minutes)
Hammond's Candies has been making tasty treats for 84 years.  Their candy canes are sold in fine stores across the country.    The tour starts with a short video (even the young children seemed interested in most of it).  Then the group is led to observation windows to see how the candy is made.  It's a very interesting process to watch.   The tour guides provide lots of information and are happy to answer questions.  Everyone receives a sample at the end of the tour.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children were all interested to watch the candy making progress.  The tour is short so even little ones do not seem to have an issue.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  If the tour group is large it can be difficult for little ones to see as the glass windows are tall and space on the steps in front of them is very limited.
 

DENVER AREA-  HERITAGE SQUARE
18301 W. Colfax Ave., Golden  303.279.2789

www.heritagesquare.info
COST:  Free to walk through the village;  rides are paid for per ride and the costs vary
HOURS:  Hours vary widely based on the time of year;  please call for latest hours
Victorian style amusement park with shopping and a live performance theater.    Activities include some traditional amusement rides, an alpine slide, go carts, bumper boats and a train.   Restaurants and snack stands on site. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Rides to please all ages.  The children love the old style restaurant and candy store. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Pricey especially for certain rides like the go carts and bumper boats.


DENVER AREA-  HYLAND HILLS WATER WORLD
1800 W. 89th Ave., Federal Heights  303.427.7873
www.waterworldcolorado.com

COST:  $39.99 Over 48" tall / $34.99 Children 40" - 47" tall / Under 40" Free / $8.99 Seniors 60+
HOURS:  From late May to early September-  hours vary;  check website for schedule
One of America's largest family waterparks, Hyland Hills Water World has 42 attractions scattered over 64 acres.  There's something for every water lover;  from the slow-paced Lazy River to the thrill of the Screamin' Mimi.  Lockers are available for rental.  Many picnic areas including some covered pavilions.  Food concessions on site.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Great variety of water rides for all ages and swimming skill levels.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Most of the time the lines are very long;   the children tired of standing in hour - two hour long lines then having the ride over in a few minutes.  Some of the rides require you to carry a large raft or innertube with you while you are in line;  very difficult to handle that and small children.


DENVER AREA-  LAKEWOOD HERITAGE CENTER
801 S. Yarrow St, Lakewood     303.987.7850
Lakewood Heritage Center

COST:  $5 adults / $4 seniors (65 +) / $2.50 children (ages 3 - 17) /  2  & under FREE
HOURS:  Tuesday - Saturday  10a - 4p
This historical park has 10 historic structures and 30,000 artifacts highlighting the culture of the early to mid 20th century in America.  Tour the museum then walk around the park like setting to visit a beauty shop, diner, houses and a schoolhouse.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Easy to navigate paths.   Plenty of restrooms, including some in a few of the historical buildings.  The facility offers tours and classes/ activities for children to learn more about the time period.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Some areas are hands-off. 


DENVER AREA-  LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN NATURE CENTER
910 Colorow Rd, Golden   303.526.0594

COST:  FREE;  donations are appreciated
HOURS:  NATURE CENTER-  May 27 - Sept 3-  Tues - Fri 10 am - 4 pm   Sat/Sun 9 am - 5 pm    Sept 4 - May 26-  Tues - Sun 10 am - 4 pm    NATURE PRESERVE-  daily 8 am - dusk
Hike the trails of this 110 acre park and enjoy the amazing wildlife.  The on-site nature center has many hands-on interactive exhibits.  Picnic areas available.  
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Easy to navigate trails. 


DENVER AREA-  WINGS OVER THE ROCKIES AIR & SPACE MUSEUM
7711 East Academy Blvd., Denver   303.360.5360

www.wingsmuseum.org
COST:  $11 Adult (age 13 - 64) / $9 Age 65 +, active military, veterans / $6 Age 4 - 12 / Under 4 free with parent
HOURS:  Mon - Sat 10 am - 5 pm, Sun 12 pm - 5 pm  Cockpit Demo Day-  2nd Saturday of each month 10 am - 2pm
Informative displays and exhibits depicting aircraft and military history.  Housed in a former military training hangar on the former Lowry Air Force Base.   There is an area of the museum that displays the history of Lowry AFB.  Also on display is Luke Skywalker's X Wing Fighter. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children were amazed to see all of the airplanes.  If possible go on one of the open cockpit days;   they are usually busy but the kids really enjoy seeing inside the cockpits.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The historical display areas did not keep the children interested for long.


ESTES PARK-  ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL PARK
970.586.1206
www.nps.gov/romo

COST:  $20 per passenger car
HOURS:  Park is open 24 hours per day, 7 days per week
Nature lovers will have a great time on the 359 miles of trails available in RMNP.  Gorgeous views and amazing wildlife sightings throughout the park.  Trail Ridge Road cuts through snow crusted mountain sides even in the summer. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children love to see the snow right next to the road even during the summer.  Lots of areas to get out of the car and climb around.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Restrooms are few and far between.
 

FAIRPLAY-  SOUTH PARK CITY MUSEUM
Near intersection of US 285 and US 9 719.836.2387
www.southparkcity.org

COST:  $10 adults / $4 Age 6 - 12 yrs / Age 6 and under Free
HOURS:  Memorial Day - Labor Day-  9 am - 7 pm / Labor Day - Oct 15-  10 am - 6 pm
Wonderful way to explore frontier boomtown life.  It has 34 authentic buildings laid out in a town-like fashion.   Browse through over 60,000 artifacts!  The buildings are all original to the site or have been moved from nearby towns.  Check their website for a variety of special events.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  A favorite was the old train-  the kids thought being able to go through the old caboose was interesting.  The general store captured their interest for quite awhile.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-   Not very stroller friendly due to a lot of ruddiness and rough terrain.
 

FORT COLLINS-  BUDWEISER CLYDESDALE HAMLET
2351 Busch Drive, Fort Collins     970.490.4691

COST:  FREE
HOURS:  First Saturday of Each Month from 1 pm - 3 pmBudweiser Clydesdale on Camera Day in Fort Collins Colorado
Visit the Budweiser Clydesdale Hamlet for an up close photo opportunity with one of the Budweiser Clydesdales on Camera Day.  A line forms through the Hamlet, so you get to see the other Clydesdales in their stalls as you wait to get a photo with the one that is out.  There is an employee there to answer some questions while you pet the horse and have your photo taken.  There was even an employee standing ready to use your camera to take a photo if everyone in the family wants to be in it.  There is also a small display area that explains some of the history of the Clydesdales' connection to Budweiser. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The kids were amazed at the size of the Clydesdale and very happy to be able to pet it.  The line moved fairly quickly.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  You don't get much time to pet the horse and take you photos, since there are many people waiting.

 

FORT COLLINS-  THE FARM AT LEE MARTINEZ PARK
600 Sherwood Street, Fort Collins   970.221.6665

www.fcgov.com/recreation/thefarm.php
COST:  $2 / person (under age 2 and over age 84 are free)
HOURS:  Wednesday - Saturday 10a - 5p, Sunday- 12p - 5p, During the summer also open Tues 10a - 5p
Learn a bit about the history of farming and see the animals as you walk through this picturesque authentic historical farm.  For an additional fee pony rides are available (on weekends). 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Very reasonably priced.  Laid back and enjoyable.   Nice variety of animals to visit and a small playground.  The kids love to stop at the old well to pump water.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The lines for the pony rides can be long especially on weekends.   The type and number of animals you see varies greatly.
 

FORT COLLINS-  FORT COLLINS MUSEUM
200 Mathews Street, Fort Collins   970.221.6738

COST:  Donation
HOURS:  Tues - Sat 10a - 5p, Sun 12p - 5p
Learn about the history of the Fort Collins area in this multi-part museum.  The inside area of the museum features displays about Fort Collins' early outpost history, agricultural highlights, floods and its move to a college town.   Outside are several historical buildings to walk through including cabins and a one room schoolhouse.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children especially loved the archaeological dig area where they could use scoops to look for hidden treasures.    They liked to walk through the old buildings and spend some time having "class" in the old schoolhouse.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-   The displays did not hold their interest long so expect to move through the indoor portion of the museum quickly. 


Family Friendly Colorado Vacation Activities   Reviewed by Families


FORT COLLINS-  SWETSVILLE ZOO
4801 E. Harmony Rd., Fort Collins  970.484.9509

COST:  FREE;  donations appreciated
HOURS:  Call to confirm
This is a zoo like no other you've seen.  All of the creatures were built by one man using scrap metal, farm machinery and car parts.   A path takes you through the property;  use one of the self guided check lists to find 43 of the displays.  
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The children had fun following the check list and looking for the specified creatures. 


GEORGETOWN-  GEORGETOWN LOOP RAILROAD
303.569.2403
www.georgetownlooprr.com

COST:  Check website for cost
HOURS:  Check website for hours
Enjoy the beauty of the Rocky Mountains on the historical narrow gauge steam locomotive.  Though Georgetown and Silver Plume are only 2 miles apart, the tracks wind through the scenic canyon and crosses Clear Creek four times, including passing over the Devil's Gate Bridge twice.  The ride is a round trip with a short stop at each station.               
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Doesn't every child love a train ride?!  At some stops along the way there were chipmunks that would come up next to the windows.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The younger children were bored about half way through the trip so it might be a bit long for a little one with a short attention span.   No restrooms on the train.

KEENESBURG-  THE WILD ANIMAL SANCTUARY
1946 WCR 53, Keenesburg   303.536.0118

COST:  $15 Adult/ $7.50 Child (12 & under)
HOURS:  Daily 9 am - 4 pm
The Wild Animal Sanctuary is set on over 200 acres.  They are home to a variety of large felines and bears.  The animals in the sanctuary have been rescued from a variety of situations.  Throughout there are placards Wild Animal Sanctuary Keenesburg Coloradoexplaining how the different animals came to be at the facility.  The kids loved being able to become acquainted with the animals by learning their names and history.   There is an education center and gift shop on site.  Before starting the tour, we were told all about the center and given an informative notebook to carry around with us as a tour guide.  The animals are viewed from an observation walkway which goes 35 feet above the habitat.  There are tables on the observation deck to sit and enjoy watching the wildlife.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-    Very educational and interesting.  It was nice to know that the admission fee goes to help the animals.   The staff was very friendly, willing to answer questions and obviously passionate about the cause of protecting animals.

LONGMONT-  AGRICULTURAL HERITAGE CENTER
8348 Ute Hwy 66, Longmont   303.776.8848
COST:  FREE
HOURS:  April 1 - October 31:  Fri, Sat, Sun 10 am - 5 pm;  November 1 - March 31:  1st Sat each month 10 am - 5 pm
The Agricultural Heritage Center is built on the historical Lohr-McIntosh Farm.  This is a self-guided facility;  just follow the pamphlet available on-site.  During our visit, there was someone who gave us information on the center and was very helpful and informative.  We were able to tour the first level of a farmhouse from the 1900s, furnished with items from that time period.  There were pigs, horses and chickens to see.  Also, one of the barns is full of hands-on activities;  educational and fun! 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-    Free!  Many hands-on activities for the kids.  Learn about the history of farming in the area.

MORRISON-  TINY TOWN
6249 S. Turkey Creek Rd., Morrison

www.tinytownrailroad.com
COST:  $5 Adult/ $3 Ages 2 - 12/ Under 2 Free  / Train Fare- $2
HOURS:  Memorial Day - Labor Day Daily 10 am - 5 pm,  May and Sept Weekends Only 10 am - 5 pm
This adorable little town is comprised of over 100 buildings that are 1/6 sized.  It was built in 1915 and the buildings primarily depict the change of the century.  There is a small railroad that travels around the site.  Snack stand on site.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-    Touring through the little buildings and the train ride were enjoyed by children of all ages.

 Redplum

PLATTEVILLE-  MILLER FARMS
9040 HWY 66, Platteville  970.785.6133
www.millerfarms.net

COST:  Price varies depending on the activity
HOURS:  April 1 - November 24-  Daily 9 am - 6 pm
This functioning family farm is a great place to help your children learn about agriculture.  Their hayrides (available for a few months of the year) take you through the fields where you are able to stop and pick some produce.  There is also a petting zoo, giant slide, hay maze and hay pyramid.  Farmer's Market and picnic area.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children enjoyed harvesting vegetables and filling their bags with what they picked.  The hay pyramid is definitely a favorite!
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Depending on the time of year, the fields can be picked over which is disappointing to the kids.


WINTER PARK-  BILL'S TROUT POND
Next to Beaver Village Lodge, Winter Park   970.726.5741, ext 238

COST:  $5 per fisherperson plus .75 per inch for trout caught
HOURS:  Daily 9 am - 6 pm (summer months)
Stocked trout pond offers a great experience for the impatient little fisherman.  No license required, rod and reel provided, and free fish cleaning. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   All of our children caught fish quickly.  They were amazed at how easy it was.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  It was almost too easy.  We had finished in about 15 minutes.  The fish can add up quickly since there is no catch and release.   No restroom facilities nearby.

 

WINTER PARK-  WINTER PARK RESORT (SUMMER ACTIVITIES)
www.winterparkresort.com
970.726.4221

COST:  Full Day Pass $49 ($39 if booked in advance) / Under age 5 Free,  Half Day Pass $44/ Under age 5 Free.
HOURS:  Summer Only!  10 am - 5:30 pm
While the winter in Winter Park is full of skiing, there are many fun summer activities as well.  The resort offers an amazing alpine slide, chairlift rides, climbing wall, disc golf, mini golf, maze, bungee and Rock-n-Roll Gyro.  Restaurant on site.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Activities to fit a wide age range.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Very pricey!    The miniature golf course isn't very exciting.
 

WOODLAND PARK-  DINOSAUR RESOURCE CENTER
201 S. Fairview St., Woodland Park  719.686.1820

COST:  $11.50 adults / $10.50 seniors (65 +) / $7.50 children (ages 5 - 12) /  4  & under FREE
HOURS:  Monday - Saturday  9a - 6p , Sunday 10a - 5p
The Dinosaur Resource Center is a must-see for any little dinosaur fan.  There are many amazing displays featuring dinosaurs, prehistoric marine reptiles, pterosaurs, and fish.  The hands-on area, called Woody's Paleo Playground has a place for kids to try their hand at excavating fossils, make a fossil etching (with crayons), watch videos and several other activities.  In other areas of the museum there were things to touch and interact with as well.  The displays were very informative, but impressive enough to keep even younger children interested.  I would highly recommend the tour (contact the DRC for their current tour schedule).  The tour was included in our admission rate and was very well worth it (though it might be a little long for very young children).  Our guide was informative and entertaining;  he seemed to enjoy answering the kids' questions.   The highlight of the trip for my kids was the gift shop.  They have a great variety of gifts....just about anything you can think of with dinosaurs on it! 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Informative and entertaining.  Plenty of opportunities for hands-on.  Staff was happy to answer questions.  Gift shop prices were very reasonable and there was an excellent selection.  Clean and modern.  Restrooms were conveniently located.  Stroller friendly, but also easy for little ones to walk since it is not spread out.


RESTAURANTS:

COLORADO SPRINGS-  GIUSEPPE'S OLD DEPOT
10 S. Sierra Madre St., Colorado Springs   719.635.3111
Built in Colorado Springs' former train station, this Italian restaurant offers a fun, albeit expensive, experience.  While the train station is no longer operating, the tracks behind it are still active so trains fly by often.  Watching for the next train kept the kids busy while they waited for their food.  The menu is quite extensive, the food good and with suitable portions.  We did find the prices to be more than one would expect for the quality though;  expect to be paying for the idea of eating in a historical building and watching for trains.  Our waitress was friendly and helpful while dealing with food allergy issues.  Overall a decent dining experience but not someplace you are likely to eat at often.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The kids loved the idea of eating in an old train station and especially loved watching for the trains to go past.  The large salad bar, though expensive, was a big hit.   Good variety on the menu.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Expensive.

COLORADO SPRINGS-SOLO'S RESTAURANT
1664 N. Newport Rd., Colorado Springs   719.570.7656

www.solosrestaurant.com
Aviation themed restaurant includes seating for 42 passengers inside a fully intact Boeing KC-97 tanker.  Great aviation memorabilia.  The kids will love visiting the cockpit!  The menu ranges from sandwiches to steak and seafood.   Has an extensive children's menu.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Sitting in the cockpit and "flying" the airplane was a favorite.  The children's menu had a good variety and came with plenty of food.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  There aren't many seats in the airplane so you aren't guaranteed a seat in there.   The restrooms are near the front door which is a bit of a walk from the airplane.
 

DENVER AREA-CALIFORNIA PIZZA KITCHEN
1 West Flatiron Circle, Broomfield    303.410.8895

www.cpk.com
Varied children's menu;  including pizza, pasta, and salad.  Open kitchen area so the children could watch their food being prepped.  Friendly staff.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The kids loved to watch the "chef" prepare the food.  Kid's Menu for ages 10 and under.  Price-  $5.49 

 

DENVER AREA-CASA BONITA
6715 W. Colfax, Lakewood   303.232.5115

www.casabonitadenver.com
Americanized Mexican food (not overly spicy) including some All You Can Eat options.  Over 30 attractions inside the restaurant, including cliff divers (yes, there's a water fall in the restaurant!), caves, an arcade and pinatas.  Children's menu has three options and all meals come with sopaipillas for dessert.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children are always entertained by the cliff divers. Black Bart's cave and the pinata.  They love to put up the little flag on the table which lets the waiter/waitress know the are needed.  Everyone will enjoy the sopaipillas for dessert.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Trying to carry trays of food while dealing with little ones can be complicated.  On the weekend the line to place your order and pick up your food can be very long.  It is difficult to carry trays of food and maneuver children to your seats (ask for help and there is usually a server who can help with food trays).

 Colorado Springs.- $25 gift certificates for $10

DENVER AREA-DAMON'S
10 E. 120th Ave., Northglenn   303.280.1559

www.damons.com
Sports bar type restaurant with sports programming shown via projection.  Kid's menu.  Menu has a variety of sandwiches, burgers and seafood. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Kid's menu available.  Large booths good for families.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Our experience was not good.  Service was very slow;  never refilled drinks.  They were out of kid's menus so they had to tell the kids what they offered.  Kids didn't have any choice on side items.  The tables were not very clean.  Considering the quality, the prices were higher than one would expect.
 

DENVER AREA-  HOUSE OF WINDSOR
1050 S. Wadsworth Blvd, Denver    303.936.9029

Adorable British tea room set in a strip mall.  You'll be surprised by how quaint it is inside.  Offers meals, tea and a small selection of British grocery items.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  The children were most impressed with the scones and the British chocolates that were available.   Fun way to introduce children to an afternoon tea (reservations required).
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Not good for very young or boisterous children.  Every time we have been there the patrons have seemed disapproving of noise from little ones.  There is no kids menu and the prices on the main menu are not budget friendly.
 

DENVER AREA-OLD CHICAGO
1280 E. 1st Ave., Broomfield    303.466.5834

www.oldchicago.com
Varied children's menu;  including pizza, pasta, burgers, shrimp, chicken and salad.  Noisy environment so it's perfect for kids who can't stay quiet.  TVs throughout with sports entertainment.  Friendly staff.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Environment is well suited to little ones due to the fact that it is not a quiet restaurant.  Kid's Menu for ages 10 and under.  Price-  $4.59 



EAGLE-EAGLE DINER
112 W. Chambers Ave, Eagle   970.323.1919

Old style diner with a full menu offering a wide variety of home cooked dishes.   Has a children's menu with a good variety.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Good variety on the children's menu and the meals came with plenty of food.


GEORGETOWN-  TWO BROTHERS DELI
406 6th St, Georgetown   303.569.3320

Large variety of sandwiches for both meat eaters and vegetarians.  Delicious, fresh bread.  Has a children's menu.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The sandwiches were large and filling.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Only three choices on the children's menu.  Restrooms are next door.  Small tables;  many families will require more than one table.  Very limited seating.

 

WINTER PARK-  MIRASOL CANTINA
Corner of Hi Country Drive and Hwy 40 in shopping center   970.726.0280

Great variety of tacos, including meat tacos, fish tacos, veggie tacos and dessert tacos.  Has an inexpensive children's menu. 
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Good variety on the children's menu and plenty of food.  The children loved the basket of chips and salsa that were provided before dinner.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  The beef and chicken tacos were quite spicy.


WINTER PARK-  RUDI'S DELI
Downtown Winter Park-  Hwy 40 in shopping center   970.726.8955

Variety of sandwiches for both meat eaters and vegetarians.  Delicious homemade bread.   Has a children's menu.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Sandwiches were large and filling.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Not many choices on the children's menu.  Seating was limited. 
 

LODGING:

COLORADO SPRINGS-CHEYENNE MOUNTAIN RESORT
3225 Broadmoor Valley Rd, Colorado Springs   800.428.8886
www.cheyennemountain.com

Comfortable resort-style hotel.  Has many amenities and includes access to the neighboring Country Club of Colorado.  Amenities include 4 swimming pools (one indoor), tennis courts, and a 35 acre lake for sailing and fishing (open seasonably).   Adjoining rooms are available.  
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The children loved the lake which can be used for fishing and sailing.  Adjoining rooms are a more affordable option for families than the their suites which are quite pricey.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  No breakfast included.

COLORADO SPRINGS- STAYBRIDGE SUITES
7130 Commerce Center Dr., Colorado Springs  80919  719.590.7829

This is a great hotel for larger families.  Their reasonably priced suites include a 2-bedroom suite with 2 bathrooms.  The hotel offers an extensive breakfast (though we did find the breakfast area too small for the number of diners so we had to take our breakfast back to the room).  There is free highspeed internet access, a fitness center, outdoor pool (summer only), a small library with board games and books to borrow, and a small convenience store with a variety of snacks available.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Great room size.  Plenty of space for a family and luggage.  The breakfast had a wide variety of foods.  Staff was friendly and helpful.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  Small breakfast dining area was too crowded to find a place to eat.  This location is tucked back behind another hotel so it can be difficult to find.


DENVER AREA-  WESTIN
10600 Westminster Blvd., Westminster   303.410.5000
www.westindenverboulder.com

Business centered hotel that is still family friendly.  Both the parents and kids will love the comfortable beds.  Rollaways and adjoining rooms are available.  Has an indoor heated pool.  The hotel is located adjacent to an entertainment facility;  a theater, indoor miniature golf, and ice skating rink are all within easy walking distance.  
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Everyone loved the comfy beds.  Adjoining rooms are available as well as suites.   Easy walking to many activities including an area with horse statues that talk.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  No breakfast included.


EAGLE-BEST WESTERN EAGLE LODGE
200 Loren Ln., Eagle  970.328.6316
www.bestwestern.com

Hotel offers free continental breakfast and  an outdoor pool.  Two level suite is perfect for families.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   The family suite is perfect for a larger family.  Good continental breakfast;  fully stocked and great variety.

 
ESTES PARK- STANLEY HOTEL  
333 Wonderview Ave, Estes Park    800.976.1377
www.stanleyhotel.com

Opened in 1909, this hotel is on the National Register of Historic Places and is often referred to as one of America's most haunted hotels.  It was here that Stephen King first came up with his idea for The Shining.   In 1996, a mini-series based on the book was even taped here.  Luxury hotel but with all of the quirks and charm of a historical property.  Prices are considerably higher during the summer/ high season.  For more reasonable pricing, try to plan your visit off-season.  You can then find accommodations closely priced to less-charming alternatives.  The hotel does not have adjoining rooms but does have several options available for families, even larger families.  Rooms are comfortable and in good repair.  The staff was friendly and informative.  The hotel is located centrally, an easy drive to Rocky Mountain National Park or the main downtown Estes Park area. The hotel offers a ghost tour during which they recant stories of the hotel's haunted history (additional fee), but be sure to book it early since these book quickly even in the off-season.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-   Large rooms, including suites, to accommodate families.  The children (and parents, too!) were very interested by the history of the hotel and the idea that it was haunted.  The ghost tour was a lot of fun and informative (the younger children were a little frightened by the stories but still enjoyed the tour).
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS-  No breakfast included.  Parking is quite a distance from most of the rooms so it can be tedious for a family to unload the kids and the car, though we were offered help with this if needed.  The hotel has all of the creaks, clunks and noises common with older buildings.  We were all awakened at some point in the night by banging pipes (not ghosts!).

WINTER PARK-  SNOW MOUNTAIN RANCH
1101 County Rd 53, Granby 80446  (Hwy 40 between Winter Park & Granby) 
800.777.9622
If you have the chance, definitely check out Snow Mountain Ranch.  This YMCA Camp facility is full of family fun.  Lodging options include lodge rooms, cabins, and vacation homes.  There is also a campground.  There are several dining options on-site.  The great thing is you don't have to journey far to find something fun to do.  In the winter, enjoy cross country skiing at the Nordic Center, sledding or ice skating.  In summer, enjoy adventure programs (zip line, etc), mini golf, fishing and canoeing.  Regardless of time of year, there is roller skating, basketball, ping pong, and bouldering available at the Kiva Center or swimming in the indoor pool.  The Craft Center has a variety of reasonably priced projects to work on.  Sign up for archery classes or rock climbing classes.  Many of the activities are either included with lodging or very inexpensive.  The lodging is great;  we stayed in a vacation home which was spacious, clean and well-equipped.  The staff was friendly and helpful.  Snow Mountain Ranch really puts 'family' back into family vacation.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-  Great variety of lodging, reasonably priced.  So much to do right on the property, so there is no need to spend a lot of money on other activities.  Friendly, attentive staff.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS- Reservations can be difficult to get as this is done on a YMCA membership registration program.  Members have first priority for reservations which are done as certain times of the year.  Non-members can then fill in the remaining reservations.  We did not have an issue securing reservations but this was primarily due to staying at on 'off' time.  Definitely worth the effort to secure reservations though!

 

Family Friendly Travel Tip:
Older children can use time in the car or airplane to learn a new craft.  There are some great books about learning to knit, crochet and cross-stitch.  Your child will be occupied and have a sense of accomplishment when they have completed a project by the end of the journey.

 

Read our articles for more travel tips and location information:
 
How to Make the Most of a Family Trip to Disneyland

How to Enjoy Family Activities in Colorado Springs

How to Enjoy a Family Vacation Without Hearing 'Are We There Yet"

READ MORE ARTICLES

  Turn Your Everyday Spending into College Savings!

 

 


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Familyfriendlyamerica.com is dedicated to providing reviews and information aimed at families.  The reviews are primarily travel based;  such as hotels, restaurants and activities.  We have a variety of activities depending upon the state requested;  from historical to theme parks and everything in between.  Each state also includes an information page.  This  page displays fun facts about each state.   Each state also includes a listing of Kids Eat Free (or at a discount) restaurants.  Our database is continually growing and changing.