Boulder, CO, is made for the adventurous. This happy mountain city enjoys 300 days of sunshine a year, and according to the National Endowment for the Arts, it boasts the third most artists per capita of any city in the U.S. Boulder overflows with opportunities to nurture and challenge the body and soul while captivating visitors with the Flatiron Mountain Range to the West, beckoning you to take an inspiring journey.
We are serious about biking, hiking, and climbing—when it snows, the bike paths are likely to be plowed before the roads. Grab a city bike from nearly any spot in town and ride it to Chautauqua Park (Baseline Rd & 9th St.) for large fields and hiking trails, including entrance to a couple of the mountains in our famed Flatiron range. Skip steep climbs by wandering around Wonderland Lake Park (601 Poplar Ave.) for stunning reflections in the water and gorgeous horizon views. Boulder Hiker Chicks can guide you while connecting you with new friends (register for their group hikes here).
Drive or hike up to the National Center for Atmospheric Research (1850 Table Mesa Dr.) for educational fun and more breathtaking sights. During the week their library and art galleries are open to the public for bonus eye candy. The Main Public Library (1001 Arapahoe Ave.) is a great stop with windows overlooking the Boulder Creek (their Seeds Café sources ingredients from nearby farms). Drop by the beautiful Boulder Shambhala Center (1345 Spruce St.) to get your meditation on, or go on a leisurely walk through Central Park (1236 Canyon Blvd.) for the farmers market (Saturdays and Wednesdays) and an afternoon tea at the market-adjacent Boulder Dushanbe Teahouse (1770 13th St.).
Boulder is the headquarters of two famous beverages, and they both offer free tours: Avery Brewing Company (4910 Nautilus Ct. N) employs one of the three beer archeologists in the country, and iconic tea brand Celestial Seasonings (4600 Sleepytime Dr.) gives you an “adventure for the senses in every cup”—don’t forget to clear your sinuses in their famous Mint Room. Later, hit food truck park/beer garden Rayback Collective (2775 Valmont Rd.) and try kombucha on tap from Rowdy Mermaid, owned by cool mom Jamba Dunn. You can even leave with a growler of your favorite flavor, from Savory Peach to Alpine Lavender.
Boulder has more than 30 art galleries in its 24.4 square miles. The Dairy Arts Center (2590 Walnut St.) has an indie movie theater, along with multiple art galleries, and live dance and theater performances. We are also home to two famous music venues: the Fox Theatre (1135 13th St.), revered by Rolling Stone for its superb sound system, and former opera house The Boulder Theater (2032 14th St.). End your night at one of these establishments to be blown away by their roster of small and large name bands, poets, and speakers from around the world.
Curate your self-care at Rebecca’s Herbal Apothecary & Supply (1227 Spruce St.), just off Boulder’s iconic Pearl Street Mall, where they’ll help you choose salves, lotions, soaps, and teas made with herbs from local farms. The Amazing Garage Sale (4919 N Broadway) has lots of curious and wacky knick-knacks you didn’t know you needed. Are you a crafter? Art Parts Creative Reuse Center (2860 Bluff St.) is a thrift store for art supplies. Find all the tools and inspiration you need for your next project.
By Samantha Albala
Photographed by Rebecca Stumpf
This article originally appeared in the July/August 2019 print edition of BUST Magazine. Subscribe today!
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