Looking for scenic spots near Denver? I got chu.

When my couples travel to Denver for their elopement, more often than not they make a vacation out of it to celebrate! There are so many places to see and things to do, it can be super overwhelming to decide how to spend your time. Luckily for my couples, I plan their trip from start to finish on top of taking some kick-ass elopement pictures. 

Check out my top picks I recommend to my couples when they come to town. We’re still in COVID times, so Colorado requires that you only recreate with people from your household, wear a face covering when passing others, and staying on the trail to protect the plants and wildlife. Now get out there and snap some Insta-worthy pics!

Red Rocks Amphitheater

1. Red Rocks Ampitheater and Park – Morrison

Red Rocks is a “must see” spot for a lot of visitors, and for good reason! The naturally formed, world-famous outdoor venue has a ton to see. The amphitheater itself is breathtaking, sometimes literally, as you’ll definitely find locals running up and down the steps or practicing yoga if you stop by. There are a few hiking trails too if you’re after some more views!

  • Drive time from Denver – 25 minutes

  • Deets
    • Bathrooms available
    • Doggos allowed (don’t forget a leash!)
    • Plenty of parking

2. Chautauqua Park – Boulder

If you want great views of the Flat Irons, this is the place! If you aren’t a hiker, you can still get a great view in the open, grassy area at the base, but if you’re up for an adventure, there are plenty of trails to explore. Sunset here is AMAZING, so plan to show up around 4:45 p.m. (depending on time of year) if you’re doin it for the ‘Gram. 

  • Drive time from Denver – 30 minutes
  • Deets
    • Bathrooms available
    • Doggos allowed (don’t forget a leash!)
    • Parking is limited, but Boulder offers the Park to Park shuttle, which can drop you off at Chautauqua


Chautauqua Park

3. Lookout Mountain, Golden

Golden is a special place and Lookout Mountain has my favorite views of downtown and the Front Range. Not only will you get great pictures from the top, but the drive-up is also one of the most scenic routes along the Front Range. It’s a win-win! It can get pretty busy on the weekends, so if you don’t want randos wandering through your photos, I’d recommend heading up early or during the week. 

  • Drive time from Denver – 30 minutes 

  • Deets
    • Doggos allowed (don’t forget a leash!)
    • There are several pullovers you can park in on the way up or there’s plenty of parking by the Buffalo Bill museum at the top

4. Settler’s Park, Boulder

Have you noticed I love Boulder? Settler’s Park is actually a network of short trails stemming out from Red Rocks and gives great views of the unique cliff formations Red Rocks is known for. This is another pretty popular spot on the weekends, so work this one in during the week if you can. And if you plan to head out onto the trails, make sure you’ve got some decent hiking shoes on – some of the trails can get pretty uneven. 

  • Drive time from Denver – 40 minutes

  • Deets
    • Doggos allowed (don’t forget a leash!)
    • Parking available at the trailhead


7 Bridges Trail, Colorado Springs

5. Eldorado Canyon State Park, Golden

Get your camera ready for these panoramic views! This canyon is a hidden treasure close to downtown Denver, complete with cliffs and creeks. I definitely recommend checking out the park’s website before you go to get the full run-down on what to expect. The park has a capacity limit, so if you show up when capacity is reached, you’ll be turned away. Your best chance to avoid the weekend crowd is to take a trip during the cooler months. If your heart is set on summer, this is another spot that’s best during the week!

  • Drive time from Denver – 45 minutes

  • Deets
    • Bathrooms available
    • Doggos allowed (don’t forget a leash!)
    • $10 daily vehicle pass
    • $4 individual daily pass
    • Photography permits vary based on project

6. Evergreen Lake, Evergreen

Find yourself surrounded by pine trees out at Evergreen Lake. One of the more easily accessible locations thanks to its paved roads, there’s views for everyone here. Take in the gorgeous lake, explore the trees, or head out on one of the trails for some more exclusive spots. 

  • Drive time from Denver – 45 minutes

  • Deets
    • Doggos allowed (don’t forget a leash!)
    • Plenty of parking
    • Over 230 miles of hiking trails


Lost Gulch Lookout

7. Lost Gulch Lookout, Boulder

Another stellar sunset spot! I’d argue it’s one of the most amazing overlooks close to Denver, and a lot of people must agree, because there are always visitors eagerly awaiting the sun to go down. That said, make sure you get there early if you want a great view! The lookout is right near a cliff, so if you or bae are afraid of heights, this might not be a good choice.

  • Drive time from Denver – 45 minutes

  • Deets
    • Doggos allowed (don’t forget a leash!)
    • Keep an eye out for parking spots on your way up. There are a few located near the lookout, but it’ll cost you $5
    • If you’re bringing a photographer, there’s a $25 photography fee

8. Echo Lake, Idaho Springs

When I think of Colorado in the winter, I see sunny skies and snow-capped mountains, which is exactly what Echo Lake offers. Mountains soar around the lake, and if you’re an early bird, it’s worth it to get there first thing in the morning to see the mountain reflected in the calm water of the lake. There’s also an easy hiking trail that will only take you about 15 minutes out and back if you want to explore.

  • Drive time from Denver – 1 hour

  • Deets
    • Doggos allowed (don’t forget a leash!)
    • They provide parking, but you’ll have the most luck near the gift shop or on the side of the lake with the picnic areas
Gross Reservoir

9. Gross Reservoir, Boulder

Where are my water lovers at?! This reservoir is nestled in the low mountains of the Front Range and is especially beautiful during the summer. The views are endless, and once you’re done exploring, there are several spots you and bae can relax for a picnic. Make sure you pay attention to any posted signs – some spots don’t allow swimming or wading. 

  • Drive time from Denver – 1 hour

  • Deets
    • Bathrooms available
    • Doggos allowed, but not in the water (don’t forget a leash!)
    • Parking permitted in designated spots

10. Walkers Ranch, Boulder

This historic spot has great mountain views from the start, and if you choose to hike the nearby loop, you’ll find some meadows along the way as you walk by the river. This is a popular spot in Boulder and can get pretty busy in the afternoon, so hit this spot early! 

  • Drive time from Denver – 1 hour

  • Deets
    • Bathrooms available
    • Doggos allowed (don’t forget a leash!)
    • Parking available

Can you picture you and bae eloping with the mountains of Colorado as your venue, celebrating with your closest friends and family? If you haven’t considered eloping before, what are you doing?


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