Just returned from a beautiful and relaxing week in Grand Lake,CO. Being our first time there,we were not sure what to expect. I'll admit, I was a little afraid of running out of things to do for a whole week- in such a small town. Boy, I couldn't have been more wrong! Our time there flew by in the blink of an eye. Sunday we ate at The Fat Cat Cafe for brunch. It was fantastic...still dreaming about that place. Teriffic food and friendly atmosphere. Then we explored all the neat shops in Grand Lake- so much fun. My mother and I took a tour of the Kaufmann House, right off the marina. That was a really neat experience! We love soaking up the history of new towns we visit.
On Monday (the fourth of July), we took the 1 hour lake tour, through Headwater's Marina. It was truly one of the highlights of the trip. Guide gave a great overview of the history of the town and all the homes/properties on the lake. We loved seeing all the different boathouses so much, that we bought a Patricia Rainey poster of them, at the art gallery in town. We shopped around more, then went back to our rental home to relax for the afternoon, and take in the stunning views from the property's deck. Found the property on VRBO and booked 1 year out to get the holiday week. Set on 7 acres, with stunning views of Shadow Mountain lake, as well as gorgeous abundance of wildflowers and pine trees. That evening played at the neat playground /park in town while waiting for seating at The Sagebrush Bar and Grill. It was delicious food and such a fun atmosphere. Then around 8:30 down to the marina, to stake out our spot for the fireworks. So much fun, the fireworks didn't start until 10:00, but a dj was playing music and we danced and laughed in the streets with our children, until they started. The fireworks were spectacular that they shot off from the middle of the lake. The moments spent watching them were worth all the time and research planning my vacation. Just beautiful! Were a little worried about how long it would take to get back to our cabin after the show, but only 45 minutes. We had been hearing stories of 3-4 hours from other people. We parked near the far end of the village, so that helped out.
On Tuesday we spent half the day exploring Winter Park. We packed a picnic lunch and set off. Did the alpine slide and explored the village area shops. We also explored the shops in downtown Winter Park. Bought some souvenirs at the store' Shirt Off My Back,' in the village. First discovered that shop in Breckenridge a couple of years ago and love it.. Then we went back to Grand Lake for ice cream at Grand Lake Chocolates and Ice Cream (right next to Fat cafe , in middle of town). I think we stopped in there 4 more times over our stay, for chocolates and ice cream. We LOVED the place. They had something like 32 flavors of ice cream!
On Wednesday we took the 2 hour breakfast horseback trailride through Sombrero Ranch. It was a fantastic experience. We got to see a moose in RMNP, we were super excited about that!
Thurday we explored RMNP for about half the day and had a picnic lunch. It was so beautiful and the weather was hovering around 70. In the evening my husband and boys played in the arcade in town, next to Grumpy's
On Friday we hiked Adam's Falls, which was so pretty. The children especially loved seeing the waterfall. Shopped more in the town, buying those last minute souvenirs. My husband and boys played mini golf in town (my 4 year olds first time). My mother and I went on a wildflower walk at the visitor center in the afternoon. It was fun and informative. Stopped by to look at Grand Lake Lodge, a neat property with stunning views of the lake below. Went to the swim beach for a little while, so the kids could stick their toes in the water. That was a lot of fun for them- cold, but they didn't seem to care.
We left Saturday morning. A beautiful and relaxing week. Thank you to everybody on the forum for helping me plan my trip!