Top 5 Colorado Winter Attractions Close to Denver

Experience Clear Creek in Wintertime

From winter train rides to ice racing, there is something here for everyone! Come explore Idaho Springs, Empire, Georgetown, and Silver Plume – Perfect for an overnight stay, a day trip, or a short visit as you are passing through.

1. Loveland Ski Area

Located 53 miles west of Denver, Loveland offers the closest full mountain experience while sitting high atop the Continental Divide at the Eisenhower/Johnson Tunnel.

Here skiers and snowboarders can opt in to enjoy free snowcat rides to some of Loveland’s most exhilarating terrain on the Ridge Cat Tours. Loveland also offers an incredible Daytripper Package which includes everything anyone could need for a great day on the slopes – including a lift ticket, ski or snowboard rental and clothing rental (hat, goggles, gloves, jacket and pants).

Also don’t miss February 14th at Loveland where couples can tie the knot or renew their vows in a mass wedding ceremony at the top of the Ptarmigan Lift at an elevation of 12,050′.

2. Georgetown Loop Railroad

Completed in 1884, the Georgetown Loop Railroad® is one of Colorado’s first visitor attractions.  With a train ride running about 1 hour and 15 minutes, you will be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy scenic mountain views along the way inside heated coaches!

For the holiday season, the Georgetown Loop Railroad® offers two unique wintertime experiences! First, the Holiday Light Train which begins in Late-November and runs through New Years Eve. This evening train features beautiful synchronized holiday music with a light show while winding through the snow covered Rocky Mountains. Don’t miss the Santa’s North Pole Adventure Trains which begin in Mid-November and run through January 4th, offering multiple train rides a week. Ride along with Santa and Mrs. Claus while enjoying complimentary hot chocolate, cookies, and candy canes – Plus the kids get to take home a jingle bell ornament!

Historic holiday train travels a bridge far above the snowy ground below.
interior of hot spring pool with bright blue water and tropical trees

3. Indian Hot Springs

The modern outdoor jacuzzi baths allow you to relax under the stars while breathing in the cool crisp mountain air.

The indoor mineral swimming pool is another favorite with adults and children of all ages offering a tropical paradise underneath a translucent dome complete with tropical plants and palm trees.
And, if you are looking for a little extra pampering, the Indian Hot Springs of

Idaho Springs also offers a wide variety of spa services and overnight accommodations – choose from the Historic “Main Resort Building”, “The Inn” or the “The Lodge” – handicap-accessible rooms are also available.

4. Our Gang Ice Racing

Our Gang Ice Racing has been holding ice races in Colorado for 44 years! Races take place on weekends at Georgetown Lake from January through February, weather permitting.

Did you know that you too can participate in Ice Racing on Georgetown Lake? All you need is a 4WD or AWD vehicle, a valid driver’s license, proof of insurance and to pay a small registration fee! Even kids under 16 years old will get a chance to race this season and remember, spectators are always free.

Cars line up on a frozen georgetown lake in anticipation of the start of an Ice Race.
Georgetown Christmas Market horse-drawn Carriage trotting down a city street

5. The Annual Georgetown Christmas Market

Each December the town of Georgetown transforms for the first two full-weekends into a bustling Christmas scene reminiscent of Christmas long ago: roasted chestnuts, holiday shopping, horse-drawn wagon rides, and wonderful sights and smells. Enjoy appearances by St. Nicholas in his traditional dress and the daily procession of the Santa Lucia. Carolers in Victorian costume, dancers, and other family entertainment.

Admission is always free. Be sure to visit the local shops and restaurants in addition to the outdoor European marketplace and vendors.

Clear Creek County is the gateway to the Rocky Mountains. Located just west of Denver along Interstate 70, Clear Creek has 396 square miles of public lands to explore, as well as four mountain peaks above 14,000 feet. Clear Creek is comprised of charming mountains towns Idaho Springs, Downieville, Lawson, Empire, Georgetown, and Silver Plume, which are all along the I-70 corridor. Learn more about Clear Creek County here.