What to Do in Colorado's Ski Towns When You're Not Skiing

Everyone knows that Colorado has some of the best skiing in the world, but what fun awaits skiers once they’re off the slopes?

Here are a few of my favorite ways to experience Colorado’s ski-resort towns when you’re not skiing.

Photo courtesy of Strings Music Pavilion

Steamboat Springs, when you’re not skiing

Steamboat Springs is a popular ski resort with Colorado locals, and there’s a good reason why. In addition to the ski resort, there’s a charming town to explore and several hot springs to enjoy.

One thing you may not have considered doing while in Steamboat Spring is catching a show at Strings Music Pavilion. This 550-seat venue brings outstanding talent to Steamboat Springs year round.

While there are no shows scheduled for February, there are a number of shows on the calendar at Strings in March.


Scallops with bacon jam [Photo courtesy of Terra Bistro]

Vail, when you’re not skiing

The first time I visited Vail on an extended stay, my preconceived stereotype of a town full of pretentious folks was utterly smashed. While the rich and famous do love to ski Vail, the locals are friendly and down-to-earth.

Vail is perfect for foodies. Great food is so expected here that it’s hard to find a bad meal. One of the most amazing restaurants in Vail is Terra Bistro at Vail Mountain Lodge. This restaurant has been serving up local, organic food long before it was trendy. Ninety percent of the food they serve is certified organic, and they even grow their quinoa spouts onsite, which brings an entirely new meaning to “keeping it local.”


Breckenridge, when you’re not skiing

Breckenridge is one of my favorite ski towns because there’s so much to do in Breck off the slopes. From a jam-packed winter festival calendar to multiple breweries, it is impossible to be bored in Breckenridge.

The Breckenridge Arts District is a hidden gem on a one-acre campus on E. Washington Avenue just off of Main Street. The district offers a variety of classes and workshops ranging from painting to jewelry making.

Be sure to stop by the Tin Shop at 117 E. Washington Avenue where you’ll find the current artist-in-residence. This unique program brings artists from around the world to create their art in Breckenridge for one week to one month.


The Telluride Historical Museum

Telluride, when you’re not skiing

Despite its highbrow reputation today, Telluride was a rough-and-tumble town in the 1800s. A quote from a local newspaper in 1887 says it all: “Ouray has four churches and 14 saloons. Telluride has 10 saloons and plans for a church.”

The Telluride Historical Museum tells the story of the town in a fluid and concise manner. This uncluttered, well-appointed museum is worth visiting during your off slope adventures in Telluride.

Categories: The Heidi Guide