Travel: Silverthorne named top destination for vacation that won’t break the bank |

Travel: Silverthorne named top destination for vacation that won’t break the bank

A family enjoys standup paddleboarding on North Pond in Silverthorne.
Courtesy of Bill Linfield |

With its central, Summit County location, affordable housing and access to several trails and features, Silverthorne was named a “top affordable vacation destination” by TripAdvisor.

Ashlee Centrella, a spokeswoman for TripAdvisor, said that the town was chosen from a list of 150 destinations across the United States. Each of the locations had more than 500 user reviews, but the group was narrowed down to a list of 29 by the cost of a two-bedroom vacation rental and nearby warm-weather features for visitors.

For example, a condo rental in Wildernest can go as low as $70 per night. According to TripAdvisor, the average cost for a two-bedroom rental runs at $1,089 per week, much cheaper than Vail, Breckenridge, Aspen, Boulder or Denver.

“I think the biggest thing is the affordability,” said Anthony Benz, marketing and tourism manager at the Outlets at Silverthorne. “The access is so close. You may not be in River Run Village, but you have access to the shopping.”

Right off of Interstate 70, it’s not a far drive to some of the free summer events and festivals hosted throughout the county, including Fourth of July fireworks, parades and weekly concerts in Frisco and Dillon. Sandwiched between two marinas, it’s also a short trip for a day out on the lake.

Benz added that the nearby Blue River bike path as well as Lily Pad Lake, Cataract Lake and Oro Grande hiking trails bring lots of visitors out during the summer.

“For me, with the activities during the summer, there are so many things to choose from on so many different levels,” he said. “If you’re driving in from Missouri and just throw a bike rack on the back of your car, you have tons of options, gorgeous options.”

For those seeking a break from the outdoors, Silverthorne’s namesake outlets are also a choice. While the name-brand stores differ from the boutiques lining the Main Streets of Frisco and Breckenridge, Benz said that familiarity is a draw for many.

“We see those visitors who are drawn to those names that they recognize,” he said. “That’s what makes Silverthorne so great — it’s just a one-stop shop.”

While Summit County is often associated with winter sports and ski resorts, he said that summer tourism surpasses ski season in Silverthorne, with more visitors in the town for a longer period of time. He added that Summit sees more visitors from within the U.S. during the warmer months, with the ease of a road trip unhampered by icy winter roads.

“We see a lot of Front-Rangers trying to escape the heat,” he said. “There are also a lot of people coming from the Midwest. We see that on a daily basis.”

As peak season approaches with the summer holiday months, he said business continues to boom.

“In last couple of weeks, we’ve seen a lot of vacationers going through,” he said. “It’s just been exploding.”

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