a VirtualTourist member
Will be in Denver for a conference and want to get to see the beautiful parts of CO. Leaving around noon and need to get back to the airport for a morning flight. Thinking of heading towards Boulder and beyond and then returning to Boulder for dinner/hotel. Looking at the trip from Boulder to Estes Park or Boulder to Nederland. As this is mid April, are either likely to be preferable?? And when i get back to Boulder, can you suggest a place to stay?
Nederland is only about 15 miles southwest of Boulder. Its over 8,000 feet but much closer than Estes Park which is about 90 miles south of Denver. Its old mining town and laid out in a cutesy gold rush fashion. Boulder is one of my favorite places in Colorado, nicely laid out with a lot to do downtown and then of course there is the University of Colorado which has a very pretty campus.
It will take you a good 1 1/2 hours to get to Estes Park from Denver. Some beautiful country to see there and in Colorado Springs but I think that area is best appreciated in late spring or summer. If you are heading there on a weekend the driving time can be even longer. Besides if you are coming to Boulder already Nederland is so much closer.
Oh yes and the place to stay. Usually I avoid Quality Inn and Suites because of their poor reputation in California.
However the Quality Inn and Suites in Boulder at 2020 Arapahoe Ave, is excellent. Very nice rooms, great beds, friendly staff, nice room amenities, and a great hot breakfast. Wish other ones were half as nice as this. Price is also very reasonable for Boulder which is usually high.
The hotel mainly depends on your price range. There are some really top-notch hotels there like the St. Julien and the Boulderado, but the cheaper places tend to be kind of dumps. I would try to stay as close to the intersection of Pearl and Broadway as possible. Maybe look into a B&B.
Nederland is a prettier town, I think. Estes Park is just a gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park. I'm not sure what you'd do there without going into the park.
The drive between Boulder and Estes Park is scenic, but the drive between Boulder and Nederland is very scenic. It follows Boulder Canyon. There's a waterfall along the way. It may be closed since it'll be so early in the season, but you'll still be able to see it.