Blake Walsh

15 Free Things to Do in Westminster, CO

  • Published 2023/01/22

Westminster‘s abundance of stunning architecture and outdoor pastime activities are only two of the reasons why the city is popular among tourists.

Located in the Denver–Aurora–Lakewood metropolitan area in Colorado, this city also boasts a small-town atmosphere that’s attractive to many travelers.

Its long list of organized sports opportunities makes the place a haven for outdoor enthusiasts.

Situated in Adams and Jefferson counties, it’s also a suburb of Denver, which sets it conveniently near metropolitan urban modernity.

Westminster’s alluring history goes back to the 1850s when the place became a gold rush discovery site.

Incorporated as a city in 1911, Westminster’s tourism soared to new heights with the budding of public art, hiking trails, large open spaces, and city parks.

If you think exploring this city is expensive, you’re wrong!

To prove this, here are 15 free things to do in Westminster, Colorado, to help you plan your budget-friendly itinerary:

Take a Selfie in Front of the Westminster Bell Tower

Daytime view of Westminster Bell Tower

Kit Leong /

The Westminster Bell Tower tells of the surviving history of the city.

A visit to this tower is a must if you plan to visit all the must-see sights in Westminster.

Built in 1988, this bell tower stands 14 stories and has an eye-catching 130-foot spire.

Exactly two years before its construction, the city thought a bell tower would be a good public art investment because of its synonymy with Big Ben in Westminster, England.

It became—and still is—a centerpiece for the City Hall.

The City of Westminster, England, even gifted Westminster, Colorado, with English oaks that you may see standing within the same property.

Though you can’t go inside Westminster Bell Tower on West 92nd Avenue, you can freely take photos of the historic landmark.

Go Sightseeing while Biking around Big Dry Creek Trail

For a one-of-a-kind biking experience, add Big Dry Creek Trail to your itinerary.

This 12-mile trail curves around open spaces, parks, and neighborhoods.

Mostly flat, the trail also passes through occasional curves and peaceful hills, offering serene scenery for your solo or group biking excursion.

With the skyline clear in the distance, it’s easy for you to spot birds and other wildlife fluttering and scurrying along the trail.

For quick breaks, there are benches and picnic areas available.

For a charming surprise, go through underpasses with painted murals.

Big Dry Creek Trail starts on Simms Street and ends on Interstate 25.

Have Fun with the Whole Family at Westminster Center Park

Along West 2nd Avenue, Westminster Center Park offers a fairytale-inspired play area to the community.

Built in 2010, this 10-acre park comes with a magical play area and an obelisk at the very center.

These features gave birth to the nickname “Peter Pan Park.”

Surrounding the obelisk are water-featured pads that open around Memorial to Labor Day.

The play area features a London-themed community, complete with castle-like play climbers and a structure that resembles Big Ben.

There’s also an amphitheater onsite that’s commonly used in large-scale park concerts and other events.

Come by Westminster Center Park during the summer and enjoy its magical facilities with loved ones and friends.

Relax at Torii Square Park

Torii Square Park features a tribute plaque to Yuko Nakamura Kishimoto, an important visitor from Japan who attended high school in the city.

Unfortunately, at only 25 years of age, she suffered a stroke, and she and her unborn child died in 1974.

A year later, another plaque graced the property grounds.

This time, it was for Pleasant DeSpain Homestead, which was the first residential of its kind in Westminster in 1870.

After improvements and renovations in the following years, this park now boasts Japanese architecture with the presence of a “torii,” a red structure shaped like a gate.

Torii Square Park’s cherry blossoms are also the perfect backdrop for memorable photos and meditation exercises.

You can find this park on Lowell Boulevard.

Play Sports at Westminster City Park

For a bit of family recreation, you can never go wrong with a visit to Westminster City Park.

Spanning 205 acres, this park is the definition of “all-in-one.”

It offers various facilities—from sports courts and play areas to a fishing creek and picnic areas.

Aside from baseball and basketball courts, a disc golf course is also free to use.

Try your hand at swinging when you come by!

For the daredevils, there is also a skatepark within the site.

Gather your family for a well-deserved outdoor break at Westminster City Park on North Sheridan Avenue.

Take Your Furry Friends to Westminster Hills Off-Leash Dog Park

When traveling to another city, it can be difficult to find entertainment for the whole family, especially for your canine friend.

But at Westminster, you don’t have to worry!

Westminster Hills Off-Leash Dog Park allows your dogs to make the most of their vacation too!

Spanning 420 acres, this park is partially fenced and spacious enough for dogs of every breed to roam around and play fetch.

There are trails you can explore with them, too.

At Westminster Hills Off-Leash Dog Park, you can find a dog drinking fountain and porta potties.

It’s located on Simms Street with another parking station on West 100th Avenue.

Spend Time in Nature at Hyland Ponds Open Space

Ready for an undisturbed nature stop where you can relax or follow nature-paved trails?

Hyland Ponds Open Space is the spot for you!

This natural area highlights two ponds surrounded by trails of the same name.

Picturesque with sweeping vistas of the mountains, this park is popular among fishing and hiking enthusiasts.

But if you’re not up for catching a few fish or going on an adventurous hike amid the dense forest, you can always just sit and observe nature.

Westminster’s Hyland Ponds Open Space is along West 100th Avenue.

Take a Quick Break at Allison Community Garden

Established in 2006, Allison Community Garden offers a quick respite for travelers exploring the streets of Westminster.

This public garden features urban agriculture within 24 plots on Semper Farm.

But did you know this garden is also a historic spot in the city?

This garden is home to the state-champion apple tree and connects the Farmers’ High Line Canal Trail to the community.

Chill by the park benches while admiring the garden landscape, or take a photo while standing underneath the garden’s pergola.

Allison Community Garden is on the northwest corner of 92nd and Pierce Streets.

Check Out the Public Art Installations in Downtown Westminster

Walking around downtown Westminster can be as exciting as treasure hunting.

Spend your afternoon spotting various public artworks and installations all over the district and look through the lenses of various artists.

For your first stop, see the Promise of the Prairie sculpture on West 92nd Avenue.

This historic piece is the first public artwork within the city and depicts a family strengthened by hope for the future.

On Hooker Street, be amazed by the portrait painting of a woman surrounded by abstract and colorful designs.

Along Big Dry Creek Trail, there’s also a mural of foxes at the entrance of the underpass on Simms Street.

More artworks await you in the heart of the city!

Pay Your Respects to Fallen Heroes at the Armed Forces Tribute Garden

The Armed Forces Tribute Garden is not your ordinary garden; it serves as both a memorial park and a contemplative space and aims to share the stories of the fallen soldiers of the country.

This tribute encompasses those from the Army, Marines, Navy, and other military fields.

Over 1,600 honorees are mentioned in the granite pillars erected onsite.

There are seating areas and walkways with pavers for more details about the people who’ve sacrificed their lives in service.

There’s also a water feature at the central section of the park, providing a refreshing atmosphere to the spot.

The Armed Forces Tribute Garden is on West 104th Avenue.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Other adventures are waiting for you in cities near Westminster.

Below are other free activities you should add to your list when traveling to Colorado.

Hike around Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater

Scenic view of Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater

Sean Pavone /

Get your hiking shoes ready because at Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater‘s trails, you’re in for a picturesque surprise.

Within the two hiking trails that offer clear vistas of Denver, you can expect a diverse collection of rock formations.

Not only that, but there are also fossil monoliths of ancient and extinct animals.

Its 868-acre park is big enough to house many habitats and wild animals, so you can look out for some along the way.

Concert setup at Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater

Stephanie A Sellers /

If you prefer to stay indoors, you can always browse the exhibits at the Colorado Music Hall of Fame and Trading Post.

Exploring the grounds of the park, museum, and amphitheater does not come with a cost, but attending concerts may come with a fee.

Only a 26-minute drive from Westminster, Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater is on West Alameda Parkway in the city of Morrison.

People at Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater

Jim Lambert /

Get Your Face Painted for the Lafayette Peach Festival

One of the most popular festivals near Westminster is the Lafayette Peach Festival.

This annual festival and yearly tradition happens every August.

Celebrated in Old Town Lafayette on Public Road and see the streets lined with booths and stalls.

Browse through antiques and artworks from all over the western states.

Little ones, meanwhile, can enjoy the free face painting and balloon sculpting sessions.

To get to the street festivities at the Lafayette Peach Festival, you only need to drive for about 20 minutes from Westminster.

See the Art Displays at the Dikeou Collection

When it comes to art discoveries, the Dikeou Collection in Denver is among the top-tier galleries to check out.

Established in 1998, this gallery highlights contemporary art.

With the help of at least 30 artists, owner Devon Dikeou also holds immersive artist talks in the museum.

The gallery’s programs include family workshops, jazz music performances, and literary renditions of poems and written works.

While they are free to the public, you may have to call for an appointment in advance for special events and features.

The Dikeou Collection is on California Street 1615, which is about 22 minutes away from downtown Westminster.

Spot Bison and Other Wildlife at Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

Bison at Rocky Mountain Arsenal Wildlife Refuge

Nina B /

Only 19 minutes from Westminster, Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge is an ideal site to relax in nature.

Established in 2004, this nature preserve is home to various endangered species and native foliage.

Before becoming the refuge it is today, the early Apache and Ute settlers lived peacefully with the bison population within the area.

Now, with the area developed to accommodate wildlife observation activities and nature hiking, the site offers several nature programs that the whole family can enjoy.

Mule deer at Rocky Mountain Arsenal Wildlife Refuge

Susan Pettitt /

Alongside bison herds, you’ll see black-footed ferrets and sandhill cranes.

Cultivate your love for photography and archery, which you can enjoy freely through the site’s special programs.

Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge is on Gateway Road in Commerce City.

Trail at Rocky Mountain Arsenal Wildlife Refuge

Corey Carrico /

Browse through Historical Resources at Aurora History Museum

Aurora History Museum, only a half hour from Westminster, is your best bet for an educational detour without straying far from the city.

Go through archived photographs, artifacts, and other shelved memorabilia offering a glimpse into Aurora’s past.

Learn more about the art, culture, clothing, and tradition of the early Aurora dwellers through permanent exhibits and art showcases.

Aurora History Museum is on East Alameda Parkway.

Final Thoughts

With Westminster’s massive collection of historic and outdoor attractions, choosing to travel to this city is a no-brainer.

From scenic parks to rustic trails, everyone has a place they can explore and get lost in.

Add that to its free and diverse activities, and you are sure to come back to this city again and again.

Keep in mind these free things to do in Westminster, Colorado, for a more enjoyable experience.

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