A Guide To Your First Cannabis Tourist Experience

It’s been six years since recreational cannabis first became legal in Colorado and Washington State

Photo: Unsplash/kimzy

Photo: Unsplash/kimzy

It’s been six years since recreational cannabis first became legal in Colorado and Washington State. Today, several other states have legalized it, with plenty others hoping to follow suit. Coming from Florida (a state which only recently legalized it for medical purposes), I was pleasantly surprised at how very different life was like in Denver (the real Mile High City). Dispensaries can be found in just about every neighborhood, and the process of procuring goods is even easier than finding a pair of well-fitting pants at your local Target. From first-timers to lifelong tokers, cannabis tourism thrives here and in other 420-friendly cities. If you’re thinking of taking a trip to the land of legal weed, do yourself and others a favor and read this guide.

Figure Out Your Hotel’s 420 Policies Prior To Arriving

Before you even book your hotel, find out what their policies are regarding cannabis. Many hotels have strict no smoking policies, and that includes the green stuff. There are a few places that are totally cool with your consumption in any event (like the Jupiter Hotel in Portland, OR and the Adagio Bud & Breakfast here in Denver), but overall you’ll like need to keep things on the down-low. That means sticking to edibles (and light vaping for those who excel at masking odors).


Decide Which Dispensaries To Visit


You’re going to want to be selective about which dispensaries you go to. Some are amazing. Others are, well, low on selection and generally underwhelming. Since you’ve traveled this far, make sure to look up dispensary reviews ahead of time. You can also check out the weed selection at many of these places online. Speaking of which…


Do Your Canna-Research

While some folks will tell you to simply ask your budtender for suggestions, I disagree. Yes, some budtenders are amazing and can guide you right. But others will sell you their weakest strains or convince you to overspend. Hit up Leafly and jot down the names of strains you’re most interested in. Indica or sativa? How about some kief? Want to try some oils or shatter? Look into what types of edibles or other products you might want to check out. Write it down (on paper) and bring it along to help your experience.


Have Cash And ID In Hand, Phone In Pocket


Every dispensary you visit will ask you for your identification. Most dispensaries are also cash-only. Save yourself the fees by bringing cash with you (but if you forget, don’t worry—most have on-site ATMs). Also, using your phone once inside the dispensary is usually a big no-no, so better to just keep it in your pocket or bag.


Stick To Small Quantities

Depending on your tolerance levels and the length of your trip, you’ll want to gauge just how much product to buy. Buy the smallest quantities in order to try various products during your visit. Otherwise, unless you have a friend in town, you’ll end up having to throw it out—a true travesty.


Get At Least Some Edibles

Some folks like picking up a cookie and eating it bit by bit throughout a day. Others like to indulge in gummies. There’s even canna-powders to make your visit much more enjoyable. Stillwater Brands is a company that has THC and more balanced THC/CBD teas, coffees, and powders that can be tossed into any food or beverage to enhance your meal. You’ll be glad you picked some up when you realize you’re out and can’t smoke in public but can still get plenty toasty.


Figure Out Where You’re Going To Enjoy Your Goods

Nothing locals dislike more than obnoxious pot tourists. You don’t want to be the stereotype in the tie-dye tee walking around smoking a blunt in public since A. people will complain and B. you might just get the attention of a cop. Instead, plan your activities accordingly. Pick up a cheap vape pen and take a few tokes before swimming laps in your hotel pool. Indulge in some edibles and then go on a hike and enjoy getting in touch with nature. Smoke one with a friend, then take a Lyft to a local museum or movie theater. Be cool and considerate with your cannabis consumption.


If You Really Want To Go All In, Consider Taking A Class Or Booking A Tour

There are plenty of 420-related activities in legal rec towns. Puff Pass Paint classes are available just about everywhere that’s legalized it, from Las Vegas to D.C. Feel like a stretch? Find a cannabis-friendly yoga class. Need to unwind more than usual? Book a cannabis massage (where topical THC and CBD products may be used). Or simply book a tour like Seattle’s Kush Tour or Denver’s Loopr so you can get the full experience of smoking out, seeing a grow house, picking up some glassware, grabbing some munchies, and more.


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