Colorado's Best Beaches
Every summer, slather on the sunscreen and bring your umbrellas to the best beaches in Colorado. Colorado's sun enthusiasts believe there is no better place to work on your tan and get some much-needed R&R than here. Take a swim in one of these or other Colorado lakes, book a lakeside hotel, or learn about fishing spots.
Blue Mesa Reservoir, Curecanti National Recreation Area
The state's largest body of water, Blue Mesa Reservoir, offers plenty of opportunities for recreation and relaxing on its beaches. Between the agricultural settlements of Montrose and Gunnison, US Highway 50 runs through the pinyon-dotted high-mountain desert, opening up into a vast scene of dazzling blue water and talus-sloped hills. While much of the beachfront is rocky, the Bay of Chickens, Dry Creek, and Old Highway 50 beaches all have decent swimming places. On a sweltering day spent in the high-altitude sun, the water is always chilly, and there's nothing more pleasant.
Blue Mesa ReservoirBlue Mesa Reservoir, Colorado 81230, USA
Medano Creek, Great Sand Dunes National Park & Reserve
Medano Creek is a secret swimming hole in Colorado. Every spring, behind the sand dunes, the wide, shallow, and softly flowing Medano Creek emerges from the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, forming an oasis for people eager to build sandcastles and cool down in its wonderfully icy waters. Just as abruptly, the creek vanishes for another year by late August. Swimming, sand sculpture, skimboarding, and wandering along the world-famous dunes that surround the sea (médano is Spanish for sand dune) are all popular activities at Medano.
Medano CreekMedano Creek, Colorado, USA
Chatfield State Park
When you're looking for a nice place to soak up Colorado's warm sun, head to Chatfield State Park's reservoir. Chatfield State Park, with its magnificent vista of the Rocky Mountain foothills, is a lovely place to meet with friends and family. This state park is one of metro Denver's most popular attractions, featuring a variety of activities to meet your beach-loving desires. Whether it's barbecuing, animal viewing, hiking, or water activities, there's something for everyone. If beach camping appeals to you, Chatfield will not disappoint. There are picnic tables and grills at each of the 197 campsites, which are all within walking distance of the water.
Chatfield State Park11500 N Roxborough Park Rd, Littleton, CO 80125, USA
Grand Lake's crystal blue water, surrounded by steep, pine-covered hills, is the ideal beach destination for a day trip or a weeklong vacation. Grand Lake, Colorado's largest natural lake, is located on the western side of Rocky Mountain National Park and is an excellent spot for scenic lazing near sparkling waters and tragic peaks. Check out the array of boats skimming across the water when you're not cooling off in the high alpine lake. At the marina, you may rent speedboats, canoes, party boats, and fishing boats. Grand Lake is particularly enticing to beachgoers who want a bustling boardwalk. Take a stroll down historic Grand Avenue, where you'll find over 60 stores and eateries.
Grand LakeGrand Lake, CO 80447, USA
Boulder Reservoir has unobstructed views of the Boulder foothills, making it tough to believe it's only minutes from adjacent communities like Boulder and Longmont. This beachy reservoir is a favorite among residents for runners, bikers, swimmers, and beach loungers who want to soak in the vacation mood. The environment of Boulder Reservoir is diverse, ranging from desert-like parts to marshy marshes that will make you forget you're in Colorado. While you're not lounging on the warm sands, the 700-acre state park offers plenty to do and see, including friendly encounters with canine and feathered wildlife.
Boulder ReservoirBoulder Reservoir, Boulder, CO, USA
Jackson Lake State Park
Jackson Lake State Park is best described as an oasis in the midst of Colorado's eastern plains. Each summer, swimmers and water skiers flock to its warm, South Platte River-fed water and sandy bottom beaches. Jackson Lake, named one of Reserve America's "Top 15 Park Beaches," is a must-see for anybody vacationing in the area or passing through Colorado's eastern plains. At Jackson Lake, you can even go treasure hunting. The state park is one of several hidden geocaching spots throughout the globe. Participants in geocaching use GPS to find hidden containers containing various goodies. The official geocaching website is where you may sign up to participate. After a day of fun in the sun, stay for some great stargazing at Jackson Lake, which was designated as an International Dark Sky Park in 2020.
Jackson Lake26363 County Road 3, Orchard, CO 80649, USA
Sun worshippers will be greeted by white sand and a plethora of activities to keep the whole family occupied, including SUP and kayak rentals, fishing, swimming, boating, archery, a nature center, and, of course, lots of spots to just eat and rest. In the pristine blue sea, kids enjoy looking for turtles and crabs. When you've had your fill of those activities, take a ride on the 8-mile paved bike route that runs beside the water.
Aurora ReservoirAurora Reservoir, Aurora, CO 80016, USA
South Bay, Horsetooth Reservoir
This sparkling-blue reservoir, located west of Fort Collins, offers a biscotti-colored sandy beach perfect for your favorite beach towel. Put on some sunscreen and take in the scenery of granite peaks and towering evergreens. Canoers and kayakers may be seen from the coast due to the 6.5 miles of water. If you become tired of lying about, go fishing, scuba diving, biking, hiking, rock climbing, or water skiing. Stay till the evening to see the glittering stars in the pitch-black sky along the shoreline.
Horsetooth Reservoir South Bay Campground4200 W County Rd 38 E, Fort Collins, CO 80526, USA
North Star Beach, North Star Preserve Park
Along a calm stretch of the Roaring Fork River, this butterscotch-colored sandy beach can be found. You're not on an ordinary beach when you're surrounded by rolling hills and forest-green flora. The beach is easily accessible and is located on Highway 82, just six minutes from Aspen. Alternatively, you can visit the shore while paddling, canoeing, or kayaking down the river (note: you must put-in at Wildwood and the beach is just a place to get on dry land for a bit, the take-out is at the North Star Pedestrian Bridge).
North Star Nature Preserve43151 CO-82, Aspen, CO 81611, USA
More from this author
Have Story To Share?
Blog with Trip.Social
Reach new audiences and maximize your potential.