Aerial photo of Old Main in the early morning sun, covered in snow.

Looking for things to do over fall break? Here are some activities to enjoy in and around Boulder.

Holiday lights

Boulder Star

The Boulder Star on Flagstaff Mountain will be lit for the 74th time this November in honor of Veteran’s Day and remain lit throughout the early winter. View the dazzling lights from campus with a cup of cocoa to keep you warm. 

Please note: No hiking or gathering is permitted in the area around the star.

  • Location: Boulder, CO
  • Price: Free
  • Dates: Nov. 11 to January

Switch on the Holidays

Stop by downtown Boulder for holiday shopping and the annual Switch on the Holidays lighting event on Nov. 21. The general event starts at 5 p.m. and the grand illumination will take place at approximately 5:20 p.m. as the city lights up the Boulder County Courthouse and Pearl Street Mall.

  • Location: Boulder, CO
  • Price: Free
  • Dates: Nov. 21 to January

CU Night at Zoo Lights

Join fellow Buffs on Nov. 21 for an exclusive look at the Denver Zoo light displays, photos with Chip, caroling, tasty treats, a scavenger hunt and more. General admission tickets for public viewing will be available from Nov. 22 through Jan. 2.

  • Location: Denver, CO
  • Price: $15-25
  • Dates: Nov. 21 at 5:30 p.m.

Blossoms of Light

For the past 30 years, the Denver Botanic Gardens have hosted this annual holiday light extravaganza to transform their York Street location into a twinkling winter wonderland. 

  • Location: Denver, CO
  • Price: $16-21
  • Dates: Nov. 19 to Jan. 8

Catch the Glow Parade

This holiday parade illuminates the town of Estes Park in a flurry of dazzling lights and will feature marching bands, fire trucks, specialty vehicles, toasty beverages and more. The parade starts at 5:30 p.m.

  • Location: Estes Park, CO
  • Price: Free
  • Dates: Nov. 26

Holiday Lights Mini Golf

Bundle up for a round of holiday light themed mini golf at the Adventure Golf & Raceway complex. This is a great activity to enjoy with friends, family or roommates. Open daily weather permitting.

  • Location: Westminster, CO
  • Price: $8-10
  • Dates: November to February

Outdoor recreation

Run (or walk) in a Turkey Trot

Enjoy some fresh air at one of these local turkey trot races (5K and 10K available):

Boulder: Thanksgiving Day 5K
Denver: Turkey Trot
Broomfield: Turkey Day 5K and 10K
Littleton: Gobble Wobble Run 5K

  • Location: Varies
  • Dates: Varies
  • Price: Varies

Fresh Air Friday

Colorado Parks & Wildlife encourages you to #OptOutside this Black Friday by offering free admission to all 41 Colorado State Parks!

Nearby state parks include Eldorado Canyon, Golden Gate Canyon and St. Vrain.

  • Location: Colorado State Parks
  • Dates: Friday, Nov. 26
  • Price: Free

Hiking and snowshoeing

Don’t let the snow stop you from enjoying a hike! Just be sure to check the weather in advance and dress appropriately.

If you don’t have all the essential gear, the Outdoor Program Equipment Rental Center has snowshoes, winter hiking boots, trekking poles, rain pants and more available for rent.

You can also check out this article for 5 essential hiking tips and places to go around Boulder.

Additional activities

Film on the Rocks

Enjoy a one-of-a-kind drive in movie experience at Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater. They’ll be featuring classic holiday movies with popcorn, cola and candy included with your ticket purchase. 

  • Location: Morrison, CO
  • Dates: Nov. 26 to Dec. 12
  • Price: $59.50/car

Meier Ski Tour

Meier Skis in Denver offers two free tour options to learn how trees are turned into skis. Join professional ski tenders as they explain the ski-building process or reserve a tour to go behind the scenes and learn about each step in the ski-making process.

  • Location: Denver, CO
  • Dates: Tuesdays thru Saturdays
  • Price: Free

Hammond’s Candies Tour

Ever wonder how lollipops, candy canes and other sweet treats are made? Stop by Hammond’s Candies for a free tour to watch as their favorite treats are pulled, twisted, shaped and packaged by hand—the same it's been since they started in 1920.

  • Location: Denver, CO
  • Dates: Mondays thru Saturdays
  • Price: Free