The Top Attractions in Aspen For Locals and Tourists

Engel Lansburgh Team April 2, 2024

The Top Attractions in Aspen For Locals and Tourists

Aspen, Colorado is renowned for its stunning natural beauty, world-class skiing, and vibrant cultural scene. Whether you're a resident or a first-time visitor, this charming mountain town has plenty of attractions to explore. From iconic landmarks to outdoor adventures and cultural events, Aspen offers something for everyone to enjoy. In this guide, we'll take a closer look at the top attractions in Aspen that are sure to captivate both locals and tourists alike.

Maroon Bells

One of the most iconic attractions in Aspen is the Maroon Bells, two towering peaks in the Elk Mountains known for their distinctive maroon-colored rock formations. You can admire them from afar or hike one of the many trails that wind through the surrounding wilderness. Either way, the Maroon Bells offer breathtaking views and photo opportunities year-round. In the fall, the mountainsides come alive with vibrant foliage and beautiful yellow leaves on all the Aspen trees, making it an especially popular time to visit.

Pine Creek Cookhouse

For a unique dining experience, head to Pine Creek Cookhouse in the serene Castle Creek Valley just outside Aspen. This rustic restaurant specializes in gourmet mountain cuisine, focusing on locally sourced ingredients and seasonal flavors. After a delicious meal, take advantage of the nearby cross-country skiing trails offering stunning views of the surrounding mountains and forests. It's the perfect way to combine great food with outdoor adventure in the heart of the Rockies. There is also a sleigh-ride option to and from the restaurant.

Skiing at Aspen's four mountains

Aspen is synonymous with world-class skiing, and for good reason. The town has four world-renowned ski resorts: Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Buttermilk, and Snowmass. Each mountain offers its unique terrain and atmosphere, catering to skiers and snowboarders of all abilities. Aspen’s winter landscape provides steep chutes, challenging runs, gentle groomers, and family-friendly slopes.

Aspen Institute Events: Intellectual stimulation

The Aspen Institute hosts several prestigious events throughout the year, including the annual Aspen Ideas Festival and the Aspen Music Festival. These events unite some of the world's leading thinkers, artists, and innovators for discussions, performances, and presentations. The Aspen Institute always provides engaging content for anyone interested in politics, culture, science, or the arts.

Woody Creek Tavern: A local institution

For a taste of local flavor and a touch of celebrity sightings, head to Woody Creek Tavern, a beloved institution just a short drive or bike ride on the Rio Grande Trail from Aspen. For decades, this quirky roadside bar and restaurant has been a favorite haunt of locals, writers, and celebrities. Enjoy a cold beer and a hearty meal while soaking in the eclectic ambiance and colorful characters that make Woody Creek Tavern a must-visit destination in Aspen.

Fly-fishing: A relaxing pursuit

Aspen's pristine rivers and streams offer some of the best fly-fishing opportunities in the country, particularly in the Roaring Fork and Frying Pan rivers. Seasoned anglers and novices will find plenty of places to cast their lines and maybe even reel in the big one. Hire a local guide to take you to the best spots and teach you the tricks of the trade, or simply pack a picnic and spend a leisurely day on the water, surrounded by the natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains.

Hiking: Explore the wilderness

With miles of scenic trails winding through the surrounding mountains and forests, hiking is a popular pastime in Aspen. Those looking for a leisurely walk or a challenging trek can find trails to suit every skill level and interest. From short nature walks to multi-day backpacking adventures, Aspen's hiking trails offer something for everyone to enjoy.

Biking up Castle Creek to Pine Creek Cookhouse

Pedal up Castle Creek Road to Pine Creek Cookhouse for a scenic and exhilarating bike ride. The road winds through the picturesque Castle Creek Valley, offering stunning views of the surrounding mountains and forests. Once you reach Pine Creek Cookhouse, reward yourself with a delicious meal and enjoy the serene mountain scenery before coasting back down the mountain.

Aspen Art Museum

Located in the heart of downtown Aspen, the Aspen Art Museum is a cultural hub that showcases contemporary art worldwide. With rotating exhibitions, educational programs, and special events, the museum offers visitors a chance to engage with cutting-edge artistic expression and explore new ideas and perspectives.

Shopping at the Hyman and Cooper Walking Malls

Aspen offers a wealth of shopping opportunities for those needing some retail therapy along the pedestrian-friendly Hyman and Cooper walking malls. You'll find something to suit every taste and budget, from upscale boutiques and designer stores to quirky local shops and art galleries. Walk the charming streets of downtown Aspen and discover unique treasures and souvenirs to take home with you.

Aspen Theater in the Park: Entertainment under the stars

During the summer months, take the chance to catch a performance at the Aspen Theater in the Park. Located in Rio Grande Park, this outdoor arena hosts a variety of theatrical productions, concerts, and events, providing entertainment under the stars for locals and visitors alike. Pack a picnic and enjoy an evening of live entertainment in the beautiful Colorado outdoors.

Aspen Santa Fe Ballet: World-class dance

For fans of the performing arts, the Aspen Santa Fe Ballet is a must-see attraction. This acclaimed dance company performs a diverse repertoire of contemporary and classical works, showcasing the talent and artistry of its world-class dancers. These performances leave audiences spellbound, offering something for ballet fans and those new to the art form.

Discover the magic of Aspen

Aspen uniquely blends natural beauty, outdoor adventure, world-class restaurants and cultural sophistication. You can hit the slopes, explore the wilderness, and immerse yourself in the vibrant arts scene — clearly, this charming mountain town has no shortage of attractions. With its stunning landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and welcoming community, Aspen truly has something for everyone to enjoy.

Ready to make Aspen your home?

If you're ready to make Aspen your home, the Engel Lansburgh Team is here to help. With their extensive knowledge of the local real estate market and commitment to exceptional service, they can assist you in finding the perfect property to suit your lifestyle and preferences. Whether you're searching for a cozy mountain retreat, a luxurious ski-in/ski-out condo, or a spacious family home, the Engel Lansburgh Team has the expertise and resources to make your Aspen dreams a reality. If you have enjoyed owning a home in Aspen or the Roaring Fork Valley and are interested in selling, the Engel Lansburgh Team provides a unique team approach with white glove service and great attention to detail.

Contact them today to begin your journey to homeownership in this spectacular mountain town.

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