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breckenridge colorado affordable activities

Breckenridge on a Budget: Fun and Affordable Activities

Saving Funds While Having Fun in Breckenridge, CO

Breckenridge, Colorado, is a great place planted at the base of the gorgeous Rocky Mountains range, offering family visitors a cozy place to cuddle up during the Winter and an expansive place to explore in the Summer months.

With a rich mining history, the former gold rush town has continued preserving its history through architecture, museums, gold panning expeditions for kids, and a calling for the great outdoors.

The Breckenridge, CO, hills have also cultivated a town that offers modern advances in arcades, breweries, dining, interactive recreation, etc.

With all of the city’s wonders, it is still associated with some of the finer things in life – from the Breckenridge Ski Resort to upscale art museums, high-cost lodging, and designer retail stores.

Over time, it has established a reputation as being a more expensive place to vacation or plan a weekend getaway.

While many state residents and out-of-state tourists visit the area to check out the ski resort, there are plenty of ways to make plans that are friendly to your monthly budget and all the bills you need to take care of when you get home.

gelato breckenridge
Any ideas where he got that gelato? Yep…I Scream Gelato, right downstairs!

skiierEntering Breckenridge Ski Resort Territory

The Breckenridge Ski Resort has long been the city’s central focal point; there are five peaks to visit and over 2,900 acres for cross-country skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing.

People from all over Colorado and nationwide will race to the ski resort to get the first day of fresh powder. Many invest in seasonal passes through Epic Pass that allow them to visit multiple parks.

The pass makes avid skiers and snowboarders eligible for a significant discount on frequent visits and buddy passes for friends and family members on set days throughout the season.

If you are dedicated to visiting the Breckenridge Ski Resort, most families and individuals have to plan out their trips up the mountain for cross-country skiing because of the costs associated.

But that is not all there is to do in the area. You can enjoy the free attractions of the Breckconnect gondola and take the scenic ride to a beautiful view, purchase a ride down the alpine slides, take the sledding hill, or indulge in après on the mountain!

skiing in Breckenridge
Skiing in Breckenridge needn’t cost a fortune if you avail of the discount passes

passDiscounted Cross Country Skiing & Snowboarding Passes

Breckenridge Ski Resort has options through all four seasons; even though Winter is considered the busy season, you can experience a ton of free recreation and Summer activities in the warmer months.

If collecting a ski pass to hit the hills is what you are set on, there are options to gain entry to the ski resort at a discount.

Purchasing your day pass at least a week in advance can end up saving you up to 20% off of what a ticket would cost you for last-minute buys or window pricing.

Additional early-bird options are available before the Breckenridge Ski Resort opens for the season as well.

Ski resort passes are cheaper on weekdays than on weekends, as that is when most people choose to visit the town.

If you plan to visit often or on a regular basis, you should consider purchasing a season pass expedition with a 65% discount and tons of savings from multiple resort options.

fee costIs Breckenridge skiing expensive?

The Breckenridge Ski Resort sits in the middle of the road between other cross-country skiing throughout the Centennial State.

If you are trying to get things done on a budget, you can utilize your Costco membership or King Soopers card to secure a lift ticket at a discounted price.

Many online sites offer flash sales and discounted ski resort tickets throughout the season.

Sometimes, locals will sell passes they have previously purchased and cannot use through social networking sites like Nextdoor, Facebook, etc.

calendarWhat is the best month to ski in Breckenridge?

The best month to ski in Breckenridge, CO, is towards the end of February and even into March.

This is early Spring for the rest of the states, but the mountain has been played on in Colorado all season long and will continue through May.

The locals know all of the best-kept secrets because when planning a trip or ski vacation to Breckenridge Ski Resort, April is the cheapest month to get your lift tickets!

Sledding in Breckenridge

sleddingCheck Out the Secret Sled Shed Instead

If skiing and snowboarding aren’t your thing or aren’t suited for your budget, the alpine slide and sledding are options for more games and fun!

Check out the runway sledding hill options, which are totally free! It is right off Airport Road, easily reached by the free Breck bus loop.

Sledding is also free at Carter Park right off Main Street on the South end, but you cannot rent sleds here and will need to be prepared or visit the sled sheds, where you can park and pull from the pile of sleds to borrow or leave yours behind when you are through!

Try to arrive with your family as early as possible for the festivities because Carter Park is extremely popular in Breckenridge year-round!

If you are looking for something a little more extreme, you can find sledding options at Country Boy Mine, but it can only be accessed using snowcats.

Spend your day sledding, and you can scoot over to Main St for more fun playing games and enjoying refreshments.

Don’t forget about the best gaming snacks available off Main Street inside I Scream Arcade, Colorado’s largest indoor arcade offering everything from traditional gameplay to virtual reality experiences!

fee costHow Much is a Sled at Breckenridge?

If you plan to rent a sled for the day, multiple styles are available, ranging from $10 to $20 – one of the many cheap things to do in the city on a budget.

But with the sled sheds available, you can borrow them for nothing at all, so long as you return them by the end of the day!

ice skating in Breckenridge
Ice skating in Breckenridge

ice skatingIce Skating for the Family at West Ice Arena

Are you looking for the best bang for your buck? Ice skating doesn’t come naturally to everyone, but if you are up in the Breckenridge Ski Resort area, it is a hard thing to pass up, and it is a great activity option on a budget.

The Stephen C Arena is where everyone heads for ice skating in Breck, and it is incredibly affordable at this arena.

  • Adults skate for $13.
  • Children and Seniors skate for $10.
  • Rental skates are $7.

Discounts are offered for a large group; you just need to call ahead to reserve the skates and set up a time for your skating session.

Does Breckenridge Have an Ice Rink?

Stephen C. Arena is the only major ice skating arena in the area. It is directly connected to the Breckenridge Recreation Center off Boreas Pass Road.

The arena is used for additional sporting events, so if you plan a visit, check the calendar in advance and plan accordingly.

The ice rink parking lot because just around the corner is a chance to visit the Breckenridge, CO, troll, beautiful parks, and the old railroad!

family hikes
Hiking is one of the most popular outdoor adventures in Breckenridge, all year around

hikingYou Can’t Enjoy a Mountain Town Without Hitting the Hiking Trails

The city is not solely centered around the Breckenridge Ski Resort; although it is the heart of the town, it wouldn’t be possible without the natural landscape.

Being located almost 9,600 miles above sea level, there are dozens and dozens of different hiking trails to choose from, and you won’t ever have to reach your wallet or phone, for that matter.

The hiking trails in Breck are unlike any other; you can take your time climbing up the mountains in the snow or sunshine!

If you would instead get a ride up the mountain, pop over to the free Breckconnect gondola and take a ride to the top, where you can easily access trails throughout the hills.

Ready for a gamers’ day out in Breckenridge? Try the Snowflake Trail and end your day on Main Street for good food and fun at I Scream Arcade!

biking in Breckenridge
Biking in Breckenridge

mountain bikingMountain Biking, Trail Running & More

If you are heading to the Breckenridge area, you are likely looking for some time in the great outdoors.

The environment is what makes the town so special.

Whether you are flying into DIA first and then taking the drive up, even the weaving roads and tunnels you take there are their own experience, all a part of your experience and the memories that will unfold at Breckenridge Ski Resort.

The hills, parks, and even local dog park all have their own personality defined by the trees, sky, rocks, and all of the natural elements pieced together before us.

The city’s visitor centers can provide more information about the national parkland and trails that surround the area, but there are plenty of choices:

  • Hop in your car and head about 20 minutes away, where you will pass through Frisco and Silverthorne to reach Lake Dillon. The lake’s crystal waters are perfect for boating, enjoying lunch at the picnic tables, biking trails nearby, or simply relaxing and taking in the scenery.
  • Boreas Pass Road is another popular spot in Breckenridge, Colorado. You will have to load the family in the car and drive to the trail entrance, which is best suited for the Summer months if you have small children. The trail is a great place to get great views of the one and only Ten Mile Mountain Range.
  • The Peaks Trail Head is a more moderate option in the town of Breckenridge. The mountains seem to engulf you on this trail, but it will surely make history for your personal, couple, or family trip! Peaks Trail is 6.9 miles long but doesn’t circle around, so you can take the dirt as far as you would like into the mountains until you get tired and head back to Main Street for more fun.
Hiking in Breckenridge
Hiking in Breckenridge
What is the Famous Trail in Breckenridge?

The most widely talked about hiking trail in the mountains of Breckenridge, Colorado, remains the Trollstigen Trail.

The path is actually concise unless you are making the trek from down Main Street, although this is a fun, free, and simple trip to take if you are in a large group. This remains one of the most infamous hiking trails within the city and brings thousands of visitors each month.

At the end of the path, you will find Mr. Isak Heartstone, initially created for the Breckenridge International Festival by Thomas Dambo.

The artists created Isak to embody the spirit of Breckenridge and the importance of reusing and recycling. If you plan to take this trail, you must be highly aware of your presence along the way and ensure you leave no trace!

Glenwood Springs CO
Glenwood Springs CO is located not far from Breckenridge
What Town is Near White River National Forest?

Beyond the usual goodness, excellent restaurants, live music, and artistry that Breckenridge brings to the forefront of their communities – the White River National Forest remains the strong contender in the mix.

It is one of the more frequented national parks for tourists and visitors in the Breckenridge area because no one has an issue with the drive once you get there.

Glenwood Springs, another popular tourist destination in Colorado, is the closest town to this national park. It is known for its shared mountains, ski resort options, and the ethereal hot springs!

This is only a couple hour drive from the town of Breckenridge, but if you are looking for something fun to do on your trip with the family, you cannot miss this!

White River National Forest
Noting describes Colorado’s natural beauty more than the White River National Forest
What is White River National Forest known for?

Who needs a climbing wall when you have mountains like these? You won’t need to search for cheap things to do in the town with these kinds of views and hiking trails available!

White River National Forest is the homebase of breathtaking landmarks like the Maroon Bells and Hanging Lake.

The forest has a way of beckoning you in, and once you have arrived, it is hard to turn back around.

That is what is so special about the mountains – when people say they have been calling for them, you have to know it’s true!

The forest stretches through over ten ski resorts and eight different wilderness areas, over 2.3 million acres.

There are incredibly unique flattop areas to explore throughout the park. Ten Mile Mountain Range is a part of White River land.

If you choose to visit with your family during your Breckenridge trip, you can enjoy skiing, boarding, hiking trails, running, snowshoeing, camping, fishing, and whatever your soul needs!

High Line Railroad Park
High Line Railroad Park

steam trainAdventures in High Line Railroad Park

Since Breckenridge has such a deeply rooted history as a mining town, installing a railroad was necessary for transport.

As you inch out of the downtown area, you can take the streets toward Breckenridge Recreation Center, where the High Line Railroad Park sits.

It is now where the original railroad materials are on display and has been developed into a playground for kids.

It is fabulous for those searching for the background of the town of Breckenridge and its mountains, families, and young children!

Why is the High Line so Famous?

While the park isn’t necessarily famous, it is a hotspot in Breckenridge that tourists and even locals choose to visit as it marks a piece of history.

The city wouldn’t have been established and inhabited similarly if that railroad had never made it up to Breckenridge. It is the perfect place to check out if you want something to do on the cheap.

Carter park sledding
Carter Park allows for sledding, baseball, skiing and so much more!

sleddingPay Carter Park a Visit

We cannot forget about Carter Park, perched right off Main Street. It was initially formulated as a dog park and is always visited on Breckenridge tours, but it has also become an ideal spot for gathering.

Much like the West Ice Arena, Carter Park has become a local gathering place, and the pavilion allows people to gather for weddings, birthdays, and other celebrations.

The park offers visitors tons of amenities:

  • Gathering area with gas fireplaces and picnic areas.
  • Tennis courts and pickle ball courts.
  • Baseball and volleyball courts are used during the Spring and Summer.
  • Public restrooms.
  • Recreational field and trail for hiking, biking, or running.
  • The infamous sledding hill during the Winter and snow season.
Breckenridge co
Take a stroll through downtown Breckenridge CO. You’ll be surprised how thriving this town can be!

breckenridgeTake a Walk Down Historic Main Street in Downtown Breckenridge, CO

If you hope to get to know Breckenridge for all it offers, then you can’t spend all your time in the mountains because downtown Breckenridge is where all the action happens.

From the old masonic hall to gold panning on a mine tour – there are plenty of cheap things with rich experiences off Main St!

You can indulge in a little après after a day of skiing and snowboarding at Breckenridge Ski Resort, check out the local restaurants and cafes for happy hour,

Looking for family fun at Breckenridge Arcade?

I Scream Arcade will take you on a roller coaster ride and amp up your mountain trip with fun for every one part of it.

Mountain Top Cookie Shop
Get some well-deserved treats at the Mountain Top Cookie Shop

shoppingFood, Shopping, Dining & Breckenridge Tours

Whether you are exhausted from your day in the mountains and you are searching for restaurants, or you are just hoping to find a place to cool out and turn your brain off for a bit, there are tons of local boutiques, tourist shops, pizzerias, breweries, bars, arcades and more.

This is the central hub for the town of Breckenridge to come together, and you will find blocks of shopping, exciting events, live music, and festivals that your friends and family can enjoy.

As you are walking around Main Street in Breckenridge, make sure to check out any or all of the following:

  • Clint’s Bakery is a hidden gem amongst Breckenridge, offering deli sandwiches, fresh locally brewed coffee, and baked goods that will have you coming back for more. Clint’s also offers cake orders and other baked goods if they are placed at least 72 hours in advance.
  • The Mountain Top Cookie Shop is another fixture within the Breckenridge mountain community. Everyone in the town knows the smells of these cookies the second they walk out their door. It is a relatively small shop, but that may be because there are usually so many people cramped there at once. Making mouthwatering cookies at a high altitude is their specialty, and you will always have many flavors to choose from!
  • Breckenridge Tap House is a quintessential place to gather after spending an afternoon hiking or biking on the Ten Mile Mountain. Take your pick between 37 different craft brews, gastropub-style grub, and a great place to relax!
  • Marigolds Farmhouse Funk & Junk is a lovely, small, locally owned business in Breckenridge that has quickly made a name for itself throughout the town. The shop supplies vintage clothing styles, shoes, home decor, handmade accessories, and jewelry options!
  • The Arts Alive Gallery is one of the more well-known and frequented art galleries in Frisco, a neighbor to Breckenridge. While there are many options for visual art enthusiasts, this gallery is a must-visit! It is a co-op, community-based artist gallery that features local work for purchase throughout the property.
arcade cabinetWhat Should You Do in Breckenridge if There Is No Snow?

If you came to the mountains in Breckenridge, CO, to hit the slopes, but skiing isn’t an option, it is time to head into town and check out the indoor fun at I-Scream Arcade!

I Scream Arcade joined the town of Breckenridge with enthusiasm for the escape that the town provides visitors and wants to offer a virtual gaming experience for those who consider themselves experts and novices.

We offer a premium gaming experience, with diverse entertainment options ranging from the original classics to more modern gameplay, so your group can immerse themselves in what our arcade offers.

fee costIs Breckenridge Colorado Expensive?

When you are simply looking to take a trip to Breckenridge, Colorado, you may find the term expensive to be true to the definition.

Even renting or locating a home in the area is challenging because it follows the same trends as the rest of the Mile High State.

There is no way around expenses in Breckenridge because you will have to eat at some point or another. You will need a place to rent during your stay, but it isn’t difficult to stick to your budget.

Whether you are skiing on a discounted day pass you received in the early bird special or simply riding the Breckconnect gondola to take in the views – there are always options for significant savings that can supply you and your family the option to make memories that will last the rest of your lifetime.

Historical Breckenridge
The history of Breckenridge dates back to 1880

old townHistory in Breckenridge, Colorado

Breckenridge is drenched in history, as most towns are, but it holds the DNA of that history throughout the town, within the community, and that echoes through the peaks and valleys of the Rocky Mountains.

The historic district is preserved to present Breck’s history and allow the city to continue to develop as a community.

Being a mining district, there is so much to uncover in the town, and the Colorado Historical Society is dedicated to ensuring these sites, like the Blue River Plaza and displays, remain protected.

The Breckenridge, CO Visitor Centers

Just stop by the Visitors Center, which was once the old Masonic Hall, for more information on how to have an adventure in the city.

The Breckenridge Welcome Center is located across the street from the Blue River Hall and is there to greet newcomers, tourists, and Coloradan visitors.

It simultaneously serves as an information hub and a museum – displaying and offering things to do, good restaurants, a place to have happy hour, and all-season activities that fit your vacation budget!

Enjoy a spot of basketball in Breckenridge!

Free Museums & Continued Recreation for the Whole Family

Venturing further into the city of Breckenridge is something to do outside Main Street and the town’s central point.

There is plenty of indoor recreation, ace throwing fun, a giant bounce house at the top of the mountain, basketball courts, tennis courts, and plenty of things to do to stay active.

With a place that has all of these exciting recreation opportunities in one place – outdoor enthusiasts, athletes, extroverts, and introverts can all thrive equally!

Breckenridge Recreation Center
The Breckenridge Recreation Center includes venues for tennis, basketball, a gym, and also a water park!

museumThe famous Breckenridge Recreation Center

Breck is already considered one of Colorado’s most active communities, and having access to both indoor and outdoor recreation, coupled with everyone within the community always participating in the movement, can be contagious.

The Breckenridge Recreation Center is located off Airport Road, giving community members and visitors easy and uncomplicated access to the facilities.

The recreation center is $20 for adults and $10 for children, providing additional discounts for seniors, last-hour entries, and membership options allowing buddy passes to be utilized.

The rec center has a little something for every kind of person, offering the following:

  • Tennis courts
  • Basketball courts
  • Indoor track
  • Weight lifting center
  • Cardio machines
  • Rock climbing wall
  • Ice rink
  • Baseball and soccer fields
  • Personal training and group fitness classes
  • Skate park
  • Conference center
  • Access to the Nordic Center and more!
calendarHow Many Days Do You Need in Breckenridge?

You could move to Breckenridge and still not be able to get through everything there is to do there. The mountains are a gigantic playground; the town only adds to these features.

Most visitors will choose to make their stay a long weekend to get in a couple of days of skiing or hiking and then rest and recover.

It is entirely up to you how long you stay, but if you hope to keep things within budget, four days will provide a nice getaway!

museumBarney Ford House Museum Tours

Barney Ford was a stand-out figure in Breckenridge, and his previous home has been developed into a beautiful museum for visitors to learn about his life.

He was an escaped enslaved person and entrepreneur who became very successful in both his personal and business endeavors.

Why is Barney Ford famous?

Barney was born into slavery in 1822 but escaped and made it to Colorado, where he began investing in businesses, restaurants, and the fruitful mining industry.

He fought for equality, civil rights, and the suffrage movement and died at the age of 26. A stained glass window was created in his image and displayed in his honor.

Country Boy Mine
Explore the Country Boy Mine

minerCountry Boy Mine Tour

Country Boy Mine in Breckenridge is another historic site that allows tourists to reach 1,000 feet deep into the mountains and fully tour one of the city’s mining sites.

You have the chance to experience what it would be like to be a miner in Colorado!

Beyond that, Country Boy Mine offers the following expeditions:

  • Snowshoe tours.
  • Mine and gold panning.
  • Treasure hunts.
  • Extreme sledding with snow cats!
  • Sleigh tours in a monster truck.
  • Scavenger hunts and group events.
Is it worth going to Breckenridge?

Breckenridge is a sum of all its parts, and as an active mountain town, it cannot be displayed in photos, advertisements, or magazines.

It is a place that offers epic experiences all throughout the year, from Winter sleigh rides and snowboarding to summer hikes and campsites or rainy day activities in Breckenridge.

You have to see the town for yourself, but once you arrive and on your journey up the mountains, it is always worth it.

Between Breck’s interesting history, outdoor recreation, indoor fun and games, fine dining, dessert shops, sweet boutiques, arcades, museums, mine tours, etc. – you will never get bored, nor will you stop searching for excitement.

visiting breckenridge co
If you’re visiting Breckenridge co, make a stop to I Scream Arcade@

Are You Thinking of a Trip to the Tenmile Range?

If you are considering planning your trip but need to piece together some affordable activities while you are in town, explore our game room at I Scream Arcade.

While we are a newer addition to charming Main Street, our reach extends to everyone!

Games should be something that makes you laugh, allow you to cultivate memories with friends and loved ones, and remain accessible within inclusive environments.

breckenridge co family
Let us know if you’re planning a visit to Breckenridge. We’ll be happy to point out all the good spots to enjoy life!

Visit Breckenridge on a Budget: The Beautiful View is Always Free

You can get into plenty of things during your Breckenridge trip, but I Scream Arcade stands out within the crowd and the gorgeous hills of the Rocky Mountains. Get in touch with us and schedule your visit!