Take a look at Colorado's historic shopping destinations and discover one-of-a-kind buys. You'll also be treated to fresh air, mountain views and plenty of sunshine.Less
The Downtown Boulder Historic District, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, encompasses the city’s oldest commercial section. Craft breweries, cafes, restaurants, boutique design and clothing stores, as well as outdoor stores and other enticing businesses line the brick pathways in this college town.
Just a few minutes' drive from downtown Denver, Cherry Creek North is comprised of more than 300 shops, spas/salons, home stores, art galleries, restaurants and hotels. Sixteen tree-lined and flower-bedecked blocks set the stage for a veritable Rodeo Drive of independent luxury boutiques.
Downtown Denver's 1.25-mile pedestrian promenade is often visitors' first stop in the city for shopping, upscale and casual dining, breweries, coffee shops, public art, architecture and — naturally — lots of people watching. In winter, the mall is particularly festive and colorfully lit for the holidays. Free shuttle buses run up and down the strip, making getting around its 250-plus stores a cinch.
This area adjoining Colorado Springs was one of Colorado’s earliest settlements. In 1861, it became the territory’s first capital — a home to miners, farmers and outfitters in the gold rush days. Today, it retains a bit of Old West atmosphere with historic brick buildings and tree-lined streets. You’ll find a cluster of art galleries here, mostly with Southwestern collections. Rare jewelry, kitschy gifts and antiques are among the other goods for sale in these boutiques.
Breckenridge hosts distinguished shops, including fashion boutiques, book stores, souvenir shops and even quilting and craft stores that offer regular classes, all within the town's Victorian National Historic District. Perhaps most notably, shoppers discover that the town of Breckenridge is pet-friendly. Doggie bakeries provide treats and trinkets to show pets how much they are appreciated.
Between the ski-mountain base areas of Vail Village and Lionshead, the year-round resort town of Vail hosts hundreds of shops, selling everything from high-end jewelry and fine art to ski boots and cowboy hats. Located in the shadow of the Gore Range, Vail has a distinctly alpine feel. A free bus traverses the pedestrian area for those who are weighted down by shopping bags. The villages are also home to a growing number of amazing restaurants.
A shopping trip to historic downtown Littleton provides patrons with the opportunity to snag some artisanal buys. Gift, craft and antique shops, galleries, cafes and more are easily found at this welcoming downtown thoroughfare. With fun holiday events like a Halloween zombie parade and Trick or Treat Street, an annual candlelight walk and tree-lighting in November and other annual celebrations, the area is always a festive place to hang out.
Fort Collins' historic district is known for its bookstores, galleries, shops and local eateries. It's also a Certified Colorado Creative District, thanks to its artsy and innovative locals. You'll see the city's residents zipping by on bikes and even riding the historic streetcar from boutique to boutique. Several holiday lighting events fill the area's plazas with cheer, and walking tours guide foodies and shoppers to prime locations.