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Top Activities in Boulder

See all 178 things to do in Boulder


Boulder Attractions

Named for the sun-drenched creek that snakes its way around granite boulders through town, Boulder is an idyllic destination that appeals to adventurous college students, active outdoor adventurers, and everyone in between. For those who want to fill their days with rewarding treks and their evenings with extraordinary entertainment, Boulder delivers. Beyond being graced with nearly three hundred days of sunshine, Boulder is home to top-notch contemporary art, an airy commercial center, and enough activity to keep you going for your entire trip.

Areas & Neighborhoods in Boulder

Locals joke that Boulder's fair skies mean that "the best time to visit Boulder is right now." That's not the only reason to make haste—a laid-back commercial center and views of the Rockies nearly everywhere you look make Boulder's enclaves the ideal place for a getaway.

Downtown Boulder

With restaurants dishing up everything from paleo-style granola to eggs benedict, Boulder's downtown food scene brims with diversity. The civic center is also home to world-class accommodations, cultural institutions like the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, and some of the best espresso in the west.

Pearl Street Mall

More than a mere business district, Pearl Street Mall serves as a gathering place pace for residents and travelers alike. In this pedestrian enclave, independent tea houses and kite shops sit beside high-end sports outfitters and chic yoga studios.

The Hill

Directly west of the University of Colorado Boulder, the Hill bustles with up-and-coming boutiques, popular bars, and nightclubs like the Fox Theatre, which showcases contemporary music in an intimate, standing-room only venue.

North Boulder

North Boulder is the residential neighborhood near the base of Boulder's recreation region. Relaxed cafes sprout up between beautiful mountain homes, making “NoBo” an ideal place for a leisurely stroll.

Things to See in Boulder

Beyond gazing at the saw-toothed peaks in the distance, there are a bevy of things to see in Boulder. Begin in the Pearl Street Mall, where the Boulder Theatre hosts independent films, comedy routines, and live music inside an Art Deco institution. If your tastes veer more toward the classical, head to the Macky Auditorium Concert Hall at the University of Colorado Boulder to see the Boulder Philharmonic play. In addition, many of the breweries in town feature American roots music during the week—simply head downtown and follow the tune of the banjo to the nearest venue.

Sightseeing in Boulder

From heart-pumping hikes to exhilarating river trips, Boulder offers an array of things to do outdoors. Get in touch with the city's namesake during an invigorating jog along the Boulder Creek Path, which follows the waterway through town. Then, pair your sightseeing with a bit of activity at the Colorado Chautauqua—the site of a former adult sleepaway camp, which Theodore Roosevelt notoriously referred to as “the most American thing in America.” Today, the site hosts a summer concert series, in addition to acclaimed lectures and plays. From there, grab your hiking poles and sally forth into the Flatirons and Green Mountain outdoor recreation area via the Chautauqua Trailhead. Finally, if you’ve got rapids on the brain, a tube float on Boulder Creek or a whitewater rafting trip on Clear Creek can be arranged.

Free Things to Do in Boulder

Some say the best things in life are free. Be sure to visit the following around Boulder:

CU Art Museum - Talk to the staff and discover more about the special collections on exhibit at this museum.

The Spot Bouldering Gym - Find time to play and add some excitement to your escape here.

Naropa University - Architecture fan or not, get set to be wowed by this landmark's modern design.

Colorado Chautauqua - If you're interested in bygone eras, this is one stop you ought to visit.

Boulder Falls - Spend some time close to the water to relax and replenish your energy.

Carnegie Branch Library for Local History - Pull out your guidebook and discover why this place is worth a spot on your to-do list.

Flatirons - Take a break from the big city and get in touch with Mother Nature at this picture-perfect landscape.

Scott Carpenter Park - Refresh your mind and soul by spending some time in nature.

Explore The Neighborhoods of Boulder

Central Boulder

If you're spending some time in Central Boulder, Pearl Street Mall and Boulder Theater are top sights worth seeing.

Downtown Boulder

While visiting Downtown Boulder, you might make a stop by sights like Pearl Street Mall and Boulder Theater.

North Westminster

While North Westminster isn't home to many top sights, Orchard Town Center and Butterfly Pavilion are some notable places to visit nearby.

North Central Westminster

While visiting North Central Westminster, you might make a stop by sights like Butterfly Pavilion and Ice Centre At the Promenade.

University Hill

Unique features of University Hill include the shopping and restaurants. Make a stop by Fox Theater or Boulder Public Library while you're exploring the area.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What to do in Boulder on a sunny day?

What to do in Boulder on a rainy day?

If it's pelting down during your visit, put your umbrella aside and try your hand at some of these entertaining indoor activities:

What should I not miss in Boulder?

If you'd like to explore the best of this place, add these attractions to your schedule:

  • University of Colorado-Boulder
  • Chautauqua Park
  • Folsom Field
  • National Center for Atmospheric Research

What can you do in Boulder for free?

You could leave your wallet in the hotel safe for the day, because these excellent attractions won't cost you a cent:

  • University of Colorado-Boulder
  • Chautauqua Park
  • National Center for Atmospheric Research
  • Pearl Street Mall