The summer is a great time to take your family out for some fun, but if you are looking for Denver area attractions, it can become very expensive. But, with some planning, and a little bit of research, you can find family-friendly things to do that are free to enjoy. During the summer, there are events, you can take your family to one of the many city parks for a picnic, or you can take in some of the attractions that have free days all year long. Some fun things to do are highlighted here and can be both educational and fun for your kids, and they are free to enjoy on certain days.
The Denver Zoo: There are a few free days during the fall and winter at The Denver Zoo, and it’s one of the most popular places to visit. Kids love looking at the different animals and there are often activities throughout the park where kids can do some animal-related activities, on of which is playing the drums at Congo Basin. Most of the zoo is outdoors, so it’s advised to dress warmly if you decide to visit on one of the zoo’s free days. There are many indoor animal exhibits, as well, like the rainforest at Tropical Discovery.
The Children’s Museum of Denver: The Children’s Museum is just as popular with the kids as the zoo and on the first Tuesday of every month, the museum offers a free day. The Children’s Museum offers a hands-on and interactive experience, which is very popular with smaller children. The kids can enjoy a full-size fire truck near the main entrance of the museum and many other activities to enjoy throughout. With giant play areas for children of every age, and music and craft rooms, there is something for every child to enjoy, and an experience they won’t forget.
The Denver Museum of Nature and Science: Older children, and adults, will enjoy this Denver attraction, and scheduled Sundays and Mondays are free days throughout the year. Check the museum’s website for specific dates. Most exhibits are hands-on and there is also a children’s area where the little ones can colour, make crafts, and play with educational toys. Every hour, there is a live presentation on how tornadoes are formed. It’s interactive, educational and fun. And don’t forget about the dinosaurs. Dinosaur skeletons are placed all over the museum.
Dinosaur Ridge: This is a free park that is located in Morrison, about 20 minutes west of Denver. Children can stand in dinosaur footprints and your family can enjoy a leisurely hike along the winding trail of the ridge.
Bluff Lake Nature Center: Bluff Lake Nature Center is one of Aurora’s most popular free parks that your children will enjoy. Many school field trips have been taken to this nature preserve throughout the years. There is wildlife to enjoy and children will love seeing the animals they have learned about in school and in books.
The Colorado Railroad Museum: The men in your family will probably enjoy this Denver attraction the most. This museum is located in Golden and it offers both indoor and outdoor exhibits with a large selection of full-sized trains, including old-time engines and train cars, most of which are open to explore. On the lower level of the museum is the miniature train collection. Like the Denver Zoo, The Railroad Museum offers free days during the fall and winter.
The Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls and Toys: This museum is on of Denver’s lesser known museums, but still a favourite among the girls. The museum has an historic collection of dolls and doll houses, along with miniature toy exhibits all through the museum. Children under 5 are free, but the museum offers free days all year on the first Sunday of every month. Another bonus of this museum is that there are always free crafts to make and other events for the family to attend.
These are just a few of the attractions Denver offers for families on a budget, but our city also offers Elitch Gardens, Water World and the Denver Aquarium if you don’t mind spending the extra money.