When it comes to choosing a ski resort in Colorado, there is certainly no shortage of incredible options from which to choose! Colorado has nearly 30 ski resorts, ranging from local favorites to internationally renowned destinations. Wherever you choose as your ‘mountain of choice,’ however, you’ll be sure to find that famous Colorado powder you’re looking for.
If you are planning to visit a resort with your family, there are a few considerations you may want to keep in mind such as the ease of travel, off-mountain amenities, and diversity of terrain so everyone – from the bunny hill beginners to the black diamond veterans – are sure to have a great time.
Here’s a round-up of our top 5 resorts for your next family ski vacation:
Keystone is a huge family-friendly resort with more than 3,000 acres spread over three peaks. With its close proximity to Denver, it’s one of the easiest mountains to get to and one of the more affordable options as well. Keystone offers the longest ski day in the state for those who are frequently the last one off the mountain, and they offer extensive night skiing. There is plenty of programming for kids too, from Kidtopia events and the ski school program to the world’s largest snow fort.
Not far from Keystone is Breckenridge, one of the best ski resorts in Colorado for beginners with its gentle Green slopes and family learning zones. Intermediates in the group will also have a ton of Blue runs to choose from, and expert skiers can explore entire peaks of the mountain that will challenge even the most veteran thrill-seekers. After a long day on the mountain, the historic town of Breckenridge has plenty of shopping and dining options, as well as ice skating, tubing and sleigh rides.
As Colorado’s northernmost ski town, Steamboat Springs is a three-and-a-half to four-hour drive from Fort Collins. Otherwise known as “Ski Town, USA,” Steamboat is incredibly welcoming for families with young children. There are wagons in the ski village so you can load your gear and tired little ones, and there is a variety of terrain for everyone in your group. There are 3,000 acres to explore, ranging from easy groomers to thigh-burning tree runs, and there is plenty of cross-country skiing available for those who aren’t as keen on downhill. Off the mountain, there are a ton of activities to choose from including a natural hot spring, sleigh-ride dinners, ice skating and tubing.
When you take a trip to Aspen, you can actually try out four ski resorts with one lift ticket – Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Buttermilk and Snowmass. Each resort has its own unique charm and offers something slightly different from the rest, but they all are blanketed in the powder snow that has made the area famous! If you have children with you, Buttermilk’s Hideout Children’s Center is the perfect place for them to learn how to ski, and the Aspen/Snowmass area has plenty of family-friendly activities like an alpine coaster, snow cat dinners, snowshoeing, tubing, free s’mores and delightful après options for kids and adults.
Vail is the largest ski resort in Colorado with over 5,000 skiable acres. There is terrain suitable for the whole family from beginner-friendly groomed trails and family learning zones to the famous back bowls and deep powder runs. Adventure Ridge is perfect for an afternoon of winter fun with the kids where you can go tubing, snowshoeing, or try kids snowmobiling and ski biking. Vail also has three villages with plenty of bars, restaurants and shopping, as well as ice rinks and playgrounds for the kids.
As you can imagine, it’s a tall task to pick a favorite from all the incredible ski resorts in Colorado, but hopefully this guide will help you start narrowing down the options and find the perfect place for you and your family.