A former mining town nestled into the Colorado Rockies, Aspen is an Instagrammer’s delight all year long.
A former mining town that’s now a playground for winter ski bunnies and outdoorsy types for the rest of the year, Aspen, around 200 miles from Denver, is just as exquisite as it is romantic year-round. Here are ten of the most Instagrammable places in Aspen.
1. Maroon Bells
These two snow-capped, 14,000-foot peaks 10 miles outside of Aspen preside over an area that’s only accessible via snowmobile, snowshoes or cross country skis in the winter. During summer, various hiking trails bring you in their vicinity. The colorful foliage adds exquisite ambiance during autumn.
This complex contains four ski resorts: the eponymous Snowmass, Buttermilk, Aspen Mountian and Aspen Highlands, and you’ll find yourself stopping for a photo break any chance you can get.
3. Downton Aspen
The charming boutiques, galleries, shops, cafes and more in Aspen’s picturesque Old Town make perfect fodder for your Instagram feed — especially when the trees are bare limbed and snow-topped.
4. The Little Nell
This five-star, ski-in/ski-out resort is emblematic of Aspen. The Living Room is delightful Apres Ski and a cocktail at Ajax Tavern is a must — temperature permitting, hang out on the patio.
5. Wheeler Opera House
The distinct structure from the late 19th century fuses Romanesque Revival and Italianate architectural styles, and is inside is just as easy on the eyes as the outside — so check the schedule to see what’s on when you’re in town.
6. Dancing Fountain
This dancing fountain on the corner of Hyman Avenue and Mill Street is lovely, especially during the summer when the children dash through the spray water.
7. Ute Trail
This challenging, dog-friendly hiking trail passes Ute Rock to reach the top of Aspen Mountain with plenty of breathtaking Insta-worthy vistas along the way.
8. Independence Pass
Located about 15 miles from Aspen, this mountain pass stands at an elevation of 12,095 feet, crossing the Continental Divide at the Swatch Range — an astounding sight to behold.
9. Rio Grande Trail
To stroll, jog, bike or ride horseback through a 42-mile chunk of living history, the Rio Grande Trail lies along the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad, connecting the mining town to New Mexico starting in 1887. It usually closes during winter, but the scenery is astounding during the warm weather months.
10. John Denver Sanctuary
Named for the late singer/songwriter, this lush garden near the Roaring Rock River is teeming with an array of perennial flowers that render it spectacular all year long.