This winter in Aspen, enjoy time with the kids, on and off the slopes
Whether you’re outdoors, skiing or boarding on one of the Roaring Fork Valley’s four epic mountains, fishing in the river below, or cosied up indoors by the fire with hot chocolate in hand, holidays in Aspen offer prime family time.
From activities designed to wear the kids out to experiences you’ll remember as a family forever, here are some of the best things to do in Aspen with kids this winter.
Most people come to Aspen in winter to ski or snowboard, so finding family-friendly ski runs and themed trails is a priority for a winter family Aspen holiday.
Snowmass is popular among families, not only for the variety of runs but also for the ease of getting on and off the slopes – there are lots of places to stay on the mountain itself.
For lessons, try the Treehouse Kids’ Adventure Center (which also offers childcare for children four and under), while older kids will relish in the freedom offered by the Mountain Explorers camp.
Buttermilk, which many people consider Aspen’s beginner’s mountain is also very good for families, and fun trails include the Devil’s Gut, which involves skiing through a log tunnel, and The World’s Longest Tree Trail, where kids can look out for stuffed animals dangling from the trees as they ski.
Off the slopes, at Snowmass Village Recreation Center, there are climbing walls inside and a free ice-skating rink outside, while at Collective Snowmass, forget VIPs, here it’s all about VIKs (Very Important Kids), with a busy programme of activities every day from 3.30pm, including arts and crafts and cookie-making.
To challenge inquisitive minds, head to the Ice Age Discovery Center where children can get hands on with fossils, including the remains of a young mammoth, and learn more about the geology of the area.
Après-ski fun for families doesn’t come much better than Ullr Nights – winter wonderland parties held at Elk Camp, with s’mores, hot chocolate, snow-biking, fire dancing, tubing and rides on the Breathtaker Alpine Coaster to enjoy – all under the pretence of celebrating the Norse God of Snow.
For more edge-of-your-seat excitement, take a sled ride with Krabloonik through the Colorado wilderness, pulled along by 8-10 Alaskan huskies, or jump on a snowmobile for a thrilling tour through the White River National Forest.
If you can convince the kids to make it out by sunrise, you’ll feel on top of the world on a magical hot air balloon ride in Aspen.
There is a huge amount of choice when it comes to filling young tummies, no matter how picky or adventurous your children are with food.
Few kids have ever complained about the chocolate chip cookies served straight from the oven at Up 4 Pizza, at the very top of Snowmass – rumoured to be the best cookies in all of Aspen.
The Merry-Go-Round on-mountain restaurant on Snowmass has a very kid-friendly menu, while the chicken sliders at Home Team BBQ, near Buttermilk, are firm favourites with young diners.
For event dining, book a Snowcat Dinner at Cloud Nine Bistro, where you will be driven in an open snowcat to an Alpine-esque bistro located halfway up Aspen Highlands, where a roaring fire awaits, and views of the mountain peaks of the Maroon Bells can be enjoyed.
Alternatively, take a horse-drawn sleigh to the Pine Creek Cookhouse log cabin, where kids can enjoy mac and cheese or chicken tenders if they don’t fancy the elk or bison on the main four-course menu.
26 January 2022
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