Image by Education Images UIG via Getty Images
This historic landmark park is the gateway to Boulder’s most magnificent slab of open space adjoining the iconic Flatirons; its wide, lush lawn attracts picnicking families, sunbathers, Frisbee folk and students from nearby CU. It also gets lots of hikers, climbers and trail runners. It's a popular site so parking can be a hassle. During the summer the city of Boulder runs a free shuttle on the weekends from downtown and satellite parking lots (parktopark.org).
If you're hiking with kids, stop by the Ranger's Cottage to borrow a free nature discovery pack with binoculars, field guides, activities and more.
Once an important site for the inspired rural educational organization, the Chautauqua Movement, these days the park encompasses lodgings, a good restaurant and an auditorium where world-class musicians, dancers and actors perform each summer.