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Steamboat Magazine

A Shady Stroll

06/28/2023 07:00AM ● By Ski Town Media
(Venture off the main trail and weave your way through the gardens, which house 1,600 varieties of plants. Photo courtesy of Noah Wetzel.) 

From the Steamboat Springs Visitors' Guide 2023

Unwind with a stroll around the Yampa River Botanic Park, home to 1,600 varieties of plants in multiple themed gardens. On the south side of the park, check out Jeff’s Garden, which features tufa rock – a volcanic rock with holes drilled into it to accommodate rock garden plants. Search for a hummingbird pollinating the recently renovated Hummingbird and Butterfly Gardens. The Foliage Garden is a shady spot to cool off, and if you have kids in tow, make sure to take them over to the Children’s Garden, which has miniature benches for tired legs, a playhouse stocked with books and the always-magical Fairy Garden.

To truly decompress, try the new self-guided serenity walk, designed to promote mindfulness and mental health. The walk was created in partnership with a licensed counselor and psychologist and pairs mindful activities and thoughts with different places in the park. Pick up a map and brochure with a self-guided walking tour at the Emerald Park entrance to the gardens. 

Bring a picnic and sit by Peter’s Pond or see if you can spot the osprey family that returns to their nest next to the Yampa River each summer. Fun fact: this will be their eighth summer returning to the same nest.

The park also offers a variety of summer programming including concerts, yoga, storytimes and theatrical performances. New this summer is Open Days, a program in which local homeowners open their gardens for a day to visitors. The event  is ticketed and allows access to four different Yampa Valley gardens.

For more information on the park and events, visit