With a vaccination rate of more than 72% and an abundance of outdoor activities from skiing to hiking, Denver has long offered a safe jumping off point to explore the great outdoors. But a 20% boost in the population over the past decade has also transformed this railway city into a hip urban centre, with more activities than ever for those who are more the glamping-than-camping type.
One of those is the permanent installation of Meow Wolf, the third such installation (after Santa Fe and Las Vegas) in the US, which guides visitors through a psychedelic, surreal narrative that features more than 110 Colorado-based artists across four floors, bursting with colour and creativity. The Denver Art Museum also reopened following a renovation in celebration of its 50th anniversary, with updated galleries and two new dining spots.
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Denver’s restaurant scene has benefited from the additional outdoor dining space offered by the closure of city streets, many of which may remain permanent post-pandemic, like upscale food hub Larimer Square. Though Colorado may be best known for its famous craft beer scene, the city’s newest bar, Awake Denver, is completely alcohol-free, featuring non-alcoholic beer, wine and specialty cocktails and encouraging sober socialisation. Denver guests can stay at the new Rally Hotel, which features a rooftop plunge pool with sprawling skyline views and is attached to food hall McGregor Square – all of which have helped spur the LoDo (Lower Downtown Denver) neighbourhood’s recent transformation.
Denver has also been making big infrastructure improvements to accommodate more international travellers, including adding 39 new gates at Denver International Airport, which will house additional international carriers by the time construction is complete at the end of 2021.
Visitors definitely need to be prepared for Denver’s high altitude, famously known as the “Mile-High City” for being 5,280ft above sea level. “Drink plenty of water before and during your trip, and talk to strangers as much as you’re comfortable,” advises resident Kara Patterson, founder of travel blog Destination: Live Life. “We are all pretty helpful around here!”
published 2021-11-10 19:10:03