Sure, there are plenty of opportunities to play hard in town, but mountain life is about balance. Indoor rest days, spent observing the falling snow next to a crackling fire, are essential to the lifestyle here in Durango.
When the wind is howling, snow is dumping and roads are frozen over, sometimes it's best to just stay indoors.
Grab a blanket and a mug of tea- here are our 16 favorite places to enjoy a snow day in Durango:
#16 Animas City Theatre
With movies and concerts most nights of the week, it's a perfect place to unwind with a drink from the bar. Located in the heart of downtown at College Drive and Main Avenue, this is a unique place to catch interesting movies without all the crowds, or discover a new favorite band!
See the concert and showtimes here!
#15 The Clay Room
Fun for kids and adults!
Pick a mug, mermaid, or other ceramic item and use your creativity to paint it. They fire the pieces once a week and leave you with an excellent Durango souvenir.
The Clay Room is located at 2053 Main Avenue.
#14 The Durango Public Library
You don’t need to love books to enjoy the Durango public library. Nestled near the Animas River, this community hub is a great spot for both nature-watching and lounging in the winter months. Bring a blanket, grab a coffee, find a book, and settle in. Ceiling-high, wall-to-wall windows make for perfect weather watching and offer a great view of the river and historic train as it chugs by.
The library hosts events nearly every day of the month and caters to citizens of all ages. Events range from adult board game nights to toddler and preschool storytime.
On the third Monday of every month, the library hosts a Books and Brews book club at the nearby Animas Brewing Company.
The library is located at 1900 E 3rd Avenue.
#13 Old Colorado Vintage
Old Colorado Vintage is “the largest curated true vintage store in Colorado” and is argued to be one of the best-hidden gems in all of the Southwest. Known for its incredible deals and a massive collection of clothing from the 20th century, you’ll never find quality vintage goods like this anywhere else.
The shop often offers various other old-time collectibles like rugs, blankets, antiques, and more.
Visit them at 1020 Main Avenue.
#12 Southwest Book Trader
If you’re looking for a particular book, chances are it’s somewhere amongst the piles at the Southwest Book Trader. This bibliophile paradise, though small in size, is easy to get lost in.
Towers of books stack all the way to the ceiling, creating a maze of paper and words. It’s not unheard of to find unique historical treasures, like first edition classics or author-signed novels, amongst the pillars of books.
While the selection may seem overwhelming, shop owner George Hassan is always around to show you exactly where everything is-- his knowledge of his stacks is impressive!
Explore his collection at 175 E 5th Street.
#11 Durango Outdoor Exchange
Another local-loved gem, this Durango gear exchange is where to shop for gear on a budget. You can find just about anything here, from vintage camp stoves, to tents, climbing helmets, kayaks, skis, SUP boards, and more.
By purchasing gently used or recycled gear, you’re supporting the local community in a sustainable way. The inventory is ever-changing, so make a few stops on your journey through town.
Durango Outdoor Exchange is located just north of Downtown Durango off of Main Avenue.
#10 Maria’s Bookshop
Your dream book awaits at Maria’s Bookshop, where hundreds of novels, stories, cookbooks, trail guides and more fill the shelves. This special nook of downtown is a book lover’s haven, best perused unhurriedly with a cup of coffee in hand.
If you’re not sure which book to choose, look for titles with a little green bookmark. Staff picks, chosen by the friendly, knowledgeable bibliophiles who work here, are guaranteed to suit your interests.
Each of the 11 staff members has their own, very unique preference of books, relatable in their own ways. Clint loves books that stimulate the senses; Suzy loves books that inspire; Kevin has a passion for poetry, prose, and philosophy. More information on staff favorites can be found here.
After a few trips to Maria’s, you’ll find yourself returning often, asking things like “Hey, do you have any more of Kirbie’s favorite books?” Maria's is located at 960 Main Avenue.
#9 Purgatory Resort Club
If you want to add a serious slice of luxury to your ski and snowboard routine, invest your money in a Mountain Club membership at Purgatory Resort. Perks include equipment storage and valet, discounts on on-mountain dining, access to DMC’s heated outdoor pool, and much more.
While all that is fantastic, the best part about a Purgatory Resort Club membership is the massive family-friendly lounge and game group. Cuddle up with a blanket and a mug of peppermint schnapps next to a roaring fire. Enjoy direct access to the club bar, restaurant, and a private, beautiful view of the slopes and the San Juan Mountains.
For more information, click here.
#8 Conundrum Escape Rooms
If you’re looking for something out of the ordinary this winter that will leave you with questions for years, check out one of Durango’s favorite escape rooms. Get a team together, enter a room, and become completely immersed in a mystery worth solving. You will be tasked to find clues, solve puzzles, and complete challenges as a team. Do everything correctly and you just might escape.
Currently, success rates for escape range from 40-60% for the three available themed rooms at Conundrum.
#7 Smiley Café
Located slightly off the beaten path of downtown Durango at 1309 E 3rd Avenue, the Smiley Café is where the locals go. A converted schoolhouse, the Smiley Cafe is also home to some of the best chai lattes in town. Bring your laptop and cozy up on one of the couches for an afternoon of peace and quiet among the community. If you're lucky you may even get to experience a piano serenade.
#6 Durango Hot Springs and Spa
Treat yourself to a mountain spa experience at the natural hot springs at Durango Hot Springs!
Rejuvenate your body with a 90-minute massage, sweat out toxins in the sauna house, or watch the snowfall from the warmth of the naturally-heated pools outside. Therapy pools range in temperature between 100 and 110 degrees, while the community pool stays at an average of 102 F.
#5 Himalayan Kitchen
Featuring Himalayan cuisine crafted with cold weather in mind, Himalayan Kitchen is a winter favorite in downtown Durango.
No matter what you choose off the menu, the owner and Chef Karma Bhotia will make sure it warms you from the inside out (we suggest the Dhaal Bhaat with a side of mo-mos).
Even if you’re not hungry, stop in for a pot of traditional chai tea and conversation with the incredible Nepalese and Tibetan folks who work here.
A buffet lunch is offered every day from 11:00 – 2:30 PM. Visit the Himalayan Kitchen at 992 Main Avenue.
#4 Powerhouse Science Center
Located between downtown and the Animas River, Durango’s Powerhouse Science Center offers educational fun for all ages. Hands-on attractions will have you and your kid occupied for hours on end. Events and exhibits change throughout the season. Check out their website to learn more.
#3 Ska Brewing Company
Voted one of Outside Magazine’s Top 100 Places to Work, this music-inspired brewery is a local treasure in Durango. Beer fanatics nationwide count down the days to the seasonal release of Euphoria Pale Ale, the official beer of choice for epic powder days.
The World Headquarters is located in town on Girard Street in the BoDo Industrial Park and features a Biergarten, stage, gift shop, and two-level hangout space indoors.
Tours are available at Ska Brewing every Monday through Saturday at 4 PM, where you can catch an inside look at this “100% wind-powered brew fortress.”
#2 Gaslight Twin Cinema
Movie watching has never been this luxurious.
The Gaslight Twin Cinema, a vintage two-screen theatre located on Main Avenue, has cozy movie days down to a science. Catch the latest new releases in the best theater seats in the world- massive, reclining, sink-in chairs.
#1 Bookcase and Barber
Warm your core with a hot toddy from Durango’s most mysterious barbershop. Known as the best-kept secret in Durango, the Bookcase and Barber speakeasy offers a cozy, intimate scene for afternoon and evening cocktails.
Their newest hot buttered rum dessert cocktail, made with home-crafted butter, Panama Pacific 9 year rum, John Taylor’s Velvet Falernum, maple syrup, and a dash of nutmeg, is sure to delight the senses and make you forget everything about the biting cold outside. Stop in for a drink at 601 E 2nd Avenue.
While Durango is an outdoor paradise during the Winter months, there are still plenty of things to see and do that don't involve the cold! Our list was compiled with our favorite places to spend the day inside during the frigid days and nights of Winter.
So next time you're looking for something to do in Winter, consider spending it inside, nice and cozy, at one of the places on our list.