A Day in Littleton: Best Free & Cheap Things To Do (2024)

A Day in Littleton: Best Free & Cheap Things To Do (1)Littleton may be only 30-minutes from downtown Denver, but it’s full of fun things to do on the cheap—whether bargain hunting in historic downtown many shops, grabbing a bite at area restaurants or exploring the great outdoors. Littleton has miles of trails for hiking or biking and so many affordable (or totally free) attractions that it’s easy to make a full day of exploring.

Before you grab your GPS, Littleton is roughly bordered by East Belleview Ave. to the north, South Broadway Blvd. to the East, Platte Canyon Rd. and the Platte River to the west, and County Line Rd. to the south.

I was a Littleton local for decades and I want to share some of my favorite things to do with you.

There’s so much to explore in Littleton and this list doesn’t cover it all, but here are some of the attractions and restaurants worth checking out while you’re there.

Things To Do In Littleton

Littleton is spread out, as suburbs often are, so I divided the best things to do into two sections—attractions near the Downtown Littleton light rail station and those near the Mineral Station light rail station further south.

From either station, there are lots of attractions and things to do within walking distance.

Close to Littleton Downtown Light Rail Stop

Littleton Museum

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Divine Bovine Blacksmith Steve Loo. Photo by Ryan Badger/courtesy City of Littleton

Littleton Museum
6028 S. Gallup St., Littleton, 80120

One of Littleton’s best treasures is the Littleton Museum, a space that includes both a museum of historic and contemporary exhibits of artifacts and art and a living farm that highlights the features of homesteads from the 1860s and the 1890s.

In addition to the period dwellings, there is a schoolhouse, a smithy, gardens, and livestock. Entry is free.

Main Street Littleton

The historic downtown Littleton Main Street neighborhood is full of shops and restaurants–one can even take a free historic walking tour on the first Friday of every month through October.

Window shopping is always free, but it might be tough to not buy anything while stopping in one of downtown Littleton’s independently-owned boutiques. There are also plenty of independent restaurants where you can grab a drink or a bite to eat.

Loop Consignment

Loop Consignment
2692 W. Alamo Ave., Littleton, 80120

Loop Consignment is a family-owned consignment shop whose goal is to encourage sustainability in fashion by buying second-hand and extend the life of clothes that might be discarded. They offer affordable, curated women’s and men’s clothing, footwear, and accessories in some of your favorite brands like Vans, Madewell, Free People, and Doc Marten’s.

Reinke Brothers Store

Reinke Brothers Store
5663 S. Prince St. Littleton, 80120

Reinke Brothers has been in the spooky business for 50 years and has 20,000 costumes available for sale or for rent, plus masks, wigs, makeup, props, special effects lighting, and magic tricks and illusions. Fun to explore any time of year, they even create a haunted mansion that people can tour near Halloween.

Inside Scoop Creamery

Inside Scoop Creamery
5654 S. Prince St., Littleton, 80120

Inside Scoop Creamery makes their own ice cream daily. They have dozens of flavors (including vegan sorbets) made in small batches from local Gold Meadow Dairy products and other fresh ingredients. Summer specialty flavors like strawberry basil and honey lavender are especially refreshing on hot days.

The Depot Art Gallery

The Depot Art Gallery
2069 W. Powers Ave. Littleton, 80120

Housed in the former 1888 Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad train station, The Depot is the home of the Littleton Fine Arts Guild, which began as a group of 10 women artists in 1962 and today boasts the work of more than 60 men and women who work in a variety of media. The gallery hosts rotating shows plus provides art to local businesses and restaurants.

Town Hall Arts Center

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Town Hall Arts Center. Photo credit: Rachel Graham/RDG Photography

Town Hall Arts Center
2450 Main St., Littleton, 80120

Town Hall Arts Center, in the former Littleton Town Hall, has hosted live theater productions since 1982. Their season runs from September to June and includes six musicals or comedies and eight concerts.

Palenque Cocina y Agaveria

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Palenque’s prickly pear margarita. Photo credit: Tony White

Palenque Cocina y Agaveria
2609 Main St., Littleton, 80120

Palenque, named after the distilleries where agave plants are transformed into mezcal, is sister to the popular South Broadway eatery, Adelita’s Cocina y Cantina. You can enjoy happy hour on the rooftop from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. daily, where specials include $8 margaritas and $3 tamales—the prickly pear marg is a personal favorite.

Hudson Gardens

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Lilypad at Hudson Gardens. Credit: Wanderlight Photography

Hudson Gardens
6115 S. Santa Fe Dr., Littleton 80120

This hidden gem is a thirty-acre garden that features cultivated beds of roses, vegetables, native Colorado plants, water features, and art installations. It’s free from sunrise to sunset and is ideal for exploring and picnicking.

Kids will enjoy the Nature Play area and miniature railroad and Hudson Gardens also offers free birding walks and beekeeping seminars, along with some paid classes like plein-air painting and yoga.

Close to Mineral Station Light Rail

Littleton is home to more than 200 miles of trails and 1,400 parks, making it a great place for people who like to get out and enjoy the outdoors without having to trek into the mountains.

South Platte Park & Carson Nature Center

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South Platte Park / Rebecca Treon photo

South Platte Park & Carson Nature Center
3000 W. Carson Dr., Littleton 80120

Features 880 acres of open space along the South Platte River and Mary Carter Greenway Trail. The paved trails are bike and stroller friendly, while unpaved sections lead to easy (family-friendly) hikes with many hidden spots popular with geocachers.

There is water access (both river and lake) for fishing, tubing, and kayaking.

The park is home to the Carson Nature Center filled with interactive displays, live animals like turtles and snakes, and on-duty naturalists. There are great spots to stop for a picnic all throughout the park.

South Suburban Parks and Recreation, who manages South Platte Park, also offers numerous free or low-cost programs and camps ranging from full moon hikes and bird watching excursions to archery and fly-fishing classes.

Breckenridge Brewery

Breckenridge Brewery
2920 Brewery Ln., Littleton, 80120

Near Hudson Gardens and right off of the South Platte River Trail, Breckenridge Brewery’s HQ, The Farm House, is a great place to while away an afternoon.

Access the brewery and restaurant via car or the bike path and enjoy a cold beer and a bite to eat inside or at a picnic table out on the lawn, a spacious “backyard” with lawn games, fire pits, and sometimes live music.

A 16 oz. beer will set you back $6, plus they have a happy hour daily from 3-6 p.m. that knocks $2 bucks off each pint.

Angelo’s Taverna & Carboy Winery

Angelo’s Taverna and Carboy Winery
6885 S. Santa Fe Dr., Littleton, 80120

Breck’s neighbors, Angelo’s Taverna and Carboy Winery share a spacious patio and indoor seating and a daily happy hour from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. and from 8:30 p.m. to close daily that features not only discounted drinks but affordable appetizers.

Tattered Cover Aspen Grove

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Tattered Cover Aspen Grove. Photo credit: Scott Patnesky courtesy Tattered Cover.

Tattered Cover Aspen Grove
7301 S. Santa Fe Dr., Littleton, 80120

Tattered Cover, the beloved local independent bookseller, hosts events almost every day at its Aspen Grove location, from Wednesday and Sunday story times to author talks, including those by many local writers. Aspen Grove shopping mall is home to a seasonal farmers market as well as a monthly antiques bazaar called A Paris Street Market.

Worth the drive

Colorado Journey Miniature Golf

Colorado Journey Miniature Golf
5150 S. Windermere St., Littleton, 80120

Though it isn’t close to either light rail station in Littleton, this fun mini-golf course is worth a stop. One of Littleton’s best family-friendly attractions is Colorado Journey Miniature Golf, an 18-hole course whose holes are modeled after the Centennial State’s landmarks, like Mesa Verde and the Florissant Fossil Beds.

Non-District adults pay just $7 a round or $13 for a day pass, while kids pay $6.25 a round or $11.50 for a day pass.

Getting There & Getting Around Littleton

Littleton is a 30 minute drive south south down Santa Fe Blvd. from downtown Denver. If you’re going to South Platte Park, there is a small parking lot at the Carson Nature Center or a dirt lot behind it, plus ample RTD parking and Aspen Grove also has plenty of parking.

Breckenridge Brewery, Angelo’s Taverna and Carboy Winery; and Hudson Gardens all have plenty of onsite lot parking.

Parking in downtown Littleton can be somewhat challenging as it is primarily free two-hour street parking along Main St. Some side streets have three-hour parking, plus there are various lots for RTD and paid lots off of Main St. and Powers St. and off of Alamo St. Downtown

Littleton’s historic downtown is super-walkable, offing several blocks of shops and restaurants to explore.

If you want to skip the drive (and save on gas), the D line of RTD Light Rail goes through Littleton.

The Mineral Station stop will leave you right at Aspen Grove and South Platte Park, while the Downtown Littleton stop will take you to the historic Littleton downtown area.

From Mineral Station, the Carson Nature Center and Aspen Grove shopping mall are across the parking lot. From the Carson Nature Center, Breckenridge Brewery, Angelo’s Taverna, and Carboy Winery are a scenic 1.1-mile walk along the Mary Carter Greenway Trail.

From the Downtown Littleton light rail stop, the historic downtown area is a couple of blocks away. Littleton Museum is a 1.3-mile walk.

A Day in Littleton: Best Free & Cheap Things To Do (2024)
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