The Mile-High city shines at Christmastime, with beloved holiday traditions that will put you in the holiday spirit STAT. Take a ride on the Polar Express, shop a German-style Christmas market, skate the skyline and soak in the festive lights and sounds of downtown Denver. Make a weekend of it with hotel deals starting at $99! Here are six ways to celebrate the holidays with your family in Denver, Colorado.
WHEN: Nov. 20–24, 29–30 and Dec. 1, 4–8, 11–15 and 17–23, 2019
WHERE: Colorado Railroad Museum
If you have a kid who loves trains, you’ll want to hitch a ride on the Polar Express. The Colorado Railroad Museum has theatrically re-created and combined the delightful holiday story with a magical train ride at the Colorado Railroad Museum. After a fun, festive train ride, kids will have the chance to chat with Santa as the classic tale comes alive, guaranteed to make even the biggest Grinch a believer in the spirit of Santa.
WHEN: Nov. 22–Dec. 23, 2019
WHERE: Skyline Park
Vendors arrive all the way from Germany for Denver’s Christkindl Market, making this a truly European-style holiday market. Expect holiday treats, ornaments, and unique gifts from local artisans, including traditional hand-carved wooden figurines and handmade candles. Traditional German elements including Glühwein (hot spiced wine), Christmas carols, and live German music to round out the family fun.
WHEN: Nov. 26, 2019–Feb. 16, 2020
WHERE: Corner of 16th and Arapahoe
Skate a figure 8—for free! The Downtown Denver Rink at Skyline Park in Downtown Denver is the perfect place to skate away holiday stress. Entry is free and rentals are just $7-$9, or bring your own pair and skate for free. A robust schedule of entertainment and activities each week, including Friday night DJs; Saturday morning skating lessons; Saturday night concerts; and Sunday afternoon family entertainment, makes this rink the best in town for outdoor, family fun in the wintertime.
WHEN: Nov. 29–Dec. 30, 2019
WHERE: Denver Zoo
It’s the most magical time of the year to visit the Denver Zoo: Zoo Lights will span 70 acres of Denver Zoo’s campus with nightly entertainment, animal encounters, Santa meet-and-greets and, of course, illuminated animal sculptures. The animals at the zoo love to celebrate with their human friends, and in the evening, they tend to come out to play and join in on the holiday fun.
WHEN: Nov. 29, 2019–Jan. 1, 2020
WHERE: Denver Botanic Gardens
Even the plants and flowers get into the spirit of the season at the Denver Botanic Gardens! Pay a visit and enjoy a stroll among the flora at Blossoms of Light, where incredible light displays—a large field of sound-reactive, animated LED lights—plus warm drinks and tasty treats make for festive, floral family fun.
WHEN: Dec. 7–8, 14–15 and 21–24 2019
WHERE: Downtown Aquarium
Every year, Sharkey and Santa host a delicious breakfast buffet at Denver’s Downtown Aquarium. After you enjoy the decadent buffet, families are invited to mingle with more than one million gallons of extraordinary marine life at the amazing Aquarium Adventure Exhibit.