10 Things to do in Las Vegas
This last Labor Day weekend was my best friend's 21st birthday. And what better a way to celebrate reaching the legal drinking age than going to the city of vices. First off, let me just say, a weekend is not long enough – not even a long weekend. But here are 10 things to do first if you've only got a weekend.
1. The Fremont Experience
Fremont Street has a myriad of different things to do and see, ranging from concerts to street performers. This is also a great place to go for some low stakes gambling as most of the minimums are a lot lower than the casinos on the strip. Also at Fremont Street is the Viva Vision Light Show. Every hour, lasting about six minutes, a light show plays on the 1,500 foot long video screen that hangs 90 feet above the pedestrian mall.
2. New York New York Roller Coaster
I've been skydiving before, so I'm definitely not afraid of heights, but the roller coaster at New York New York really got the adrenaline pumping through my veins. The coaster itself has a wide variety of twists and turns, going upside down, sideways and straight down. But the most amazing part is the view. New York New York is right on the strip, and from the top of the roller coaster the entire strip can be seen from this coaster.
3. Virtual Blackjack
If you're new to the gambling scene but still want to play your hand at winning some money, virtual games are the way to go. Virtual Blackjack has minimum bets at as low as $5, without any of the pressure of a real table. It's a great way to feel out the game and get a hang on things, and you can always work your way up to the big leagues from there.
4. The Fountain at the Bellagio
The fountain at the Bellagio plays every 15-30 minutes, each time choreographed to a different song and accompanied by lights. The fountain attracts a fair share of people, so it might take a while to fight your way to the front, but there are also multiple places to watch the fountain from the Bellagio itself. There are also four restaurants in the hotel with outdoor seating that overlook the fountain.
The Bellagio Fountain- All That Jazz
5. Drink a Yard
Yes, that's right, a whole yard of alcohol – or at least 32 oz. anyway. You can find these souvenir drinks pretty much anywhere, and they range in shape from rubber duckies to guitars to the Eiffel Tower. And don't let the size intimidate you. One of the best things about Vegas? No open container law! So don't feel the pressure to finish it all before you move on to the next place. Go big! And take it home with you!
6. The Conservatory and Botanical Gardens at the Bellagio
The fountain isn't the only attraction worth seeing at the Bellagio. I would even say that the Conservatory is equally as impressive as the fountain. Plants from all over the world have been selected for the Bellagio's grand Conservatory, creating a wide array of colors and brilliance. The Bellagio even hires 140 horticulturists to transform the Conservatory into something different for each season. The best time to see this exhibit is at night, when all of the plants are theatrically lit up for display. But during the daytime, a skylight from above also showcases these amazing plants – there really isn't a bad time to see it.
7. New York New York Roller Coaster, Again
Seriously though, twice should be a required minimum for this roller coaster. I would highly recommend doing at least once during the day, and another at night so that you can really get the full view of the strip and beyond. And if you buy a full day pass, it's actually cheaper than the price of two rides so you're guaranteed to get your money's worth.
8. Zip, Zoom, and Fly
Also at Fremont Street is the SlotZilla zip-line. The Zipline takes off from 77 feet high and ends at about halfway down the Fremont Street Experience. And for double the price, SlotZilla also has the Zoomline, which is 114 feet up and twice the length. Unlike the standard Zipline, riders of the Zoomline look down on Fremont superman style, with the connections at their backs and their stomachs facing down. If you time it right, you might even be able to catch a light show as you fly at up to 40 miles per hour.
9. The Shark Tank at the Golden Nugget
The Golden Nugget is right next to Fremont Street, so don't leave the area without checking out this unique water-slide at the Golden Nugget, which goes right through a shark tank. The water-slide starts from three stories up and ends in the outdoor pool. The shark tank sits in the middle of the pool and you can see it from all sides without ever having to get out of the water. The only downside about the slide is that it goes by way too fast. If you don't slow yourself down a bit, the tank might look like nothing but a blur. But if you use your hands and feet to slow down you can even take a second to wave at the swimmers on the other side.
10. Just Walk Around
No seriously, just walk around. Every hotel, casino, and restaurant on the strip is like its own work of art. The Strip itself is an endless gallery of incredible architecture and beautifully crafted interiors. Each hotel has its own attraction that sets it apart from the others, from a volcano that goes off every hour to a flamingo exhibit. So leave time in your busy Vegas schedule to grab a souvenir drink and explore the visual wonders of this city.