Lifestyle

40 Free Things to Do in Denver

Published On 05/12/2015 Published On 05/12/2015

Not all the best things in life are free, because burgers, but there are still many good free things out there. Here are 40 of them that you should do in Denver.

Flickr/billselak

1. Go on a brewery tour

Colorado has so many craft breweries, there are probably some local beers you haven't tried yet. Wynkoop, Great Divide, and Breckenridge breweries all offer free tours.
 

2. Get funky at First Friday

There are several different art walks around town that feature galleries and street art every first Friday of the month. The biggest one is on Santa Fe, but there's also Tennyson, RiNo, Belmar, and the Navajo Street Art District in LoHi.
 

3. Check out the hidden Dikeou Collection 

This contemporary art gallery houses giant inflatable bunnies and frequently features free tours and workshops, often with free refreshments, too.
 

4. Get a mile high

No, not like that. The 13th step on the Capitol's stairs is the exact marker of 5280ft, or one mile above sea level.
 

5. Watch a movie in the park 

There are free movies playing throughout the summer at Skyline Park, Infinity Park in Glendale, and Civic Center.
 

6. Skate the Denver skatepark

Show off your skills at one of the 25 best skateparks in America. Or if you have no skills, there are always plenty of skaters and bikers to watch.

Flickr/leighadactyl

7. Red Rocks

The famous outdoor venue is open year-round for people to check out and is free when there isn't a show or event going on.
 

8. Learn about money at Denver Mint

Learn about the history of American coins and see how they are produced. Unfortunately, they don't hand out free money souvenirs after the 45-minute tour.
 

9. Take in an exhibit at the Denver Art Museum 

Every first Saturday of the month is free. Get there early, unless you love large crowds.
 

10. Run, walk, or ride the Cherry Creek bike path

It stretches for more than 40mi.
 

11. Visit the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame

Inside the Mile High stadium, there's a tribute to Colorado's best athletes and it's usually open Thursday-Sunday.
 

12. Find the Blue Bear

Hint: He's peeking into the Convention Center on 14th Ave.
 

13. Ride on at Cruiser Night 

Every Wednesday night in the summer, hundreds of people join together to dress up in silly costumes and bar-hop across the city.

Flickr/flowercat

14. Drive up to Lookout Mountain

Check out the views of Golden and Denver, and pretend not to check out the cars of teenagers who come here to make out.
 

15. Sample whiskey at Stranahan's Distillery 

You can reserve yourself a spot on a tour any day of the week except Tuesdays.
 

16. Play frisbee golf

You'll have to bring your own discs, but the Paco Sanchez course is 10 minutes from Downtown and is easy to access by bike, car, or light rail.
 

17. Enjoy nature at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal

The National Wildlife Refuge is made up of over 15,000 acres and is open every single day, except for major holidays.
 

18. Take an artsy photo of the Millennium Bridge

Seriously, it looks good from any angle.
 

19. See the views at Sloan's Lake

Get two totally different (and awesome) views from one park. From the East side, you can see the mountains and from the West, the Denver skyline.
 

20. Fishing at Wash Park

There are a few spots where fishing is allowed. If that's not your thing, there're 155 acres of park to explore.

Flickr/jacqueline_poggi

21. Catch up on reading at Denver Public Library

Books: remember those? Probably not, but this 540,000sqft library would be the place to get reacquainted with them.
 

22. Exercise at Civic Center Moves

Join in for a free workout right in the middle of Civic Center Park.
 

23. Visit a farmer's market 

Practically every neighborhood in Denver has its own version of a farmer's market, complete with local vendors, food carts, and sometimes live music.
 

24. Ice skate at Skyline Park 

The ice rink is open to the public this year from Nov 25th-Feb 16th. There's no admission, but if you don't have your own ice skates, you can rent them there for $2.
 

25. Find the cash register in the sky

The building with a top shaped like a register is the most identifiable in the Denver skyline.
 

26. Ogle at the mansions in Cherry Creek

Drive slowly through the somewhat hidden cul-de-sacs of the richest people in Denver... but not too slow, because you don't want to be that creep.
 

27. Experience The Big Wonderful

It's a new outdoor event that's essentially a hipster farmer's market, complete with beach volleyball, a craft beer garden, and tons of local vendors every Saturday from noon-7:30pm. It also does the Friday Night Bazaar in a warehouse, which features food, live music, and cocktails on Fridays from 6pm-12am. You can even barter your unwanted vintage items for beer tickets.

Flickr/kevglobal

28. Take a selfie in front of Union Station 

After a major revamp, it looks better than it ever has, especially when it's in the background of your new profile picture.
 

29. Find the Denver Flea

It's a pop-up flea market that has a more hip and modern approach than the typical kind your grandma used to drag you to. The location and day change every time, so make sure to sign up for the newsletter to be in the know.
 

30. See dinosaur footprints at Dinosaur Ridge

It's the closest you'll get to experiencing Jurassic Park around here.
 

31. Browse the shelves at Tattered Cover 

This historic book store now has four locations, but the original is in Cherry Creek. Every store comes equipped with comfy chairs for lounging with a good read.
 

32. Visit a Denver winery

Yes, there's a vineyard within city limits. It's family-owned and offers tasting tours seven days a week from 11am-5pm.
 

33. Play a game of chess on the 16th St Mall

There are chessboards set up in random spots on the mall. There's also the free mall ride that runs every day, every few minutes.
 

34. Window-shop at Larimer Square

The boutiques and restaurants on this stretch are higher-end, so there are plenty of pretty things (and people) to look at.

Flickr/steve-stevens

35. Go to the Denver Zoo

There are only a few free days offered this year, but it normally costs $17 to get in.
 

36. Visit the Denver Museum of Nature and Science

There's a free day once a month for the entire year except for December, but if you want to see an IMAX movie or visit the planetarium, it will cost you extra.
 

37. Visit the Clyfford Still Museum

It's free every Friday from 5pm-8pm most of the year and free all day on the last Friday of every month.
 

38. Admire the lobby at The Brown Palace

Check out the atrium of the famous hotel that has seen a ton of celebrities and presidents. If you want to indulge in afternoon tea or dine at Ellyngton's, the upscale restaurant, be prepared to shell out a lot of money.
 

39. Take a stance on the giant dancing statues

The 50ft-tall figurines in front of the Denver Center for Performing Arts are known to some Denver natives as some of the most hated statues in the city. Check them out and make your own opinion.
 

40. Make friends with someone who works at the Warwick Hotel

Maybe they'll be nice enough to let you access the rooftop pool.

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