Beyond the rich mining history, the luxe buildings and the A-list celebrities roaming around, Aspen Snowmass is one of the most family friendly resorts to be found in North America.
They even have a V.I.K program – Very Important Kids – because when the smallest members of the family are stoked, parents are bound to be happy too.
Here are 10 of the best things to do with your little ones in glorious Aspen Snowmass when borders open and we can hit up the Colorado slopes again.
1. Go skiing
With four mountains accessible via one lift ticket, you’re spoiled for choice in Aspen – which makes it the perfect place to ski with a family, especially when you have family members with varying abilities. From double-black diamonds to cruisy groomers, there’s something for everyone here across the 336 runs; plus five terrain parks and 41 lifts to take you everywhere you need to go.
Little ones particularly love the tree runs to be discovered in the Lizard Lodge/Dawdler area. Expect wooden forts, tunnels, bridges and even hidden characters to discover. There’s also a Children’s Race Arena for kiddies to test their speed skills.
2. Free kids programs
Very Important Kids deserve some Very Important Activities, and you’ll find plenty of free ones on offer in Snowmass for the whole family to enjoy once you’re finished on the slopes.
The program includes free s’mores, postcard making, cookie decorating, clown shows and many more family fun après activities. Find them happening daily from November through to April, 3.30pm onwards.
3. Take the kids to the Treehouse at Snowmass
Let’s be real… it’s your holiday too, so mum and dad are going to want a break. That’s where the Treehouse comes in. It’s an incredible, 25,000-squarefoot ski and snowboard school facility, ready to create a lifetime of memories for the kiddies.
The Treehouse offers everything under one roof: check-in, equipment rental, retail, and family après entertainment. Plus six interactive, nature-themed rooms designed for specific ages to bring the outdoors inside. Discover the Butterfly room with infacts and toddlers, have your preschooler crawl into the Bear Den, or watch the older kids as they venture up the Aspen Leaf Climber in the Alpine Climbing Room.
The instructors at the Treehouse are specialised in blending indoor and outdoor activities for the day, making for gentle introductions to the slopes.
4. Discover Ullr Nights
What’s a ski holiday without a bit of worship for our favourite Norse God of Snow? Aspen regularly does it in style with Ullr Nights – nighttime winter wonderland parties at Elk Camp on Snowmass.
Take an evening gondola ride up and enjoy a bonfire, with s’mores and hot chocolate available for purchase; watch the fire dancers; go snowbiking; or take part in one of the other many activities on offer. Check in when you get there about what nights you’ll be able to join the Ullr fun.
5. Ride the Breathtaker Alpine Coaster
There’s nothing like an alpine coaster to keep the kids talking about their winter holiday for many years to come. Riders can wind their way through over 1.6km of forest on an elevated track at speeds of up to 28mph, controlling their own speed along the way. You can ride the Breathtaker Alpine Coaster at Elk Camp both during the day and also at night during the Ullr Nights.
6. Go tubing
Keen to ride the alpine rollercoaster? Good news – your coaster ticket also gives you full access to the tube park at Snowmass. There are multiple lanes to choose from, all lift-served and carved into The Meadows at Elk Camp, with lighting facilities to illuminate the runs at night during Ullr Nights.
7. Snowcat dinners
For a truly unique family experience, opt in for a snowcat dinner. Sip hot chocolate or spiced cider as you stargaze from the snowcat on the way up to the Cloud Nine Bistro, 10,000 feet up the mountain. Once nestled into the warm, toasty, European-style ski hut, you can sit by the fire and enjoy a three-course meal.
Feeling really boujee when we’re able to travel once again? You can book in for private snowcat dinners for you and the entire family – just enquire with the Aspen team when your holiday is locked in.
8. Visit the Ice Age discovery centre.
When you’ve had your fill of activities on the mountain, it’s worth ducking down to the Snowmass Mall for an interactive afternoon at the world-renowned Ice Age Discovery Center.
The centre is home to a whole lot of Ice Age fossils – including mammoths, giant sloths, giant bison, mastodons and more – that were unearthed during the excavation of nearby Ziegler Reservoir. The children can become amateur paleontologists as they learn more about the history of the area, and mum and dad can tick an education box off on their snow holiday.
9. Eat. And then eat some more.
Aspen is home to hundreds of places to eat, so you’ll be spoiled for choice across the mountain. Try Ryno’s, for fresh, local pub fare and a video game arcade to entertain the young – and young at heart – as you wait for your food; Merry-Go-Round for a cozy fireplace, huge outdoor deck and kids menu items; or CP Burger for burgers for the kids and spiked milkshakes for grown-ups, which you can enjoy before taking a spin around their ice-skating rink.
The Limelight Hotel offers Italian comfort food, including hand-tossed pizzas, and a large children’s game area. Or head to Brunelleschi’s for a relaxing, laidback atmosphere and make-your-own pizzas for the kids.
10. Stop by the Aspen recreation centre
You may not have any energy to burn after everything on this list – but just in case, it’s worth putting the Aspen Recreation Centre on your list.
The facility offers up over 18,000 square feet of fun, including saline outdoor pools that are open year-round; ice-skating; hockey; an indoor climbing and bouldering wall; sledding; plus state-of-the-art gym facilities.
It’s a great place to entertain the kids on a day off from the mountain, or on a rough weather day (of which you won’t have many, considering all the bluebird days at Aspen… but good to be prepared!).
Convinced? Ready to travel when it’s safe to go once more? Get planning your ultimate family holiday in Aspen by clicking here here.