A Guide to Downtown Breckenridge
One of the beautiful things that sets Breckenridge apart from other ski resort towns is its gripping blend of old and new. We have a cutting-edge arts scene, fantastic shopping and dining and plush spas and lodging—all nudged up against painstakingly preserved historic buildings and an active riverside recreation path set off by postcard mountain views for days.
There’s an underlying Old West vibe lingering from Breck’s 1850s Gold Rush heyday and a bootstrapping community of mountain folk that take work-hard-play-harder living to heart. Not only is there a legendary ski resort accessible via a free gondola, we’re also blessed with a laid-back seven-mile-long manicured hamlet that consistently pulls accolades like Best Colorado Small Town (Country Living Magazine, 2017).
Breck is forging enthusiastically into the future with an award-winning arts program backed by the 2014-born Breckenridge Creative Arts District where photography and ceramics workshops share calendar space with famous rock and bluegrass bands blowing the doors off the Riverwalk. The Backstage Theatre brings musicals to life, while numerous yoga and meditation studios invite you to stop and breathe. Run the dog, take the kids skating and sledding and enjoy the views among 55 acres of town parks.
Cruise more than 200 shops and boutiques on Main Street and Ridge Street, scoring everything from outdoor gear to antiques, hand-stitched gifts to spices and gourmet cooking oils. Tip: Take the free Main Street Trolley to merrily get from one end to the other.
Winter months see popular free events such as Ullr Fest, Mardi Gras and the International Snow Sculpture Championships and summers usher in art festivals, a Sunday farmers market and al fresco wine and beer fests.
The get-after-it set doesn’t slow down when the snow melts. They just swap skis for hiking boots, mountain bikes and kayaks. Wander the Blue River that flows through town, watching fishermen casting, families picnicking and artists drawing on the Ten Mile Range for inspiration. Stop into one of Breck’s outfitters to book rafting and stand-up paddleboard outings and to rent bikes and skis.
And when it’s time to sit and refuel, the number and variety of restaurants doesn’t disappoint. Breck’s dining scene has experienced a delicious renaissance in recent years. Pizza, burgers, breakfast fare and Mexican food are still mainstays with the addition of global cuisine spanning gyros and shawarma to Italian, Mediterranean and French fine dining at restaurants such as Artisan 206, Belle V. and Legends. There’s even a vegan pizza spot, Hawaiian tiki bar and rooftop Thai.
Locals belly up for happy hour bites and cocktails at Colorado comfort favorites like Twist and Blue River Bistro and go big on elk and steak dinners at Hearthstone and the Briar Rose. Head to the Gold Pan Saloon, Napper Tandy’s and Burke & Riley’s Irish Pub to catch up over pints and pub grub.
Colorado craft brew and spirits roots run deep and award-winning brewers and distillers are carving out names for themselves locally and nationally. Visit the Breckenridge Distillery’s downtown tasting room, Breckenridge Brewery and Après Handcrafted Libations for a taste.
Go at your own pace, soak up the genuine mountain town charm and hospitality, seize adventures as they arise and carve out some soul-fueling R&R time—all in true Breckenridge come-as-you-are style.