Nothing beats an Aspen summer. It’s one of the most picturesque places to be, not to mention there is something for everyone. From the arts to live music, hiking, camping and beyond Aspen is the ultimate destination for summer. Immerse yourself in the culinary scene or plan a week full of epic adventures that will get your heart racing and your adrenaline pumping. We have the full scoop on where to stay, what to do and where to eat this summer in the Roaring Fork Valley!
This Auberge property is steeped in history and celebrated in luxury. It’s a kid-friendly place, but also ideal for a romantic getaway. Located in the heart of town, the hotel offers bespoke stays for the wellness seekers, spa goers, adventurers and also those looking to enjoy a topnotch culinary experience.
The Little Nell
The “Nell” as most call it is next level. This luxury five-star property will cater to your every need. You can be as chill or as adventurous as you like at The Little Nell. Craving wine? They will arrange a private wine tasting in the cellar complete with gourmet pizzas and snacks. Want to take in the best views of Aspen? Book one of their jeep tours to the top for a sunset picnic.
Kid-friendly, parent approved. The Limelight is like a home away from home. Their newly renovated Aspen location is warm, inviting, casual and fun. The real treat? Well, there are two: 1. Soak in the hot tub post-hike with a cocktail while your kids swim in the pool. 2. Enjoy their delicious happy hour with well priced drinks and some of the best pizza you will have in the valley.
Owned by locals and run by locals. This coffee shop merges style, taste and culture all in one. Head here for a pre or post-hike nosh and coffee or tea. You’ll want to invite your friends and hang out all day long.
The trendy seen and be seen coffee shop within the Hotel Jerome. This NYC based company brought the beans and the flare to Aspen, keeping everyone well caffeinated. Tip: it’s a great place to post up and work, take meetings and read a good book.
A local’s favorite with fare from all over the world. This Victorian structure houses mouth watering pastries, avo toast and velvety lattes.
Jour De Fete
Breakfast burrito craving? We have you covered. Stop by Jour De Fete for the ultimate Aspen breakfast. Just enough for the extreme athletes or extreme shoppers to keep you full for a day’s exploration around the valley.
Health and Wellness lovers, this is the joint for you!
Snag a seat on the patio.
A cool oyster bar with a warm vibe. Check this out for lunch and make sure to order one of their signature cocktails. We love the margarita, personally.
Meat and Cheese
Another local favorite. Meat and Cheese delivers fresh farm to table fare. Think heart sandwiches, cheese boards and fresh salads. Make sure to check out their shop after lunch. We should mention, this is VERY kid-friendly.
A fine dining experience perfect for date night, or a gal’s night out. Tip: leave the kids at home for this one.
Epic music and even more epic food. Get dressed up and have a ball at Betula. You will leave smiling. The food is versatile, healthy and hearty. The wine list is impressive too.
A classic steakhouse with a sexy vibe. You can’t have a bad meal here.
For the Thrill Seekers
Book a rafting trip with Elk Mountain Expeditions and paddle your way down the Rio Grande river.
Put pedal to the medal E-biking or on a regular old bike and ride with the family, friends or solo on the Rio Grande path. Make it extra special and pop by Woody Creek for lunch.
North Star Preserve is a paddle boarder's dream. Quiet, peaceful, serene and full of wildlife, it’s also a great place to float with friends and/or family. Rent boards from any of the sports shops in town. Be sure to pack a water bag for your phone, snacks and a water bottle. We highly suggest sun protection, like a hat and sunscreen.
Arts & Culture
Aspen Art Museum
A fine art destination with a beautiful rooftop. Check out the cafe too!
For the adults seeking live music in an epic space. Get ready to dance and sing the night away at Aspen’s premier music venue. Artists such as Kygo, Tiesto, Gary Clark Jr. and more tour through here year-round.
Where to Camp
To round out a true Aspen summer experience, we suggest you take a stab at camping! Yes, camping! Get your gear ready, the s’mores kit packed and head out for a night of sleeping under the stars. Most likely you aren’t traveling with your camping gear, so we suggest hiring one of the valley’s finest guides who will get you all squared away, Rich Valley Adventures.
Top of Ajax
Beyond the gondola lies a ridge about 15 minutes on foot, or a nice drive from the backside at the Little Annie’s entrance. Camping on this ridge is magical. The views are expansive and it’s one of the best locations to catch the sunset.
This dispersed camping location is truly special. Nestled up Independence Pass, the campgrounds are surrounded by forest, a rushing river and the settling sounds of nature.
An exposed trail worth the trek. Make it an all day hike and connect to Hunter Creek and back into town for a much deserved post-hike cocktail or treat.
A family-friendly and chit-chat-friendly leisurely stroll. About 3 miles roundtrip, this is a great hike if you don’t want to burn yourself out, but want to feel a small sweat and sense of accomplishment.
This steep up and up is about a mile in length, and is sure to help get that heart rate up. Make sure to bring a water bottle, and a snack just in case. Take in the beautiful view of Aspen at the top.
This point to point hike is 7 miles of pure bliss and adventure. Make sure to hire a guide or pack your backpack accordingly. You will need water, food and sunscreen. Warning: there is no cell phone service, so plan accordingly. If you go point to point you will need a car shuttle at the end.