Situated about 55 miles from the Denver city center is the small town of Frederick in Weld County. With a population of about 12,000 people, visitors to the town can expect a laid-back environment with friendly people.
Frederick is surrounded by a rural landscape not far from the Rocky Mountains, where the world-class ski resorts of Vail and Breckenridge are found.
The town is rich in history – particularly its coal mining and agricultural industries – and the story of the town and its people is showcased in many of the museums and attractions around the area.
Recreational facilities, breweries, and family-run restaurants are also numerous in the town, and the nearby communities of Firestone, Dacono, Boulder, Erie, Longmont, and Fort Lupton are home to various parks and attractions.
Throughout the year, a number of events and festivals take place in the area, including Celtic Fest, Chainsaws and Chuckwagons, and Miner’s Day.
Below are 15 of the best things to do in and around Frederick, Colorado.
1. Miners Memorial Museum
As an elected Colorado Historic Landmark in downtown Frederick, the original Frederick Town Hall building is an important landmark; it’s also home to the Miners Memorial Museum.
This museum’s main purpose is to share and preserve the town’s history while educating residents and visitors. Among the various exhibits are artifacts relating to the town and its people over the years, including the original mayor’s chair, old school desks, a coal stove, and mining tools from the past. Tours must be scheduled in advance.
2. Mirror Image Brewing Company
Visitors to Frederick who wish to try out some local craft beer can visit the friendly, laid-back taproom at Mirror Image Brewing Company and try out a variety of options on tap. Balefire Red, Mirror Image IPA, and Tri-Town Brown are just some of the craft beers you can sample.
There’s also food available to enjoy with your beer, and the main focus in on different types of pizza.
3. Anderson Farms
The best time to visit Anderson Farms in Erie is during the fall months when the excitement around the farm is at its peak. This is the time of year when Colorado’s oldest corn maze opens, and visitors of all ages can spend hours getting lost within the 25 acres of trails.
Other attractions include wagon rides, shooting pumpkins from a cannon, jump pads, fire pits, a playground, and mine cars. There are also farm animals on-site, which are fun to interact with.
4. Enjoy a Meal at Peel Handcrafted Pizza
Food is just food until you make it a meal, and the way to have a perfect meal is to indulge in carefully-prepared, delicious, handcrafted dishes prepared and served by friendly staff in a relaxing setting ideal for making long-lasting memories.
This is how Peel in Frederick does meals. Enjoy a wide variety of traditional and modern dishes, including wood-fired pizzas, mussels, pasta, salads, burrata, and, of course, fabulous desserts.
5. Explore Pearl Street
In the heart of nearby Boulder is the historic Pearl Street district, which is a pedestrian mall and entertainment area spanning four blocks. It’s a popular meeting place for locals and a must-see attraction for visitors to the area. Besides an array of storefronts, which include locally-owned small businesses and national chains, there’s a variety of restaurants, cafes, and micro-breweries.
Pearl Street is also the center of Boulder’s lively nightlife, and during the warmer months, street performers take to the street to entertain the masses. As you stroll down the street, make sure to check out the public art and sculptures that fill many of the spaces along the way.
6. The Flatirons
Nearby Boulder is home to one of the region’s must-see natural attractions, which are also a recognized symbol of the city. The flatirons are five huge rock formations on the eastern slope of Green Mountain. These spectacular formations have been popular with rock climbers for decades, but you don’t need to do any climbing to enjoy them.
There are several hiking trails of varying skill levels in the area, and perhaps you may even catch a glimpse of some scrawls left behind by climbers from the 1940s.
7. Museum of Boulder at the Tebo Center
If you’re interested in learning about how Boulder became what it is today, a visit to the Museum of Boulder at the Tebo Center will take you through the city’s history and right into modern times. Through various interactive exhibits, you will learn all about the people and the local culture.
The museum also hosts traveling exhibitions, art shows, and various events throughout the year. The rooftop area is where you can relax and enjoy stunning views of the nearby flatirons.
8. Mountain Cowboy Brewing Company
For a relaxing afternoon or evening of sampling quality craft beer, visitors head to Mountain Cowboy Brewing Company in Frederick. The beer sold here is made with hops that is grown at a local farm, which happens to be the biggest commercial hops farm in the area.
Choose from a variety of options, including Flighty Blonde Watermelon Ale, Peak Seven IPA, and Lenten Loophole Lager. Food and other beverages are also sold on-site. Tours of both the brewery and the farm are available.
9. Chautauqua Park
Visitors who wish to spend a relaxing day taking in some fresh air and enjoying nature can find that and more in Chautauqua Park in nearby Boulder. The park, which is a National Historic Landmark, hosts various events and festivals throughout the year, but is also a place where you can go to enjoy stunning views, beautiful gardens, and several walking trails.
It’s also an excellent place to enjoy a bike ride or have a picnic. On-site amenities include a playground, bathrooms, and tennis courts.
10. Eldorado Canyon State Park
Not too far from Frederick is a beautiful state park offering plenty of opportunities to participate in a wide variety of outdoor activities. Eldorado Canyon State Park is 885 acres of natural beauty consisting of steep canyon walls, lush forest areas, and stunning views.
The best place to start your visit is at the visitor center, where you can learn more about the park and what it has to offer. Rock climbing, kayaking, fishing, horseback riding, nature viewing, and bird watching are just some of the activities you can participate in.
There are several hiking trails ranging from easy to difficult. One of those trails, Rattlesnake Gulch, is a 3.6-mile trail that passes by the ruins of the Crags Hotel and offers views of the Continental Divide. Picnic areas are on-site.
11. National Center for Atmospheric Research
At the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, you can learn all about weather through an assortment of interactive exhibits. The building itself is a sight to behold at the top of Table Mesa. Inside, scientists are hard at work studying various weather-related events. Visitors can see the equipment that is used to conduct these studies.
Guided tours are available with a knowledgeable guide. After your tour, take a leisurely stroll along the Walter Orr Roberts Nature and Weather Trail and grab a bite to eat at the center’s cafeteria.
12. Celestial Seasonings Tea Factory
A tour of the Celestial Seasonings Tea Factory solves the mystery of why everyone seems so laid back in Boulder and surrounding areas: quality, herbal tea is packaged here, and this factory is the continent’s biggest. Visitors can see how eight million tea bags are packaged and distributed every day, and you don’t need to be a tea person to appreciate this process.
During the free tour, you will get to visit the Celestial Herb Garden and the Mint Room. You will also have a chance to sample some of their most popular teas.
13. Peppers Fireside Grille
For food and drinks the whole family can enjoy in a friendly environment, visitors head to Peppers Fireside and Grille in nearby Firestone. With a wide variety of classic and unique items to choose from, there’s sure to be something for even the pickiest eater.
Salads, soups, pasta, and delicious desserts are just some of the items available.
14. Leanin’ Tree Museum of Western Art
If an adventure into the great outdoors to experience Colorado’s spectacular natural scenery is not on the cards for you, The Leanin’ Tree Museum of Western Art in Boulder is the next best thing.
The extensive compilation of Western Art includes a number of works depicting the beautiful mountainous landscapes of the region and the agricultural life that shaped the land and the people.
A sculpture garden is also on-site, and complimentary tours are available.
15. Flagstaff Mountain
About five miles outside of Boulder is a beautiful nature area where the whole family can immerse themselves in the natural beauty of the region. Flagstaff Mountain & Summit Nature Center is a top attraction in the area, and the main draw is the hiking trails that lead to the summit of Flagstaff Mountain. There is also an outdoor ampitheatre.
The several hiking trails have varying levels of difficulty, so both beginners and seasoned hikers can make their way to the top, where spectacular views await. Also at the summit is a nature center with interactive displays showcasing the region’s geography and wildlife. The Flagstaff House Restaurant offers locally-inspired dishes, but there are picnic areas if you packed your own lunch.