Postcard from Denver, Colorado.
Traveling and live music: two of my favorite things to do in life. Bundle them together and you’ll get a happy version of me. Make the gig being from one of my favorite band, playing in a bucket list venue I’ve been dreaming to go since someone told me about it last year, and I am in heaven.
Denver: Murals. Everywhere. Maybe less edgy than those I loved discovering in Detroit last year but as good as. People saying hi while you walk by. New food to try. The altitude boosting the sun intensity, painting a beautiful blue sky with majestic clouds all around. Beer tasting. A bit too much beer tasting.
And Red Rocks amphitheater. A magical place that goes straight into my top 5 favorite music venues of all time.
Note to self: rocky mountain oysters are not actually oysters.
City Break in Denver Cheat Sheet
Accommodation in Denver:
- Zuni | Studio, 3022 Zuni Street, Apartment 207, Denver, Colorado It was the first time in a long time I was staying in a vacation rental apartment and I couldn’t be more satisfied. The studio was bright, clean with new home appliances. Located in a very nice neighborhood, walking distance from the river and downtown.
Where to eat and what to see in Denver
- The Buckhorn Exchange, 1000 Osage St, Denver, CO 80204, Denver’s oldest restaurant. The menu includes a variety of dishes including yak, ostrich, elk & Rocky Mountain oysters which are not actually oysters… (spoiler: I’d say what they are in the FAQ). Highly recommended.
- Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre, 18300 W Alameda Pkwy, Morrison, CO 80465. One of most magical venue I’ve ever been, hands down. If you have the chance to go to watch a concert, just go. No matter who is performing. Otherwise admission is free whenever there is no event. I went to see LCD Soundsystem and it was incredible.
- Denver Beer Co, 1695 Platte St, Denver, CO 80202, Nice brewery with a cool open space.
- Recess Beer Garden, 2715 17th St #103, Denver, CO 80211, A bit busy but open till late.
- Zuni Street Brewing Company, 2355 W 29th Ave, Denver, CO 80211. Craft beers and food-truck service for one of my favorite breweries in Denver.
- Great Divide Brewing Co., 2201 Arapahoe St, Denver, CO 80205. Smaller and more intimate than the other breweries listed here serving awards winning craft beers.
- Ratio Beerworks, 2920 Larimer St, Denver, CO 80205, I think this was the first brewery I tried and it didn’t disappoint. The industrial setting makes the interior design pretty cool but best staying outside, watching Denver passing by.
- Babe’s Tea Room, 2401 15th Street Suite 170 (Entrance on, Platte St, Denver, CO 80202. Cause I don’t just drink alcohol. Sometime I drink coffee.
- Park Burger, 2643 W 32nd Ave, Denver, CO 80211, good burgers and super friendly hosts for this small neighborhood join.
- I See What You Mean (The Big Blue Bear), at Colorado Convention Center, 700 14th St, Denver, CO 80202. A 40-foot-tall sculpture of a blue bear that has become one of the most recognizable landmark in Denver.
- Biker Jim’s Gourmet Dogs, 2148 Larimer St, Denver, CO 80205. A Denver institution with some pretty unique hot dogs such as rattlesnake, reindeer and wild board. Note: the hot dogs are big.
- Little Man Ice Cream, 2620 16th St, Denver, CO 80211 a very quirky shop open till late for some refreshing ice cream.
- RiNo, River North is a neighborhood in Denver full of breweries, bars and most importantly some of the best murals I’ve ever seen. A must go place when in Denver.
City Break in Denver FAQ
Start the day walking on Commons Park trail, then keep walking along the river making your way towards the northeastern part of RiNo. At 38th and Chestnuts start your zigzagging tour of Denver’s best murals, slowly heading back to downtown. Have a rattlesnake dog for lunch at Biker Jim’s and hit one of three breweries to better digest it. Take a picture of the Big Blue Bear, have an ice cream at Little Man Ice Cream then head back to your hotel for a little rest before either taking a shuttle to Red Rocks to dance the night away or a cab to The Buckhorn Exchange to snack some tasty rocky mountain oysters.
Biker Jim’s is an institution in Denver unique hot dogs such as rattlesnake, reindeer and wild board. The Buckhorn Exchange is the oldest restaurant in town and they serve a Colorado delicacy: rocky mountain oysters. A must try.
Despite being relatively small Denver has tons of character (especially if you venture outside downtown) and plenty to do both within the city limits and with the mountain at your doorstep, outside. Very friendly people, tons of amazing breweries and Red Rocks Amphitheatre, a bucket list music venue, make a trip to Denver worth.
There are several way to get to Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre from Denver: probably the best and cheaper way is to book a seat in a shared shuttle. I’ve booked with Shuttle Red Rocks and a return ticket did cost me $83.74 (in May 2023) including fees and taxes. The driver picked me up at Union Station, opposite the Crawford Hotel, dropped me at Red Rocks, picked me up after the concert to drop me off back in Denver. Very smooth and safe.
No they are not! Rocky Mountain oysters are a dish made of deep-fried bull testicles, most often served as an appetizer.