March 12, 2020
Looking for a romantic vacation for just the two of you this spring? You don’t have to book an extravagant vacation to Paris to have the time of your lives — not when Glenwood Springs is just a few hours west of the Front Range, right here in Colorado!
Whether you’re celebrating Valentine’s Day, a birthday, an anniversary, or just need a weekend away, this idyllic mountain town is just what you need to keep the spark in your relationship going. So what is there to keep you busy? We’ve got some ideas.
Get the Blood Pumping With a Hike
We all know that Colorado weather can be unpredictable, especially in the shoulder seasons, so you’ll have to seize the sunny days when you find them. Luckily, Glenwood Springs has a lot of them — over 300 a year! — so it shouldn’t be too difficult.
If you and your special someone are adventurous types, there are dozens of miles of hiking trails in the immediate Glenwood Springs area to get your muscles loosened up and your hearts pumping:
1. Hanging Lake — probably the most famous hike in Western Colorado, Hanging Lake is a gorgeous (but steep) 3-mile hike up the side of Glenwood Canyon to the breathtaking Bridal Veil Falls, which freeze into a shimmering white curtain in the winter.
You’ll have to book your pass ahead of time, since travel is restricted in order to preserve the delicate ecosystem. But if you get the chance, this hike offers views you won’t soon forget.
2. Red Mountain — looming just to the west of town, Red Mountain offers an excellent moderate hike up switchbacked dirt roads. At the top, 1800 feet above Glenwood Springs, you’ll have spectacular views of the city, Glenwood Canyon, and the “monarch of the valley,” Mt. Sopris, to the south.
3. Doc Holliday’s Grave — though no one knows exactly where his body lies, the famous gunslinger is believed to be somewhere in Linwood Cemetery in Glenwood Springs! The trail is less than a mile in each direction, starting at the corner of 12th Street and Bennett Avenue, which is only about half a mile from Hotel Denver’s front steps.
4. Bike Trails — if you had something a little more low-key in mind, you can take the Glenwood Canyon Recreation trail up to 14 miles east along the Colorado River. Or try walking or biking on the Rio Grande Trail, which extends 42 miles all the way up the valley to Aspen!
Grab a Bite to Eat
All this romping around in Colorado’s outdoors will doubtless leave you with an appetite — fortunately for you, Glenwood Springs has no shortage of places to eat. Whether you’re in the mood for a casual lunch or an intimate dinner, a quick cup of coffee or a slice of pizza, you can find what you’re looking for just a stone’s throw from downtown.
5. Glenwood Canyon Brewpub — if you’re staying in the Hotel Denver, it doesn’t get any easier than this. The Brewpub is located right on the ground floor of the hotel! For lunch, try hearty pub fare like the soup flight sampler or jalapeno cheddar elk sausage mac and cheese, along with a selection of artisan burgers. And of course, the Brewpub has more than half a dozen beers on tap, brewed right here in the building!
6. River Blend Coffee House — for a quick pick-me-up in the mornings, River Blend is on the first floor of the Hotel Denver and offers coffee, tea, breakfast burritos, croissants, and locally baked treats from Sunshine & Moons in Glenwood Springs and Louis Swiss Pastry in Aspen.
7. Seventh Street’s Restaurant Row — for a modern American twist on a romantic dinner for two, step across the street to the Pullman, which pairs simple yet imaginative food with good wine, comfortable surroundings, and an unpretentious atmosphere.
8. Also on Seventh Street: Juicy Lucy’s, featuring mouthwatering steak, seafood specials, and a panoramic rooftop setting; The Riviera Supper Club and Piano Bar; and the Colorado Ranch House — all great dinner options right in Hotel Denver’s neighborhood.
Relax and Unwind in the Hot Springs
No visit to Glenwood Springs would be complete without a visit to the famous hot springs, and there’s no shortage of ways to enjoy them.
9. Glenwood Hot Springs Pool — the most famous of Glenwood Springs’ famous heated pools, this 30,000-square-foot swimming hole is the largest naturally heated pool in the world. Water at one end is a steamy 104 degrees, perfect for relaxing your legs after the hike you went on earlier.
10. Iron Mountain Hot Springs — to get away from the crowds a bit, try Glenwood Springs’ newest hot springs installment. Across town next to the Hotel Glenwood Springs, Iron Mountain offers 16 individual pools, each at its own temperature, so you can choose the bathing experience that’s right for you.
11. Yampah Vapor Caves — for a truly unique spa experience, try the Yampah caves just across the river from the Hotel Denver. Mineral-infused water flows through limestone channels in the floor of the caves at a simmering 125 degrees, heating the surrounding air to 110 degrees and melting your stress away in the soothing steam.
Whether it’s a special occasion or just a weekend away from the stress of daily life, Glenwood Springs has exactly what you need to relax, refuel, and refresh!