Denver is a vibrant and exciting city and visitors would ideally have a lot more than just 24 hours to explore its many cultural sights and colorful neighborhood eateries. But for visitors in a huge rush to get out to Breckenridge or Vail to start their skiing holiday, these picks offer a pretty good idea on how to spend a fun-filled 24 hours exploring the cultural gems of the "Mile-High City."
One of the country’s top urban botanical gardens, the Denver Botanic Gardens has over 15,000 species of plants on 23 acres in the middle of Denver. Even those who don’t love gardens will probably still enjoy its rainforest exhibit or its intricately designed Japanese gardens. The gardens stay open during the winter, and have a cool light display during the holidays.
Just a few miles down the road from the Denver Botanic Gardens, Snooze is the place to go for brunch in Denver. Its menu of organic and locally sourced breakfast items is top notch, and it has a great atmosphere as a local hangout. Though Snooze has branched out and now has several restaurants in Denver, and even as far afield as San Diego, its restaurant on 2262 Larimer Street is where it all began and is still the best of the bunch.
Denver’s probably not the first city that comes to mind when one thinks of great American art destinations, but the Denver Art Museum is fast becoming a must-see on any American art tour. Its vast permanent collection includes 68,000 pieces of art that span several cultures and time periods. The museum is best known for its Native American art holdings and pre-Columbian and Spanish Colonial art, but it also has a smaller but well-selected collection of European and American art.
Bookend any day in Denver at one of the city’s finest dining establishments, Fruition Restaurant. Here chefs Alex Seidel and and Matthew Vawter cook up Denver’s best French cuisine in a rustic and intimate setting. Fruition’s staff are great at pairing just the right wine to accompany any dish, which makes for a memorable meal and a satisfying way to relax after a long day of sightseeing.
Photo by KCBalletMedia/Flickr.
Soon to be moving to a new home in Denver’s Art District, the Colorado Ballet is the premier ballet company in the Rocky Mountain region. While not as famous as its coastal cousins, the Colorado Ballet earns rave reviews from the nearly 100,000 visitors who come each year to see one of its four annual productions. So puts on your finest duds, enjoy the show, and don’t forget that glass of wine at intermission!