Vail's summers are like nowhere on earth — and it's happening NOW, so don't wait to book, as the deals are incredible (visit www.vail.com for more details).
Otherwise known as White Water Mecca, Vail offers Class I to Class V rafting day trips with Timberline Rafting Company. Experience the thrills of the Eagle, Colorado or Arkansas Rivers, then finish the journey with an outdoor barbecue on the river's edge. Paddlers will love the river kayaking experience offered by Alpine Quest Sports. Riding the rapids of the Colorado River is an unrivalled experience, where Bald Eagles soar in blue skies above you and all manner of wildlife gaze at you from the river's banks.
Hiking and mountain biking on Vail Mountain is essential to your summer trip. You'll discover views and vegetation so amazing you'll think you've fallen into Alice's Rabbit Hole. Hiking? Simply set foot at the base of the mountain and start walking. Those biking can catch the gondola up to any of Vail's many picturesque biking trails. There are also more challenging descents for adrenaline-junkies.
Gore Creek Fly Fisherman offers free casting clinics daily, so even novice fishermen and women can test their skills. The more experienced angler can consider casting in a pristine alpine lake, wading a Gold Medal stream, or floating one of several scenic rivers into the remote wilderness.
Guided horseback tours are one of the most relaxing ways to see Vail Mountain. Meander up and around Game Creek Bowl, where you take in the summer surrounds and marvel at mountain's vast beauty.
Rugged alpine peaks surround Vail and seasoned climbers have access to top-rope and multi-pitch routes throughout the valley. Beginners can hit the climbing walls or have a guide take them up. You can cut your climbing teeth at the Lionshead climbing wall at the base of the Gondola or on the indoor climbing wall at the Vail Mountain Lodge and Spa.
Every Sunday, the streets of Vail village are alive with a fresh produce, arts and crafts market. Many of the village restaurants take the opportunity to buy the ingredients for the evening's menu from here, so be sure to make a booking! Also take note that legendary Nobu restaurant is set to open its doors there any time soon, right in the lush new Solaris complex in the centre of town, which also boasts a five-star bowling alley and luxury movie theatre!
No matter what season you visit Vail you will always find lively bars, unrivalled restaurants, and accommodation for all budgets, indulgent spa choices and incredible shopping.
Vail has more watering holes than you could shake a swizzle stick at. The new Tavern on the Square at the Arrabelle at Vail Square is spacious, friendly and fun, with a list of apré's-hour cocktails and snacks as long as lift queues on powder day.
Vail boasts diverse restaurants for every budget. Nearly all of its restaurants have organic, locally produced options with many menus offering low-fat, low-carb, low-cholesterol options.
Shopaholics will love Vail's art galleries, clothing and ski stores. The Golden Bear is a favourite jewellery store — its signature bear charm is as synonymous with the Vail Valley as Tiffany's Elsa Peretti Coffee Bean is with Manhattan.
Vail is an entertainment epicenter, with some of the biggest names in showbiz dropping by to perform. Everyone from Ben Harper, Stephen Marley, the Black Eyed Peas, Train, Counting Crows and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra have graced a stage and thrilled audiences at Vail, generally (but not always) for free admission.
A trip to Vail would be incomplete without a spa experience. Book in for a Vin Chaud (Hot Wine) Indulgence at the The Spa at the Arrabelle at Vail Square.
The Vail Marriott Mountain Resort and Spa, is just minutes walk to the Eagle Bahn gondola at Lionshead and directly on the free village shuttle route. It has a true Five-Star feel, but without the price tag.