Best Things To Do in Crested Butte with Toddlers

by | Jun 28, 2024 | Colorado | 0 comments

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Crested Butte is a small mountain town located in western Colorado. It is well known for its mountain biking trails, downhill skiing, hiking trails and beautiful wildflowers. This town is the perfect place to visit during any season but summer time is especially beautiful. 

This mountain town is the perfect place to visit with kids of any age. We like visiting with our kids in summer because there are so many beautiful kid-friendly hikes. The colorful Elk Street that runs right through town is also something that is fun to see. 

No matter what time of year you visit, you will be sure to find something to do with kids of all ages.  


Where to Stay with Kids:

There are lots of different places to stay in Crested Butte that are great for kids. There are a few places to stay in downtown Crested Butte but most places are located just a few miles from town in the Mount Crested Butte area.

Mount Crested Butte area is located at the base of the ski resort in Crested Butte. You can find all types of accomodations here like hotels, condos, and vacation rentals.

We personally enjoy staying in condos or vacation rentals when traveling with our small children. We stayed at the Grand Lodge which was perfect for a weekend getaway. This condo included a king size bed and a small kitchenette area which is perfect when traveling with kids. There was also a heated outdoor pool which was a big hit with our kids as well. 

I have also heard good things about the Elevation Hotel and Spa. It is located right next to the Grand Lodge and looked like it would also be a nice place to stay with kids. The rooms at this hotel also include a kitchenette.

If you are looking for a bit of a splurge, The Nordic Inn is a fantastic place to stay as well. There are several different types of rooms to choose from and some come with their own balconies that include hot tubs overlooking the mountains. There is a breakfast included with this hotel which is always a nice perk when traveling with kids.   

Where to Eat With Kids:

Crested Butte is filled with all types of food options so you can be sure to find something that your family will enjoy. We choose to eat dinner out every evening during our weekend stay and found some really great places on Elk Street.

Secret Stash: This is a pizza place that serves up some delicious pizza. They have some really unique speciality pizzas and the atmosphere is really fun. Our kids loved all of the decorations inside this restaurant and really enjoyed the pizza as well. The service was great and it was very kid friendly. 

Public House: This place was another favorite during our stay. The menu has a good variety of things to choose from and the kids menu is great too. If you can, request to be seated in one of the front windows. The kids loved watching everything going on on Elk Street. 

Pitas in Paradise: This place is perfect if you are looking for a quick bite to eat. They specialize in pitas but also have a few other things on the menu. We enjoyed trying some of their different types of pitas and the kids loved their grilled cheese pita. 

Tin Cup: No trip to the mountains is complete without some ice cream. This small ice cream shop serves homemade ice cream that is delicious. The kids loved coming here after a day of hiking and they have lots of rotating flavors. 

One thing to make note of is that there are no big grocery stores in the area. They have some small stores with basics but if you plan to make some meals while staying in this area, I would suggest stocking up before coming. 



Where to Hike With Kids:

There are tons of hikes to do with kids in Crested Butte. It is a great place to expose kids to hiking as there are several trails that are very easy for younger kids. We did three different hikes while we were visiting and thought they were perfect for kids of all ages. Our two year old hiked some of the trails and then was in the hiking backpack for a portion of the trails. Our four year old happily hiked all of these trails.  

Woods Walk: This hike is located just a few miles outside of the downtown area of Crested Butte. There is a small parking lot right across the street from the trailhead which makes it very easy to access. We had no problem finding a spot on a Saturday morning. 

This walks takes you through a beautiful aspen grove and then continues on into some open fields. This is a great to do during wildflower season which runs from mid June to mid July in Crested Butte. I can also imagine it would be beautiful in the fall with all of the aspens that we passed on the hike. 

This hike is very easy and there is little to no incline. The entire trail is about 2 miles round trip but you can turn around whenever your kids have had enough. There are great views over the city of Crested Butte and we couldn’t get over how beautiful the wildflowers were. 


Story Walk: This hike is also located just a few miles from the downtown Crested Butte area. This hike is a little bit harder to find but if you search for the Lower Loop Trailhead or Budd Trail you should be able to find it. 

The start of this hike follows a dirt road from the main parking area. If you are hiking with small children, you can continue driving up the road for about a half mile and you will come to a small parking lot that is designated for people with disabilities and people hiking with small children. We used this parking lot as we were hiking with small children and it saved us a good hike up the dirt road. 

This particular hike was so fun for our four year old. Each year, the local school designs a story for this hike and you can follow the trail to see all the different pages of the story. My four year old couldn’t wait to find the next pages of the story. This really helped make the hike super fun for her and it was another easy hike for our family. 

This hike is only one mile round trip so it is a great hike for small children. You can choose to continue on this trail and then it becomes the Budd Trail. We turned around after the story walk ended as this was our second hike of the day. This trail is very popular with bikers as well so be sure to keep an eye out when hiking this trail. 


Judd Falls: This hike is located a little further out than the other two. It is located about a 15 minute drive from the Mount Crested Butte area. The road to get to this hike is a dirt road but it is well maintained. You should be able to access the main trailhead parking with any type of vechicle during good weather. 

The trail starts on a rocky road from the main parking lot. You go up this road about a half mile and then you will hit the main trailhead. If you have a four wheel drive vechicle, you can drive up the road about a half mile further to one of several pull off parking areas. 

This hike is a little more difficult that the previous two that I have listed above. There is much more incline and uneven ground but is still douable for most kids. Our four year old did just fine on the hike although she did get a bit tired at the end. 

The hike is about 2 miles round trip from the main parking area. There is a gradual incline up the rocky road and then the hike evens out and has incredible views of the surrounding mountains. This is also a great hike for wildflowers and beautiful views. The end of this hike rewards you with a beautiful waterfall which our kids loved. Our four year old said the hike was worth it just to see the waterfall. Just be sure to mind your kids when you get to the waterfall as there is a tall drop off at the observation area. 


Other Things to Do In Crested Butte With Kids:

There are several other great things to do with kids when visiting Crested Butte. 

Trailhead Children’s Museum: This is the perfect place to take the kids on a rainy day or just for some downtime from the outdoor activities. It is a very small children’s museum but it was perfect during a rainy afternoon.

The great thing about this museum is that you pay a fee to enter for the day but you can come and go as you please. They have a few different rooms with different activities in each. They even have an outdoor patio with activities as well. 


Rainbow Park: This park is located on the edge of downtown Crested Butte. It is a fairly large playground that has a covered picnic area and a large soccer field adjacent to it. This was a great place to take the kids to burn off some energy. 

They loved all of the different aspects of the playground and I loved the amazing views from the park. There is a small parking area right in front of the playground which makes it very easy to access. 


Pirate Park: This is another great park located in downtown Crested Butte. This is a fairly new playground and is another perfect spot to let the kids run around. This park has lots of unique features and both of my kids loved it. My two year old liked the sandbox with diggers the best and my four year old loved all of the rope climbs. 

This park also has a soccer field adjacent to it and some parking right next to it as well. It is located less than a half mile from Elk Street so you could easily walk there after if you wish to. 


Silver Queen Chairlift: This is a chairlift that takes you up to the top of Mount Crested Butte. We did not get to experience this during our stay but I have heard good things about the ride up.

It is only a 7 minute ride one way and then you can take in the views from the top of the mountain. There are also several trails on the top that you can hike around if you choose. 


Crested Butte is a wonderful place to visit with kids of all ages. We especially love visiting in the summer since we love to hike with our kids. If you are looking for a small, beautiful mountain town, you should look no further than Crested Butte. 

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