The best ski resorts near Denver, Colorado

With its bracing weather conditions and more than your average smattering of snow, Colorado is by far the best-known holiday destination for a quintessential skiing experience. There are more than 25 ski resorts in Colorado, dotted around the snowy state and catering to all experience levels.

It’d be easy to dedicate weeks to navigating the state’s slopes, but we think the ski resorts near Denver are among Colorado’s finest. So, set up camp in the Mile High City, hire a car in Denver and visit a few of our favourites.

Echo Mountain

How far: 36 miles from Denver, 55 mins. When to go: November to April

Just a stone’s throw from downtown Denver, Echo Mountain suits seasoned skiers and beginners alike. There are eight runs to choose from, covering 60 acres of gorgeous Colorado grounds. If you’re not completely comfortable donning a pair of skis, there’s also snowboarding and tubing so you can take to the terrain park in style or comfort.

Echo Mountain is set up for night skiing, with roughly two thirds of the resort brightly lit to let the fun continue into the evening. Best of all, being so close to Denver means you can beat the traffic out of the city and be on the slopes sooner than you thought – many of the mountain’s regulars head up straight after work.


How far: 53 miles from Denver, 1 hour. When to go: October to May

Loveland’s longer ski season is made possible by favourable weather patterns and the tireless effort put in by workers. An hour’s drive from Denver, it’s a popular snowy stop for locals and tourists alike, with 1,800 acres of snow-coated ground split between the Basin and the Valley.

The Valley offers a warm welcome and a great confidence boost for new riders, with a ski school and wide-open spaces where you can practise newly learned techniques.

The Basin offers a variety of terrains for all skill levels, with the Continental Divide offering a unique landscape and some stirringly challenging conditions.


How far: 50 miles from Denver, 1 hour 15 minutes. When to go: November to April

Eldora’s near-700 acres of skiable terrain includes the Nordic Center – swathes of snowy ground suitable for snowshoeing or cross-country skiing.

Alongside this, there’s a selection of mountain parks dotted around the Eldora resort, which are great if you’re sliding on a pair of skis for the first time or want to put your snowboarding skills to the test.

Eldora is also well-known for its après-ski scene – once you’ve warmed up after a day on the slopes, you might want to check out what’s on offer. Popular spots to soak up the atmosphere include Timbers Tap House, the Snow Beach and Indian Peak Bar, to name just a few.

Winter Park

How far: 66.5 miles from Denver, 1 hour 25 minutes. When to go:November to April

Winter Park’s snowmaking technology is another of Colorado’s best – their widespread coverage of more than 3,000 acres across 27 trails allows them to open in time for Thanksgiving each year. An hour’s drive from Denver, it’s still close enough for those who want to divide their time equally between the city and the slopes.

Even if you don’t make it to Colorado for the ski season, fear not – the lifts are in operation all year round at Winter Park, so you can indulge in hikes, trails and biking.

Winter Park’s downtown area is also well worth a visit. Stop for dinner and some fantastic vistas, enjoy a spot of shopping in some trendy boutiques or grab a hot drink and cosy up with some warming entertainment. 

Why Denver?

If you’re wondering what else Denver has to offer, how about:

- The world’s biggest collection of Native American artefacts at Denver Art Museum.

- Larimer Square, the nightlife hub of Denver, featuring restaurants, comedy clubs and much more in scenic, Victorian-style surroundings.

- A horse-drawn carriage ride up the IM Pei-designed walkways of 16th Street Mall.

- Taking in a game at one of the city’s four Major League sports stadiums.

Once you’ve returned to the city after a day on the slopes, all of these attractions and more await you in the great city of Denver. 

From snowy peaks to city streets, enjoy the best of both worlds when you hire a car in Denver. For more inspiration, check out our ultimate Colorado skiing guide.