11 Beautiful Spots for the Perfect Sunrise in Denver (2023)

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If you’re wondering where to see the sunrise in Denver, you’re in luck!

There’s nothing quite like witnessing the sunrise firsthand. Denver is home to some of the most beautiful sunrises in the country, and we’ve compiled a list of our 11 favorite spots to watch the show.

Whether you’re looking for an Instagram-worthy spot or a quiet place to reflect, these locations have something for everyone. Keep reading for our picks on where to watch the perfect sunrise in Denver!

🚗 Click here to rent a car for your trip to Denver!

While public transportation is alright in Denver, it’s truly easiest to get around by car. (Trust us, we didn’t have a car our first year living there… not fun!)

Sunrise in Denver

Red Rocks

Located right outside of the city, Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater is one of the best places to watch the sunrise in Denver. That’s because it has a great vantage point that allows you to see the city skyline in the distance as the sun peeks over the mountains!

With its awe-inspiring red sandstone rocks and stunning views, visitors can enjoy a peaceful walk or hike through the park before settling in to watch the sunrise. And with such a picturesque setting, it’s definitely worth getting up early for!

Keep in mind that this area can sometimes be a bit cold in the morning, so be sure to dress warmly. You could even consider bringing a blanket!

Barr Lake State Park

Obviously, this list would not be complete without including at least one state park near Denver! Barr Lake State Park in Brighton has amazing views of the rising sun with its unique landscape, which serves as a beautiful sunrise spot.

The park features a wide, open prairie landscape that provides an ideal setting for catching the morning’s first light. Visitors can enjoy a peaceful walk along the park’s nature trails while taking in the stunning scenery.

Additionally, Barr Lake State Park is home to a variety of wildlife, making it a perfect place to observe nature at its finest.

This is also a great spot for camping near Denver, as camping is allowed right within the state park.

Sloan’s Lake

We’ve been to Sloan’s Lake a few times, and it’s easily one of our fave spots for the Denver sunrise. That’s because it actually has a pretty great view of the city skyline, and the area itself is fairly quiet, even though it’s literally in northwest Denver.

Getting there is super quick and easy, especially if you’re coming from downtown. Once you get there, you can find one of many spots around the lake where you can sit on a bench or even at a picnic table to enjoy the morning views.

In the morning, the sun rises over the city and casts a beautiful light on the lake and its surroundings. If you’re looking for a peaceful place to watch the sunrise, Sloan’s Lake is definitely worth checking out.

South Table Mountain Park

South Table Mountain Park is one of the best spots for watching the sunrise in Denver, Colorado. The view from the top is simply breathtaking, and there’s nothing quite like witnessing the sun slowly rising over the Rocky Mountains.

To catch the sunrise, try to do one of the many hikes in the area. They range in difficulty, so pick one that’s best for you. The most popular hike is the easy Fossil Trail, which takes around 40 minutes to hike and is only a little over a mile long.

Keep in mind that because this is a park, it doesn’t open until an hour before sunrise, so don’t get there too early.

The Flatirons

The Flatirons in nearby Boulder is easily one of the absolute best places for watching the sunrise. You don’t even have to hike to see the beauty, as you can see from the picture above!

Just head over to Chautauqua Park and find a good spot either in the parking lot or in the lower part of the park to just sit and enjoy the view. It’s beautiful as the colors of the sky change and peek out behind the mountain range.

You can also consider going on a hike if you want, but just remember that then your sunrise view will be over the town of Boulder. Don’t worry, though; that’s still just as beautiful.

The Flatirons are a popular spot for hikers, and there are plenty of trails to choose from, so you can get up close and personal with the natural beauty of Colorado.

Mother Cabrini Shrine

Located in Golden, the Mother Cabrini Shrine has one of the most unparalleled and unbeatable sunrise views near Denver. The view from the shrine is incredible, and it’s a great place to spend some time alone or with friends.

The shrine is located in the rolling hills and offers a unique vantage point. This is a favorite spot among locals, for sure, so it’s usually quite a bit more serene than other spots to catch the sunrise in the area.

Before going, be sure to learn a bit more about Mother Cabrini, who passed away in the early 1900s.

City Park

City Park is the biggest park in Denver, and it’s located not that far from downtown. It’s home to the Denver Zoo, and many city events are also hosted here too. Plus, there’s tons of green space where you can sit and trails where you can walk or go on a morning run.

What makes City Park so great is that it is surrounded by many trees that provide a beautiful view and create a perfect backdrop for the sunrise. In addition, the park is large enough to accommodate plenty of people who come to watch the sunrise, so it’s a great place to gather with friends and family.

You really can pretty much go anywhere in the park for a great view, too. If you visit in winter, you’ll even be able to see the colors of the sky change and reflect against the snow-topped peaks.

Garden of the Gods

Okay, so even though it’s located a bit south in Colorado Springs, you should still consider watching the sunrise at the famed Garden of the Gods. This unique rock formation takes a bit longer to get to than other spots in Denver, but it’s worth it for the view.

Consider going to the visitor center’s viewpoint if you want to see the sky change over the rock formations, or go on one of the hikes that go around the perimeter of the park if you want a more quiet spot.

Once you’re done watching the sunrise here, stop by the visitor center for some breakfast from the cafe or head to downtown Colorado Springs to support another local breakfast and fuel up before heading back to Denver.

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    Daniels Park

    Daniels Park is a great spot for watching the sunrise in Denver because of its pristine views of the Rocky Mountains. This park is pretty unique because a bison herd actually lives right within the park, so you can see wildlife here, too.

    There are a few ways to watch the sunrise here. You can just find a comfortable spot to sit (which is a good idea if it’s colder), or you could consider exploring one of the trails in the park to get some morning exercise in as the sky starts to change colors and the nearby city begins to wake up.

    This is also one of the best spots for sunset in Denver, so you could even come back here at night if you wanted to!

    Barnum Park

    Barnum Park is one of the more underrated places to catch the sunrise. It’s located pretty centrally in Denver but does allow you to see the city skyline! You can often find people here with their dogs.

    At Barnum Park, in addition to the skyline, you can find a beautiful pond that reflects the colors of the sunrise in the morning. There are also some paths here that you can just walk to stretch your legs as you begin to wake up and watch the sunrise.

    Many people also visit this park to bike, so it can be a great spot to start an early morning bike ride in Denver.

    Even though it’s located right in southwest Denver, the park is still fairly quiet, allowing for a nice tranquil morning watching the sunrise.

    Lookout Mountain

    Last but not least is Lookout Mountain! Located in Golden, this mountain provides unparalleled views of Golden from above. In the morning, this view is impeccable as you see the blues and pinks of the sky begin to change color as the town wakes up.

    The best way to witness the sunrise from here is to do one of the hikes. One of the most popular hikes is the Windy Saddle Lookout Mountain hike, which is around 4.5 miles long with 700 feet of elevation gain. It’s an out-and-back trail, and you’ll want to start a bit earlier before the sunrise to make sure you don’t miss it!

    There are also many other trails here too if you want to do something a bit shorter.

    🚗 Click here to rent a car for your trip to Denver!

    While public transportation is alright in Denver, it’s truly easiest to get around by car. (Trust us, we didn’t have a car our first year living there… not fun!)

    FAQ: Best Sunrise Spots Denver

    What time of year is the best time to catch the sunrise in Denver?

    The best time of year to catch the sunrise in Denver is typically during the summer months from May to August, as there are longer daylight hours during this period. It’s also warmer in the mornings in summer!

    What is the earliest I can catch the sunrise in Denver?

    Depending on the season and day of the week, you can typically see the sunrise between 4 a.m. to 6 a.m.

    What should I bring with me when catching a Denver sunrise?

    It’s important to dress for weather conditions so make sure to check what temperatures are like before heading out. A camera will also be helpful for taking photos or videos of your experience. Additionally, bring water and snacks if you plan on staying out for an extended period of time.

    Are there sunrise hikes near Denver?

    Yes! The best sunrise hike near Denver is Lake Haiyaha in Rocky Mountain National Park.

    Final Thoughts: Denver Sunrise

    Yellow sunrise over the Denver city skyline.

    Denver, Colorado is renowned for its breathtaking natural beauty, offering some of the best mountain views in the state. With its remarkable landscapes, the city boasts a multitude of spots where one can witness the most stunning sunsets in Colorado.

    From vibrant hues painting the sky to mesmerizing views, Denver is home to an array of picturesque sunset spots near the city center. In fact, Denver and its nearby regions are considered to be the best places to watch the sunset in Colorado (at least by us).

    For those seeking the best mountain views in Denver, Colorado, the options are truly endless. Whether exploring the outskirts of the city or venturing into the heart of the Rocky Mountains, magnificent vistas await at every turn.

    Whether reveling in the best views around Denver or capturing the ethereal splendor of a sunrise, this city is a treasure trove for nature lovers. Enjoy watching the sunrise in Denver!

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