So, you've come to Boulder for the mountains and the beer. Excellent! You're on the right track. But how about a day trip down to Denver, where you can experience some shopping and dining that only a big city can offer?
For the Indoorsy, Cocktail Dress Type
Love to shop but don't really care for all the walking involved? Never fear! 16th Street Mall of Denver offers a free trolly service that will take you up and down the mall from store to fabulous store.
This mall features the Virgin Records Megastore, Nikitown, the Gap and H&M. Awesome and funky places to dine and drink include the Hard Rock Cafe, Maggiano's, Little Italy and Rock Bottom Brewery, which got its start here in Colorado.
Shop 'til you drop in Denver — Photo courtesy of 16th Street Mall of Denver
This mall puts you in the epicenter of Denver, and gets you within walking distance of Coors Field and the Pepsi Center, so you can shop before or after you catch a game or concert.
Looking for a microbrew after a long day of pounding the pavement? Stop into the Wyncoop Brewery, where they also happen to serve amazing food. Or try Denver Beer Company, which is just a trolly ride and short walk away from the mall area.
If you're looking for a touch of elegance and a more high-end feel, then try the Cherry Creek Shopping Center. Here you'll find Juicy Couture, Burberry, H&M and Ralph Lauren. For dining, you can also stop into the California Pizza Kitchen, which offers some of the best pizza for miles around.
For the Outdoorsy, Get-Your-Hands-Dirty Type
On the outskirts of the Denver shopping district, you'll find REI and Wilderness Exchange. These two outdoor powerhouses offer two very distinct styles for naturalists.
Gear, glorious gear! — Photo courtesy of Wilderness Exchange
At REI, you'll find cycling, climbing, hiking and winter gear galore. Whether you're a skier, boarder, mountaineer or you just do it all, REI has what you need in spades. Not to mention, their friendly and knowledgeable staff is just as, if not more, outdoorsy than you are. So, you'll have no trouble finding someone with expertise in your chosen outdoor sport.
Wilderness Exchange is for you eco-friendly shoppers who prefer to buy pre-loved gear. Here, you'll find climbing shoes, ropes, backpacks and other cool gear that was pre-owned but is in great condition and cheaper than anything you can find at REI. By shopping here, you ensure that your purchases aren't having a negative impact on the environment which, for outdoorsy folks, is always a concern.
With these fabulous places to shop, you'll leave Denver with a heavy suitcase and a light heart. Shop on!