The Mile High City is one of America’s most rapidly expanding and exciting cities. Cayman Airways travellers will enjoy the city’s new hotels, museums, cultural parks, world-famous eateries and access to some of the best snow and resorts for skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, sleigh rides, ice skating, sledding, snow tubing and more. Denver truly sparkles extra bright come Winter with an incredible amount of downtown celebrations and festivals extending through the Spring solstice. For your Winter city stay, 5,280 signifies more than Denver’s elevation in feet. It’s merely a starting point of reasons why you should visit one of North America’s most notable and iconic cities, both past and future!
Winter Festivals and Lights
Denver Zoo’s annual light festival has 70 acres of nightly entertainment, animal encounters, Santa meet-and-greets and illuminated animal sculptures that swing through trees. Denver Botanic Gardens has Blossoms of Light, their ode to Winter, with hundreds of thousands of colourful lights draped in elegant designs with sound-reactive LED lights and carollers on select evenings. Winter Brew Fest at Mile High Station, 24–25 January, celebrates all things craft beer and includes live local music, food and other vendors.
Golden’s Holiday Extravaganza
A 30-minute ride from Denver is one of the most exciting small-town Christmas celebrations throughout the Rocky Mountain region. Golden is a Winter wonderland with thousands of holiday lights strung throughout the historic downtown, a Candlelight Walk, weekly hometown holiday parades, free horse-drawn carriage rides and even adorable Newfoundland dog–pulled sled rides for children. Departing from the Colorado Railroad Museum in Golden is The Polar Express, a festive and magical train ride where children meet Santa and experience all the sights and sounds of this classic tale.
Community and Culture
The Denver Art Museum (DAM), including this Winter’s ticketed exhibition of “Claude Monet: The Truth of Nature” — the most comprehensive U.S. exhibition of Monet paintings in more than 20 years, is along the route including free general admission to those 18 years of age and younger. Attend Colorado Ballet’s The Nutcracker at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, located in the Denver Center for the Performing Arts (DCPA), which also showcases dozens of other productions. Rent a pair of ice skates at the downtown Denver rink at Skyline Park. There is a holiday carousel at the Denver Pavilions. The State Capitol has free public tours from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday. Take in the view of the City & County Building with thousands of sparkling lights twinkling for the season.
Take the A-Line Train from the airport to Union Station, the century-old American railroad station that has been revitalised into one of the Rocky Mountains’ most admirable, iconic and community-based facilities, including Snooze, an AM Eatery; Mercantile Dining & Provision; Pigtrain Coffee Co.; Stoic & Genuine; libations at The Cooper Lounge; Terminal Bar and over a half-dozen retail shops and gathering spaces in the Great Hall with shuffleboard, benches and cosy couches. Come holiday season, expect weekly visits from Santa, accompanied by live music and Winter festivities.
Bonus: an overnight! Guests can stay in the railway station at the boutique Crawford Hotel with 112 luxury guest rooms that reflect the different eras of the landmark building’s history.
Double bonus: plane to train! The Amtrak Train from Union Station whisks riders to Winter Park Ski Resort, where they can seamlessly de-board and embark upon the resort’s 3,081 acres of skiable terrain, with 3,060 feet of vertical rise and covered in more than 315 inches of average annual snowfall.
One of the largest and most accessible mountain resorts from Denver is Breckenridge. The resort has five peaks to ski, 34 chairlifts (including highest in elevation in North America), 70+ restaurants, over 150 retail outlets and an average yearly white blanket of 366 inches of snowfall. Time a visit to coincide with Ullr Fest (from 11–15 December), the celebration of the gift of snow from the Norse god of Snow, Ullr. Ski slopes are filled with horned Viking hats, there is a bonfire in town and there is a parade with float participants skiing off jumps on Main Street.
From 20–29 January the Budweiser International Snow Sculpting Championship brings together teams from around the world to carve frozen masterpieces from 20-ton blocks of snow, all on display for visitors to observe.
Stunning, storyed and glamorous, Aspen has long been one of the most premier Winter mountain destinations for the luxury snow lover. The resort is actually made up of four different mountains — Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Snowmass and Buttermilk. Winter activity includes snowshoeing, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, powder tours, family activities and much more. Aspen hosts the Winter X Games for the 19th consecutive year 23–26 January. The ESPN-created Winter sport festival showcases the world’s greatest skiers, snowboarders and Winter sport athletes as they compete in mountain speed, slalom, big air and numerous other disciplines of snow sport.
A mild, whimsical snow might lightly blanket a sun-drenched sidewalk, land on an eyelash or cause a giggle upon delight.
Quite typical of many Front Range Colorado snowstorms, with a blanket of two to four inches.
A white wonderland of activity is to occur: sledding, snowballs, snowy city nights. It’s all predicted with abundant hope as this flagged warning of six inches of snow and more is bestowed upon the city.
Blizzard, or the newly Denver-coined “bomb cyclone”
White-out conditions, extremely strong winds, heavy snow accumulation. Stay off the roads!
Getting There with CAL
Cayman Airways offers seasonal weekly and bi-weekly nonstop flights from Grand Cayman to Denver, Colorado. To book your trip, contact us at 1-800-422-9626 (toll-free in the U.S.), 345-949-2311, contact a travel professional or visit our website caymanairways.com.
Author: Julie Bielenberg