Aurora, Colorado bills itself as the “Gateway to the Rockies” with close proximity to the region’s famously breathtaking scenery and abundant wildlife in the mountains, but it offers plenty of its own for those who plan to visit or move into one of the Aurora apartments.
As it’s so close to Denver, many think of it as more of a suburb, but Aurora is the third largest city in the state, known for everything from cultural attractions and outdoor recreation to an outstanding dining and nightlife scene. With that, it’s becoming increasingly recognized as a place worthy of its own distinction.
There are many parks in Aurora, from spaces for exercising your dog off-leash (Grand View Dog Park offers five acres for Fido and Fluffy) and boating at Aurora Reservoir to hiking and biking trails at Cherry Creek State Park. Golf enthusiasts will find many courses to play on, including Meadow Hills, Aurora Hills, Saddle Rock, Springhill, Murphy Creek, and Fitzsimons.
At Sports Park, there are national and regional soccer tournaments on 22 multi-use fields plus a dozen softball/baseball fields. No matter what you’re looking for, there’s probably an activity for you in Aurora to enjoy – not only the above, but swimming, tennis, dance, gymnastics, and mini-golf, just to name a few.
If that’s not enough, the stunning red rocks in Garden of the Gods can be reached in only a little over an hour, located at the base of Pikes Peak, and a 75-mile drive will bring you to one of the most popular national parks in the country: Rocky Mountain National Park.
Here in the high plains, there are all sorts of opportunities for wildlife watching. At the Pronghorn Natural Area with its over 800 acres of open space, you’ll have a great chance of spotting herds of pronghorn and other creatures like mule deer, prairie dogs, birds, and the occasional coyote.
Near the border of Aurora and Commerce City is the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge which covers 15,000 acres with woodland, wetland, and prairie habitats – you can hike or take the Wildlife Auto Tour to see bald eagles, burrowing owls, deer, black-footed ferrets, coyotes, and herds of bison out on the horizon.
Cherry Creek State Park not only offers prairies, rolling hills, wetlands, a reservoir, and mountain views, but some of Aurora’s most diverse wildlife from large freshwater fish, turtles, bald eagles, and hawks to coyotes and mule deer. One can also view wildlife in their natural habitat at Star K Ranch and the Morrison Nature Center. It’s a great place to visit in the winter, with animals like marten, deer, owls, eagles, and the occasional cougar or bobcat. Plus there are programs during the season like bird walks to view the winter waterfowl.
Diverse Dining and Nightlife
There’s no reason to have to drive to Denver when you want to dine out. There are hundreds of eateries in this city, with flavors from across the globe.
That includes some 250 locally operated ethnic restaurants serving classics from six different continents, with everything from casual classic fare to trendy fine dining with many talented, creative chefs here.
The nightlife is buzzing too with venues like the Kasbah, one of the hottest nightclubs in the city. It features multiple stages and live entertainment that includes regional and national artists. Stampede is where everyone goes for country, with live concerts, seven bars, a dance floor, and a restaurant.