Frisco, Colorado may not be as well-known as some of the other towns in the state, but this under-the-radar destination is considered a gem by many family travelers. It’s located less than two hours from Denver and has a variety of activities, lots of great restaurants and plenty of mom-and-pop shops.
Its location on the banks of the Dillon Reservoir is ideal—it’s surrounded by public land (think nature as far as the eye can see). There are six nearby mountains for skiing and snowboarding, and for those who prefer other activities, there’s plenty in this charming town to keep families busy while on vacation.
What to Do
Winter in Frisco means snow tubing at Frisco Adventure Park, which is located between Frisco and Breckenridge and has amazing views of White River National Forest. In the summer there are miles of hiking and biking trails, but winter brings Nordic skiing along the shores of Frisco Bay and Dillon Reservoir. In addition to snow tubing (one of the most popular activities to be found), there’s also a beginner ski and ride hill (which is ideal for those who have never been on skis).
The Frisco Nordic Center—located just off Main Street—has skate-skiing, classic cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing with over 16 miles of trails. They also have gear rental, lessons and clinics. If you’re looking for something a little different, try your hand at skijoring (think cross country skiing with a dog).
Two Below Zero Sleigh Ride is a real treat for couples or families looking for something unique to experience. It starts with a sleigh ride through the Rocky Mountain landscape followed by a home-cooked meal (options include freshly-made steak, chicken and homemade apple pie) and your beverage of choice. Then settle in and listen to some local music and entertainment. It’s a great way to experience the Rockies in an intimate and memorable way.
Spend a relaxing afternoon at the Frisco Historic Park and Museum (which is free) and learn about the history of this town through artifacts, exhibits, and photographs. If you’re a shopper, there are plenty of opportunities to explore unique stores along Main Street.
Food and Drink
There are plenty of good family restaurants to be found in Frisco.
Uptown on Main Street is family-owned and operated and has been a staple in Frisco for over 20 years. Come hungry as their menu has a variety of options ranging from pizzas, burgers and pasta, to soup, salad and unique dishes like bison meatloaf. They are also known for their happy hour specials and their extensive bar menu (in addition to handcrafted cocktails, they have over a dozen draft beers on tap including local Colorado favorites).
Butterhorn Bakery & Café is a Frisco institution; it’s been around for over 40 years. For breakfast they have everything from biscuits and gravy, to eggs any style (omelets, frittatas, scrambled, poached), but be sure to try the Eggy Bread—a special of the house. If you come in for lunch, you can still get breakfast in addition to over a dozen sandwiches and salads. If you don’t have the time for a meal—grab something from the bakery, they have a variety of cookies, brownies, turnovers and other sweets made freshly each day.
The Bread + Salt is another great breakfast option and is a fan favorite for both locals and visitors. They focus on locally-grown ingredients and serve up classic breakfast dishes with a twist (like the truffle scramble and the summit vegetable hash). For lunch, try some of their unique dishes (like the duck confit tacos and the forest mushroom burger) or stick to some tried and true favorites (like the pork sandwich and the BLT).
For dinner, a good option is Bagalis—a classic Italian restaurant with artisanal pizzas including the fan-favorite classic Bagali—which has mozzarella, fennel sausage, capicollo and ham. Pasta lovers have a choice of linguini, fettucine and penne served with a variety of sauces and fresh herbs; plus, Italian sausage, shrimp and chicken can be added. The menu also has fish and meat options including salmon and short ribs.