Whether you are looking for a quick grab and go with the kids, a romantic dinner for two, or a waterfront view—Estes Park, Colo., has it all. Just take a casual walk down the main street of Estes Park and you will be presented with a varied array of fabulous options catering to all price ranges and atmospheres!
1. Ed’s Cantina & Grill
Locally owned Ed’s Cantina & Grill serves as a popular Tex-Mex dine-in restaurant focusing on freshness and quality. Ed's has specialty margaritas and a lively atmosphere. Situated near the Big Thompson River, you can pair a quality experience with a wonderful view.
390 East Elkhorn Ave., Estes Park, Colo.; 80517, 970.586.2919
2. Mama Rose’s Restaurant
Mama Rose’s is tucked away in an elegant Riverwalk Plaza with a wrap around deck situated right on the beautiful Big Thompson River. Classic Italian favorites make up the menu and an abundant variety of Italian wines and spirits are available as well. The atmosphere of Mama Rose’s is very welcoming and the aromas of garlic and Italian sauces as you walk by the restaurant are enough to make you go take a look for yourself!
338 East Elkhorn Ave., Estes Park, Colo., 80517; (970) 586-3330
3. Grubsteak Restaurant
The rustic interior of Grubsteak has walls lined with rich historical photographs of Colorado and this is an attraction in itself. This is a must go for first timers to Estes Park while it is also a popular place for locals. Yak and elk are among a few of the popular game plates on the menu that keep customers returning.
134 W Elkhorn Ave., Estes Park, Colo., 80517; (970) 586-8838
4. Wapiti Pub and Grill
The Wapiti Pub is situated in a quaint corner of the plaza with a patio that is lit up at night where you can enjoy the brisk mountain air. Aside from the uniqueness of Wapiti itself, the draft beers are a major draw—focusing on Colorado’s finest microbrews. The menu has something for everyone and offers weekly specials.
247 W Elkhorn Ave., Estes Park, Colo., 80517; (970) 586-5056
5. The Other Side Restaurant
The Other Side has 180 degree views of the Big Thompson River and lays just before the Beaver Meadows entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park. The Other Side is a classic Estes Park restaurant that offers a traditional American menu with specials throughout the week. The high ceilings draw you into the space and the scenic views are simply a complement to the delicious dishes locals love.
900 Moraine Ave., Estes Park, Colo., 80517; (970) 586-2171
6. Waterfront Grille at the Estes Park Resort
The Waterfront Grille has one of the top restaurant atmospheres as well as scenic views within Estes Park. Attached to the Estes Park Resort, The Waterfront Grille offers an overall fine dining experience with nightly specials from the sea and the grill. The dining experience at the Waterfront Grille will be unforgettable so don’t forget to walk out onto the wrap-around deck and take in the Lake Estes and mountain views.
1700 Big Thompson Ave., Estes Park, Colo., 80517; (970) 577-6400
7. Park Theatre Cafe
Is there a better way to spend an afternoon after hiking then to grab tasty sandwiches at Park Theatre Café before catching an evening film at Park Theatre? This quaint café is perfect for a light and healthy lunch focusing on classic sandwiches and salads. The café offers outdoor seating on the river walk.
132 Moraine Ave., Estes Park, Colo., 80517 (970) 586-8904
8. Chicago’s Best
Chicago’s Best could be considered a hole in the wall pizza place that is perfect for a quick grab and go, and a great place to bring the kids. Right on the main drag of Estes Park, Chicago’s Best offers classics from greek salad to calzones and a variety of pizzas. It is definitely an easy place to pop in!
112 W Elkhorn Ave., Estes Park, Colo., 80517; (970) 586-4796
9. Claire’s on the Park Restaurant
Claire’s Restaurant is in a pleasant little yellow house with a huge front deck that is great for enjoying a classic Bloody Mary and soaking up some Colorado rays. Claire’s offers fresh seasonal plates at reasonable prices. The restaurant offers a variety of unique dinner entrees, salads and sandwiches.
225 Park Lane, Estes Park, Colo., 80517; (970) 586-9564
10. Penelope’s Old Time Burgers
Penelope’s is located right in the heart of downtown Estes Park and focuses on burger quality while incorporating an old burger joint feel. Kids love the old-fashioned vanilla Cokes and adults can choose from freshly made elk and buffalo burgers.
229 W Elkhorn Ave., Estes Park, Colo., 80517; (970) 586-2277
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Video by Gunnar Sikorski