Top Things To Do in Vail, Colorado

Top Things To Do in Vail, Colorado

View of tents in green field, in vail colorado by Collective Retreats

Are you in need of a relaxing getaway that can take your mind off any stress and immerse you in natural wonder? We understand the temptation to hop on a flight and make your way to a foreign destination, but sometimes the most restorative and beautiful destinations are right in your backyard.

It’s no surprise to anyone living in Colorado that this state is a hotspot for visitors looking to reconnect with nature or explore charming towns. However, if you aren’t sure where to start when exploring other Colorado gems, we are here to help.

We have put together a list of some of our favorite things to do in and around Vail, including something for everyone. Additionally, if you are considering taking your day trip and extending it to a mini getaway, we know the perfect place to rest your weary head.


Vail Ski Resort

We would be mistaken to start this list with anything other than Vail’s claim to fame: skiing. Try taking advantage of living just a drive away from one of the best and biggest ski resorts in the world. Whether you are brand new to skiing or consider the slopes your second home, Vail Ski Resort has a place for you.

With 5,300+ acres of skiable terrain, you can choose between gentle slopes to help you learn skiing basics or one of their legendary Black Bowls for an exciting ride down the mountains.

Once you are finished skiing for the day, be sure to take advantage of their on-site restaurant, shops, and more.


Sonnenalp Spa 

Thanks to the skiers looking to soothe their sore muscles, Vail has become a prime destination for quality spas. Among the many options, our favorite spot is Sonnenalp Spa.

The menu of spa treatments almost feels endless, giving you the chance to book a dry brush massage treatment, gua sha facial, manicure, and more.

You can even take a dip in their heated indoor and outdoor pools or squeeze in a workout in their state-of-the-art gym between pampering bookings.


Vail & Lionshead Villages

If your dream vacation includes strolling down charming streets, perusing shops, and sampling treats, you will love the Vail & Lionshead Villages. These two villages are connected by pedestrian streets that are lined with string lights and towering Aspen trees.

Walking through Vail village, you won’t be able to resist admiring the picturesque architecture that is a nod to classic European alpine architecture. The dining scene is incredible, and the shops offer a mix of local and imported goods at a range of price points. Additionally, if you are visiting during the winter months, the heated streets will feel comfortably warm beneath your feet.

As you walk into Lionshead Village, you can relax in the quiet and serene ambiance, thanks to its carless streets. Aside from its own wonderful collection of shops and restaurants, Lionshead Village is known for its ice rinks, cozy bars, and stunning gondola rides.


Fly Fishing

If you don’t usually spend your free time with a fishing rod in your hand, you might be surprised to learn that Vail is one of the biggest hot spots in the country for fly fishing. A combination of Vail’s impressive network of rivers, unpressured water, and dense fish populations make this the perfect city to pick up a new outdoor hobby.

One of the biggest draws of fly fishing is the ways in which it can fully immerse you in nature, giving you an up-close view of some remarkable views. In order to fly fish, you have to stand calf-deep in the water, giving you a unique perspective at 100-foot tall trees, the distant mountains, and the lush foliage that surrounds the water.

Some of Vail’s most popular fly fishing spots include Gore Creek and Eagle River.


Whitewater Rafting

Speaking of the impressive network of rivers in Vail, many visitors land in Vail looking for adventure on the water. Timberline Tours is a well-loved touring company that will provide plenty of options for your white water rafting experience. You can book a tour for groups of two to 16+ and pick between rides that are calming or thrill-seeking.

Rated as the nation’s most popular intermediate whitewater rafting experience, the Timberline Tour through Browns Canyon will take you along exciting Class III rapids. Full of pool-drop rapids, sights of the Sangre de Cristo Mountain Range, and an immersive view of the Colorado canyon.

Lastly, you won’t have to worry about getting fatigued on this trip since it offers a midpoint riverside lunch. This family-friendly excursion is perfect for anyone looking to get a taste of whitewater rafting.



The best views of the Rocky Mountains won’t be from your car, a restaurant, or a spa. The most impressive and breathtaking sights are found on the many hiking trails that stretch through and around Vail. There are countless hiking trails to choose from, ranging in difficulty from easy to expert.

If you are a beginner or just looking for a relaxed hike, head to Lost Lake trail. While the trail is relatively long, covering seven miles, the terrain is flat and easy to traverse. At the midway point of this trial, you will be greeted with remarkable views of Lost Lake, which can reflect the blue sky and evergreen trees on a clear day.

For a moderately difficult trail, try out Booth Falls. This 4.2 out-and-back trail takes you through Eagle Nest Wilderness, giving you unparalleled views of rivers, valleys, aspen grove forests, and the peaks of Gore Range.

Lastly, if you have plenty of hiking experience under your belt, head to the Gore Lake trail. This twelve-mile out-and-back may take most of the day to conquer, but you will be rewarded with views that will make you feel on top of the world.

Stopping to admire the tops of Aspen trees and look out over the expansive Gore Lake is an experience you will never forget.


Where To Stay in Vail, Colorado

If you are having trouble choosing which of these incredible activities to try, we recommend staying in Vail for a few nights and sampling as many as possible.

At Collective Retreats, we have made it our goal to give our customers the best of both worlds: immersion in the beauty of the outdoors and the comfort of a five-star resort.

Our most popular accommodation option, the Summit Tent, is considered the retreat’s premiere travel experience. Fall onto your king bed at night and snuggle under the high-count sheets and plush comforters for a restful night’s sleep. In the morning, step out onto your private patio to watch the morning light hit the mountains.

Additionally, as a Collective Retreats guest, you will have access to a wealth of Colorado-centric activities, including fly fishing, horseback riding, hiking, and more. Contact our concierge to talk about your options, and we will take care of all the planning for you.


Off You Go

Once you step foot into the charming villages of Vail or begin your thrilling descent on a slope at Vail Ski Resort, we can promise you won’t want to leave. Vail offers something magical for outdoor and city lovers alike and will always leave you wanting more.

Be sure to rely on us here at Collective Retreats to make your Vail vacation even more luxurious and memorable.



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