The Getaway
Invigorating Ways to Experience Steamboat Springs

Steamboat Springs, Colorado is a feast for the senses, an adventurous destination filled with fervor 365 days of the year. Named for its famous hot springs, the town features 3,000 skiable acres surrounded by pristine nature.

Ranching heritage is alive and well too; the town was built as a gateway to the west, with streets designed to drive cattle. Along with robust history and culture, Steamboat Springs is a distinctly 21st-century metropolis, with bustling pubs, live music, and delectable cuisine at every corner. There's something for everyone here, making it a top spot to check off your bucket list.

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01 Old Town Hot Springs

The town's namesake hot springs offer a rejuvenating experience year-round. In the heart of downtown, you'll discover eight hot spring-fed pools, waterslides, an assortment of fitness classes, and a world-class gym, all in one convenient location. Whether you're stopping by for a few hours or spending the whole day, the healing mineral waters provide an unparalleled oasis.

Swim laps or lie back and soak; there's an experience for everyone — the spacious kiddie splash pad and community pool make for a great family outing. Yoga, zumba, spin, cardio barre, and bodypump classes make the hot springs a fitness lover's paradise.

02 Scenic gondola rides

Take in Steamboat Spring's stunning scenery on this once-in-a-lifetime adventure. Get comfy inside an enclosed 8-person gondola and ascend into the skies, where panoramic views abound. Your ride draws you up Mount Werner for an unparallelled perspective of the 10,500 foot mountain.

Watch the leaves change color, see flowers bloom, and catch animals scurrying up the slopes as you ascend — there are sights for every season. The ride ends with truly breathtaking views from the Oasis Sun Deck, where you can gaze down on the expansive Yampa Valley.

03 Mountain Tap Brewery

Pub culture abounds in Steamboat Springs, and this charming brewpub/restaurant is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. Savor 12 unique beers on tap, all of them produced in-house, including an authentic German-style lager and a Mountain Macaroon nutty brown ale that brings the ski slope experience directly to your dinner table.

For those craving a taste of the old world, an extensive selection of wines and ciders is also available. The menu harks back to traditional ranch culture, with hearty entrees such as bratwurst, Cornish game hen, and slow-roasted lamb leg. Wood-fired pizzas and delectable desserts round out the fresh, artisan-crafted menu.

04 Fish Creek Falls

Experience classic mountain wilderness at Fish Creek Falls, which cascades an impressive 280 feet down Fish Creek Canyon. Along with countless photo opportunities, the falls offer something for everyone, including hiking, ice climbing, and picnicking with a view.

Gain access here to the renowned Routt National Forest and explore uncharted terrain, or take a tour to explore the area's must-see spots.

A bridge over the river at Fish Creek Falls, Colorado Erik Cox Photography / Shutterstock

05 Steamboat Art Museum

Listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, this downtown museum houses rotating exhibitions highlighting the history and culture of the American West, with galleries featuring work from today's living masters. It's free to the public and displays an array of engaging exhibits, including Portraits of the American West, Photography and Pictorialism, and Moments in the Wild.

From paintings to photographs and quilts, the art takes center stage, but you can also sign up for classes, tours, lectures, and workshops. The museum store features timeless treasures from over 25 local artisans, so you can take a lasting piece of Steamboat Springs home.

06 Steamboat Ski Resort

As one of the state's most expansive ski resorts, this don't-miss location features 165 trails stretched over nearly 3,000 acres, giving you full access to Steamboat Springs' premier slopes. Access seven mountain peaks directly from the resort, but the area offers much more than just skiing. Traverse the scenery on snowshoes, glide through the crystal white blanket on a sleigh, or give snowkiting or ice fishing a go.

Equipment rentals, classes, and mountain tours are available on-site, and the resort houses 18 unique dining options.

07 Saddleback Ranch

This 8,000-acre working ranch expertly honors the town's history and heritage. Throughout the year, this fourth-generation destination hosts a wide range of outdoor events, including horseback riding through the wilderness, horseback dinners, and cattle drives, where you'll spend the morning moving cattle and conducting day-to-day tasks that keep the ranch going.

With dinner wagon rides, you'll head directly toward the sunset, enjoying a three-course meal and beverages before you head out. Other alluring adventures include hunting, tubing, and snowmobiling for an authentic Colorado experience.

08 Tread of Pioneers Museum

Housed in a 1908 Victorian home, this charming museum preserves Steamboat Springs' rich heritage. Explore diverse aspects of the town's storied past, including its founding families, the history of the hot spring, the lives of the original Native American residents, mining, and every aspect of pioneer life, from raising a family to work and leisure.

Hands-on exhibits for kids include a replica of a child's bedroom from 1900, where kids can try on authentic pioneer garb, open historic books, and play with period toys, from china dolls to stereoscopes. Engaging events offer fun for the whole family: history happy hours, steamboat walking tours, an Olympic heritage tour, and a storytelling series are all on the schedule.

09 Steamboat Symphony Orchestra

This professional ensemble features talented local musicians who are fully dedicated to their craft. Concerts are designed to be engaging and joyful, with guests becoming part of the process. Bring your own beverages, clap along, or get up and dance — this orchestra is all about audience participation and excitement.

Check the performance schedule to grab tickets to one of their upcoming shows, or attend an immersion weekend to learn and perform new skills alongside professional musicians.

10 Yampa River Botanic Park

This can't-miss natural attraction features six acres of lush botanical gardens located 6,800 feet up in the Rocky Mountains. Explore an impressive selection of gardens that highlight the region's abundant flora and fauna. The park is open from dawn to dusk, giving you plenty of time to connect with colorful beauties in the Butterfly and Hummingbird gardens, discover where your favorite flavors come from in the Culinary Herb Garden, watch fish glide through the ponds, and discover one of 40 other engaging garden experiences.

Prevalent labels teach the story behind every site. With so much to explore, this is a true gem of the Colorado Northwest.

11 Steamboat scenic gondola: a sky-high adventure

Experience the grandeur of Steamboat Springs from a bird's eye view on the Steamboat Scenic Gondola. This nine-minute journey takes you over the stunning landscapes of Mt. Werner and Yampa Valley, offering breathtaking panoramic views. Regardless of whether you're a skier or not, the gondola ride is a unique experience that allows you to appreciate the beauty of Colorado from a new perspective. Don't forget your camera to capture these unforgettable vistas!

Young boy looking at the view from gondola. VisualCommunications / Getty Images

12 Vista Verde Ranch: a luxurious getaway

Located about 30 minutes north of Steamboat Springs, Vista Verde Ranch offers an all-inclusive vacation experience in a luxurious setting. From snowmobiling and snowshoeing to horseback riding and hiking, the ranch offers a plethora of activities to keep you entertained. The ranch also offers chef-prepared meals and a variety of relaxation options, making it an ideal destination for those seeking a blend of adventure and relaxation.

Woman horseback riding in autumn Sitikka / Getty Images

13 Routt National Forest: an outdoor paradise

Routt National Forest is a camper's paradise, offering a diverse range of terrains for outdoor enthusiasts. With an array of hiking and biking trails, as well as opportunities for lake and stream fishing, you'll never run out of things to do. The forest's vast landscapes and stunning views make it one of the best locations in the state for camping and hiking, offering a true wilderness experience.

Wildfire Smoke Over Mountains Marek Uliasz / 500px / Getty Images

14 Tread of Pioneers Museum: a journey through history

Step back in time at the Tread of Pioneers Museum, housed in a historic Victorian-era house. This museum offers a fascinating insight into Colorado’s rich agricultural history, local Native American tribes, the evolution of skiing, and more. With hands-on exhibits and interactive scavenger hunts, it's a fun and educational experience for all ages. Whether you're a history buff or simply curious about the region's past, the Tread of Pioneers Museum is a must-visit.

Looking at the display Mypurgatoryyears / Getty Images

15 Alpine slide: a mountain descent adventure

Glide down the mountainside with the wind in your hair on the Howler Alpine Slide. This family-friendly adventure starts with a scenic chairlift ride to the top, followed by a thrilling descent on a sled. Control your speed with a simple brake mechanism as you navigate turns and straightaways, enjoying picturesque views of Steamboat Springs below. It's an exhilarating way to experience the mountain's natural beauty during the warmer months.

16 Sunset happy hour: evening vistas and refreshments

As the sun dips below the horizon, Steamboat Springs' Sunset Happy Hour offers an unforgettable experience atop the gondola-accessed Oasis Sundeck. With stunning vistas of the Yampa Valley, guests can enjoy a selection of fine wines, craft beers, and gourmet appetizers. This magical evening event is perfect for couples seeking a romantic setting or anyone wanting to cap off their day with a breathtaking view and a toast to the beauty of Steamboat Springs.

17 Skeeter's ice rink: winter fun in the heart of Steamboat

In the heart of Steamboat Square, Skeeter's Ice Rink shines as a winter jewel. Whether you're lacing up skates for the first time or showing off your ice dancing skills, the rink offers a magical setting for making memories. Surrounded by twinkling lights and the laughter of families enjoying the crisp air, the ice rink becomes a centerpiece for holiday celebrations and a gathering place for those looking to embrace the joy of the season.

18 Yampatika ski with a naturalist: merging slopes and nature

Combine your passion for skiing with a love of nature at the Yampatika Ski with a Naturalist program. Glide through the pristine landscapes of Steamboat Springs while a knowledgeable naturalist shares fascinating insights about the local flora, fauna, and ecosystems. This unique experience not only enriches your skiing adventure but also deepens your connection to the natural world surrounding this winter wonderland.

19 Balloon rodeo: the sky-high spectacle of Steamboat

The Balloon Rodeo in Steamboat Springs is a spectacle of color and grace against the backdrop of the Rocky Mountains. Watch in awe as hot air balloons lift off in a choreographed display of flight, painting the sky with vibrant hues. This annual event brings together the community and visitors for a weekend of aerial beauty, morning launches, and evening glows, offering a unique way to experience the spirit and scenic beauty of Steamboat Springs.

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