Golden, Colorado

The Golden hours

Downtown pizza feasts, impromptu hikes up South Table Mountain, taking the Coors brewery tour, tubing down Clear Creek and more—there’s something for everyone in Golden. 

Golden is that sweet spot. Situated in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains and just a short drive to downtown Denver, this small town is perfect for any adventure. Want to get in a great hike before your physics study session? You got it. Want to check out some live music within walking distance? Sure thing. With numerous boutiques, restaurants, museums, festivals, outdoor recreation and more, Golden is packed with unique things to do without ever venturing far from campus. You’ll fall in love with Golden, and it will always offer you something new to keep you coming back for more. 

What to expect


A small-town feel with the benefits of a major city nearby

restaurant table and chairs

A burgeoning restaurant scene for all tastes and budgets


A place that feels like home, no matter how long you’ve been away

Top Local Attractions

Clear Creek: Got your inner tube or cardboard boat? 

Washington Ave: Your main street for the best restaurants, shopping and more 

South Table Mountain: Offers some of the best views around. 

Coors Brewery: Stop by for a tour or social hour with friends. 

Hiking trails: Take a break and soak up that famous Colorado sunshine. 

Open to

All Orediggers


All the time


Golden, Colo.

Aerial view of Golden and Lookout Mountain behind it.

Golden is more than just the location of the Mines campus—it’s home. With a small-town feel and close-knit community, Orediggers and Golden residents alike look out for one another and show support for the city that makes you feel welcome no matter how long you’ve been away.

starOredigger reviews


Leah, Mechanical Engineering, Okla.

“There are so many outdoor opportunities right off campus! There are so many hiking trails, Clear Creek floats and climbing opportunities a small walk from campus!” 


Brenna, Civil Engineering, Colorado Springs, Colo.

“Tubing on Clear Creek should be a required excursion for every Mines student! Nothing feels better than the cool water on a hot summer day.” 


Josh, Petroleum Engineering, Lafayette, La.

“Chill at the Stratton Commons, hike up South Table or go for a drive up Lookout Mountain on a sunny day. A sunny day spent inside is a day wasted.” 


Kassidy, Geophysics, California

“There are so many hikes in Golden! The trailhead to South Table is even walking distance from campus! Downtown Golden is also full of restaurants, coffee shops and breweries that are so much fun to go to with friends!” 


Ellaena, Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, Irvine, Calif.

“While living in Golden, I have gotten into hiking a lot more. There are a ton of places to see, and some are a short drive from campus. In the summer, swimming in Clear Creek is so much fun. You can even rent a tube and float down it. There are also a lot of places to go rock climbing around here, which is a good way to stay in shape and keep busy.” 


Lauren, Chemistry, Centennial, Colo.

“I love walking over to downtown Golden to get coffee! It is so awesome having downtown Golden so close to campus because there is so much to do! There are also so many amazing hiking trails around Mines, which has been so much fun!” 


Danil, Computer Science, Aurora, Colo.

“Downtown Golden is a beautiful little city that has a lot to offer. Whether you want to get some pizza at Woody’s Wood Fired Pizza or just enjoy the scenery at Clear Creek, there is something for everybody. I personally enjoy just walking down Washington Ave and enjoying the nice architecture and grabbing a bite at Snarf’s Sandwiches with a few friends.” 


Anna, Mechanical Engineering, Parker, Colo.

“Golden is AWESOME! One of the main reasons I came to Colorado School of Mines was because I loved the surrounding area so much. Whether it’s hiking south table with friends, floating down Clear Creek in the summer, window shopping along Washington, grabbing ice cream from Golden Sweets or figuring out which of the local cafés is your favorite, Golden provides a scenic mountain town experience every day.” 


Colleen, Engineering, Cimarron, N.M.

“There are so many things to do in Golden! My favorite nearby hike is, of course, South Table—it has such a wonderful view, and my fastest time to get up was around 20 minutes (yes, I time myself whenever I make the hike). I also love downtown Golden, which is filled with wonderful restaurants like Sherpa House, Golden Thai, Buffalo Rose, Woody’s and Snarfs! There are also so many cute stores for thrifting, antiquing and getting super cool stickers! I also like to walk down to Clear Creek and sit by the water whole reading a book (when there’s no snow, of course). This is even better in the fall during the Saturday farmer’s markets where I’ll always get some fresh fruit or a burrito!” 


Colton, Mechanical Engineering, Olathe, Kan.

“Downtown Golden is just a short walk away. There are many shops and restaurants that draw tourists and locals alike. Woody’s Wood Fired Pizza may be the most popular restaurant in Golden. They offer an excellent variety of pizzas, pastas and sandwiches. Otherwise, there are many other places to go locally. About 10 minutes away are the Colorado Mills which includes a mall, lots of restaurants and stores such as Target and Dick’s Sporting Goods. If you want to go to downtown Denver, it is only about a 25-minute drive.”