A. Travel Tips For Colorado First-Timers
Whether you’re traveling to Colorado from another state in the US or overseas, there are things every first-time visitor should know. From weather to visa to transportation options, these tips will prepare you for your stay in the highest average US state.
Colorado has beautiful scenery, wonderful wildlife, and incredible views of nature. While the capital can be busy and interesting, the national parks, forests, and mountains offer even more entertainment and unforgettable experiences. As you explore this great state that is home to the world-class city of Denver, you will learn about art, natural history, and fabulous restaurants.
1. Popular Posts
Rocky Mountain is the state’s most popular national park and is visited by tourists all year round. However, this is just one of the many, many wonderful things to do here. So before you focus on what to do and where to go, check out the helpful tips listed below.
2. Advice to all Colorado visitors
Planning your trip to another state can be a daunting task. But you can manage your preparation by checking out travel documents, best cities, weather, and activities. It is important to choose the best time of year for the activities that you plan to participate in.
Summer and spring are perfect for visiting parks and camping, walks and hikes, while in autumn you can enjoy nature in all its colors. If you want to go skiing and snowboarding, winter should be your favorite time to go. There is no way to underestimate the time of year when planning your trip to Denver or any part of the state.
3. Are you traveling to Colorado from another US state?
First-time travelers from other states can expect to experience a variety of Colorado weather. In a few hours you can go from shorts and t-shirt to long pants, jacket and hat, or just a difference in height. The higher altitude here compared to the lower altitude in most other states can cause altitude sickness with nausea and headaches.
Since the weather is difficult to predict, you may need to bring thick, lightweight clothing. The morning temperature may call for a sweater, but a lighter shirt should last until noon. Afternoon rains and thunderstorms are common in June and July, so expect milder temperatures and a rain jacket.
4. Healthy and Safe Living in Colorado
To enjoy good health in the Rockies, all first-time travelers to Colorado must stop smoking and drinking alcohol during their stay. At high altitudes, it’s easy to get drunk after just one drink. And if you are into green tourism here, take it easy with the edibles, they are amazing. It’s also very important that you don’t go too far with the cool thing of smoking every first time. There are still limits.
It is advisable to increase your water intake as well as this will help you control the dry air situation. In the morning you can start the day here with a large glass of water. Then make sure you drink plenty of H2O throughout the day.
5. International travelers to Colorado
If you plan to travel to Colorado from outside the United States, you will need extensive information on the travel documents required and how to apply for your visa. Most foreign nationals require a valid visa to visit the United States. There are different types of visas, and most tourists come on a tourist visa.
Most importantly, bring a valid passport and tourist visa. Canadian citizens do not require a visa, but must provide a passport and proof of residence. The US embassy in your country can provide you with updated visa information for your trip to Colorado.
6. Colorado Transportation
Most people arrive through Denver International Airport (DEN). The Denver Airport Train takes you to the Denver Union with ease. For $ 9 you get 24/7 access to all trains and buses in the city, including the airport train. You can also get Uber or Lyft from D.I.A. or Union Station, cheaper than taxis, which are also available. Getting around Mile High City is easy on foot, bus, and train. The Regional Transportation District (RTD) operates subway and bus systems that allow Denver visitors to see neighborhoods without paying for rental cars or parking.
For those headed straight to the Rocky Mountains, buses run daily to popular tourist towns including Breckenridge, Vail, and Steamboat Springs. A great state option, Bustang has a state-of-the-art bus with bathroom amenities that can take you from Union Station to Glenwood Springs, north to Fort Collins or south to Colorado Springs. You can also drive a car as it allows you to explore the best parts of the state. In winter we recommend all-wheel drive or at least the front wheel with a good tire profile. Any car will do in the summer, and if you need it, you can rent jeeps or quads in cities like Ouray and Buena Vista to reach the 4 × 4 highways inland.
7. What to Bring to Colorado
Rest assured, whatever you need or forget, you can buy it here. As a bonus, almost anything that is needed for the most popular activities can be rented here. This includes everything from kayaks and golf clubs to snowboards and tents. The following are a good rule of thumb no matter what time of year you will be doing more than just visiting the hotel bar.
- Walking shoes (you can wear them to dinner … it’s a relaxed state)
- Hydration pack or refillable water bottle
- Lip balm and sunscreen
- Additional shoes
- Many layers
- Raincoat (during storm)
- Travel pillow (for flight, train, bus, hotel)
- Sunglasses and hat
- Phone / camera
- Whistle / compass for when exploring off the beaten path
In the United States, Denver is considered one of the top cities to visit and Colorado is ranked as one of the top states. Be sure to visit the mountains, take part in recreation and spend plenty of time outdoors.
B. 12 Things You Must Know Before Visiting Colorado
Colorado is a great place to visit, let alone live. A trip to the state of the century and your entire vision of life will change. In fact, after visiting Colorado in 1998, we began making plans to break out of our urban mindset and adopt a more relaxed, adventure-oriented lifestyle.
But traveling to Colorado isn’t as easy as packing your bags and hitting the streets unless you don’t get what you have to leave Denver. You see, Colorado is unlike any other state I’ve been to. While it’s relaxed, it’s almost a necessary study before enjoying it. As an 18 year old resident of this amazing and quirky state, I let these 12 things know before I visited Colorado. So come on, let’s visit Colorado for a minute on paper.
Let’s just confront the elephant in the room … marijuana. Definitely Among the Top 3 Things to Know Before Visiting Colorado! Everyone in the world now knows that it is legal to buy and use marijuana when you are 21 or older. But what many don’t quite understand is that it is illegal to smoke in public. This includes cars, buses, parking lots, ski resorts, parks, bars, etc.
But just because it’s illegal to smoke in public doesn’t mean everyone knows or respects it … so be prepared to sniff a LOT during the summer months if you’re planning on going on the river, one popular hike to take or relax at some of the fountains of the most amazing thermal baths in the country. And if you’re a marijuana tourist, don’t be the type to start smoking with kids.
2. Altitude sickness
Now that we’ve got that sorted out let’s talk about something I didn’t know about when I first traveled to Colorado. Altitude sickness. Again, a very high point on the Totem of Things to Know Before Visiting Colorado!
Altitude sickness is a real thing, unfortunately. Some people have no problem with altitude; others feel the effects instantly once they reach Denver and beyond. Altitude sickness is the cause of headaches, insatiable thirst, fatigue and, very rarely, nausea. Typical symptoms subside around the second day. However, there are a few things you can do to reduce symptoms and even avoid them altogether.
3. We drive fast
I usually drive very fast, so the speed at which the Coloradians move didn’t bother me. However, it surprised and terrified some of our friends and family when they visited Colorado. Especially when speeds over 75 are common in the mountains and roads are unknown. So I felt like this should definitely be included in the top 12 things to know before visiting Colorado.
4. Fire bans
This article on my list of things to know before visiting Colorado is the worst! The word fire prohibition was never in my vocabulary before I moved to Colorado. I come from the DC area. We took our children out camping in late August and built huge bonfires without realizing that droughts and forest fires were a major problem in other parts of the country.
And then one day, right after we moved to Colorado, we packed up the truck and the kids and drove down an arbitrary forest road. Lo and behold, there was a sign: “The ban on fire is in effect.” What the hell? And it was June! We tried camping without a fire and only lasted one night. Even today, after 18 years, the idea of no campfire massively dampens the entire camping experience.
5. Nature is serious business
Attention city dwellers. The coloraders take nature in every form very seriously. If there is a sign “Stay on the path” before a hike, it is best to take it seriously. Likewise, a sign that prohibits swimming. If you get dishonest and start scouring Colorado’s almost pristine wilderness, you are likely to be featured in a shame campaign on social media. There is no joke.
6. Prepare for a truly bipolar weather pattern
What to pack is the number one question for anyone when planning a trip to visit us in this incredible state. This morning it was very cold and around 2 p.m. it was 50 degrees. Tomorrow it will snow and the next day this is what Colorados hold for a short while … a pleasant 49.
7. Craft beer
For the love of beer, it had to be in every Colorado. We are a country of craft beer! Good luck finding Bud Light or Michelob on tap in more than a handful of bars and restaurants. Coors is popular because it’s made in Golden, CO, but that’s about it. See, you are now entering the Craft Beer Twilight Zone. And you will love it. They know what to say when in Rome.
8. Rocky Mountain oysters
Rocky Mountain Oysters, the food Colorado is famous for. And when I say that, I mean that people come from everywhere to get them! My first experience with Rocky Mountain Oysters was at a local restaurant in Rivers, Glenwood Springs, Colorado. Delicious food, for those who love food.
Anyway, we made some new friends for dinner and I browsed the menu looking for something to order. I choose a salad. Our friends rode the Rocky Mountain Oysters and found we had no idea they weren’t from the ocean, so keep on having fun with my husband and me.
9. Coloradans casual dress
On a short trip to New York or Los Angeles, I feel underdressed every step of the way. There just aren’t enough bags to carry all of the clothes I need for a weekend getaway, let alone the fees associated with those bags.
However, when you visit Colorado, expectations are greatly reduced. If you see someone in a suit in our little wooded area between Aspen and Vail, it is definitely a lawyer on his way to court. No lies.
10. Learn skier etiquette before skiing or horseback riding
Few things make Colorado’s crazier than people who break skier etiquette. So, put “research” on your list of things to know before visiting Colorado. You will find that we have very few rules here. The first is for relaxing, the second is skier etiquette.
So don’t be the guy (or the girl) who cuts the line in the elevator or flies through the park and bumps into a 5 year old (actually it happened the other day) or smokes weed in the elevator (main pet peeve of mine) or one of the millions of other things specifically listed on a zillion of blogs found on Google.
11. Nature is life
Coloradans are super nice people, we do things that others only read. This is the happiest state after Hawaii, and that’s why we go out and venture out. We are diverse people, even if most of us think that it is only snowing here. Of course, we all ski and snowboard, but we all have other passions too, such as climbing, white water kayaking, cycling, and more. Sedentary Colorado will be hard to find, and if you do, it’s a city transplant.
12. Dogs are basically human
Dogs are welcome almost everywhere, for better or for worse. In all honesty, I’ve even seen her skiing or horseback riding! Dogs are everywhere. You will see them in the river, at the foot of a mountain, on every hike, even if it clearly says NO dogs. Dogs are in bars and even some restaurants that I just can’t go beyond, but they are there. In fact, my daughter went to the doctor and the doctor took her dog to the exam room.