Ski, Hike and Cozy up on an Aspen Honeymoon

Balance outdoor sports with luxury in this Colorado destination.
Aspen, Colorado ski lift
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Dina Cheney - The Knot Contributor.
by
Dina Cheney
Dina Cheney - The Knot Contributor.
Dina Cheney
The Knot Contributor
  • Dina writes for The Knot Worldwide, specializing in food, travel and relationships.
  • With more than 20 years of experience in service journalism, she also pens articles and recipes for publications, such as Good Housekeeping, Parents, SELF, Health, Men’s Health, Men’s Journal, Prevention, Fine Cooking, Weight Watchers and Diabetic Living.
  • Dina graduated from Columbia College, Columbia University and The Institute of Cul...
Updated Dec 28, 2021
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In the winter, ski and snowboard, then sip a cocktail in front of a crackling fire. During the warmer months, head to an art museum after a hike amidst mountain vistas.

If those scenarios sound enticing to you, book a honeymoon in Aspen, a town located in Colorado's Rocky Mountains. "Aspen has the beauty of a small mountain town, but the allure of a big city, with world-class dining, shopping, culture and entertainment," says Limor Decter of Embark Beyond.

Looking for Aspen honeymoon ideas? We've got you covered. Below, you'll find everything you need to know.

Is Aspen Good for a Honeymoon?

With spectacular scenery and skiing, Aspen is ideal for nature-loving, sporty couples. The iconic mountain town in the Roaring Fork Valley also delivers when it comes to culture, with award-winning restaurants, boutiques and hotels, as well as sophisticated visual and performing arts offerings.

"This quintessential resort town has a gorgeous natural setting and Rodeo Drive brands," says Brian Payntar Harris, owner of Aspen Travel Advisors.

Pros of an Aspen Honeymoon

"Aspen is particularly well-suited to active couples," says Amy Siegal, a travel advisor at Valerie Wilson Travel. The ski-resort town and its environs are home to four ski mountains: Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Snowmass and Buttermilk.

Surrounded by dramatic scenery, newlyweds can go snowboarding, skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, ice-skating and dogsledding in the winter. During the summer, they can keep busy by mountain biking, kayaking, rock climbing, horseback riding, whitewater rafting, paddle-boarding, golfing, hot-air ballooning, paragliding and fly fishing.

As an added bonus, the city is easy to access. You can fly direct from Chicago, San Francisco, LA, Atlanta and various other starting points. Or, you can fly into Vail (a two-hour drive) or Denver (a four-hour drive).

Cons of an Aspen Honeymoon

This tony town is not a budget-friendly destination. "There's a limited selection of mid-range properties and no low-cost options," Harris says.

Avoid visiting during November and December, since there will be no snow and fewer activities, says Lauren Doyle, president of The Travel Mechanic.

The Best Time of Year to Go on an Aspen Honeymoon for Good Weather

Aspen is a year-round destination; however, it particularly shines in the winter (for skiing) and the summer (for hiking and biking). Since it's a slower season, fall tends to offer lower prices (though some restaurants, shops and hotels might be closed), Harris says.

Places to Visit in Aspen on a Honeymoon

Downtown Aspen

"Downtown is very pedestrian-friendly," Decter says. "Everything is walkable and easily accessible." While away an afternoon strolling through the various boutiques.

The Maroon Bells

For truly epic summer and early fall scenery, visit this reflective lake and two 14,000-foot-high peaks located 10 miles west of Aspen. You'll be rewarded with views of colorful wildflowers, yellow aspen tree foliage and maroon mountains. Time your trip mid-week to avoid crowds.

Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro

Take a snowcat ride to this cozy restaurant atop the Aspen Highlands, Siegal suggests. At 10,750 feet, you can dine on fondue and other Swiss fare.

CHICA

Book a table at celeb chef Lorena Garcia's new Aspen outpost, Siegal says. Try the lemon chicken, ember-roasted mussels in coconut broth, and Mexican hot chocolate.

Pine Creek Cookhouse

Sit down to a meal of wild game and fresh fish at this restaurant situated at the base of the Elk Mountains. Guests reach the spot via a horse-drawn sleigh, skis or snowshoes, making it an ultra-romantic pick.

Things to Do During an Aspen Honeymoon

Attend a Cultural Event

Especially in the summer, this mountain town has a full schedule of cultural offerings. Attend a concert at Belly Up Aspen or through the Aspen Music Festival; listen to a lecture included in The Aspen Institute's Ideas Festival; or watch a Theatre Aspen performance.

Hike or Bike

Traverse the challenging 6-mile Ute Trail (known for its beautiful wildflowers) or the 0.5-mile Grottos Trail (check out the waterfall). For four-wheel action, pedal along the 42-mile Rio Grande Trail.

Get a Spa Treatment

Harris recommends the on-site Remède Spa at The St. Regis Aspen Resort. Book a couples massage, a bath or another indulgent treatment.

Best Hotels and Resorts in Aspen for a Honeymoon

The St. Regis Aspen Resort

Located at the base of Aspen Mountain, this property features luxurious rooms, including the Presidential Suite (with a private balcony, a deep soaking tub and access to butler service).

The Little Nell

This five-star luxury hotel just steps from the Silver Queen Gondola includes opulent rooms and a spa. Luxurious but not stuffy, it's the only ski-in, ski-out hotel on Aspen Mountain, Siegal says, adding that you should book well in advance.

Hotel Jerome

Part of the Auberge Resorts Collection, this hotel is centrally located in downtown Aspen. "I like the Western furnishings mixed with chic, contemporary decor," Decter says. "The Victorian facade and historic charm plus fine service and dining options make it a great choice for newlyweds."

W Aspen

The brand's first North American alpine property, this hotel is ski-in, ski-out and offers panoramic mountain views. For a vibrant après-ski scene, visit its on-site restaurant and public rooftop. The latter boasts a heated pool, a hot tub, fire pits, cabanas, a bar, a dance floor and a DJ booth.

Limelight Hotel

Located downtown, this comfortable spot offers a breakfast buffet, a fitness room, rooftop terraces, outdoor hot tubs, a heated pool and bikes.

Onefinestay

Onefinestay recently launched a collection of chalets in Aspen. These rentals include 24/7 guest support and housekeeping, plus the option to use the company's concierge team to plan adventures—think dogsledding and skiing in nearby Snowmass and dinner cooked by a private chef in your chalet.

What to Pack for an Aspen Honeymoon

Bring activewear and athleisure clothing, Harris says. "Tourists tend to dress up for dinner, but locals never do, and there are no dress codes anywhere." Decter also recommends toting layers, as temperatures vary throughout the day.

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