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Your Summer Bucket List in Boulder

Summ-ah time, and the livin's easy! We're singing with joy at the arrival of this sweet season when longer days let you explore more and relax in the sun for hours in Boulder.

✓ Find the Perfect Summer Patio

You've more than earned some lounging time in the sunshine. Slowly sip a gin and tonic at Corrida, see Boulder from the perfect perch at Avanti Food & Beverage, or pick your own from this selection of amazing patios and rooftops.


A post shared by Corrida (@corrida_boulder)

✓ Try a New Adventure

This summer's made for seizing the day and finding new adventures. Boulder is a town of adventure experts who make it easy for you to try new thrills with a guide. Go on a hot air balloon ride, feel the gleeful freedom of an e-bike, or go mountain biking, kayaking or summiting a mountain.

✓ Enjoy live music

All summer long you can find live music shows and festivals across town. Dance under the stars or pack a picnic and soak up the sweet sounds of music on the Colorado breeze. There are also several annual music festivals to celebrate all things song, including an amazing lineup of artists at the Colorado Chautauqua (celebrating its 125th birthday this summer!). Or beat the heat with an indoor concert or silent film series with live musical accompaniment. All the details are on our Hot Summer Music page.

Bands on the Bricks Boulder

✓ Picnic With a View

There's no better picnic town than Boulder. With 1,800 acres of city parks — many of them with spectacular Flatirons views — you can easily find a patch of green or a picnic table to gather over good food al fresco. Pick up nibbles from Blackbelly MarketDedalus Wine Shop & MarketDish Gourmet or Le Frigo and a picnic basket from Peppercorn and head to one of our favorite picnic spots

✓ Pick Up a Farm-Fresh Bouquet

The Boulder Farmers Market is bright with blooms from local growers, or you can swing by one of several Boulder farm stands, where fresh-cut blooms are ready for you to enjoy. 

Fresh flowers from the Boulder Farmers Market

✓ Go Out for Ice Cream

Nothing's better after a rigorous hike than an ice cream cone. Try Gelato Boy's blackberry lavender, Glacier Homemade Ice Cream's salted caramel Oreo or Sweet Cow OZO Coffee Brownie Fudge. Find lots more ice cream and frozen treat shops here.

Chocolate chip ice cream cone held in front of the Flatirons in the distance

✓ Take a Bike Ride Together

The simple joy of pedaling around town with the breeze in your hair is a uniquely divine summertime pleasure. Here's a guide to family-friendly biking areas. The Travel Channel calls Boulder one of the top 13 cycling cities in the U.S.

Family biking on road during a farm tour

✓ Hike Deep Into the Woods

In the heat of summer, we like to choose a heavily wooded trail for the shade, wildflowers and the heavenly summer scent of ponderosa pine — some compare it to chocolate or ice cream. Shady summer hikes include Lion's Lair (with a summit that overlooks all of Boulder Valley) Ranger Trail (the first part is lush and cool), or Anne U. White (in the shade of a narrow canyon).

✓ Refresh Your Summer Wardrobe

A floaty new sundress, a new straw hat, some great sandals or a colorful new bag will brighten your summer. Shop modern and sustainably crafted goods at Mabel & Moss, silk dresses at Haven, sandals at Savvy on Pearl or head to Twenty Ninth Street for a shopping center full of finds (and views).

✓ Discover What's New

If you haven't been to Boulder for a minute, you might be wondering what's new. A lot, actually! We have dozens of new murals, several fresh coffee shops and eateries, and a handful of restaurants recently included in the Boulder MICHELIN guide.

Photo by Casey Wilson

Frasca Food & Wine received a MICHELIN star in 2023

✓ Go for a Mountain Drive

If it's the heat of the day, hop in the car and drive to higher ground for cooler temps. The Peak to Peak Scenic Byway is a favorite with visitors, described as, “Omg, it was like being inside a dream world of unbelievable mountains.” Along the way, you can stop to dip your toes in a mountain stream, stop for photo ops at a picturesque stone church and stop for some fun roadside adventure.

Did You Know?

The Peak to Peak Scenic Byway is officially registered as a Colorado Electic Vehicle Byway. This means you'll find multiple dual-port DC fast charging stations between the start and end points of this historic byway. You can locate electric charging stations on the U.S. Department of Energy's website.

✓ Stay the Night Somewhere Special

From hotels with year-round pools to those with swanky lounges with roaring fireplaces, each of Boulder's hotels offers a mini escape to look forward to.