THE WORLD IS A BOOK, AND THOSE WHO DO NOT TRAVEL READ ONLY ONE PAGE. - ST. AUGUSTINE
Nestled deep in the Rocky Mountains, Winter Park, Colorado is the perfect place for a woodsy weekend getaway!
STAY IN WINTER PARK
Winter Park Lodging Company
21 Kings Crossing #103, Winter Park, CO
We stayed in a GORGEOUS condo in Trailhead Lodges, just one block away from the heart of downtown Winter Park. Seriously - the PERFECT location! I originally located this condo on Airbnb, but saved money by booking directly with Winter Park Lodging Company. Making our reservation was a breeze, and since the staff is local, I was able to score some great recommendations for the area.
The pictures on the booking site looked great, but the condo was even better in person! It was completely updated, cozy and woodsy, and cleaner than any place I've ever stayed. I had mentioned at the time of booking that we would be visiting for Ryan's birthday, and the staff even left us a welcome basket full of goodies in the kitchen! How thoughtful was that?!
We laughed about how we could spend all day at just the condo and be totally happy! The bed in the master bedroom was SO comfortable, and it was fun lounging around in front of the fireplace watching football (they have every sports channel you might need!). PLUS, not only was our condo great, but we also had access to the main clubhouse located just steps away! The clubhouse features a pool, hot tub, fitness room, entertaining area, billiards, and outdoor fire pits. We were able to get a workout and a few games on the billiards table in during our visit. We didn't want to leave!
Want to book the same condo? Check out their reservation link here. I'd highly recommend staying here!
DINE IN WINTER PARK
78707 US-40, Winter Park, CO
Pepe Osaka's was a great fusion of Mexican and Asian cuisine! We both ordered margaritas, and I opted to add cucumber infused tequila to mine (they had a long list of ways to customize your drink). We snacked on fresh chips, salsa, and guacamole as an appetizer, and split orders of the shrimp tacos and surf + turf tacos (paired with sides of rice and beans) for our main course. Everything we had was flavorful and delicious, and we enjoyed the trendy music and interior!
Mountain Grind Coffee + Bistro
47 Cooper Creek Way #126, Winter Park, CO
Such a cute and cozy place to grab coffee, breakfast, or lunch! This spot is located in Cooper Creek Square just a few blocks from the condo we stayed in. I ordered the breakfast burrito stuffed with eggs, potatoes, veggies, and salsa, and Ryan opted for a toasted turkey sandwich and a side of chili. We both grabbed Chai tea lattes (hot for me and iced for Ryan) and gobbled down every bite of our food!
Randi's Irish Grill + Pub
78521 US-40, Winter Park, CO
We grabbed a classic egg breakfast at this Irish pub before we left! The interior was authentically Irish, and the food and service were both great. Had we been in town longer, we definitely would've returned for a beer here at night.
78746 US-40, Winter Park, CO
We stopped here after bowling and ordered a couple of wood-fired pizzas to go! I'd definitely recommend ordering the Salsiccia and Diavolo pizzas - YUM! They also had a great selection of salads, appetizers, and traditional Italian dishes.
PLAY IN WINTER PARK
Rocky Mountain National Park
16018 US-34, Grand Lake, CO
We accessed Rocky Mountain National Park through the Grand Lake entrance near the Kawuneeche Visitor Center, about 30 minutes or so from downtown Winter Park. A large portion of the park's roads were closed due to snow, but we made it about 15 miles in and hiked around for a bit! There are endless trails, campsites, and views to appreciate in the park. If you're traveling through RMNP during early evening, you'll likely see many of the park's residents (aka wildlife) roaming about.
In warmer temps when the roads are completely open, you can make your way over to Estes Park and enjoy a Jeep tour, shopping, or visit The Stanley Hotel, which inspired the movie "The Shining". On your way back to Winter Park, Grand Lake is a great place to stop for a quick bite or a show at the Rocky Mountain Repertory Theater.
The Foundry Cinema + Bowl
22 Second Street, Fraser, Co
We had a blast at The Foundry, which is about a 3 minute drive from where we stayed! The interior feels brand new and features tall ceilings, brick and wood features, neon signs, and fun gas station memorabilia. We spent a couple of hours bowling and watching sports on the giant screens above each lane. I actually beat Ryan once, though he schooled me the other 3 games. The man can bowl! The bowling balls were made to look like billiards balls, which I thought was a fun touch! The drinks and prices were great, and they also had a great menu and selection of movies. Whether you're visiting with friends, your significant other, or the whole family, you'll have fun at this spot.
OTHER NOTES: You'll definitely want to rent a car when traveling from Denver to Winter Park. Not only will it give you more opportunity to explore, but I found it to be much cheaper than a shuttle or car service to and from. We rented a fully-loaded Chevy Tahoe for literally just a few dollars more than a small sedan, and I saved additional money by booking online in advance (we used Avis) and using a coupon code I located on Retail Me Not.
Another spot we visited (but I didn't score any pictures of - oops!) was Idlewild Spirits Distillery. This is tucked in on the lower level of the building Pepe Osaka's is in, and is a cozy spot to grab an after dinner drink by a fireplace. The Peak Bistro and Brewery also looked awesome, but we didn't have time to stop in. Next time, for sure!
Though this trip for Ryan's birthday was brief, we had a blast! Questions about any of the spots we visited? Don't hesitate to send me an email!
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