Living in Fort Collins

Fort Collins, Colorado

Living in Fort Collins

Fort Collins sits a little over an hour away from Denver, and is known as a small college town tucked in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. In 2010, the city was ranked #6 on Money magazine's “Best Places to Live” list and is considered an emerging epicenter for innovation. It’s also a great destination for young professionals, according to Next Generation Consulting. Nature plays a big part in the city, and the area boasts more than 300 days of sunshine a year. With 90 parks, 450 kilometers of trails to explore and major ski resorts only a few hours away, there is plenty to keep you busy at any time of year.

Fort Collins offers the amenities of a larger city with the convenience of a small town. Here, you’ll have access to a wide assortment of outdoor activities, entertainment venues and shopping centers. There are over 600 restaurants in the city and more than 300 local events going on each year.

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Dining in Fort Collins

Dining around town

Fort Collins' food scene

Fort Collins has the most restaurants per capita in the United States, so you’re bound to find some favorites within the city. Places like Avogadro's Number offer up vegetarian options while Nick’s Italian is great for late-night pizza breaks with a casual atmosphere. At Music City Hot Chicken, one of Fort Collins’ newest restaurants, you can enjoy Southern-style sandwiches with a side of coleslaw or potato salad. Inside the Colorado Room you will find live music, good beers and tasty meat sliders.

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Exploring Fort Collins

Plenty of things to do around town

Shopping your favorite brands

No matter what kind of shopping you want to do, Fort Collins has the store you’re looking for. From malls to boutique shops and your one-stop shop stores like Target, you’re never too far from your next great purchase. Check out these stores located close to CSU’s campus:

  • Old Town boutique shops
  • Foothills Mall 
  • H&M
  • Nordstrom Rack 
  • The Promenade Shops at Centerra
  • Lululemon
  • Walgreens
  • Maurices
  • Costco
  • REI
  • J.Crew 
  • Target
  • Victoria's Secret 

Getting around the city

You don’t need a car to enjoy all Fort Collins has to offer. Explore the city by bus, Zipcar or bicycle. Biking is a very popular and efficient option for locals. At the Fort Collins Bike Library, anyone can rent bikes for an hour, or up to seven days, for free. As a student at CSU, you can also ride the public bus system (Transfort) at no charge. The hours vary but the buses usually run Monday through Saturday from 6:30 am to 10:30 pm. City Zipcars are also available if you need to get somewhere quick, and they're parked right on campus.

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Fort Collins things to do

A new place to call home

What to see and do in Fort Collins

Fort Collins is a nature lover’s playground. There are plenty of year-round activities to enjoy outdoors, whether it be hiking Horsetooth Mountain, touring the New Belgium Brewing Co. or visiting a local museum to learn more about the city’s history. Here are some of the best attractions:

  • Annual Flower Trial Garden
  • Mountain Whitewater Descents 
  • Cache La Poudre River
  • Horsetooth Mountain Open Space
  • Global Village Museum of Arts and Cultures
  • Fort Collins Museum of Discovery
  • Spring Canyon Community Park
  • The Farm at Lee Martinez Park
  • Horse and Dragon Brewing Company
  • Fort Collins Municipal Railway
  • Center for Fine Art Photography More Info
  • Vern’s Toffee House
  • New Belgium Brewing
  • Odell Brewing Company
  • Coyote Ridge Natural Area
  • Totally 80's Pizza & Museum
  • Avery House

Sports in Fort Collins

Colorado is a great place for sports lovers. Whether in Fort Collins or in the surrounding areas, there are a variety of activities and events to attend to cheer on your favorite teams. In the city you can attend a Colorado Eagles hockey game or watch the Fort Collins Foxes baseball team at City Park Field. Although Denver is the smallest city in the country, they take their sports teams seriously. There are five professional sports teams to watch: Denver Broncos football, Denver Nuggets basketball, Colorado Rockies baseball, Colorado Avalanche hockey and Colorado Rapids soccer. And since the city is only about an hour's drive away from Fort Collins, you can easily catch a professional sports game during the week.

Life in Fort Collins

Enjoy fun activities around town

Annual festivals and events

Fort Collins is a lively city offering a variety of festivals, events, art shows, concerts, plays and other performances just about every night of the week. A few annual events include:

  • Old Town Car Show
  • Colorado Brewer’s Fest and the Summit
  • Taste of Fort Collins
  • Bohemian Nights at New West Fest
  • New West Fest
  • July 4th Celebration
  • USA Pro Challenge
  • Breathe Yoga Festival
  • Live Music Concert Series
  • Tour de Fat
  • FORToberfest

When the sun goes down

Although not a large city, Fort Collins still plenty to do for a fun night out. The city is known for its breweries and college bars. Instead of having game night at home, go to The Haunted Game Cafe and play one of over 160 board games while grabbing a bite to eat. Once the sun goes down, hit up Bondi Beach for drinks and a little of the Aussie spirit in Old Town Fort Collins. On Tuesday nights, the Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant has salsa lessons in the evening and everyone from new dancers to experienced salsa addicts hit the floor to dance the night away.

Careers in Fort Collins

Find your perfect job

Work where you live

Fort Collins is home to both small businesses and entrepreneurial ventures in fields such as manufacturing, clean energy and high-tech. A few of the city’s largest employers include:

  • Advanced Energy Industries Inc
  • Anheuser Busch
  • Banner Health
  • Columbine Health Systems
  • EKS&H
  • Exodus Moving & Storage
  • First National Bank
  • FirstBank of Northern Colorado
  • Fort Collins Coloradoan
  • Hensel Phelps
  • Hewlett-Packard Enterprise
  • Hilton Fort Collins
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • Meritage Homes
  • New Belgium Brewing Co.
  • The Group Inc.
  • Wells Fargo Bank