The best books to explore Denver no matter if you're a newcomer or local

The Books I Picked & Why

A History Lover's Guide to Denver

By Mark A. Barnhouse

Book cover of A History Lover's Guide to Denver

Why this book?

As the title indicates, history lovers will enjoy this book. I appreciated the short, easy-to-read entries. It was a well-written book with excellent photography. The author Mark Barnhouse is a Denver native and has published six history books on Denver. As a result of his experience, this book is of high-quality and polished.


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A Short History of Denver

By Stephen J. Leonard, Thomas J. Noel

Book cover of A Short History of Denver

Why this book?

An outstanding history book of Denver filled with interesting details. Short enough not to bore me. Detailed enough to grasp the significant events, people, buildings, and aspects of Denver that give it a well-rounded and thorough view. Well organized and researched. This book is a treasure for Denver's history. I applaud and appreciate the authors for putting their knowledge and research into the hands of the public is such an easy-to-read book form.


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Walking Denver: 32 Tours of the Mile High City's Best Urban Trails, Historic Architecture, and Cultural Highlights

By Mindy Sink, Sophie Seymour

Book cover of Walking Denver: 32 Tours of the Mile High City's Best Urban Trails, Historic Architecture, and Cultural Highlights

Why this book?

I had fun learning more about Denver by walking. I decided to take 32 different friends or family members on the 32 different walks outlined in the book. It was a great way to spend time outdoors in conversation and exploration. It is fabulous if you are new to Denver or if you want to rediscover the city where you have lived for a long time. 


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Secret Denver: A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful, and Obscure

By Eric Peterson, David Lewis

Book cover of Secret Denver: A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful, and Obscure

Why this book?

After reading a lot of Denver history and guidebooks, I found Secret Denver a fun addition to my collection. Sometimes I enjoy going off the beaten path of traditional guidebooks, and Secret Denver has ideas of what to explore and obscure facts that are interesting. Not all entries are in Denver proper, so one can also go outside the city limits for a few outings if desired. 


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Denver Then and Now

By Joshua Dinar

Book cover of Denver Then and Now

Why this book?

I like reading about Denver's history, but I love seeing pictures bring that history to life. This book shows old pictures of buildings and compares them with the present-day look. In some cases, beautiful old buildings no longer exist or have been drastically altered. This is a great coffee table book. 


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