View of Main Street in Telluride, Colorado

Telluride Guide

(Credit: Jonas Tufvesson/Shutterstock)

Why you should visit Telluride

It’s no wonder visitors from all over the world flock to Telluride. Nestled amid Colorado’s San Juan Mountains, this energetic former mining town boasts some of the best skiing in the U.S. And with an endearing personality that fuses history and adrenaline, Telluride is never boring. This mountain town pays an ode to the Wild West with its saloon-like buildings housing art galleries, boutiques, and gourmet restaurants. And while Telluride presents a charming vibe during the day, come nightfall, it boasts a buzzing nightlife with pubs every which way.

Aside from skiing and snowboarding, Telluride boasts an extensive list of outdoor activities, from hiking to biking to rock climbing, making this city a hub and stomping ground for the nature enthusiast.

Ski Resorts Near Telluride

What to do in Telluride

Telluride’s location is excellent for outdoor adventure. The town is a notable rock-climbing destination with some of the most iconic rock faces and cliffs in the West. You can even ice climb at various spots like, Via Ferrata, The Ophir Wall and the East Buttress, just to name a few. Fat-tire bike riding is also a popular winter activity in Telluride. These bikes withstand snow, mud and stream crossings, making them the ideal vehicle for outdoor adventure. In warmer months, take in the breathtaking landscape of the San Juan Mountains on horseback with Circle K Ranch .

Embrace Telluride’s creative culture at an art walk held every first Thursday of the month. Shop through Telluride’s quaint Main Street at some unique, locally owned stores like Hook and Down to Earth .

For those looking to learn more about Telluride, visit the Telluride Historical Museum . Visitors can learn more about the world-renowned Telluride Ski Resort, as well as the town’s geological past.

Where to stay in Telluride

With the wide variety of resorts, hotels, and rental homes to choose from in Telluride, you are bound to find lodging that will fit your fancy. One thing to point out is that Telluride is made up of two parts: the main town and the mountain village, so be sure to book accommodations in the one where you plan to spend most of your time.

The main town is made up of 12 blocks of restaurants and bars with plenty of Victorian-era homes around to rent out on sites like Airbnb and VRBO. For a hotel that still provides a charming and quaint feel, while being centrally located and in close proximity to the gondola, Hotel Telluride fits the bill.

If you are visiting Telluride solely to ski, you will want to stay in the mountain village. Here you will find extraordinary, European inspired ski resorts. The Madeline Hotel and Residences provides hotel rooms as well as condos if you are looking for more space. The hotel also has the ski-in/ski-out amenity which is convenient for getting a full day’s worth of skiing.

What to eat in Telluride

One thing to know about Telluride is that it isn’t cheap, especially when it comes to dining. But, while it might be pricey, you can always expect a top-notch meal.

If you are looking for a quick and hearty meal to start your day, The Butcher & Baker Cafe is a fast and delicious spot for breakfast located in the heart of downtown Telluride.

Dine ski-in/ski-out style at the charming Alpino Vino , which serves Italian delicacies of bison short rib gnocchi and homemade pasta stuffed with veal ragu, paired with a collection of fine wine. Or if you are looking to splurge for some delicacies that are out of this world, Allreds is where you want to go. This on-mountain restaurant might be pricey, but those who have tried the dishes on the menu, like the crumb-crusted rack of lamb, are well worth it.

For some good eats that won’t break the bank, head over to Floradora Saloon where you’ll find innovative, local food like duck egg rolls and fried chicken. Or try Wood Ear , an underground spot serving up a fusion of Texas and Asian cuisine with its southern-style ramen to their slow-smoked barbecue brisket.

Family-friendly activities in Telluride

Whether you are looking for an outdoor adventure with the family or you are aiming for more of a day with the arts, there are many ways to take in what Telluride has to offer.

Spend the day at the Town Park and enjoy the extensive variety of activities. During the summer, take advantage of the outdoor heated swimming pool and the frisbee golf course, or grab a complimentary fishing pole and see what you can catch in the Keep an eye out as the park holds music festivals throughout the year. In the winter, come to the park for ice skating and Nordic skiing.

Jingle all the way with hot cocoa in hand on a sleigh ride with Telluride Wranglers , or enjoy views of towering peaks and waterfalls while off-roading with Telluride Offroad Adventures . In the summer, head over to Elk Pond in Mountain Village and try your hand at stand up paddle-boarding with Telluride Outside .

Should you encounter a rainy day, let out your inner artist in a painting or sculpting class at the Ah Haa School of the Arts , or learn all about the history and culture of Telluride at the Telluride Historical Museum , located in a historic miners hospital.

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