The Mile-High city is known for its outdoor adventures, cultural attractions and it’s beer. If you’re planning a trip to Denver, make sure you stop at these six unique places.
1. The Unsinkable Molly Brown House
Visit the home of the famous Margaret Brown, who heroically helped save the lives of many during the sinking of the Titanic. Margret Tobin, born in Missouri, married a wealthy Colorado minor by the name of J.J. Brown. Brown built Margaret this home in Denver. Maggie had been traveling alone on the Titanic, returning home from a trip to Egypt. When she realized the luxury liner was doomed, she helped the crew load people into lifeboats — before being persuaded to take a seat in one herself. Brown convinced the passengers and crew in her lifeboat to return and look for survivors in the water after the ship went down.
In 1914, Brown also led relief efforts for workers and families who were attacked by the Colorado National Gaurd for protesting the “Ludlow Massacre.” After World War I, she earned the Légion d’Honneur for helping the American Committee for Devasted France provide medical care and rebuild villages. You can learn more about Molly Brown and her steadfast moral compass by visiting her home, which now functions as a museum and community center.
2. Fifty-Two 80’s
This shop, located in the antique district in southern Denver, is a time-capsule of nostalgia, packed with pop-culture collectibles from the 80’s and 90’s. At Fifty-Two 80’s, you’ll find a range of items like trading cards, Cabbage Patch Kids, vintage Pepsi cans, pinball machines, action figures, posters, cardboard cutouts and so many more relics to remind you of bygone eras. The store owners believe they have around 4,500 items in their collection, and it’s all for sale! Fifty-Two 80’s is a collectors dream; there’s no doubt you’ll find a treasure from the past there.
3. Forney Transportation Museum
The Forney Transportation Museum in Denver contains American treasures like Herbie the Love Bug and Amelia Earhart’s roadster. It all started with a single vehicle in 1961 when Forney’s wife and children presented him with the same antique car he courted his wife in. Now, Forney’s collection holds many oddities and eccentric antique vehicles such as an old medicine show stagecoach, custom cars with eight wheels, and one of the 25 ever made Union Pacific “Big Boy” steam engines. Forney’s museum continues to grow; right now there are about 600 pieces in his collection, complete with mannequins who stare admiringly at the antique vehicles.
4. Buckhorn Exchange
If you’re interested in eating lunch with a few furry guests – the Buckhorn Exchange is a great place to do so! Founded in 1893, the Buckhorn Exchange is home to hundreds of taxidermy animal heads and antique weapons, all mounted on the walls. The eatery claims to have been visited by Buffalo Bill and has a very adventurous menu which includes rattlesnake, buffalo sausage, Rocky Mountain Oysters, and pheasant to name just a few. Buckhorn Exchange also boasts that it was the first restaurant in Denver to obtain a liquor license. If you’re ready for an interesting meal, visit Buckhorn on a Friday night, and you’ll catch old cowboys performing traditional prairie songs. Or, come for the annual “Buffalo Bill Look-alike” contest!
5. Linger Eatuary
Speaking of Buffalo Bill, the Linger Eatuary once held the body of Buffalo Bill for six months in 1917. This may seem strange, but when you learn the history of the Linger Eatuary, you’ll soon realize that what once was a morgue is now a popular restaurant destination for many tourists and locals. The new owners of the space ultimately embraced its morbid history by using metal conveyor belts as tables, a church pew as a host’s stand, and formaldehyde bottles as carafes. Despite once being the seal of the Olinger family’s funeral empire (known for organizing half of Denver’s funerals at the time), the eatuary is now a famous tourist stop and a place to enjoy a great meal — fully cooked, of course.
6. Denver Art Museum
The Denver Art Museum is an expansive facility that spans across two buildings. With over 68,000 works from artists like Georgia O’Keeffe, Vincent Van Gogh and Salvador Dalí, the museum holds one of the most impressive collections between Chicago and the West Coast. In particular, the Denver Art Museum is known for its extensive collection of Western American Art and pre-Columbian artifacts. If you’re looking for a great place to spend the day, it won’t disappoint.
Denver has a little something for everyone to enjoy. The city is full of cultural history and beautiful parks overlooking the Rocky Mountains. Get a glimpse of Colorado’s iconic mountainous landscape on a foothill tour, catch a concert at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre, or take a stroll down Larimer Square — you really can’t go wrong.