A walk around Denver

Colorado State Capitol and Civic Center Park

We found Denver to be a compact and walkable city. As our guidebook included a walking route which ended up at the State Capitol, very close to our B&B, we set off to do it in reverse.

The Capitol (1890s) wasn’t looking its very best with a bit of scaffolding round about, but we could still admire the ornate golden dome (1908) – 200 ounces of gold leaf went into that to celebrate the Colorado Gold Rush. Denver is also known as Mile High City and the 13th step up to the Capitol marks the exact point where that becomes true.

Across the road Is Civic Center Park. I liked the idea of using part of it to grow produce for food-banks.

Two Old West sculptures sit in the park, both by Alexander Phimister Proctor: Bronco Buster (1920) and On the War Trail (1922). Apparently, the model for the cowboy was arrested for murder before the statue was finished, but Proctor insisted that he should be allowed to continue posing for as long as he needed him.

To one side of the park are the public library and Denver Art Museum (DAM), both interesting buildings. The latter has one of the largest Native American art collections in the USA, which I can easily believe as we spent hours in there (including having lunch in their very fine restaurant, Palettes). Unfortunately, even though I still have the floor plan, I have not been able to caption much in the gallery below. I remember being fascinated by the video about creating the woman sitting with several infants between her legs, and could have told you its significance at the time, but now? No idea! That will teach me to leave things six months before writing them up.

Back on the street, we found plenty more art including this  40-foot-tall blue bear peeking through the window of the Convention Center (I See What You Mean by Lawrence Argent) and Jonathan Borofsky’s Dancers, two giant white figures prancing towards the Performing Arts Complex.

Our next stop was the Tattered Cover Book Store where we took the weight off our feet over a coffee. Friends had told us about this place: it was huge when they visited, but competition from Amazon and the like has reduced it to one floor. The little scene on the stairs commemorates Charlie Shugarts (1918-2007), Friend of Tattered Cover.

Our route then took us down Cherry Creek to the South Platte River. Here, in Commons Park, we found the sculptures below. I think, checking online, that these were temporary, part of an exhibition of nine sculptures by Jorge Marín called Wings of the City. I also realise I should have stood between the giant wings before John took the photo. Well, he knows I’m an angel anyway 😉

Just beyond Commons Park is the dramatic Millennium Bridge which marks the beginning of the walking tour – or, in our case, the end. We were tired after being on our feet all day and decided, rather than going back to the B&B to come out again for dinner, we would eat earlier than normal so that we could go home to relax.

This also meant we could re-admire by night some of the buildings we had walked past earlier in the day, such as this one – the Daniels and Fisher Tower. Modelled after St Mark’s Bell Tower in Venice, it originally formed part of a department store, long since demolished. Since the 1980s it has been residential and office space. Wow, I’d love to live there!

Our vacation was rapidly drawing to a close – but the next day was a highlight: a meeting with a fellow blogger. Who could that be? More soon!

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63 thoughts on “A walk around Denver

  1. Debbie H April 3, 2017 / 11:08

    What a great post about Denver! I enjoyed seeing it through your eyes and look forward to your blogger meetup!

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 3, 2017 / 12:55

      Thanks, Debbie, we thought it was a lovely city so I hope I’ve conveyed some of that.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Debbie H April 4, 2017 / 00:22

        You did convey that Anabel, it’s always interesting to see where others visit 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. hilarymb April 3, 2017 / 11:29

    Hi Anabel – it must be amazing to see – gilding the lily .. .just a small dome! What fun – and it looks a delightful city … wonderful museum too – lots to see … cheers Hilary

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 3, 2017 / 12:55

      Just a small dome with lots of gold! It was all delightful.

      Like

  3. Jemima Pett April 3, 2017 / 11:39

    It would be lovely to return to Denver to see those fab sculptures – but then, I feel I’ve done the walk already!! Great post, Anabel.

    Like

  4. Eunice April 3, 2017 / 12:25

    Great post and photos, Denver looks like a really interesting city. The sculpture (?) of the woman with the kids sitting between her legs looks like something out of one of the Shrek films. 🙂

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 3, 2017 / 12:58

      Thanks, Eunice. I hadn’t thought of that, but it does!

      Like

  5. Kathleen Jennette April 3, 2017 / 15:54

    I never knew why it was called mile high. Now I know. I’ve ridden through a small part of Colorado and never had time to stop and do. Next time, I’m taking your tour.

    Like

  6. joylovestravel April 3, 2017 / 17:36

    Enjoyed the trip around Denver Anabel! We loved the city when we visited. What a shame about the book shop though…

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 3, 2017 / 17:46

      Thanks, Joy, we thought it was great – nice and compact but still plenty to do.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Birgit April 3, 2017 / 17:41

    What an excellent walk! I love the art pieces you saw and I wonder whose office it is who has the bear staring at them every day? 🙂 The artists have great eclectic tastes and I love that it is spread throughout the city. The woman with the kids-it looks like the kids all come from different races meaning we all come from the same place and are not that different after all. The tower does look likt e tower from Venice and in the last picture it looks like it is leaning?? I would love to have an apartment there as well.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 3, 2017 / 17:48

      Ha ha, it was probably the angle of the photographer! And I’m sure your explanation of the sculpture is correct. Makes sense.

      Like

  8. ms6282 April 3, 2017 / 18:03

    Interesting to see the art by Native Americans. When I was in Australia it was the art by aboriginals that I found most interesting during gallery visits. But the work of white Australians and Europeans was generally given more prominence. I guess it’s the same in the USA.

    Like

  9. Silvia Writes April 3, 2017 / 18:16

    Lovely post, Anabel. And a meeting to make it all even lovelier. I love the pics. Although I don’t live very far, I’ve never been to Denver.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 3, 2017 / 19:19

      Thanks, Silvia. It’s well worth a visit, I think – beautiful setting too.

      Like

  10. Helen C April 3, 2017 / 19:34

    Great introduction of Denver, Anabel. I don’t know how you could remember so many details! And it seems that you always know where to go and what to see! You are amazing!
    Have a wonderful day. Thanks for sharing.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 3, 2017 / 20:14

      Thank you, Helen, that’s very kind! However, I have to confess I needed to look up a lot online for this because it was 6 months ago. Also, I always keep guidebooks, maps and brochures until I’ve written about somewhere and that’s a big help too.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Anabel Marsh April 3, 2017 / 21:02

      Thank you! Or at least, thank you on behalf of the Chief Photographer who took most of them.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. RuthsArc April 3, 2017 / 20:24

    Thanks for this post Anabel. I’m glad I joined your virtual tour 🙂

    Like

  12. the eternal traveller April 3, 2017 / 22:11

    What an enjoyable stroll around Denver. I love the blue bear. Imagine suddenly finding him peering in at you!

    Like

  13. Donna April 3, 2017 / 22:45

    You did very well remembering details for this post. I am now very intrigued to find out which blogger you met there!

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 3, 2017 / 22:56

      Thanks, though as I said above I had to recheck a lot that I had forgotten. As to the blogger, all will be revealed next week!

      Like

  14. Blue Sky Scotland April 4, 2017 / 01:06

    Looks an attractive, quirky and impressive city. Nice photos to highlight that as I don’t remember many films set in Denver.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 4, 2017 / 06:59

      There’s one called “Things to do in Denver when you’re dead” but I rejected that as a post title! 😉

      Like

  15. Retirementallychallenged.com April 4, 2017 / 04:51

    Denver is such a beautiful city and you did a great job highlighting the great art and landmarks (Tattered Cover is my all-time favorite book store). I’m looking forward to learning about your meet-up!

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 4, 2017 / 07:05

      Thanks – it’s always good to know that someone familiar with a place likes my representation of it!

      Like

  16. shazza April 4, 2017 / 06:23

    I love places with lots of quirky sculptures. Denver looks my kind of place. 🙂

    Like

  17. Sarah Ferguson and Choppy April 4, 2017 / 16:03

    Nice – I particularly like that blue bear. He’s fun and whimsical, and easily accessible for everyone from kids to adults as a piece of public art (which I wish was the case for more public art).

    Like

  18. Ann Coleman April 4, 2017 / 16:38

    Denver is a terrific city to visit! I can’t wait to go back, but in the meantime, I enjoyed your photos. And which blogger did you meet???

    Like

  19. Lynne Rickards April 4, 2017 / 17:13

    I’ve never thought much about Denver but it does look like a great city to visit (and probably live in). All the whimsical sculpture is fantastic, and I do like a compact, walkable place. Plenty of green space, handsome architecture and blue skies – what else could you want?

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 4, 2017 / 18:11

      Not much! I agree it would be a great place to live – a city, but so close to all those wonderful mountains.

      Like

  20. Green Global Trek April 5, 2017 / 03:15

    Thanks for sharing these terrific sculptures and art installations. We spent some brief time in Denver en route to Boulder where our oldest son went to University. Loved the proximity of the city to mountains etc but sadly did not have time for museums etc. so thanks for the tour!
    Pets

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 5, 2017 / 06:39

      I think Boulder would be a really lovely place to study!

      Like

  21. BeckyB April 5, 2017 / 10:27

    I’ve only ever travelled through Denver, never stopped. So I have only seen the railway station and the inside of the airport. Clearly I need to rectify that!

    Like

  22. Jessica (Diverting Journeys) April 5, 2017 / 18:59

    There’s something about state capitol buildings that I really like (maybe because so many of them are Victorian?), and Denver’s is no exception.The golden dome looks very grand. I love the red dinosaur too! 🙂

    Like

  23. susan@onesmallwalk April 7, 2017 / 15:56

    Anabel – just catching up on your American adventures. What lovely photos – especially the one of you on the bench. Looks like a great visit. – Susan

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 7, 2017 / 17:26

      Thank you, Susan! Hope all is well with you – I’ve noticed you’ve not been around for a while.

      Liked by 1 person

      • susan@onesmallwalk April 9, 2017 / 00:23

        Anabel – I am so pleased you noticed! It’s taking me a while to catch up on all my favorite writers 🙂 – we were out and about in South East Asia for a bit. Wonderful trip, but what a long-haul flight!

        Like

  24. Irene April 8, 2017 / 00:16

    I lived in Denver for nine glorious months and loved the various sculptures and architecture. I actually worked for Denver Public Schools. North, South, East, and West High Schools were built using four different architectural styles, which I loved. Just found your blog, so I need to go explore your explorations.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 8, 2017 / 07:56

      I imagine it must be a lovely place to live. Thank you for visiting!

      Like

  25. Marcia Strykowski April 8, 2017 / 22:47

    Your pictures are wonderful, Anabel–such great art and architecture. I’ve never been to Denver, but will have to add it to my list!

    Like

  26. Ellen April 9, 2017 / 17:03

    I have to say Denver has never been on my list of places I really want to see, but your post has changed that. It looks like a really interesting city with lots on offer.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 9, 2017 / 18:01

      Thanks Ellen, we really liked it. We chose it for its location, near the mountains, so didn’t have much idea about the city itself beforehand. We were very glad we went though!

      Like

  27. restlessjo April 11, 2017 / 08:06

    A grand looking city with a heart, Anabel! Or do I mean a social conscience? 🙂 🙂 That’s a great idea- the veg plot.

    Like

  28. Elaine - I used to be indecisive April 11, 2017 / 10:11

    Thanks for this tour. I suspected that Denver might be a really interesting place. 🙂 We flew in, hired a car, and drove out to the ski resorts without any chance to explore the town.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh April 11, 2017 / 10:47

      We sometimes do that with cities we arrive and depart from but Denver definitely looked worth a few days and we loved it.

      Liked by 1 person

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