Things to do in Fort Collins Colorado

Things to do in Fort Collins Colorado
Sights to see in Colorado
If you are traveling to Fort Collins for the first time, the city is home to the Colorado State University and miles of paved cycling trails along the city center.

If you are looking to enjoy plenty of recreational activities as well, there are plenty of green spaces in the city, but within a short drive west of the city, you’ll find both the Lory State Park and Roosevelt National Park, which offer outdoor opportunities such as camping and rafting along the Cache Poudre River.

Apart from the many things to do in Fort Collins Colorado, if you fancy exploring nearby Colorado, Fort Collins is just an hour's drive from Denver .

Things to do in Fort Collins Colorado: Outdoor Activities

Hiking & Boating

If you fancy hiking and boating, Lory State Park is a just a short drive from the city center, and offers plenty of outdoor opportunities such as picnicking and plenty of easy trails ideal for hiking and biking.

For boating opportunities all year-around, you can head to the Horsetooth Dam (a couple of miles from Lory State Park) where you’ll find the closest boat ramp for launching your canoe or Kayak.

However, if you are traveling to Fort Collins Colorado between May and August, the popular Cache Poudre River offers more challenging runs ideal for experienced kayakers and rafters.


Cycling is one of the most popular things to do in Fort Collins Colorado, and it's a fun way to explore the city center.

There are around more than two hundred miles of paved cycling trails in Fort Collins which span the downtown area, Southridge Greens and Fossil Creek Reservoir areas.

Some of these popular paved cycling trails in Fort Collins Colorado include Spring Creek Trail, Poudre Trail, Power Trail and Fossil Creek Trail.


If you love fishing, Fort Collins Colorado is an angler’s paradise and you can find angling opportunities in the city’s reservoirs and lakes, Lory State Park and Roosevelt National Park.

In fact, the Horsetooth Reservoir is just miles from Lory State Park, and the west side of Horsetooth Reservoir features five coves where you can fish for bass, trout, and walleye.

Also, along Cache La Poudre River you can find a couple of sections designated for trout fishing.

Another popular place for fishing in Roosevelt National Park is Poudre Lake which is found along Trail Ridge Road.

Scenic Drive & Camping

Another popular way to appreciate Colorado’s beautiful natural scenery it’s on the road.

One of the most popular scenic drives it’s the Fort Collins-Arapahoe Wildlife Refuge three-hour scenic drive along Poudre Canyon Highway (Route 14).

This scenic drive runs along the famed Cache La Poudre River which passes through the Roosevelt National Park.

If you are driving your RV and are planning on camping out, this scenic drive passes through a few campgrounds such as the Stove Prairie Landing Campground, the Kelly Flat Campground and the Glen Echo Resort, which has RV spaces with hook-ups.

Brewery Tours

If you love beer, you’ll be glad to know that the city of Fort Collins Colorado is popular for its brews, and touring a microbrewery is a must-add in your itinerary.

Two popular microbreweries include Odell Brewing Co and New Belgium Brewing Co, both located in the Buckingham district, which is just a few minutes drive from the Fort Collins’ city center.

Things to do in Fort Collins Colorado: Places of Interest

Fort Collins Museum and Discovery Science Center

If you are traveling with the family and are looking for things to do with kids in Fort Collins Colorado, the Fort Collins Museum and Discovery Science Center is a great place to be.

The museum section has an interesting collection of indigenous artifacts, while the science center section offers hands-on interactive exhibits and planetarium shows.

Swetsville Zoo

If you’ve never hear of Swetsville Zoo, you’ll be surprised to know that the place is an actual farm but the animals in it are actually made out of scrap metal.

If you know about the famous Forevertron scrap metal sculpture in Wisconsin, the Swetsville Zoo is a great example of scrap metal architecture, and some of the popular works include a Heavy Metal band and a T-Rex.

Farm at Lee Martinez Park

Visiting the Farm at Lee Martinez Park is another popular thing to do in Fort Collins with kids. At the farm, the little ones can feed and pet the animals, enjoy pony rides and roam freely through the farms fields and playing areas.

Avery House

If you are a history buff, the Avery House was the home of Frank Avery who designed the streets lay out of Fort Collins Colorado. If you want to visit this historic house, the place is open to the public for a few hours on Sundays.

Things to do in Fort Collins Colorado: Shopping

For retail shopping, you can find both the Shops at Foothills Mall and Foothills Mall located at the intersection of S College Avenue and E Foothills Parkway.

Apart from shopping malls, the city is home to small stores and shops such as Old Town Quilting shop, My Sister Knits and Hops & Berries, located in the Old Town district.

Things to do in Fort Collins Colorado: Nightlife & Entertainment

Fort Collins Colorado is a college town and since the University of Colorado is located in the downtown area, you’ll find plenty of bars, live music venues and nightclubs.

For instance, along South College Avenue, you can find the popular ‘The Dance’ and ‘The Rock’ nightclubs.

Entertainment-wise, you can enjoy a movie at one of the mall’s cinemas as well as a night of performing arts at the Lincoln Center or Bas Bleu Theater in downtown Fort Collins Colorado.

Things to do in Fort Collins Colorado: Events & Festivals

Cycling Events

If you are a cycling enthusiast and would like to participate in a cycling event, Fort Collins is home many cycling events during the summer months.

For instance, in August you can catch annually the popular one-day Criterium through Fort Collins Old Town.

Also, in August look out for the US Handcycling Race and the Rist Road Canyon Road Ride.

Fort Collins Brewers' Festival

Another popular summer event is the annual Fort Collins Brewers' Festival held for two days in late June.

If you love your beer, the Fort Collins Brewers' Festival showcases the best and finest brews produced by local breweries.

Colorado Marathon

The Colorado Marathon is usually held in early May and it is a popular activity among families and outdoor enthusiast as the marathon course runs down the scenic Cache Poudre River.

If you are traveling with the family the Colorado Marathon also includes marathon events suitable for families with kids such as a kids’ run marathon.

New Visions Dance Festival

If you love dance performances, the New Visions Dance Festival happens in late March every year at the Lincoln Center.

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