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Traveling to Steamboat with Kids

Steamboat Springs is a great place for a family vacation so grab the kids, pack an extra bag and get going! We put together a list of what to pack, where eat and stay, and what to do during your family vacation to Steamboat.

What to Pack:
Known for its ever-changing weather, Steamboat temps can rise and fall during the day – the rain can come and go too! – so pack layers. With temperatures in the low 50s when the sun goes down, you’ll need long sleeves or a jacket in the evening. But at 4pm when that afternoon sun is hot, you’ll definitely need your swimsuit. Bottom line: be prepared for everything.

High altitude and a dry climate mean you need to drink a lot of water while you’re here. Instead of buying multiple plastic bottles, pack your own waterbottle that you can refill as you go.

You’ll also need lots of sunscreen (and maybe some bug spray too!). If you don’t want to lug your own all the way here, stop in at Lyon’s Corner Drug and support a local business by purchasing some there.

Where to Stay:
While Steamboat has great options for hotels (think The Steamboat Grand and The Sheraton), when traveling with children, it’s often easier to rent a townhouse or condo. This ensure that kids can have their own rooms and pretty much guarantees you a kitchen so you don’t have to go out for every meal. There are tons of rental companies in town but check out Condos in Steamboat for one that is locally owned.

Where to Eat:
Steamboat is filled with amazing restaurants, and many of them are great for the whole family. At breakfast time, head to Freshies, famous for their cinnamon rolls. It’s a great starter for the table to share, followed by pancakes, eggs, breakfast burritos and more.

If you’re strolling downtown, stop in Johnny B Good’s Diner for lunch. This is a family favorite in Steamboat that both kids and adults are sure to enjoy. Pro tip: try their milkshakes. Kids can choose from a large selection of flavors and adults can snag an “adult” milkshake, if you know what we mean….

Or, stop into the one of Steamboat’s sandwich shops (Cruisers and Yampa Sandwich Co. are local favorites!) and grab sandwiches, chips and drinks and make a picnic out of it at one of Steamboat’s parks.

At happy hour, try Rex’s, where kids can run around on the large lawn playing games like ping pong and cornhole. The 3-5 pm happy hour will get you discounted pizzas and appetizers like wings, nachos and more – plus $5 drafts and $1 off wines for Mom and Dad.

What To Do:
For outdoor enthusiasts, there are great hiking and biking trails for any age and any level. Check out our post on Tips for Hiking with Kids to get some ideas for your family.

Playgrounds and parks are a great option for younger children and luckily, there are plenty of them all over town. View our list of the best ones here.

If you’re visiting us during the summer months, the pro rodeo series is in town each Friday and Saturday night in July and August. This awesome family event has everything from live music, mouthwatering BBQ and great entertainment as cowboys from all over the country compete in multiple events.

Steamboat is surrounded by hot springs and there are multiple places to dip your toes in. For a beautiful setting, try Strawberry Park or, for some great family fun, head to the Old Town Hot Springs right downtown where kids can splash around in multiple pools of different temperatures and take a turn sliding down the giant waterslide.

Got a rainy day? Check out our library! There’s a great kid’s section (complete with a fish tank of course) that has tons of books, movies and more for kids of all ages. They also offer storytimes and activities each week for kids of different ages. Check the schedule here.

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