Boulder is an easy town to love, and as college students we seem to love it a little too much. Sometimes we get get caught up in the school bubble and forget there is a world outside of the Flatirons. The next time you catch yourself bro-ing up the quad, try grabbing your best group of friends and putting a little gas in your car to get out of town. It’ll be worth it.
As great as Boulder is, there are a number of entertaining places to visit in Colorado, just outside the bubble.
The town literally looks like a postcard. Nederland is one of Colorado’s best kept secrets, sitting just 17 miles west of Boulder. This small, mountain town of 1,500 people is home to Eldora Mountain, a vacation spot for both snowboarders and mountain bikers. Visit for NedFest, an annual music festival, and a district of wallet friendly restaurants, such as the top-rated Nepalese restaurant, Kathmandu.
With a walking mall that dwarfs the Pearl Street Mall and sports stadiums that do the same, downtown Denver has qualities that will entertain any college student. Students can make nightlife memories at the Lodo District or gain some intellectual arousal by spending time at the Denver Arts Complex. It’s a diverse district that houses our state’s capitol and an array of shopping.
It’s not quite moped distance at 163 miles away from Boulder, but Glenwood Springs is certainly worth the gas money. Glenwood Springs was recently awarded “Most Fun Town” by USA Today and keeps true to its reputation offering rafting, paragliding, an amusement park atop a mountain and the Hot Springs Pool. The historic pool has been around since the 19th century and holds roughly a million gallons of spring water. And if you’re hungry, The Pullman restaurant was awarded one of America’s best new restaurants by Esquire magazine.
Not outside of Boulder but not on any RTD routes either, the Boulder Reservoir is a great way to spend a sunny day and get away from campus. The water might be mixed with PBR, but the atmosphere around the lake is fantastic, especially when hundreds of young people come out to celebrate our country’s birthday.
Also known as the town containing the other Colorado university. If you’re passing through on your way to Boulder and looking for something fun to do, you might want to keep driving back to Boulder. Other than my bias for CU, I say this because my time spent in FoCo was dull. But who knows? Maybe you will have better luck strolling along Fort Collins’ Old Town.
Contact CU Independent staff writer Chris Ayala at Christian.firstname.lastname@example.org.