Wallet, phone, keys, sunglasses. These are the items on my mental checklist that I always tick off before leaving the house (I live in Los Angeles; it’s usually sunny). Sunglasses are also on my ‘travel essentials’ list. Wherever I’m headed, I make sure I’ve packed a pair sunnies to A) protect my eyes, and B) up my style game.
Personally, when it comes to sunglasses, I go for quality over quantity and a classic shape with polarized lenses (more expensive, but worth it). So this summer, I teamed up with VisionDirect.com.au to find the perfect pair of sunglasses for my summer 2017 travels.
Most recently, I brought my new sunglasses to Aspen, Colorado for a summertime weekend getaway in the Rocky Mountains. Below, check out four of the stops I made on my trip. Each is a place I recommend visiting if you ever make it to Aspen during warm weather months.
My New Sunglasses: Kinney Polarized Sunglasses by Garrett Leight
I choose the Kinney Sunglasses by Garrett Leight which feature a timeless shape and polarized lenses with an anti-reflective coating and UV protection. // In the background of this shot you can see the slopes of Aspen Highlands (one of Aspen’s four ski hills).
1. Check Out Classical Music Saturdays Or Bluegrass Sundays
At the top of Aspen Mountain, check out Classical Music Saturdays or Bluegrass Sundays. On Saturday’s at 1pm, local musicians put on a free classical music concert (playing both contemporary and traditional tunes) on a gently sloping field just a short walk from the Aspen Mountain gondola. Arrive a little early to snag a picnic table, or bring a blanket. It’s also the perfect spot for a picnic. // On Sundays, head to the Sundeck (more info below) from noon to 3pm for lively, live bluegrass.
2. Have A Beer At The Sundeck (At The Top Of Aspen Mountain)
Located directly at the top of the Aspen Mountain gondola, you’ll find the Sundeck. This lodge, home to a upscale cafeteria and bar is a great place to grab lunch while skiing in the winter and one of Aspen’s most popular places to hang out in the summer. It’s spacious outdoor areas and seating make it the spot to grab a beer and take in the views. The sun can be bright and hot up here, so don’t forget your sunglasses.
3. Take A Hike At Maroon Bells
Located only 20 minutes by car from Aspen, the Maroon Bells (the name for the two mountain peaks) is Colorado’s most visited and most photographed place. To beat the crowds, simply arrive early — I suggest arriving no later than 7am (and if you can make it by 6:30am, even better). Between 8am and 5pm, the only way to arrive is via a shuttle bus — so again, arrive early to save yourself the hassle (entry is $10 per car). Once there, you can walk along Maroon Lake or hike the 3.6 mile round trip trail to Crater Lake (more info here). The jaw-dropping scenery will make it easy to take some of the best photos you’ve ever taken.
4. Relax At John Denver Sanctuary
Full of meandering streams, footpaths and quiet nooks and crannies, the John Denver Sanctuary could easily be the nicest town park in America. It’s seriously worth a visit — especially in later afternoon/early evening when the golden sunlight makes the park look even more magical. It’s the perfect spot to just chill out after along day exploring Aspen and the surrounding area, so bring a blanket, a picnic, or just lay on the grass and soak up the day’s remaining sun.
This post was presented in partnership with VisionDirect.com.au