Colorado Vacations 
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Your Guide to Visiting Colorado with the Kids
Where to Eat with the Kids in the Vail Valley

When the kids are hungry and you need to fine a restaurant the whole family will like, the Vail Valley offers great places to eat with the kids.


Here is our list of favorite family feeding spots. 





Colorado Hotels have come a long way.



Canvas tents and drafty log buildings have been
replaced by
elegant inns
and plush accommodations.


Photo: Colorado hotels like The Little Nell in Aspen, offer vacationing families posh quarters close to blue-ribbon outdoor recreation.

 

Read our
articles about
Colorado's Luxurious Lodges.







Photo: Kid love the freedom of biking around Vail.

 







See Colorado's National Parks with the Kids!


Our nation's National Parks have been called the
crown jewels of America. 



Colorado is the proud home of four National Parks: 

  • Rocky Mountain 
  • Mesa Verde 
  • Great Sand Dunes 
  • Black Canyon of the Gunnison 

Plan your great Colorado family vacation with our
series on Colorado's National Parks - 45 pages of information and inspiration


Start with the National Parks Directory at FamilyTravelColorado.com
              
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The Prettiest Places in Colorado



From Mesa Verde's Far View Lodge to Vail Mountain's Eagle's Nest, Colorado is full of great scenic spots to show the kids.

Check out our article about the
Prettiest Places
in Colorado.













Did You  Know?


In 1899, the Colorado General Assembly adopted the white and lavender Columbine, Aquilegia caerules, as the official Colorado State Flower.

Later the General Assembly determined that it is the duty of all citizens to protect this rare species from needless waste or destruction.







Colorado girl skiing at Monarch
Photo: Colorado slopes call adventurous 
families looking for fun in the 
fresh air and sunshine.




At the Westin Riverfront Resort at Beaver Creek Mountain, the lobby wears an understated and elegant look during the day.



By night it fills with guests - families who come downstairs to socialize and relax.

In short, for a luxury family ski lodge experience, the Westin Riverfront strikes the perfect tone.  




 
Photo: Atwater on Gore Creek offers mountain-elegant decor,
chef prepared cuisine, a kids' menu, and high chairs.
Photo credit: Vail Cascade Resort

Feeding the troops was top of the mind for the generals who led the 10th Mountain Division to their training headquarters in the Colorado Rockies.


Those boys were active in the frosty air and burned calories like never before and food was a high priority. 


Any parent who has wondered where to eat on a family vacation in the Vail Valley knows how those generals felt. Is it possible to find a restaurant to please the kids and parents at the same time?



Fortunately, the mountains of Eagle county are home to some of the best chefs and mess sergeants in the country. Here is some intelligence on where to find them - our list of our favorite family restaurants in the Vail Valley.  


Beaver Creek Village


The Dusty Boot Steakhouse and Saloon. St. James Place #304. 970-748-1146. beavercreek.dustyboot.com/home/welcome 

A short flight of stairs leads up to the balcony entrance of the Dusty Boot, some of the best cowboy cuisine in Beaver Creek. Inside, barn wood paneling and big tin stars set the stage for casual family dining, Colorado style. Build your own chicken, beef, or veggie burger or try the excellent pork green chili. The kids menu offers fresh fruit and vegetables to eat as an alternative to the standard fries.


Our server was extra friendly and the food came quickly. All in all, the Dusty Boot is a good choice for families on vacation in Beaver Creek.    




Rimini Gelato and Chocolate. 45 Thomas Place. 970-569-3854.

www.riminichocolate.com


Rimini Café trades in treats for the tongue - and the eye. Although the establishment serves hot chocolate, lattes, wine (!), and sumptuous chocolates, we never even noticed. The kids’ eyes saw nothing but the beautiful mountains of creamy, rich gelato on display. Be prepared for a long decision-making process, but assure your children that no matter what they decide, they can’t go wrong. 

Avon



Pazzo’s Pizzeria in Avon. 82 East Beaver Creek Boulevard. 970-949-9900. www.facebook.com/PazzosCO 


In the middle of a valley catering to the tourist fantasy, Pazzo’s is a relaxed, local pizza joint. Our waiter wasn’t exactly chummy, the food took a while to come, and they forgot to fill our water glasses. We loved this restaurant. 


From the Avs hockey game on the TV to the guys in jeans, hoodies, and ball caps lining the bar, to the high school kid bussing the tables, the place was as local and authentic as it gets as it gets in any Colorado mountain town. By 6:30 in the evening it was packed. Folks greeted each other as as they sat down, and a cowbell chimed to call waiters to pick up orders. 


Our order came, and the veggie calzone, one of the best I’ve ever eaten, was packed with fresh green pepper, spinach, and ricotta and mozzarella. The huge lasagna serving was enough to fill our growing teenage boy, and the pizza had a delicate, crispy crust.  Our family of four was well satisfied for just over $40. 

Vail


Vendettas. 291 Bridge Street. 970-476-5070. www.vendettasvail.com 

The kids are clamoring for pizza, but mom and dad are hoping to try some of Vail’s famed cuisine. It makes a family wonder if it will find a restaurant to please everyone. 


At Vendetta’s in Vail, a swanky pollo madiera happily shares the table with a half pepperoni/half cheese pie.



Just about a block away from the Vista Bahn chairlift, in the heart of Vail Village, Vendetta’s has big windows and doors which open to let in the summertime mountain air and provide access to an inviting patio. The relaxed, understated decor inside makes both the fancy dishes and the kid fare comfortable. 


Blu’s
. 193 East Gore Creek Drive. 970-476-3113. www.blusrestaurant.com 

Splashy little burbling sounds from Gore Creek drift across the lawn to our table on the patio of Blu’s, a hidden gem among Vail’s restaurants. An evening chill sinks off the mountains as the midsummer sun makes its long descent. It feels good to have a fleece jacket on hand. After an active day in Vail, this is a lovely place for a family to relax. 


The kids’ menu offers a good selection of kids’ favorites, plus nice additions like cheesy scrambled eggs and fries, served all day. 


And for the parents, options include well executed dishes like the Greek pizza and pork green chili. The burgers are substantial and juicy. The Gypsy schnitzel with its Marsala gravy is delicious. 


After dinner, we linger over our coffee while the boys escape through the patio gate. We watch them play on the lawn at the edge of the creek and savor a perfect vacation moment.   

Atwater on Gore Creek. 1300 Westhaven Drive. 970-479-7014. www.vailcascade.com/atwater 

A wall of windows lines one side of Atwater restaurant and overlooks Gore Creek. Just on the other side of the creek, an aspen- and pine-covered slope climbs over 2,000 feet to the top of the Game Creek Bowl on Vail Mountain. 


Skiers are schussing around up there, but down here the Atwater dining room is cozy with the rich smells of morning coffee and fresh baked pastry.  From granola and yogurt parfaits to mounds of fluffy scrambled eggs, the breakfast buffet has something for everyone in the family and plenty to fuel kids for a day of playing hard in the snow. 


For dinner, the tone in the dining room is a little more formal with its white tablecloths and quiet wait staff. Still children are treated with utmost consideration, as exemplified by the high chairs available for very young diners, and the reasonably priced kid’s menu.  


If families prefer, they can enjoy pizza, salad, soups, and sandwiches on the comfy furniture before the big fireplace in the Fireside Bar. 


Blue Moose Pizza. 675 Lionshead Place, Building D. 970-476-8666. www.bluemoosepizza.com 

The Blue Moose Pizza is located at the Lionshead base area of Vail, right next to the ice rink.


Red Naugahyde booths and checkered tablecloths greet you when you walk in. The tablecloths are covered in sheets of white butcher paper and a centerpiece of crayons-in-a-glass finishes the look. Framed pieces of kids’ hand-drawn art work decorate the walls. A large, blue, metal moose stands in the dining room and peers into one of the booths. Clearly the owners had families in mind when they created this restaurant. 


And full of families it is. To my husband, it seemed a bit like Romper Room as kids from different tables crossed the room to socialize with each other. (Servers were as careful and comfortable with their young guests as any kindergarten teacher would be.) 


The pizza was tasty and had a chewy, flavorful crust. My son’s milk allergy was catered to without the bat of an eyelash as they made part of our pie without cheese. 


After dinner, one of the young diners asked my son to join her at another table. There she introduced him to ski champion Lindsey Vonn who graciously used a crayon to autograph a corner of butcher paper for him to take home.