Planning a trip for the entire family can be stressful. With this 5-day itinerary you won’t need to worry about making sure the vacation is perfect, as we’ve got all the very best of Winter Park and the surrounding areas included for you! From Winter Park Resort, to the iconic Rocky Mountain National Park, to the charming Fraser Valley in between, our itinerary makes the most of the time you spend here with your kids.
Book before April 23rd and receive free activity tickets. Check out a listing of current deals and packages to start your vacation planning now!
Morning: Breakfast in the Village and Activities at the Base
Start the day with one of the waffles in the Village at The Waffle Cabin. Once all fueled up, you and the crew will be ready to explore all of the activities at the base.
We know once the kids see the Alpine Slide, the climbing wall, and the ropes courses, it is going to be hard to make them wait for adventures to start, so why not get to them your first morning? Activities start at 9:30 am so set those alarms the night before!
Midday: Head to the Top for Lunch at Sunspot Mountaintop Lodge
Once you’ve worked up an appetite from all the fun you’re having at the base, take a breathtaking ride up to Sunspot Mountaintop Lodge via The Gondola. With incredible views and room for the entire family, The Gondola will take you to one of the best lunch spots on the mountain. Sit outside to enjoy incredible views paired with delicious food before heading off on your next adventure.
Afternoon: Take a Hike!
When you’re in the mountains you’ve gotta hit the trails to get the full Rocky Mountain experience! There’s no better way to learn about Colorado’s incredible nature while experiencing the wonder of the outdoors than by taking a guided hike with a Winter Park guide. Stop into the Adventure Concierge to meet up with your hiking group before heading off on the perfectly serene hike to Fantasy Meadow. Classically Colorado, this hike is perfect for the entire family and a great way to spend an afternoon.
Morning: Sharky’s and Rocky Mountain National Park
After spending the first night getting acclimated to the elevation, and (hopefully) getting a good night’s rest, Day 2 starts with some grub! Stop at Sharky’s to take breakfast on the road. We recommend ordering ahead, so you can just stop in for a quick pick up and start your road trip to Rocky Mountain National Park. We suggest checking the weather before you go to ensure you get the most out of your day! As a National Park, RMNP does charge a fee to enter, FYI!
The travel time is about an hour, but you do get to enjoy a scenic drive! And if the kid’s get restless, here are some of our ‘Lil Rippers activities that you can print for entertainment on the ride.
You should have an idea of what you want to do before visiting the park, as summer is one of the busiest times of the year. But the West Entrance through Grand Lake sees less traffic, so enjoy your back door to the park! Here is the RMNP Plan Your Visit tool but we also have some suggestions (courtesy of the Winter Park Chamber).
First stop, Kawuneeche Visitor Center to get info on the park and have the kids ask questions about wildlife, the National Parks, etc.! Then spend the morning on a short hike, like Coyote Valley Trail! This hike is a one-mile loop that starts just 5 miles north of the Visitor Center.
Midday: Picnic Lunch
Sharky’s might be filling, but you’ll have worked up an appetite with your busy morning! The Coyote Valley Trail has a picnic area at the trailhead, so stop and rest with your lunch while you take in the sights!
Afternoon: Trail Ridge Road
There are countless trails you could hop back on after eating, but for a different type of adventure, we highly recommend driving on Trail Ridge Road, number 20 on Buzzfeed’s Colorado Places that Will Literally Take Your Breath Away.
This drive can take anywhere from 1.5 to 4 hours depending on where you stop and how much time you spend watching the wildlife!
Evening: Village Activity
Head back to Winter Park Resort Village a little before 4pm to get your seat for Campfire Music Series. You and the kids can enjoy a local musician playing classic favs for a few hours on a Wednesday night. Plus don’t forget the s’mores supplies! Put that Village fire pit to work while you kick back!
Not following our midweek schedule- check out our full event calendar HERE.
Morning: Breakfast at Goodys and a Hike
Nothing beats a good crepe to get the day going, especially when you have a mid-morning hiking adventure planned! Stop into Goodys and enjoy something sweet or savory in a local’s favorite breakfast spot.
With a variety of hiking and walking trails all originating at the resort, take some time to pick out one that the group can agree on before lacing up the boots and heading out. Whether it be a leisurely stroll alongside a creek, or a push to the summit to see panoramic views of Colorado’s peaks, there’s guaranteed to be a perfect option for adventure for all.
Stop in to the Adventure Concierge to plan your trek, or explore all hiking and walking trails here to begin scouting your route. Before you head off on your chosen hike, stop into Trail’s End Mercantile for lunch supplies and treats for the trail.
Midday: Lunch on the Trail
All hikes worthy of your time and effort should require a break or two out on the trail. Take a moment, or a few, to enjoy the remarkable setting you’ve found yourself in all while indulging in a delicious packed lunch. Unpack the picnic supplies you picked up at Fireside Market, kick back, and relax. Eating on the trail is a hiking classic and with a good appetite worked up just about anything will hit the spot!
Afternoon: Explore Downtown
After being out in nature all day you and the gang will be ready for some liveliness and mountain-town energy! With free events occurring regularly, there’s always something going on in either Winter Park or Fraser.
The choice is yours how you want to get into town but believe us when we say a nice easy pedal is the perfect way to stretch out the legs after a day of hiking. Explore the multitude of unique shopping options or explore the culture of the region with a visit to one of the many local galleries.
Evening: Highnote Thursdays at Hideaway Park
Exploring town will get that appetite worked up again but don’t worry, you’ve got options! Take a walk through Cooper Creek Square to find a spot the entire family can agree on. Swing through Carvers and grab a tasty wrap or juicy burger that you’ll be able to enjoy while catching a live music show in Hideaway Park. A time for the entire community to come together and experience some excellent tunes, an evening spent listening to live music in the Rockies is the BEST way to wind down another memorable day.
Morning: Ride a Bike!
Fuel up before hitting the trails! With some of the world’s best mountain biking right outside your door, riding a bike during your summer trip to Winter Park is a must!
The Summit to Base bike tours run daily for a chance to take mountain views while you leisurely ride with a tour guide. Learn about the local area and find great photo ops while you make your way to the base. This tour is great for any activity level looking to cruise on two wheels.
If you want to up the ante, take a lesson at Trestle Bike Park . As one of North America’s premier bike parks, Trestle features a wide variety of terrain to ride and over 40 miles of lift-serviced biking trails. You’re in for an adrenaline rush like no other!
Midday: Lunch at Vertical and Games in the Village
The sunshine on Vertical’s patio is calling your name! Head on over for some delicious classic American fare and refreshing drinks on an expansive patio. The view of the Fraser River is gorgeous while you refuel and relive your biking adventure. Plus when the food runs out, you are in a perfect position to move over to the games we have in the Village. Play life size Checkers or Jenga or enjoy our musical instruments. Don’t forget to stop for another family photo op with the Coca-Cola Bear!
Afternoon: Stroll through the Village
Take a walk through the Village and along the river right at the resort! Do some shopping at stores like Columbia or Burton. Or, stop in City Pop or Treeline Treats to get some snacks for the movie later on!
Evening: Pizza Pedal’r & Village Music and Movie
It’s time for a Friday pizza party! Head to Pedal’r to get the kids a standard cheese, while you enjoy one of their other specialties (we highly recommend their Hard Tail, with an added adult beverage). Their side patio is tucked to the side, making it a great place to regroup.
You’ll also be in a great position to hear some of the music from the gazebo. Check out the band list for the season.
As soon as the music wraps up, boogie on over to the Coca-Cola Family Movie night. Bring a blanket or a few bean bags to set up camp for the evening movie. Bring a sweatshirt! The movies don’t start until after the sun goes down and it can get a little chilly.
Morning: Guided e-bike Tour
While yesterday might’ve been marked by some serious downhill fun, today is the perfect day to wind down and some sightseeing from the comfort of an e-bike. Winter Park offers guided e-bike tours, which begin at Sunspot Mountaintop Lodge and make their way to Lunch Rock. A great way to experience surreal views while saving some energy, e-bike tours are an excellent option for those looking for an easier time in the saddle.
Midday: WPR Events
You’ve made it to Saturday, so there is probably an event either at Winter Park Resort or in Downtown Winter Park. Check out the event schedules, and then plan your last afternoon according to the events going on! Saturdays are fun to enjoy regardless of what’s on the event calendar. From live music to food and drink events, the weekend is always centered around a good time! Knowing you’ve gotten all the other big “To Do” Items out of the way, means you don’t have to fight the crowds, and instead you can enjoy the day.
Evening: High Country Stampede Rodeo
Yee-haw! Spend your last evening in town at the rodeo! Watch locals race and check out the special themes and event nights. This is a small town classic, and a must for the to-do list. Nothing rounds out an authentic Colorado vacation like an evening at the rodeo!
After a fun 5 days in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, you’ll have adventure stories worth bragging about. In fact, you may want to make a Winter Park vacation your new tradition! And we can’t blame you. Luckily, we have fun events and activities year-round. Whenever you’re feeling the itch to escape to the mountains, check out our events page and plan away!