The Town of Nederland is 17 miles west of and 3000 feet above the City of Boulder, situated on the west end of Barker Reservoir. It’s the largest town on the nationally designated ‘Peak-to-Peak Scenic Byway’, and boasts a handful of renowned venues.
Nederland is on the banks of Middle Boulder Creek — watch for the walking bridge as you cross the creek. Chipeta Park, downstream towards the reservoir, has a picnic pavilion, kids’ playground and fishing pond, and access to trails along Middle Boulder Creek and the shores of Barker Reservoir.
Caribou Village Shopping Center, on the south side of the creek. is home to the world famous Carousel of Happiness, a restored 1910 carnival carousel ride.
Next to the Carousel, enjoy a cup of locally brewed coffee at the Coffee Roasters, in a restored train car cafe! Stock up on snacks and trail food at B & F Super Foods, stop for a locally brewed beer at the Very Nice Brewing Company.
Outdoor supplies are available at the Mountain Man Outdoor Store, or enjoy a yoga class at the Tadasana Mountain Yoga studio, kids activities at Wild Bear Nature Center, candy at the Confectioner’s Store, or used and new books at the cozy Blue Owl Bookstore.
First Street in Nederland runs along the north side of the creek. Stop at the Visitor Center for local information, or Nature’s Own, a non-profit shop selling gems and gifts. At the traffic circle, visit the Nederland Mining Museum. Want to rent a bike? Ask for directions to Tin Shed Bicycles.
History and Notes
Nederland sits in a valley created by a glacier thousands of years ago. Native Americans used the valley and river left behind by the glacier before the first hunters and trappers looking for beaver pelts found their way to the area in the early 1800′s. A relatively flat area with a good water source and ample wildlife, the valley was an attractive place for early settlers.
The first post office in Nederland opened in 1871, which was the year that the first road was constructed up Boulder Canyon. But, it was not until 1910 that the road was first navigated by car, a Stanley Steamer.
Nederland was built on mining, primarily gold, silver, and tungsten, and the mine at Caribou, located at 10,000 feet, played a prominent role in the town’s history. Ore from the mine was transported to Caribou Mill, located in the ‘low lands’, which is the translation of the ‘Netherlands’. The Caribou Mine was bought in 1873 by a Dutch company from the Netherlands, and the two was incorporated in 1874, and the name stuck.
Nederland is now a destination for those seeking outdoor recreation, the quiet beauty of the mountains, and a slower, small town community life. The town is served by regularly scheduled daily RTD bus service to and from Boulder.