Whether you ski, snowboard or just love the idea of a snowy paradise, Vail, Colorado is the place for you. Not only does this mountain town offer some of the world’s best skiing, but it also has the most charming downtown area, all making up the perfect place for your next vacation. The beautiful city, situated in the middle of the Rocky Mountains, is sure to blow you away. Not to mention, we’ve got a list of everything it has to offer…
Let’s start out with the most obvious, which would, of course, be skiing and snowboarding! Vail has roughly 200 trails spread out across 5,289 of developed acres of land and more than 30 lifts. You think that sounds big? Well, Vail doesn’t include its in-bound glades, so in actuality, Vail has over 8,000 acres of skiable land!
And if you’re looking to put your kids in ski school while you tear up the slopes, you’re in luck. Vail has one of the largest ski schools on earth, with a wide array of options whether it be private lessons or group classes. So, no worries. They’ve got the whole family covered.
If you’re not one to fly down a mountain attached to skinny boards or poles, we’ve got you covered, because Vail still has plenty for you to do. If you’re still looking to get up onto the mountain, there are great tubing opportunities and seasonal ziplining, as well as beautiful hiking and biking trails if you’re visiting in the summer. Beyond this, there are a ton of things to do in the village, which has two ice skating rinks, great options for food and some amazing shopping. There are also some very luxurious spas for those looking to relax, great fishing for the adventurous type, and a great bowling alley that’s perfect for families!
The two most popular areas of Vail are Vail Village and Lionshead. All of Vail’s architecture is intended to give a nod to classic European alpine architecture, so as you walk through both the Village and Lionshead, it’ll feel as if you’re in another country. Vail Village gives a cute, small-town feel, with delicious restaurants and great shopping opportunities. Lionshead, which is just a 15-minute walk or short bus ride from the Village, has more upscale resorts than the village and also has many stores focusing on mountain sports, depending on the season.
Both areas have lifts that give you access to the mountain and heated streets so you can walk through, free of embarrassment, with no slipping on ice. (Thank goodness!) There’s also an in-town shuttle that goes from Lionshead to Vail Village so that you don’t have to make the walk in the cold. However, if it’s the Summer, this walk can be very enjoyable, as some of it is along the river and the cute houses lining it.
Food! It’s one of the best things about Vail… besides the skiing of course. Both Vail Village and Lionshead are scattered with amazing places to dine, with both casual restaurants and more upscale places.
Ask anyone in Vail for a restaurant recommendation and they will no doubt, tell you to have a meal at the Austrian style restaurant, Pepi’s. This spot transports you to another country, with both the food and the architecture. Another must do when it comes to food in Vail is a local favorite, Garfinkel’s, or “Garf’s”, as the locals would say. This popular sports bar is a great place to hang out after a long day of skiing, and if it’s a sunny day, you can sit out on the deck. Trust us, you’ll want to snag a seat out there. The views are simply gorgeous.
Vail really is the perfect snowy paradise, and with ski season right around the corner, we definitely recommend adding it to your list! Mountain warrior or not, you can’t beat the culture, all-around fun and views this city has to offer.