A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Boone vs. Denver for Skiing, Nightlife, Hiking, and Families

Should you visit Boone or Denver?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Boone and Denver can help you decide which place is right for you.


Boone is a charming, relaxing, and quaint town. This is a great small town that is just waiting to be explored. The beauty of this spot is also one of the main reasons why visitors come. And you can't forget about the shopping, museums, and skiing.


Denver is a accessible, sprawling, and park-filled city. Because this is such a big city, visitors will find many sights and attractions around town. It's also popular because of the shopping, skiing, and nightlife.

Boone and Denver: Pros and Cons

  • Popular for skiing
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Very walkable
  • Small town charm
  • Impressive beauty
  • Home to the Blue Ridge Parkway
  • Popular for skiing
  • Active nightlife
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
Things to Consider
  • Less museums and historical sights
  • Less popular with backpackers
  • Less popular for students
  • Less walkable

Is there more to do in Boone or Denver?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Denver. Although Boone and Denver are both popular with visitors, Denver has more sights, activities, and attractions for travelers. Denver is more popular for its big city activities, while Boone is known for its skiing, museums, food, nightlife, hiking, shopping, small town charm, and impressive beauty. Boone is more touristy than Denver and is popular for its proximity to great hiking, skiing, and small town charm. Denver is popular for serving as a gateway to the Rocky Mountains and the many national parks that are in the area. It is also home to Red Rocks Park.

How is Boone different from Denver?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Denver and Boone. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Is Boone or Denver Better for Skiing?


Boone is a well-known place for snow skiing. Also, Denver is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for skiing and snowboarding.

People head to Boone specifically to take advantage of the area's skiing and winter sports. It's a very popular ski destination in North Carolina. There are family-friendly slopes as well as more challenging options. Head to the popular Appalachian Ski Mountain, nearby Beech Mountain, or Sugar Mountain for some of the area's best skiing.

Head to Denver for some great skiing and other winter activities. Although there's no skiing in the immediate area, there is a huge list of world class ski resorts within an hour or two of town. Two of the closest are Echo Mountain Resort and Loveland Ski Area.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Boone or Denver?


Boone is a nice place to visit for its sights and museums. However, Denver is not a good city for its museums and history.

Boone offers a variety of museums and landmarks to choose from. Most people spend the majority of their time exploring the natural beauty, but there are also several small local museums such as the Banner House Museum.

While most people don't head to Denver specifically for the museums and attractions, it does offer a few options. Many people use Denver as a starting or ending point for their mountain and national park trip, but those who linger can visit some of the city's museums and sights. Popular museums include the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, the History Colorado Center, and the Forney Museum of Transportation.

Is the Food Better in Boone or Denver? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?


Boone is a nice place to visit for its local cuisine and restaurants. However, Denver is not a good city for its restaurants.

Visitors will find a budding food and restaurant scene in Boone. You'll find farm to table restaurants, local cafes, and all of the standard chain restaurants nearby. Check for a High Country Grown certification if you want to prioritize locally sourced ingredients.

Denver may not make the list for most foodies, but you'll find what you need while you're in town. It's a pretty large city, so you'll find some nice local restaurants, but the foodie scene is still emerging in many neighborhoods. A number of restaurants offer outdoor seating, which is nice. You'll also find a growing selection of international restaurants. For something uniquely local, you should try the Bison steak and fried pickles.

Is Boone or Denver Better for Nightlife?


Boone is a well-known place for nightlife and partying. Also, Denver is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its evening party scene.

Boone offers plenty to do in the evening. It's a small town, but there are local breweries and a great nightlife scene that is, in large part, influenced by the large student population.

With a handful of venues, visitors can find a fairly lively vibe in Denver. The city has come a long way with its nightlife. There's a great craft beer scene and the downtown area has really come to life. Popular bars and clubs in town include the Grizzly Rose and 54Thirty Rooftop. Many places are concentrated in the Soco Nightlife District.

Is Boone or Denver Better for Hiking?


Boone is a well-known place for the nearby hiking options. Also, Denver is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its hiking trails.

Boone is a popular spot for hiking. The area is filled with wonderful hikes, particularly around Grandfather Mountain and along the Blue Ridge Parkway. The famed Appalachian Trail passes through the area as well. Many hikes take you through beautiful forests, passed dramatic waterfalls, and to breathtaking viewpoints.

Plenty of visitors go hiking around Denver. The city is very close to many beautiful parks and hiking areas in the Rocky Mountains. It's not hard to make a day trip from town and enjoy some great hiking. Nice options include the Trading Post Trail in Red Rocks Mountain Park, Bergen Peak near Evergreen, and Chimney Gulch Trail near the town of Golden.

Is the Shopping Better in Boone or Denver?


Boone is a well-known place for its shopping opportunities. Also, Denver is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its shopping areas.

Boone is a popular shopping destination with plenty of stores. Wander along King Street for some of the town's best shopping. There are independent vendors and antique shops that are fun to pop into. The town is also known for its farmer's markets.

Denver has a variety of shopping areas worth visiting. The city has many outlet malls that budget shoppers appreciate. There are also weekend farmer's markets, boutique shopping areas, and all of the major chains that you'll find in most larger cities.

Is Boone or Denver Better for Families?


Boone is a well-known place for its family-friendly activities. Also, Denver is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its kid-friendly activities.

Boone is a very kid-friendly town. Near town you'll find kid-friendly hikes, such as Linville Falls. There are also several places where kids can go ziplining or rock climbing. Parks and outdoor activities are abundant and the whole family will enjoy the setting.

Denver is a family-friendly town. It is a family-friendly city with museums, playgrounds, and plenty of outdoor activities. There are also a few ropes courses near town that kids and adults alike will enjoy. Popular activities include the Denver Zoo, the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, and Children's Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus.

Is Boone or Denver Better for Couples?


Boone is a well-known place for its romantic activities. Also, Denver is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for couples.

Boone is a very popular place to visit for couples. The charming town has a romantic setting with local restaurants, beautiful hikes, and plenty of shopping. Couples enjoy staying at bed and breakfasts and enjoying the quaint atmosphere.

Denver is a good town for couples to visit. There are many beautiful and romantic outdoor activities in the area such as parks and botanical gardens. There are also spas, including the impressive Spa at the Brown Palace, as well as upscale restaurants and fun bars and clubs to explore.

Is Boone or Denver Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?


Boone is a nice place to visit for backpackers. However, Denver is not a good city for backpackers and budget travelers.

It's common for backpackers to visit Boone. While there aren't many hostels in the area, there are plenty of campgrounds. The nearby Appalachian State University also ensures that there are plenty of fun activities for young visitors.

Denver is a challenging destination for budget travelers and backpackers due to the higher prices. Some backpackers fly into Denver to begin their national park tour. There is a hostel or two around town, and if you leave town quickly you'll find campgrounds not far away.

Is Boone or Denver Better for Students?


Boone is renowned for students. Also, Denver is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its student-friendly activities.

Boone is a great destination for students. This mountain town offers a great setting for students who enjoy hiking and skiing. Appalachian State University is a fun college with plenty of activities going on.

Plenty of students visit Denver. There are a few students in the city, but there isn't a college town vibe that you'd get at other nearby university areas.

Is Boone or Denver Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?


Denver is very good for times when you don't have a car. However, Boone is not known for its public transit.

While Denver offers some public transit options, it might not be your first choice. If you're not planning to leave town, the light rail and bus systems offer good access to much of Denver.

Public transit is generally limited in Boone. You really need a car to make the most of your time.

Is Boone or Denver a more walkable city?


Boone is a well-known place for its high level of walkability. However, Denver is not a good city for its ease of walking around.

Boone is a very walkable town. Head to King Street for the best shopping and the most pedestrian-friendly part of town.

Denver is not a very walkable town. While the downtown area is generally walkable, this is still a sprawling city where you'll really want to have a car to access areas outside of town.

For even more information, also check out Is Boone Worth Visiting? and Is Denver Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Denver or Boone?

How long in Boone or Denver?

Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Boone and Denver. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Boone than in Denver. Usually, 2-4 days is a good amount of time for Boone, and 2-3 days is enough time in Denver.

Families should spend more time in Boone than Denver. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Boone, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Boone than Denver. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Boone that are great for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Boone than Denver if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Boone.

  • How many days in Boone or Denver? Ideal Length of Stay
    Boone 2-4 
    Denver 2-3

One day in Boone or Denver?

Boone might be a small town, but there's plenty to do in the area. Hikers are also drawn to this area. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

In Denver, many people enjoy the skiing and nightlife that this sprawling destination offers. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it.

A weekend in Boone or Denver?

Boone is a great place to explore. It is common to spend a weekend here. With all of its activities, you can easily fill a weekend here. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Denver. For many, it makes a great getaway for a weekend. This would be the perfect place to spend a weekend, as it has just the right amount of activities. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

Five days in Boone or Denver?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Boone. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. Five days may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

Denver is a fun place to experience. Travelers enjoy the shopping and skiing when visiting the destination of Denver. Most people find that five days is more than enough time to see everything.

A week in Boone or Denver?

Boone is a small town, so it's a great destination if you're short on time. This town offers a variety of activities to choose from. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.

You'll find skiing and nightlife around the park-filled destination of Denver. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Camping Tours in United States of America, The Best Romantic Tours for Couples in United States of America, The Best Polar Tours & Cruises in United States of America, and The Best Walking Tours in United States of America.

Which place is cheaper, Denver or Boone?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Boone is $173, while the average daily cost in Denver is $218. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Boone and Denver in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Boone $91
    Denver $87
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Boone $182
    Denver $174
Compare Hotels in Boone and Denver

Looking for a hotel in Boone or Denver? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Boone

Hotels in Denver

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.

Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Boone Hotel Prices and Denver Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Boone $33
    Denver $101

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Denver

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Denver:

  • Denver Airport Transfer To/From Aspen for 6-14 Sprinter Van: $1,950
  • Denver Airport (DEN) to Snowmass/Aspen - Arrival Private Transfer: $297
  • Arrival Private Transfer Denver Airport DEN to Denver City by SUV: $290
  • Denver Airport (DEN) to Steamboat - Arrival Private Transfer: $286
  • Denver Airport (DEN) to Avon/Vail Valley - Arrival Private Transfer : $240
  • Denver Airport (DEN) to Vail/Beaver Creek/Avon - Arrival Transfer: $220
  • Denver Airport (DEN) to Aspen hotel or address - Arrival Private Transfer : $220
  • Private One Way Transfer From and To Denver Colorado: $200
  • Denver Airport (DEN) to Keystone resort - Arrival Private Transfer: $176
  • Round trip transfer in private minivan from-to Denver Intl. Airport to Downtown: $173
  • Arrival Transfer Denver Airport DEN to Denver City by Luxury Car: $161
  • Departure Private Transfer: Denver to Denver Airport DEN in Luxury SUV: $137

Is it cheaper to fly into Boone or Denver?

Prices for flights to both Denver and Boone change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.

  • Food Meals for one day
    Boone $53
    Denver $42
Typical Food Prices in Boone

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Boone:

  • Restaurant Lunch for 2

Typical Food Prices in Denver

Some typical examples of dining costs in Denver are as follows:

  • Sushi Dinner (for 2)

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Denver

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Denver.

  • RiNo Arts District Food Tour: $79
  • Downtown Denver Food Tour: $79
  • Mystery Puzzle Food Tour in Golden, CO: $80
  • The Dinner Detective Murder Mystery Dinner Show - Denver, CO: $86

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Boone $53
    Denver $52

Tours and Activities in Denver

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Denver are as follows:

  • Small-Group Cocktail Tour in Denver: $99
  • 1-Hour Ghost Tour with Ghost Hunting Gear in Cheeseman Park: $25
  • 1.5 Hour RiNo Art District Walking Tour: $28
  • 2 Hour LoDo Historic Walking Tour in Denver: $28
  • 3 Hour Private Walking Tour in Denver with Professional Guide: $230
  • 3 Hour Whiskey and History Tour: $99
  • Beginner Rock Climbing Tour: $200
  • Best of Denver Tour: $64
  • Breckenridge Ultimate Full Day Mountain Tour from Denver: $139
  • Cheesman Park Ghost Tour: $28
  • Craft Beer Tour in Lower Downtown Denver: $58
  • Denver Cocktail Tour: A Local's Guide To Denver’s Nightlife: $121

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Boone $26
    Denver $5.31

Sample the Local Flavors in Denver

Also in Denver, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Pub Crawl Through Denver RiNo Arts District : $25
  • California Vs. Colorado Wine Tasting: $30
  • Vintner's Personalized Wine Tasting Experience: $60
  • Wild West Pub Crawl in Golden: $65
  • Wine Tasting with Cheese, Charcuterie, and Dessert : $74

When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Boone and Denver, we can see that Denver is more expensive. And not only is Boone much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Boone would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Boone and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Denver would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Denver than you might in Boone.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Boone Expensive? and Is Denver Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Boone or Denver?

Denver has a larger population, and is about 40 times larger than the population of Boone. When comparing the sizes of Boone and Denver, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.