Las Vegas, Nevada is widely known as the “Gambling Capital of the World.” Some other nicknames include: “Sin City,” “The Entertainment Capital of the World,” “Capital of Second Chances,” and “The Marriage Capital of the World.” Las Vegas is internationally notorious as a major resort city full of gambling, shopping, fine dining, and nightlife. Although once aimed specifically for adult tourism, Las Vegas has become more family friendly in recent years. It is one of the top tourist destinations in the entire world. The Las Vegas Strip is where visitors can be part of all of the action.
Top Attractions in Las Vegas
New York-New York and the Big Apple Rollercoaster
Check out a faux-Manhattan skyline complete with replicas of the famous “Big Apple” attractions such as the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, and the Brooklyn Bridge. This hotel and casino occupies approximately one block of the strip, and lies across the street from the MGM Grand. Experience Gotham style fashion and a New York style pizzeria, along with slot machines, poker and table games, several bars, and a variety of shopping. For most traveling to New York-New York, the greatest points of interest is an adventure on the Big Apple Rollercoaster. While aboard, passengers will view much of the Strip. Cost is a bit high at $14 per person, but the experience is unforgettable. All-day passes are available for purchase at $25 per person.
Bellagio Casino and Fountains
The ambiance of the Bellagio Casino is a once in a lifetime experience. It provides several ways to gamble through table games, slot machines, and a sports book. For all non-gamblers out there, the Bellagio offers more than simply the casino floor. On the property, visitors will recognize the massive fountains that explode every 15 to 30 minutes. This light and water show is complimentary. The fountains’ jets shoot water into the air to the sounds of song. In addition to the fountains, the Bellagio offers a fine art gallery as well as botanical gardens. Furthermore, a luxurious hotel is attached to the casino including several restaurants. Be sure to buy tickets for the Cirque de Soleil’s “O” show. The Bellagio also has a full-service spa, which is an awesome way to relax. Try a couple’s massage!
Caesars Palace Casino and PURE Nightclub
Caesars Palace has been welcoming guests since the 1960s. The casino has made appearances in several popular movies. Themed by Ancient Rome, visitors to Caesars Palace will experience massive columns and frescoes. For all of the shoppers out there, shop till you drop at The Forum Shops, which is an indoor mall inside the building. In addition, the Fall of Atlantis special effects show will prove to be a memorable experience. Adults enjoy one of the most well-known features of Caesars Palace, PURE Nightclub. This is a party venue known for its celebrity clientele, multiple dance floors and lounges. Drinks are rather pricey, but it is worth the experience.
The Mirage Casino and Volcano
Located mid-Strip, across the street from The Venetian and next door to Caesars Palace, this Polynesian-themed casino has earned a reputation among tourists as one of the best locations to gamble along the strip. The casino’s poker room and table games are most popular among high-rollers. The floor is huge, so be prepared to be patient when ordering drinks. Despite this, The Mirage’s casino is well-known for its size and cleanliness. Do not worry if gambling does not entice. The massive volcano that erupts daily between 6PM and 11PM, will not disappoint. Music blares and the man-made ejects fireballs sky-high. If this is a family trip, The Mirage offers several family-friendly attractions. A 20,000-gallon saltwater aquarium is found behind the check-in desk at the hotel. Additionally, Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat exist on the property. At this show, visitors will encounter huge cats and watch friendly bottlenose dolphins. Tickets are approximately $20 for adults and $15 for children ages 4-12. Children under 3 years old are free. Furthermore, The Mirage also features several shops, restaurants, shows, and nightlife venues.
Paris Casino and the Eiffel Tower
Paris comes alive on the Las Vegas Strip at the Paris Casino and Hotel. Visitors will fall in love all over again while viewing the French capital’s most iconic sights. A replica of the Arc de Triomphe, décor reminiscent of the Paris Opera and Louvre, and the Eiffel Tower are some of the major highlights. The building soars 46 stories high, which offers an unforgettable view of the Strip. The Eiffel Tower observation deck is open from 9:30AM to 12:30AM during the week. It remains open until 1AM on Saturdays and Sundays. In addition to the French ambiance and culture, patrons can enjoy slots, table games, horse racing, and Keno. Be advised that Paris does have some adult nightlife that may not be too keen for a child’s eye.
Mandalay Bay Casino and Beach
Head down to the southern end of the Strip to view this towering gold building and be a part of more of a laid-back escape. How can one escape? Well, Mandalay Bay houses an 11 acre man-made beach. The beach contains 2,700 tons of sand and a 1.6 million gallon wave pool. Visitors will feel like they are relaxing on a beach! Be aware that guests not staying on the property’s hotel will have to rent a cabana in order to access the pool and beach areas. Prices are determined based on occupancy. If children are accompanying on the trip, definitely make time for the Shark Reef. Housing more than 2,000 animals such as: stingrays, sea turtles, crocodiles, and sharks, families will truly enjoy viewing this massive aquarium. Admission is $18 for adults and $12 for children ages 5 to 12. Children ages 4 and younger are admitted free of charge.
Need a break from the sounds of slot machines and the hustle and bustle of the Strip? Take a half day or full day trip to the massive concrete structure known as the Hoover Dam. This historical landmark has existed since 1937 and welcomes over a million visitors each year. The Hoover Dam spans the Colorado River and the Black Canyon and lies 30 miles southeast of Las Vegas. Check out the Visitors Center, which is located on the Nevada side of the canyon. Here, tourists will receive an in-depth look into the history of the Hoover Dam through photographs, maps, and a short film. Tourists can also pay for a 30 minute guided tour, which costs $15 per adult, and $12 for children ages 4 to 16. Additionally, there is an hour long tour available for $30. Be advised that children ages 8 and under are not permitted on the hour long tour. Tours fill up rather quickly, so head to the Vistors Center upon arrival in order to purchase a guided tour ticket if so desired.
Pick the time right!
Tourists visit Las Vegas from March to November
When traveling to Las Vegas, the best time to book a trip is during the months of March through May and September through November. Summertime in Vegas can be sweltering. Temperatures climb over 100 degrees. A popular choice among tourists is to head to Vegas for New Year’s Eve. Be advised that it is extremely crowded during this time, so be sure to make airline and hotel reservations in advance.
McCarran International Airport offers a unique experience. While waiting for a flight, travelers can kill some time at the gambling machines located throughout the airport. The food courts, baggage claim, taxi line, and car rental shuttle are all easy to navigate to and well organized. McCarran International Airport houses 110 aircraft gates at two separate terminal buildings. Tip: The two terminals are not connected, so it is important to know which airline operates at what terminal before landing in the airport.
McCarran International Airport is located at 5757 Wayne Newton Boulevard, which is two miles from the infamous Las Vegas Strip, and 15 miles from downtown. The airport is easily accessible via 1-215, Tropicana Avenue, or Russell Road. Taxis, hotel shuttles, and car rentals are all available on the grounds.
Although Las Vegas does not have a subway system, the city does offer several means of public transportation. Be sure to look into any free shuttle services that hotels provide. Taxis and the Citizen Area Transit (CAT) are the best options for navigating on the Strip. Walking is also a popular choice when navigating the Strip; many casinos and hotels are connected through skyways and walkways. Additionally, a preferred public transportation choice is the Las Vegas Monorail. Passengers can glide to one end on the Strip to another in a mere 14 minutes. Obviously, there are several modes of public transportation for tourists heading to the Las Vegas Strip. Renting a car is not necessary.