AOL Travel
Print

Aspen Travel Guide

Inside Scoop From Aspen Locals

5 Best Photo Opportunities in Aspen

Aspen, Colo., is located at the head of the Roaring Fork Valley, near the highest...Read More

Aspen Mythbusters

Aspen is famous for being the playground of the wealthy and of Hollywood...Read More
Aspen OVERVIEW
Unlike many purpose-built ski resorts, Aspen is not simply rows of condos slapped against a slope. It's a real town with real roots and that’s part of its charm. The community began as a 19th-century silver-mining boomtown and achieved greatness in its early days. Today, summer or winter, it exudes a feeling of community and a sense of place. Thanks to a part-time population of corporate execs and Hollywood elite, the West's best-known ski town has a reputation for being an opulent retreat for the rich and famous. Granted, there are plenty of mini-mansions and starter-castles to be found, but walk Aspen's streets and you'll see ordinary homes with owner-mowed yards and swing sets out back. The town sits beside the Roaring Fork River in the heart of the Colorado Rockies. At 7,800 feet above sea level, Aspen is not high by Centennial State standards, yet six of Colorado's 54 peaks rise over 14,000 feet in elevation near the city. In winter it offers four powder-plastered ski areas, all accessible ...See More on a common lift ticket. In summer it's an outdoor playground, especially for those willing to replace motors with muscle power. Just be careful—up here, thin air can result in various forms of altitude sickness, including headaches, insomnia and AMS (acute mountain sickness which often combines pounding headaches with shortness of breath, rapid pulse, nausea, dizziness, fatigue and swelling of hands and face and, interestingly enough, tends to affect the young and fit the most). To minimize your chances of contracting AMS, drink lots of water, avoid alcohol, and lay off strenuous activity the first few days. If you feel ill, rest. If you're coming from sea level, a night in Denver (only 5,280 feet) on the way in can help with acclimation. And don't forget that thin air means more of the sun's UV rays will be blistering your body. Slather your exposed skin with lots of high SPF sunscreen. If you’re willing to splurge on your Aspen travel, you can enjoy four-star and five-star hotels and multi-fork restaurants where wine lists feature thousand-dollar bottles. But there are plenty of lesser-cost options available and cheap things to do, including free art, music and, of course, the great outdoors. For many, Aspen simply epitomizes the Colorado lifestyle at its idealistic best. See Less
BEST IN Aspen TRAVEL
from our Editors
  • Sky Hotel
  • Sky HotelLocated next door to the Little Nell, the Sky offers the same closeness to the slopes, but at a more comfortable price...
  • ...
  • ...
  • AOL Travel Editors test hundreds of travel experiences at all price points. See their recommendations and make the most of your trip...
ADVERTISEMENT
INSIDE SCOOP
from Aspen
ALL Aspen articles