Plan a Nostalgic Holiday Getaway to Boulder
“Winter…is a time to gather golden moments, embark upon a sentimental journey, and enjoy every idle hour.” —John Boswell
Wise revelers know that the true joy of the holidays is spending time with loved ones and rediscovering simple pleasures. Nothing brings what’s important into focus like reviving old-fashioned, low-frills winter traditions. Here’s our guide to celebrating the holidays with a touch of nostalgia in Boulder.
See Holiday Light Displays
Have fond memories of hopping in the car to drive around at night, looking for the most dazzling holiday light displays? In Boulder, there's no car required. And we'll point you right to the best displays: Downtown glitters all season with dozens of creative light displays all along Pearl Street, and nearby, around the Boulder Public Library and Central Park, the city’s Snow Much Fun light displays shimmer with 275,000 lights in a walkable winter wonderland.
Make Snow Angels
Remember the first time you found yourself face up, bundled in winter gear, blinking through snowflakes, flailing your arms about to make a snow angel? Relive the joy at North Boulder Park, which is very close to downtown and has acres of flat snowfields in winter, perfect for such an escapade.
In winter months, organic matter is slow to break down, so it’s especially important to discard all waste in a bin, including shells, peels, crusts and cores. This goes double for dog waste.
Go to a Holiday Market
There’s no doubt handmade gifts have always been, and are still, among the most cherished. Boulder has one of the highest concentrations of artists in the country, and around the holidays, artisan markets abound, from the stylish Firefly Handmade market to the annual Studio Arts pottery sale. View our holiday artisan market guide.
Sled for the Pure Joy of It
Zipping down a hill with the wind in your hair can put anybody in a good mood. But have you sledded with a view? Boulder has some perfect sledding hills for snowy days — many of them with mountain vistas. You'll be glad you got outside, away from screens and working up a sweat. Check out our list of where to sled.
View Holiday Window Displays
The tradition of shopkeepers dressing up their windows for the holidays goes back hundreds of years! These days, in Boulder, you’ll be delighted by the creativity at Bliss, Peppercorn and Two Sole Sisters, along with other storefronts all along Pearl Street and at Twenty Ninth Street shopping center.
Sip a Mug of Hot Cocoa
The housemade hot chocolate (and accompanying shortbreads) at Süti & Co. make for a perfect winter treat in the most charming Victorian-era cottage in downtown Boulder. Boulder is a town of chocolate lovers, so you’ll find more spots all over town with craft sipping chocolates and mochas.
Take a Carriage Ride
What’s more nostalgic than “dashing through the snow” pulled by a team of horses? During Winterfest at the Colorado Chautauqua, you can take a horse-drawn carriage ride around the Chautauqua Green, which has spectacular, snow-dusted views of the Flatirons. Winterfest also offers a chance to visit Santa’s Cottage, munch on holiday cookies, and participate in festive crafts and activities.
See “The Nutcracker”
Clara’s dreamland journey to the Land of Sweets is danced each year by the Boulder Ballet, accompanied by the Boulder Philharmonic at the historic and stunning Macky Auditorium on the University of Colorado campus. It's the perfect event to start or continue a family holiday tradition.
Tell Fireside Stories
A toasty fire warms everyone’s spirits. Opt for beverages in the St Julien Hotel & Spa’s T-Zero Lounge beside the chic fireplace, gather around a firepit and share tacos and tales on My Neighbor Felix’s patio, or have a fireside brunch at the historic 1898 Chautauqua Dining Hall.