Just about 45 minutes northwest of Denver, and easy to access from Denver International Airport, is Boulder. This classic Colorado college town (it is home to the University of Colorado Boulder) sits at the base of the Flatirons – a striking set of jagged rocks rising from the plains. There are many hiking and biking trails around Boulder and rock climbing is also popular.
Boulder’s heart is the four-block long Pearl Street Mall, which is pedestrian-only and filled with boutique shops, bars and restaurants. There are often street performances and if you just want to people watch, benches are scattered along the red brick pathway.
While in Boulder, grab a meal at the Dushanbe Tea House, one of the most unique restaurants around. Right on Boulder Creek with lots of outdoor seating, the tea house was a gift from Boulder’s sister city, Dushanbe, Tajikistan. The exquisite patterned tile and carved wood façade was built by hand without the use of power tools in Dushanbe, then dissembled and sent to Boulder, where it was reconstructed. You can book a traditional English style afternoon tea service, complete with three-story tower of sweet and savory treats. They also do a full lunch and dinner menu.