With one holiday done and dusted, I’m obviously already looking forward and beginning to plan the next one…
And I’m excited to be in the VERY early stages of planning (or at least seriously considering) a trip to Las Vegas!
I’ve been to Las Vegas before, spending a few days there with friends as part of our Wild Western Contiki Tour several years ago. I remember it being amazing, and feeling super stoked to be there in a group – it’s definitely one of those places that’s better in a group; the clubs, casinos and crazy American eateries are just more fun with friends.
We’re considering it this time, as it seems like a fun halfway point between us here in New Zealand and friends living in London, who will be joining in on this holiday.
Just the idea of this holiday has already got me so excited – the glittering resorts, jingling casino floors, stage performances featuring the biggest acts in the world, and enough dining, drinking, and clubbing options to make you go dizzy. As if that weren’t enough, Vegas is in the process of making way for its first major sports franchises!
There are so many places to check out in Las Vegas, here are a few of the highlights we’re looking to hit…
Cirque du Soleil
Cirque du Soleil is generally thought of as a travelling show that exists in many forms, with various exciting themes. But there are also several versions of the show that are native to Vegas and run pretty much all year. Nothing quite beats seeing one of these shows at a Vegas theatre, with “KA” at MGM Grand and “Mystere” at Treasure Island possibly the most alluring versions.
The best attraction in Vegas may just be the city itself, and particularly “The Strip” that’s famous for. Technically part of South Las Vegas Boulevard, this is essentially Main Street for the casino and resort district. It’s a walk between famous venues bursting with light, life, and activity.
The Strip is the main attraction, but Fremont Street has made something of a comeback, and the so-called Fremont Street Experience is very cool. It’s more or less an indoor-outdoor mall with an LED-lit ceiling that doubles as a light show. There are casinos, restaurants and shops lining both sides of the street.
The Bellagio Poker Room
When you hear “poker room” these days you probably think of a computer screen. Indeed, online poker has come to approximate the real thing extremely well, particularly thanks to the popularity of live casinos that involve video feeds to real poker rooms and actual dealers. But there’s still an argument to be made that The Bellagio (the one with the famous fountains) has the poker room. There’s no better place in the world to play cards, though finding an affordable game can be tricky.
You can get a creative (or even ridiculous) cocktail at a hundred different bars and lounges around Las Vegas. Some of them even have fascinating themes that you can enjoy while you drink. If you’re looking for something unexpected, Beerhaus is a worthwhile stop. Designed as a modern and Americanised version of a German beer hall, it’s mentioned among the best bars in Vegas thanks to its social atmosphere and massive drink selection.
Mandalay Bay’s Beach
Every resort in Vegas has something neat to offer, but Mandalay Bay is the only one that features a man-made beach, complete with wave pool. It tends to get pretty crowded, but it’s a little more interesting than most of the luxurious pools you’ll find behind other establishments.
The Venetian’s Canal
The Venetian is one of the most recognisable and established resorts in Vegas, but you can’t quite understand it until you get a look at its imitation of Venice’s canals. It’s actually fairly stunning what they’ve done to create a beautiful and festive canal area, where guests can even ride in gondolas as they might in Italy.
The Spa At Aria
There are lots of amazing spas in Vegas, but the Aria is one of the newer resorts. Relaxation is an art in Vegas, and most any resort can leave you feeling like pampered royalty. But if you’re really hunting for the best spa experience, this is a good bet.