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Touring the Browns’ road cities: Denver’s stadiums, murals, and Christmas decorations

Learning more about some of the attractions in the city of Denver.

Our road cities tour continues with a look at Denver, where the Browns will play this Sunday for their fifth road game of the season.

Getting to Downtown Denver

Frontier Airlines is based in Denver, so if you plan accordingly and pack light, you could swing a roundtrip flight from Cleveland to Denver for about $108. I’ve never taken a flight that was intended to stay in Denver, but because I fly Frontier a lot, it is the airport that I lay over at all the time. Here is a video of one of my flights that took off from Cleveland and landed in Denver:

By vehicle, it is a 35-minute drive to Downtown Denver from the Airport. If you are looking for public transportation, you can board the RTD’s A Line Train at the airport by purchasing an an All-Day pass on your phone for $10. The ride is only 39 minutes and runs every 15 minutes, so it definitely makes sense to take if you’re not renting a car.

Denver’s Sports Stadiums and Arenas

Empower Field at Mile High is home to the Denver Broncos, and is the furthest stadium away from Downtown Denver. It’s not too far away, though, as you have similar distances between Coors Field (home of the Colorado Rockies), then Ball Arena (home of the Denver Nuggets), and then Mile High. In my first layover in Denver a couple of years ago, I actually walked over to see the outside of Coors Field and then rented a bicycle that passed by the basketball arena and then eventually finished outside of the football field.

I filmed a video in 2021 that looked at the stadiums, with me taking my time outside of Empower Field, and then also included some Christmas decorations afterward:

5 Tourist Things I Would Do in Denver

1. Visit the RiNo Arts District: My most recent trip to Denver was during a layover in September 2023, and that is where I got to visit the RiNo Arts District. I only show one mural in the tweet below, but the whole area has a bunch of colorful murals that are worth checking out. The Denver Central Market was also a nice indoor spot with local food vendors; I only had a bit of ice cream the day I was there, but there were plenty of options. RiNo is located past Coors Field, just beyond the Downtown area, but can still be reached by foot if you’re up for walking.

2. Books, Donuts, and City Park on East Colfax: In November 2022, I decided to explore East Colfax Avenue, starting from the Capitol building. This was another walk that takes you away from Downtown, and although the walk was safe the day that I did it, there are times in which homeless or vagrants will linger around on the streets. Once you get closer to City Park, though, it gets better, and on the way there are two places I really loved going to: Voodoo Doughnut, and Tattered Cover bookstore. The bookstore is in an old theater, but fun to look around and take in the atmosphere, as there is also a coffee shop up front and a record store just across the way from it. Venture a little further and you’ll reach City Park, which you can walk around or visit the Denver Zoo.

3. Bicycling the Cherry Creek Trail: As I mentioned earlier when I talked about Denver’s stadiums, I rented an electric bicycle and rode the Cherry Creek Trail for a bit before switching to the S Platte River Trail that took me right to Empower Field (which you can see in the distance in the picture below). Both trails run alongside water. They aren’t necessarily suited for nighttime riding like when I went, but still check it out if you’re there in the day and an avid bicyclist!

4. See the Cherry Creek Neighborhood: Even further away from Downtown Denver is the Cherry Creek neighborhood. I took a couple of busses to get there, but it wasn’t too long of a ride. You will see a lot of homeless and vagrants near the Downtown Denver area, but when I visited Cherry Creek, it seemed nice, safe, and was growing with new construction. There are a nice mix of small shops and places to eat among a wide range of blocks. The houses just off the shopping areas are neat to look at too, and there’s also a shopping mall across the street that I didn’t have a chance to visit. The video below includes a tour I did of the area in January 2023.

5. Christmas Attractions in the Winter: November and December are a nice time to see some Christmas attractions in many cities, including Downtown Denver. If you are taking the train to/from the Airport, you’ll pass by Union Station, where they display a holiday light show in the evenings. Back in 2021, I got to also see the biggest electric light show Christmas tree on the 16th Street Mall. Note: the 16th Street Mall, which I usually would’ve highlighted as a place to visit, is under construction through 2025. Therefore, the tree has been relocated to Civic Center Park this year, which gives you the bonus opportunity to see the Capitol Building and Court Building lit up nice for the holidays.

The lead snow photo from this article was from my snow walk in February 2022, before 16th Street Mall was under construction.

Other Adventure if You Have Time and Money

Platte Street Exploration: If you leave Union Station, there is a pedestrian sky bridge (Denver Millennium Bridge) not too far away that takes you over to Commons Park, an area where I frequently see walkers, joggers, and dogs. If you keep walking that direction, you’ll eventually get to Platte Street. It’s not a huge area, but the street had good upkeep with some places to eat, including Proto’s Pizza and a nearby ice cream shop.

If you have been to Denver before, please share some of your thoughts and recommendations, whether they be tourist attractions or dining locations!