There are so many fun family friendly summer activities in Breckenridge. When you’re bound for the Colorado mountains, it can feel overwhelming to try and fit in all the fun. I remember coming out to Breckenridge every summer to visit Tyson, and could never check it all off the list. If you’re coming to Breckenridge for a weekend or a week, I’ve got a local’s perspective and a few of my personal favorites to share with you!
See the Town Troll
(perfect for elementary aged kids)
Did you know that there’s a troll that lives in the forest here? Take the kids and visit Isaac Hearthstone on the Illinois Gulch Trail. It’s a short walk (like 400 feet short) and a perfect little trip to take young kids. The trailhead shares a parking lot with the Train park which is a favorite destination for my two-year-old who can’t get enough trains right now. So take the short walk in the woods to say hi to the large and lovable troll and then spend an hour in the shade at the Train Park. There are also hiking and biking paths to explore if you have more time and energy as a family.
Sit on the Beach at Frisco Bay
Frisco Bay Marina is a perfect destination for families who love both the water and the mountains. The large sandy beach has plenty of room for spreading out a blanket, building a sand castle and dipping your toes in the chilly lake. You can also rent paddle boards, kayaks, and canoes. I totally recommend bringing your own snacks and cooler or heading over to the Island Grill to get a beachy cocktail. My favorite is the Rum Runner! Their oriental salad is delicious too!
Rent Bikes and Ride Along the Rec Path
Another of my family friendly activities in Breckenridge is biking! We have the best rec path for biking. The rec path runs right through downtown Breckenridge and along the Blue River. Rent an ebike or Specialized bike to take the family on a cruise from Breckenridge to Frisco. You can even schedule a pick up from Alpine Sports at the Frisco Marina. Before your pickup, take a ride around Lake Dillon or explore Frisco Main Street. They have many great shops and restaurants as well.
Eat Outside on Breckenridge’s New Pedestrian Only Main Street
This won’t last forever, but until mid August 2020, you can sit outside at your favorite restaurant, take drinks to go, and have plenty of room to walk around Main Street and shop. My favorite rooftop patio is at Ridge Street Kitchen. Order some lunch and a cocktail over at Ridge Street Seafood and take your feast on the rooftop patio and enjoy one of the best views in Breckenridge. River Center Plaza is right off Main Street and has several live musicians playing throughout the summer during the lunch and dinner hours.
See an Elk or Moose
While we don’t have a wildlife refuge, it doesn’t mean there’s not a good chance that you can pull over and safely watch a grazing elk here. Dusk is the perfect time to see a herd of elk or the occasional moose. My recommendation is to take a drive late afternoon over the pass to Buena Vista and plan your return right around dusk (8:00ish in the summer). I’ve never not seen an antelope, herd of elk, and even a moose that time of night on my drive back to Breckenridge. There is also a beaver dam you can pull over and see in Blue River. Since you’re going to be over in Buena Vista, you have to grab an old fashioned burger at K’s Dairy Delite, Ice Cream at Louie’s, or grab a beer over at Eddy Line Brewery and walk along the river walk.
Make sure to capture this special vacation with a family portrait session. It’s a great way to remember your time in the mountains. Inevitably, when I photograph a family, I find out what they like to do and end up sharing many more personalized suggestions. I love being a local here with insider knowledge to share to help make family vacations even more memorable and fun.