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    Boulder's famous Flatirons under a dusting of snow

    COVID-19: What to Expect in Boulder Right Now

    Thank you for thinking of Boulder! You may be wondering what the situation is like here in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Well, the Flatirons are still presiding over our little city, there's a pine-scented breeze on our mountain trails and Pearl Street still has its trademark 
    lively vibe. 

    Of course, lots of things are very different than usual right now. Boulder County's COVID-19 status is at Level Yellow: Concern on the Colorado Covid Dial. Businesses are largely open with capacity restrictions. As with all destinations, circumstances can change quickly. We’ll keep you updated as best we can here, and you’re welcome to check back often for the latest.

    Last Updated: February 22, 2021

    Are Shops Open in Boulder?

    Yes, Boulder’s retailers are open on Pearl Street, in downtown, at Twenty Ninth Street and across town. There are a limited number of shoppers allowed in a store at a time. Face coverings are required to enter any shop.

    Shops are taking great pains to ensure your safety. They are cleaning regularly, wearing face coverings and sanitizing point of sale stations, and many will remove any tried-on items from the floor for a "rest" period before they are put back out. Learn more about safe shopping in Boulder.

    Twenty Ninth Street Shopping

    Are Restaurants Open in Boulder?

    Yes, restaurants are open for indoor dining at 50% capacity, as well as outdoor dining, carry out and delivery. The city has closed a few streets to through traffic so that restaurants can open additional seating right on the street, even in winter. Servers are required to wear face masks. You'll need to wear a face covering to any restaurant and can remove it for eating or drinking. The last call for alcohol at restaurants is 11pm. 

    Restaurants are also allowed to serve alcoholic beverages to go, so you can order a bottle of wine or a couple of margaritas to enjoy with your to-go meal. Alcohol can be delivered or “taken out” until 11pm.

    Japango Outdoor Dining

    Are Hiking Trails Open in Boulder?

    Yes. Boulder’s hiking trails have always remained open throughout the pandemic. In some cases, there are suggestions for one-way travel. These are marked on this awesome interactive trails map, as are lower-trafficked trails, and trails closed due to wildlife habitat protections. Kindly follow these guidelines for hiking in Boulder:

    • Stay at home if you are sick or have been exposed to COVID-19.
    • Maintain more than 6 feet of physical distancing from people not in your household.
    • Wear a face covering, as required by Boulder County Public Health order. 
    • Please do not hike with a group of people other than those in your household. 
    • If you see a full or crowded area and/or cannot find parking, move on to a different trailhead or hiking area.
    • Stay on open space trails and walk through mud unless you need to step off the trail to let others pass. If you need to step off the trail, try to avoid vegetation and step on a rock or dirt patch instead.
    • View suggested one-way travel areas, trails that are wider than six-feet and areas that see high and low visitation through OSMP's interactive trails map

    Winter Hiking at Chautauqua

    Can I Go Mountain Biking?

    Yes, Boulder’s mountain biking trails are open (unless they are closed due to muddy conditions or for wildlife habitat protections). The same guidelines as above apply.

    Mountain Biking Trails

    Woman Fat Biking in the snow in Boulder, Coloardo

    Are Hotels Open in Boulder?

    Yes, Boulder hotels are accepting reservations, and all are taking extraordinary precautions to ensure sanitization and safety. More than half of Boulder's hotels are offering a free night when you book two nights.

    Hotel Safety Measures

    What Nearby State and National Parks Are Open?

    Can I Camp in Boulder?

    Even under normal circumstances, there is no camping in the city of Boulder. However, there are several nearby options listed on our Camping page. You will need to confirm the open status of these areas. Many close in winter. Boulder County fire restriction info is here.

    Are Face Coverings Required in Boulder?

    Yes. Boulder County Public Health released an order requiring every person older than 12 years old to wear a face-covering in public. This includes outdoor spaces when social distancing of six feet cannot be maintained. And by statewide order, anyone 11 and older must wear a face covering in any public indoor space or while using or waiting to use public buses or taxis, car service or ride shares.

    Don't Leave the House Without...

    • Your face covering. They are required in Colorado. 
    • A well-charged cell phone, so you can use the ParkMobile app to pay for parking, order food to go, take pictures of maps, and use it as a tool to avoid tactile contact.
    • Hand sanitizer.
    • Sunscreen.
    • A full water bottle.

    What Are the Coronavirus Numbers Like in Boulder County?

    Covid DialAs of February 21, 2021, 18,599 individuals in Boulder County have tested positive or are considered probable (likely positive) for COVID-19, and there have been 245 deaths in Boulder County with COVID-19. More Boulder County COVID-19 data is here. In comparison, Denver County has had 58,534 positive cases and 762 deaths. The state of Colorado has had 420,614 cases and 5,719 deaths. More Colorado case data is here.

    Boulder County's current safety status is rated Level Yellow: Concern. You can read more here. Level Yellow limits gatherings to 10 people from no more than 2 households. Restaurants are open for indoor dining at 50% capacity or 50 people and retail is open at 50% capacity.

    Are Colorado's Borders Open?

    Yes, Colorado's borders are open. There is no quarantine period for those crossing state lines. Be sure to bring and wear your face coverings, as they are required by statewide order. 

    Low-Contact Travel at Denver International Airport

    DIA has launched Verifly, which reduces your contact with others at the airport and offers reservations for a dedicated TSA screening lane and a limited-capacity train car to the concourse. Denver International Airport is the closest major airport to Boulder and is about a 45-minute drive away.

    Have More Questions?

    We are the Boulder Convention and Visitors Bureau, the official tourism organization for Boulder, and we are happy to answer your questions. Call 303-442-2911 or email