15 Things To Do In & Around Las Vegas, Nevada
Updated: Sep 17, 2022
Situated in the south of Nevada, Las Vegas is known as the entertainment capital of the world. It’s famous for luxurious and immense casino hotels along The Strip, with vibrant nightlife and lots of gambling. However, Las Vegas is much more than what you've seen in the movies. Las Vegas is surrounded by stunning nature and incredible history, offering great opportunities for day trips. We will highlight 9 things to do in Las Vegas as well as 6 attractions outside the city that will make your visit unforgettable.
Check out our video about Las Vegas to get a sense of what it's like in the city and in the nature around it!
Best things to do in Las Vegas
Las Vegas is a city where you never get bored. There are so many activities in the city that we ha d to narrow it down to 9 of our favorite. But there are many more that are also worth a visit if you have enough time. These include:
the Stratosphere observation deck
the Neon Museum
the Mob Museum
the National Atomic Testing Museum
9. Walk the Las Vegas Strip
Walking the world-famous Strip is a must-do when you're in Las Vegas. The Las Vegas Strip is 4 miles or 6.5 km long and runs from the Mandalay Bay Hotel to the Stratosphere. With its neon lights and high-rise hotels, walking is an experience in itself and possibly the best way to take in the architecture and atmosphere of the city. We do recommend doing this in the evening to get the full experience. And if you don’t like to walk, you can take a helicopter ride over the Strip.
8. Gamble responsibly at the casinos in Las Vegas
If you ever want to gamble, Las Vegas is the place to do it. The casinos here are famous worldwide. Every hotel along the Las Vegas Strip is home to endless rows of slot machines and tables. It can be overwhelming at times but also very entertaining. You can test your luck in the casinos with any amount of money, small or big. Make sure to know your limits and set a budget before you play.
7. Gondola Ride at The Venetian
The Venetian is one of our favorite hotels in Las Vegas. This stunning hotel is located on the Strip. As the name implies, it’s an Italian-themed hotel that resembles the charming city of Venice. Its canaled streets and sky-painted ceilings are a great setting for a gondola ride. You can choose between an indoor or outdoor gondola ride and both offer unique views and last 15 to 20 minutes. From Monday to Thursday this costs $34 per person and from Friday until Sunday it costs $39 per person.
6. Let the Bellagio Fountain take your breath away
The Bellagio Fountain is a fun and free attraction in Las Vegas. It is part of the Bellagio Resort on the Strip. Every 15 to 30 minutes, depending on day and hour, more than a thousand fountains sway in front of the hotel in sync with music and light. It’s a beautiful and impressive spectacle, with water reaching as high as 460 feet or 140 meters into the air. Again, we recommend doing this in the evening because it is much more impressive with the lights. Be aware that if there is too much wind shows can get canceled.
5. LINQ High Roller
At number 5, we recommend a visit to LINQ, combined with a ride on the High Roller. The Observation Wheel rises 550 feet or 168 meters above the center of the Las Vegas Strip, offering 360-degree views of the city. It is the second tallest Ferris wheel in the world after Ain Dubai. The ride lasts about 30 minutes while you learn about Las Vegas and its surroundings. After the ride, you can enjoy shopping, dining, and entertainment along the LINQ Promenade.
4. Take a picture with the Welcome To Vegas Sign
One of the things you must do in Vegas is taking a picture at the “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas" sign. This sign was erected in 1959 and officially recognized as a “Las Vegas Landmark”. It was designed by one of the first female commercial artists who worked on neon signs named Betty Willis. The sign is located near the southern end of the Strip, about 2 miles or 3.2 kilometers from the Mandalay Bay resort. Visiting this landmark is completely free and makes for a great souvenir picture!
Fun fact: There are actually two "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas" signs, the real one is on the Las Vegas Boulevard and the second one is a replica on Boulder Highway created in 2007.
3. Watch and enjoy a show in Las Vegas
We are starting off our top 3 by going to see a show in Las Vegas. One of the many reasons tourists come to Las Vegas is to see a concert or show at one of the hotels along the Strip. Some of the best ones include any of the Cirque du Soleil shows, the Chippendales, David Copperfield, and the Blue Man Group. But there are also famous artists who frequently play on and off the Las Vegas Strip.
2. Never get bored on Fremont Street
One of the best things to do is to visit Fremont Street, located in Downtown Las Vegas. This street is known to be the Old Las Vegas and was the first paved road in the city in 1925. Today, you can find many bars, restaurants, casinos, and entertainment here. The centerpiece of this entertainment district is the world’s largest video screen with a length of 1,500 feet, 90 feet above the ground, which is suspended above the mall and displays lights and music. There are also often free concerts from local artists on this street.
1. Get married at a chapel in Las Vegas
If you like to be spontaneous and you’re visiting Las Vegas with the love of your life, there are many options to get married. Las Vegas is known as the wedding capital of the world and this is obvious once you see the number of chapels scattered around the city. Many chapels allow walk-ins and getting a Nevada marriage license is a simple process, even for an international couple like us. If you're also in an international relationship and considering marriage, check out the process on how to get married in Vegas.
Best things to do around Las Vegas
Las Vegas is surrounded by beautiful national parks and nature. We'll now break down the 6 best natural attractions around Las Vegas.
6. Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area
A half-hour drive from the Las Vegas Strip, there is the Red Rock Canyon, which is the quickest nature escape from the city. A one-way scenic drive stretches 13 miles or 20 kilometers through the park, with various areas to stop along the way. There are great hiking trails off this road, ranging from short family-friendly hikes to longer day hikes through the red rock landscape. Keep in mind that you have to reserve your spot for vehicle entry online from October through May. Be aware that dogs are not allowed here. Plan your visit and reserve your spot using the Red Rock Canyon website.
5. Death Valley National Park
Even though the Death Valley is located in California, you can easily visit this national park on a day trip from Las Vegas because it is only 126 miles or 202 kilometers to get there. The valley is known for being the hottest, driest, and lowest point in North America, with stunning desert vistas and multiple hiking trails. It takes about 2 hours to reach the Furnace Creek visitor center by car from Las Vegas. Highlights include the colorful rocks at Artist’s Palette, the Zabriskie viewpoint, the Badwater salt flats, the Ubehebe Crater, and the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes. The sand dunes are also a great place to watch the sunset from.
4. Seven Magic Mountains
The Seven Magic Mountains are a beautiful art installation right outside of Las Vegas. Sitting approximately 20 miles or 32 kilometers to the south of the Las Vegas Strip, this large-scale artwork was created by Ugo Rondinone, a Swiss artist, in 2016. The seven towers of colorful, stacked boulders were placed into the desert landscape, making for great pictures. The artwork was only supposed to stay until 2018 but it was very popular so they kept it open.
3. Valley of Fire State Park
The Valley of Fire State Park is our favorite park in all of Nevada. It’s located about 50 miles or 80 kilometers northeast of Las Vegas and features red and pink rock formations, as well as petroglyphs that date back more than 2,000 years. It’s a great destination for scenic driving and hiking, and is perfect for a day trip. Highlights include Mouse’s Tank, Elephant Rock, Rainbow Vista, Atlatl Rock, the White Domes, and of course the unique Seven Wonders Trail and Fire Wave. If you want to learn more about this breathtaking park, watch our Ultimate Travel Guide to the Valley of Fire State Park video on YouTube.
2. Grand Canyon National Park
The Grand Canyon is a must-visit when you're in Las Vegas. A four-hour drive away from Vegas, the Grand Canyon is considered one of the world’s seven natural wonders. The most famous area is the South Rim, where you’ll find a beautiful walkway along the rim of the canyon combined with breathtaking lookouts and short hiking trails. We spent a full day exploring the rim of the canyon and saw an abundance of wildlife as well as one of the most spectacular sunsets of our life.
1. Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon
At number 1, we have the Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend. It takes about 4.5 hours to get to these wonderful destinations. Horseshoe Bend, which got its name from its unique shape, is an outstanding viewpoint along the Colorado River. The hike to the viewpoint is short and easy, but be careful near the cliffs as there are very few railings. Antelope Canyon is the most famous slot canyon formation in the entire world for a reason. It’s absolutely breathtaking winding your way through the colorful and smoothly carved rocks. However, keep in mind that both places are very popular and can get extremely crowded!
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