​Our Top 10 Must-Visit Sites in Golden, Colorado

Golden is a city full of outdoor adventures, with deep roots in the history of the Old West. With that heritage in mind, we’ve gathered our Top 10 activities in and around Golden, Colorado.

Golden Visitors Center

Image by Golden Visitors Center via Yelp

Not sure where to start your escapades in Golden? Try the city’s visitor center, where you can find information on all things Golden – whether you’re looking for places to eat, ideas on where to shop, or just want to take a break to learn more about the city, the Golden Visitors Center will be able to assist you on your way to your next pursuit.

Golden Gate Canyon State Park

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With over 12,000 acres to explore, Golden Gate Canyon State Park is located just fourteen miles outside of the city of Golden. The park is wrapped in miles of trails, each with a slightly different appeal: For the avid hiker, try Golden Gate’s Beaver Trail, which will take you through some of the park’s scenic views. If horseback riding is more up your alley, consider Raccoon Trail, a 2.5 mile loop that will take you through several tree groves!

Colorado School of Mines Geology Museum

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Opened in 1874, the Colorado School of Mines Geology Museum is one of only two sites in Colorado to view a genuine moon rock! The museum also includes exhibits on different minerals, mining methods, and even features a walk-through mine. The museum gives guided tours for a small fee, but offers free admission for the whole family.

Heritage Amusement Park

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Once called Heritage Square, Heritage Amusement Park has carnival-style rides, a zipline, and go-kart tracks. Heritage Amusement Park was once envisioned as the next Disneyland in the late 1950’s, and was at one time called Magic Mountain. The park has since been in continuous operation for over forty years!

Lookout Mountain Nature Center and Preserve

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One of the three mountains surrounding Golden, Lookout Mountain Nature Center and Preserve offers several different programs to help encourage visitors to discover the natural world. Several of these programs are naturalist-led, and explore the flora and fauna of the surrounding ecosystem.

Dinosaur Ridge

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Just ten minutes outside of Golden, Dinosaur Ridge is a National Natural Landmark that features top-rated dinosaur tracks, and tours of various dinosaur bones and fossils. Dinosaur Ridge has a long history of preservation, and was even the location for the discovery of some of the most well-known dinosaurs, like the Stegosaurus.

The Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave

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One of the most well-known scouts and showmen, William Cody (“Buffalo Bill”)’s Wild West shows traveled not only the country, but toured through Europe eight times during Cody’s lifetime. The Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave explores the history of Cody, and the lasting image of the American West that he helped to create.

Colorado Railroad Museum

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Constructed to resemble an 1880’s railroad depot, the Colorado Railroad Museum works to preserve the history of Colorado’s railroad era. The museum features not only exhibits on the history of the Colorado railroad, but also holds a large collection of train engines, coaches and cabooses, and even offers train rides on weekends.

Downtown Golden

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Historic Downtown Golden dates back to the early 1850’s, and today is home to several modern shops, restaurants, and other attractions. For the photographer, downtown has many scenic points near Clear Creek. Strolling through downtown will also reveal a few more museums, and even a city brewery to explore.

Lariat Loop National Scenic Byway

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Featuring forty miles of road to explore, the Lariat Loop National Scenic Byway forms a circle around Golden, as well as nearby towns Morrison and Evergreen. Lariat Loop features over 30 different activities to stop at along the way, making it great for a busy sight-seeing road trip!