Weekend Getaway With a Toddler: Denver

Weekend trips are ideal for families with young children, as they offer a change of scenery and access to new activities without requiring a significant investment of time or money. If you're wondering where to take your next weekend getaway, consider traveling to Denver, Colorado in the heart of the Rocky Mountains. The Mile High City offers an exciting mix of big-city attractions and outdoor activitiesin one of the most beautiful places in the country. There are numerous kid-friendly options, including museums, events, theme parks, and countless shopping and dining possibilities. Make the most of your time in Denver by finding the best kid-friendly restaurants and attractions in the area, and be sure to take family photos in a few scenic spots. Here are some tips for planning and enjoying a perfect weekend getaway to Denver.

Denver Skyline with City Park in Foreground at Sunset

Denver Skyline with City Park in Foreground at Sunset

Kid-Friendly Denver Hot Spots

When you travel with a toddler, it's a good idea to choose activities and locations that will grab and hold your little one's attention. Denver offers several attractions and activities that appeal to both toddlers and their parents.

  • Try a day at the ballpark watching the Colorado Rockies baseball team. Kids can enjoy a large, secure play area and may even get a chance to meet the dinosaur mascot, Dinger.
  • Spend a day at the Denver Zoo where you and your children can see animals from every natural habitat. There are numerous activities perfect for young children, including the exciting Sea Lion Show, the interactive Tropical Discovery exhibit, and the beautiful Train and Carousel.
  • Explore the Denver Children's Museum and allow your child the freedom to imagine, investigate, and create in areas such as Joy Park, Book Nook, and The Teaching Kitchen.
  • Head to the Denver Aquarium and give your toddler access to interactive exhibits, a stunning theater show, and delicious food in this central Denver location.
  • Cool off with a day at Water World, one of the country's largest water parks. There are plenty of pools, rides, and interactive games for visitors of all ages. You can also park for free and bring a picnic lunch.
Denver Water World. Photo: Expedia

Denver Water World. Photo: Expedia

Perfect Family Photo Spots

You want to make sure you can remember your weekend in Denver, so don't forget to take a lot of photos. With the Rocky Mountains as a backdrop, the city holds countless picturesque spots for the perfect memento. Here are some places to consider:

  • Head to City Park for numerous views of the Denver skyline framed by the Rocky Mountains in the background.
  • Check out the 40-foot-tall Big Blue Bear statue peeking into the windows of the Colorado Convention Center.
  • Find your favorite location among the 33,000 different plants in the Denver Botanic Gardens.
  • Try taking your family picture in front of the Colorado State Capitol building with it's stunning gold-domed top and indicator that marks an altitude of exactly 1 mile above sea level.

Delicious Family-Friendly Restaurants

Finding the right place to eat with a toddler can be a challenge. You want to find a place that has an atmosphere and menu both you and your child can enjoy. Here are some options in Denver that offer great choice for the whole family.

  • Try the Lowry Beer Garden for casual, kid-friendly food such as hot dogs and chicken nuggets. Parents can try one of the beers from the extensive on-tap selections, and everyone can enjoy eating in the beautiful outdoor area complete with communal tables and incorporated playground.
  • Enjoy Italian classics at the The Old Spaghetti Factory in Denver which includes a complete old-fashioned trolley car in the center of the dining room.
  • Stop for a quick treat at Little Man Ice Cream, located on Denver's famous 16th Street Outdoor Mall. This iconic ice cream shop is shaped like a giant cream pitcher and features homemade ice cream and other treats to please kids and adults alike.
  • Travel to the Art District on Santa Fe Drive and play while you eat at Board Game Republic. This innovative restaurant features over 700 board games and a kids menu with several inexpensive selections.
  • No trip to Denver is complete without an evening at Casa Bonita, a local legend that's as popular as it is unique. You and your kids can enjoy a variety of Mexican dishes in this unique atmosphere complete with caves, grottos, arcade games, fountains, and a live show featuring musicians and cliff divers.
Little Man Ice Cream Menu. Photo: Westword

Little Man Ice Cream Menu. Photo: Westword

Top Tips for a Safe and Enjoyable Vacation

When you're traveling with a little one, it's extremely important to make sure you take all the necessary precautions for a safe and enjoyable trip. Here are some essential tips for a great weekend in Denver.

  • Bring a jacket. Denver's weather is famously unpredictable, and summer days can feature temperature swings of up to 40 degrees between day and evening, so it's always a good idea to pack warm clothing.
  • Apply sunscreen often. The high altitude in Denver drastically increases the risk of sunburn, even during cloudy days. Sunblock, sunglasses, and hats all help keep you and your little ones free from sunburns.
  • Use insect repellent. Summertime in Denver includes mosquitoes, ticks, and other pests, so make sure you use an effective repellent spray.
  • Stay hydrated. Denver's high altitude can contribute to sunstroke and altitude sickness and reduce the time it takes to become dehydrated. Drinking lots of water can help combat the effects of high altitude and fatigue.
  • Look out for pedestrians. Denver is very friendly toward pedestrians and bicyclists, and many of the main streets include integrated bicycle lanes. Make sure to stay within local speed limits and yield the right of way to walkers and bicyclists.

If you want to plan a weekend getaway with your toddler, Denver is one of the best places to consider. You can see attractions within the city and enjoy hiking, biking, and skiing within just a few minutes' drive. The stunning Rocky Mountains serve as the perfect backdrop for family pictures, and there are numerous restaurants and entertainment options that are perfect for toddlers. For more helpful tips on traveling with toddlers, follow KAMO on Facebook, Twitter @kamo_family, and Instagram (kamofamily).

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