Family vacations in Colorado can be rewarding experiences or absolute disasters -- it all depends on pre-trip homework. To make planning easier, we've done all the preparation. As part of a Huffington Post Travel series on traveling with children, here are recommended attractions for those planning Colorado family vacations.
Rocky Mountain National Park
Address: 1000 U.S. 36, Estes Park, CO 80517-8397 Phone: 970-586-1206 Hours: The park is open daily, year-round. However, weather conditions often close portions of the park. Trail Ridge Road is closed in the winter as well as much of the fall and spring due to high snow accumulation. Price: Park entrance is $20 per car and $10 for pedestrians and bikes (good for 7 days). Annual passes are available for $40.
The National Center For Atmospheric Research
Address: 3090 center Green Dr., Boulder CO 80301 Phone: 303-497-1174 Hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Guided tours daily at noon. Price: Free
Museum of Space Exploration And The May Natural Museum Of The Tropics
Address: 710 Rock Creek Canyon Road, Colorado Springs, CO 80926 Phone: 719-576-0450 Hours: Both museums are open seasonally from May through September daily, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Price: Adults, $6; kids, $3 ; seniors, $5; special group rates available
Breckenridge Whitewater Rafting
Whitewater rafting makes for an unforgettable outdoor family adventure. Breckenridge Whitewater Rafting offers trips to five rivers in central Colorado as well as rivers in other parts of the state, depending on where you are traveling. Trips cater to a variety of skill levels, so not every family has to commit to the rigor of adrenaline-pumping class V rapids. Kids must be at least 7 years old for some rafting trips and 15 or 16 for others. Trips offered are full day, half day, overnight and longer.
Address: Main Street Station; 505 S. Main St., Suite A-10, Breckenridge CO 80424 Phone: 800-370-0581 and 877-RAFTING Hours: Summer months, daily. Call for trip dates and times Price: It depends on many variables such as class of rapids, river, length of trip etc. Rates can range anywhere from $109 to $139 and up for a full day trip.
Address: 1128 Lake Ave., Grand Lake, CO 80447 Phone: 800-670-0792 Hours: The beach and warm weather activities are open until Labor Day. It is a popular area for snowmobiles, cross-country skiing and other activities in the winter. Price: Beach access, free; activity fees, vary.
The Denver Zoo
Address: 2300 Steele St., Denver, CO 80205 Phone: 303-376-4800 Hours: March through October, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. November through February, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Price: Children 2 and under, free; ages 3 to 11, $8; ages 12 to 64, $13 ; ages 65 and up, $10
You might see a movie star, a rock star or just regular vacationing families taking in the sights and sounds of the historic mining town of Aspen. While it is known as the shopping and play area of the rich and famous, it is also home to Wagner Park for kids, the Popcorn Wagon, New York Pizza, a climbing wall and even fast food. Families can catch a free downtown concert in the summer, view the water fountains and dine out, without breaking the bank.
Address: Main St., Aspen, CO 81612 Phone: 800-670-0792 Hours: Open year-round. Hours dependent on type of business. Price: Free
Have you been to Colorado? What are your favorite attractions?
Check out more FAMILY VACATION GUIDES.