Be adventurous: Last minute travel to Denver

We are trying out a new form of travel this weekend: last minute travel. We have been talking about enjoying one last trip before D turns 2, and we decided on Monday to buy tickets to travel this weekend. So, I am posting from Denver, Colorado this weekend, as we enjoy one last travel adventure for 2015. 

Z and I lived in Denver for two years after college. We absolutely loved it. It feels great to be back, even if only for a short weekend. The first glimpse of the mountains in the west still makes me marvel at their beauty, just like it did every day when we lived here. 

We had an mildly adventurous start to our trip as were we flying out of our home town at the beginning of a snow storm, then landed in Denver where it was also (surprise) snowing. We eventually were able to get our rental, sit through 45 minutes of traffic (we did NOT miss Denver traffic), and got settled in our Airbnb for the weekend.

 

Hello again Colorado! A little bit of a snowy hello.

  

D will find something to play with anywhere, including hazard signs near airport bathrooms.

 Today we went to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, a museum that we visited once when we lived here before, but has some awesome exhibits. We checked out their special exhibit on Sherlock Holmes, which was very interactive and we got to solve a crime and gather evidence in the exhibit. We also checked out a traveling exhibit about poisons, saw some of the animal habitat collections, and D played in the kids area called the discovery zone. He had a great time with their huge water play area. We only daw about a third of the museum in 3 hours, but needed to go get some lunch and head off for other adventures. 

Figuring out the telegraph in the Sherlock Holmes exhibit.

 

Using our powers of deduction in the Sherlock Holmes exhibit.

  

D playing in the water table of the Discovery Zone.

  Here’s a side note/travel pro tip: we are members at our local children’s museum, and take D their occasionally, but not enough to really pay for the membership. However, when we travel, we always check the reciprocal science/technology museum list, and we have been able to go to many museums for FREE in other cities. We also get 50% off admission to other children’s museums in the country. It’s awesome. This pass had more than paid for itself since we have gone to numerous museums in Chicago, Orlando, other parts of Wisconsin, and now Denver. Look into getting a pass of you travel, you may use it more than you think, and it helps us plan our time when we travel.

Anyway, we ate some delicious brisket at a BBQ restaurant called the Kitchen Table Cafe, and drove out to Red Rocks, west of Denver. We hiked the trading post trail, which takes you through several of the major red rock formations. It was a bit strenuous, especially since I have a cold and we are a little more than a mile above sea level, but we survived. It was visually astounding, as always. Even though we had been to Red Rocks before, we had never hiked this path, and I’m so glad we did. It was amazing, and very peaceful this time of year.     

Enjoying our hike, even with a little snow.

 

Exploring at Red Rocks.

  

Traveling light means… dad is the toddler carrier.

 

Just awe-inspiring.


 We ended our day with a visit to Trader Joes where we grabbed some groceries for dinner and breakfast, and I had an interesting solo adventure to find us some local beer, but we had a fantastic day. 

Tomorrow is packed with more hiking and some time in Colorado Springs seeing friends, and we have a half day to enjoy in Denver on Monday. It’ll be a busy weekend, but that’s the way we like it!

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