9 Things to Do in Estes Park for Adventure Indoors and Out

December 12, 2022
Holiday
jason wolfe
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Hello and welcome to my article on all the amazing things there are to do for fun around the Estes Park area of Colorado. I was honestly pretty impressed with how many amazing fun outdoor activities there are for people of all ages in Estes Park. So I’m sure you will find something on this list that jumps out to you. And I’ll give you their address, a link to their website and Yelp page, and I’ll also include a link anytime one of these great activities in Estes Park accept our convenient GiftYa cards.

What makes GiftYa so convenient is their all digital format. You don’t have to worry about keeping track of another hard plastic card in your wallet. GiftYa can be bought and sent digitally in seconds, and the recipient keeps them all on their phone. Which  means as long as you have your phone, you have all your GiftYas with you. And since they are all digital, the phone does all the math for you, so you don’t even have to do anything to keep track of the balance you have left over.

But enough about GiftYa, let’s get to that list of things to do in Estes Park that you came here for!

1. Rocky Mountain National Park

One of the Nation’s Most Treasured National Parks

203 Park Ln | Estes Park | nps.gov/romo

Rocky Mountain National Park has so many great hiking trails and beautiful scenic views, that I wrote an entire separate article on it! But if you are looking to have a great outdoor adventure surrounded by beautiful natural landscapes and fresh air, then you really can’t go wrong. The only thing I would warn you about, is that because the park is so big, there are some trails that will take more than four hours to complete. So be sure to research the trail you are going on before you head at. You don’t want to be three hours into a six hour hike and run out of water!

“Beautiful high alpine glacial valleys are all over this park.

There are also so many great hikes and views.

One of the nation's treasured parks.” - Yelp Review 

2. Lake Estes Marina

Great Activity In Estes Park On A Sunny Day

1770 Big Thompson Ave | Estes Park | evrpd.colorado.gov/lake-estes-marina

If you are looking to do practically anything outdoors involving water, then the Lake Estes Marina is going to be the place for you. The Marina Store rents basically every type of water based vehicle you could be looking for, and even a few land based ones as well. They have kayaks, paddle boards, paddle boats, canoes, pontoon boats, bikes, and pedal carts. 

You can also get any kind of fishing gear you might need. You can even get your State of Colorado Fishing License there, so you don’t have to worry if you forgot to register way in advance. Overall the Lake Estes Marina gives you a ton of different options, all at pretty reasonable prices, and I think that makes it a great thing to do in Estes Park for any type of family or small party of people.

“Really had no issues other than it being to busy.  But that's not the fault of the marina.  Did paddleboats, kayaks, and a big pontoon boat.  Spotted some birds and had a great ride!!” - Yelp Review

3. Estes Park Aerial Tramway

Great Summer Time With Jaw Dropping Views 

420 E Riverside Dr | Estes Park | estestram.com

The Estes Park Aerial Tramway is pretty much exactly what it sounds like, kind of. It’s basically like a really large ski lift, except instead of sitting outdoors and bracing the elements, you are covered on all sides in a small tram car that rides the Tramway up the side of the mountain. Which as you might expect, gives you some absolutely stunning and breathtaking views of the natural landscape, the mountains, and lakes. 

I truly can’t put into words how beautiful the views are from this Tramway. And I only get to post the one photo to back it up, so I strongly urge you to take a look at their website or Yelp page to really get an idea of what a breathtaking experience you would be in for!

“We absolutely love to take the tramway to the top of "Chipmunk Mountain" as we like to call it. My boys like the trip up and down, and love to feed the chipmunks at the top. I sometimes feel the pricing is a bit high, and the lines can be annoyingly long, however overall it's worth it!” - Yelp Review 

4. Smokin’ Dave’s BBQ & Brew

Most Popular Chain of Local Restaurants

820 Moraine Ave | Estes Park | smokindavesbbq.com

Smokin’ Dave’s actually has a few locations around the area. So be sure to search them first and find out which one is most convenient for you to get to. That being said, the reason they have so many locations is because they are by far the most popular local restaurant business in the area. I wrote a whole separate article on the great restaurants in the area and Smokin’ Dave’s was the only one that could boast that they were successfully running multiple locations in the area. 

You can get fantastic BBQ, American dinner cuisine, and plenty of cold beer to wash it all down with. They claim to have taken the art form of BBQ and perfected it. And they obviously must be on to something with so many positive reviews from hundreds and hundreds of satisfied customers. 

“Bartender was great. This was fantastic bbq.  We got the brisket, pork and at Louis ribs.  Mashed and slaw for sides.  Delicious.  Perfect for after hiking all day.” - Yelp Review 

5. Open Air Adventure Park

Zipline Through The Air From Platform to Platform At This Exhilarating Location In Estes Park

490 Prospect Village Dr | Estes Park | openairadventurepark.com

At Open Air Adventure Park you can expect to have an exciting afternoon. As the name might suggest it involves over 30 challenges for participants at 11 feet and 21 feet levels. You are tasked with climbing over obstacles as you zipline from platform to platform through the air. You can even add unique challenges and options to the different levels to make them more challenging or unique for you. And I really like that they offer you so much customization in your experience. I think that it makes them great for people who have never ziplined before, as well as those of you out there who are so experienced at zip-lining that you need an additional challenge!

“Great place to take the kids for an adrenaline rush and to wear them out, lol! Not the prettiest attraction, but maybe one of the most fun. My husband and I also had quite a bit of fun. Great staff! Very safe!” - Yelp Review

6. Rapid Transit Rafting

Whitewater Rafting Trips For Every Experience Level

161 Virginia Dr | Estes Park | rapidtransitrafting.com

Rapid Transit Rafting is the only rafting company based in Estes Park. And they have been offering family whitewater rafting trips for over 30 years. And don’t worry if you have never been rafting before, or have young children who have never been rafting before. The benefit of going with a guide on your rafting trip is that they will guide you through it from beginning to end. They also know the waters really really well. Not only are they professional rafters, they also raft the same river over and over all the time for your job. So you couldn’t possibly be in better hands!

“So much fun, we didn't want it to end! We went in completely nervous but instantly felt at ease thanks to our amazing guide. The views on the river were amazing and even though the water was 42 degrees it was comfortable. Highly recommend!” - Yelp Review 

7. MacGregor Ranch Museum

Great Indoor Activity In Estes Park For A Relaxed Afternoon

180 MacGregor Ln | Estes Park | macgregorranch.org

First established in 1873 MacGregor Ranch Museum serves as a practically perfect time capsule. They aim to recreate simpler times and even have live horses and ranch hands working to help recreate the authenticity of the ranch. And the historic ranch house has been transformed into a museum detailing the history and story of the ranch. And best of all, you get to enjoy this perfect little slice of the past surrounded by the scenic landscape of Black Canyon Creek.

“This is truly a hidden gem - make sure to come here when you visit EP! The tours are given by excellent volunteers that add their own personal touches and favorite stories to their speeches. The house is so well-preserved and full of actual items from when the MacGregor's lived on the ranch.” - Yelp Review 

8. Fun City

Great Amusement Park for People of All Ages

455 Prospect Village Dr | Estes Park | funcityofestes.com

Fun City is great because for an amusement park, they are pretty well balanced for what they have available to fo. They have two giant slides that they feature in videos on their webpage. But on top of the slides they also have bumper cars, bumper boats, two 18 hole mini-golf courses, go-karts, bungee trampoline, and water walking. And while you enjoy all of these activities you can enjoy the beautifully landscaped surroundings of the park. Which is honestly one of the best things about it. And they’ve been landscaping those same grounds since 1969. 

“The place is clean and nicely maintained.  The time in the water balls was a bit short, especially since the place was not busy at all.  Overall though, my grandsons had a blast.” - Yelp Review 

9. Golf Dynamics

Great Indoor Golf Performance Center You Can Enjoy All Year Long

Grab a Golf Dynamics gift card by following the link!

Image courtesy of Golf Dynamics website.

520 W 69th St | Loveland  | golfdynamics287.com

There are plenty of great outdoor golf resorts around the Estes Park area, but I felt like almost everything on this list ended up being something that is best enjoyed in the summer, so I wanted to be sure there were at least a few options that can be enjoyed all year. And Golf Dynamics is just that. They have a full performance indoor golf center. This includes everything from helping you fit your clubs, to using cutting edge technology to help you work on your swing. If you can’t get out to the greens in the winter, Golf Dynamics is a great place to get your golf fix all year long!

“Quite possibly the best indoor range and teaching facility in NOCO. All the bells and whistles providing all the information a golfer could possibly want or need.

In addition you can some some great personal instruction to help your golf game. Check it out!! ” - Yelp Review 

Follow this link to get a  Golf Dynamics gift card!

And that concludes my list of great things to do in Estes Park Colorado. I tried to include things that would be fun for people of all ages because I never know if somebody is looking for fun things to do with their significant other, or if somebody is looking for something great to do with a family of five. 

However, I tried to keep restaurants off the list for the most part, Smokin’ Dave’s got an exception for being so popular around the area. But if you are in need of great food around Estes Park be sure to check out our article on that as well. And don’t forget, there is an entire GiftYa article on all the great hiking trails in Rocky Mountain National Park so it has more to offer than meets the eye!

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