Las Vegas

United States

Overview

Las Vegas, in Nevada, United States is an internationally renowned major resort city known  for its mega casino–hotels, associated entertainment, and nightlife. Las Vegas is the leading financial and cultural center for Southern Nevada. The city bills itself as The Entertainment Capital of the World, vouched for by the numerous references to Vegas in the entertainment world. Las Vegas is generally used to describe not just the city itself, but areas beyond the city limits - especially the resort areas on and near the Las Vegas Strip - and the Las Vegas Valley.

Events

Things to do in Las Vegas!

Hotels

Booking.com

Guide

Neighborhood


Downtown:

  • Downtown Las Vegas is where Las Vegas got its start. This is the original Glitter Gulch, before the Strip became the trendy new kid in town. It's the place to get a sense of Old Vegas, although Downtown has been updated, with the overhead canopy of the Fremont Street Experience and its Viva Vision light show.
  • Downtown is located in the center of the Las Vegas Valley and just north of the Las Vegas Strip, centered on Fremont Street, the Fremont Street Experience and Fremont East. Downtown is a hub for arts and culture in the metro area. The main venue for performing arts is the Art Deco-inspired Smith Center for the Performing Arts. In addition to The Smith Center and 18b, The Las Vegas Arts District, Downtown includes the Las Vegas Natural History Museum, the Neon Museum and Boneyard and the Old Las Vegas Mormon Fort State Historic Park.
  • Fremont Street Casino District: Fremont Street is home to most of downtown's hotels and casinos. These are the original casinos of Las Vegas, which existed before the more famous Las Vegas Strip.
  • Fremont East Entertainment District: Fremont East Entertainment District features an eclectic mix of bars, clubs and restaurants. Centered on Las Vegas Boulevard on Fremont Street, this three-block renovation includes pedestrian-friendly street redesign, landscaping and retro-looking neon signage.
  • The Arts District: Officially called 18b, The Las Vegas Arts District - named after the 18 blocks the district originally encompassed, this area is home to the city's arts scene with its mix of art galleries, studios and stores. Many arts district stores offer antiques, vintage clothing and mid-20th century furniture/furnishings and other collectible items.
  • Symphony Park:  Symphony Park is a mixed-use urban district being built on the land to the west of Fremont and Main streets. It will eventually feature a mix of retail, medical, hotel and residential developments.
  • Financial District: The financial district is home to the Las Vegas City Hall building, the Lloyd D. George U.S. Courthouse and several bank buildings such as Bank of America.

 

The Strip:

  • The Las Vegas Strip is a stretch of South Las Vegas Boulevard, with many of the largest hotel, casino, and resort properties in the world.The Strip is best-known as an adult playground, a place where grown-ups can do almost anything they please.
  • The hotel casinos encompass every type of design, from elaborate themes of bygone eras to modern, sleek styles with lots of windows. The entertainment options include adults-only shows, nightclubs, and every kind of casino game you can imagine.
  • You also have the opportunity of watching some of the greatest entertainers in the world – from musicians to magicians to circus acts perform throughout the year at the top hotels.
  • Some of the more popular free attractions visible from the Strip include the water fountains at Bellagio, the volcano at The Mirage, and the Fall of Atlantis and Festival Fountain at Caesars Palace.

 

West Of The Strip:

  • A few blocks west of the Las Vegas Strip, the city starts to change. You’ll find businesses and homes, local restaurants, and neighborhood hotel casinos.
  • One of the advantages of being in this area is that the overall prices are generally lower than what you’ll find on the Strip.

 

Summerlin:

  • Located on the far west side of the Las Vegas Valley, Summerlin is largely a residential neighborhood. Shops, restaurants, and recreational opportunities also attract visitors, especially those looking to get away from the Strip.
  • The Red Rock National Recreation Area attracts outdoor enthusiasts, photographers, and nature lovers.

 

North Las Vegas:

  • North Las Vegas is a city in its own right, but the sprawl of Southern Nevada has swallowed up this working-class community, erasing any obvious division between Las Vegas and North Las Vegas.
  • Located close to Nellis Air Force Base, North Las Vegas is home to many military families. Race fans regularly visit the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, which hosts NASCAR, other racing events and the Electric Daisy Carnival Vegas.

Getting around


General info

Getting to the city from the Airport

  • Las Vegas is served by the McCarran International Airport which is approximately 6 miles from Downtown Las Vegas.
  • It will take you approximately 20 minutes to reach Downtown,
  • You can use the following services to reach Downtown Las Vegas.

 

  • Bus
    • Terminal 1 is served by Route 108 - Paradise, Route 109 - Maryland Parkway and the Westcliff Airport Express (WAX) route.
    • Terminal 3 is served by the Westcliff Airport Express (WAX) and Centennial Express (CX) routes.
    • The RTC Paratransit service is available by reservation at Terminal 1 and Terminal 3 for eligible Paratransit clients. To make a reservation visit the RTC website.
    • Refer here for the schedules.
    • Refer here for fare information.

 

  • Shuttles
    • Group shuttles are an economical way to get from the airport to most major hotel/resorts.
    • Shuttles are available at at Terminal 1 and Terminal 3.
    • The shuttle from the airport to the Strip is the most economic way to get to your hotel. It only costs USD 7.00 one way or USD 13.00 round trip. Or the Super Shuttle which is USD 8.00 to the strip.
    • Refer here for details.

 

  • Taxi  
    • More than ten taxi companies provide service to and from the airport and locations throughout Las Vegas. 
    • Some taxis will not accept credit card payments. Customers should notify the attendant if they plan to use a credit card for payment.
    • There is a USD 2.00 charge on all fares originating at the airport.
    • The maximum number of passengers allowed in any taxi is five (5), including infants and children.
    • Refer here for details.

 

  • Car Hire -The McCarran Rent-A-Car Center is located at 7135 Gilespie Street, just three miles from the airport with easy freeway access to Interstates 15 and 215 and the Las Vegas Strip. 
    •  The Center is open 24 hours and features state-of-the art customer service facilities. The airport is next to two major highways (Interstate 15 and Interstate 215), and it's simple to navigate to your destination.
    • Blue and white McCarran Rent-A-Car Center shuttle buses depart approximately every five minutes for the three-mile trip to the Center and the car rental company of your choice.
    • Refer here for details.

Bus

The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC)coordinates shuttle / bus service.

  • Strip & All Access Passes include access to all RTC Residential Routes, Strip & Downtown Express (SDX) and Deuce on the Strip. 2-Hour and 24-Hour Passes can be purchased on-board both SDX and Deuce vehicles or from ticket vending machines. 3-Day Passes can only be purchased on board Deuce vehicles, online and from select ticket vending machines. 2 Hour pass costs USD 6.00, 24 Hour pass costs USD 8.00, 3-Day Pass costs USD 30.00.
  • Refer here for the schedules.
  • Refer here for fare information.

Metro

The Las Vegas Monorail coordinates the operation of the monorail service.

  • Riders have access to free shuttle services that depart from locations along the Monorail route. Refer here for details.
  • Refer here for the route map.
  • Refer here for fare information. 

Taxi

  • Taxis are available at bus stations, airport and the city.
  • As of December 2014, the minimum taxi fare is USD 3.30 and increases by USD 2.60 every mile.
  • Refer to www.taxiautofare.com for fare information.
  • Waiting charge per hour is USD 30.00
  • Taxi agencies with their contact numbers:
    • Checker/Yellow/Star 702-873-2000
    • ANLV/ACE/Union/Vegas-Western 702-736-8383
    • Whittlesea/Henderson 702-384-6111
    • Western Cab Company 702-736-8000
    • Desert Cab Company 702-386-9102
    • Nellis Cab Company 702-248-1111
    • Lucky Cab Company 702-477-7555

Tipping


Tipping is expected in most places and should always be done unless the service provided was completely unsatisfactory. 

  • Hotels: Tip your porter USD 1 to 2 per bag depending on the weight. A doorman who helps you hail a cab should be paid USD 1 to 2 as well.
  • Restaurants: Tip your server 10 to 15% of the bill for average service. Restaurants will add a service charge for groups of five or more.
  • Bars: Tip the bartender USD 1 to 2 per drink.
  • Counter Service: Tips are not generally required.
  • Taxis: Tip your driver 10 to 15% of the fare; an additional USD 1 to 2 for help with bags.

Suggested itinerary


Las Vegas in 3 Days: Source (Frommer’s)

 

Day 1: Downtown

  • Las Vegas Natural History Museum: Exhibits include animated dinosaurs in the Prehistoric Gallery, southern Nevada's plant and animal life in the Wild Nevada Gallery, International Wildlife Room, a live shark exhibit in the Marine Life Gallery and the Out of Africa Exhibit.
  • Slotzilla: One of the world's most unique zip line experiences, Slotzilla allows for visitors to zip and zoom their way across the iconic Fremont Street Experience in Downtown Las Vegas. Launching from a colorful, 12-story slot machine-themed takeoff tower, riders can zip in a traditional seated harness 850-ft., or zoom in a horizontal "superman" position 1,700 ft. all with thousands of spectators watching from the Fremont Street Experience below.
  • Viva Vision: Guests can enjoy a variety of light shows with dazzling, high-resolution imagery and state-of-the-art, 550,000-watt, concert-quality sound. The Viva Vision screen is made up of 12.5 million energy-efficient LED lamps. Viva Vision shows last about six minutes, and run every hour, beginning at dusk (between 6:00 p.m and 8:00 pm, based upon the season). Shows typically end at midnight (in the summer, shows run until 1:00 am).
  • Neon Museum: Take a stroll through Las Vegas history at this outdoor museum dedicated to saving and preserving vintage neon signs. The Neon Museum hosts guided tours through the Neon Boneyard.
  • Mob Museum: The fascinating Mob Museum in Las Vegas is an enlightening look at the world of organized crime and law enforcement. Among the hundreds of artifacts, make sure to check out a giant piece of the brick wall transplanted from the site of the infamous St. Valentine’s Day Massacre.
  • Berlin Wall at Main Street Station: Inside the men’s restroom at Main Street Station, there’s a huge slab of the Berlin Wall. It’s a hidden gem in hotel with dozens of antiques and curiosities from around the world.
  • Million Dollar Photo at Binion’s: Take a free photo with a million dollars cash at one of downtown’s most iconic casinos, Binion’s. Photos are taken from 10:00 am to 11:00 pm each day.
  • Downtown’s vibrant restaurant and bar scene make Fremont East a great way to spend an evening on the town in Las Vegas.

 

Day 2: Las Vegas Strip: Be sure to see Wynn Las Vegas, The Venetian, Bellagio, The Mirage, Treasure Island, Paris Las Vegas, Caesars Palace (including The Forum Shops and the talking statues), New York-New York, MGM Grand, and the exteriors of Excalibur and Luxor.

  • Circus Circus Hotel and Casino: World-renowned live circus acts free everyday! Performances are daily from 11:00 am.
  • Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art: Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art presents exhibitions of paintings, sculptures and works on paper by the world's most influential artists. Rotating museum caliber exhibitions have featured renowned artists ranging from Picasso to Warhol.
  • Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens: Just beyond Bellagio's gracious lobby lies the Conservatory & Botanical Gardens, a kaleidoscope for your senses. Open 24 hours.
  • Fountains Of Bellagio: More than a thousand fountains at the Bellagio dance to music ranging from Pavarotti to Sinatra. Free show times are: Mon - Fri 3.00 pm – 8.00 pm every half hour; 8.00 pm-12.00 am every 15 minutes. Sat - Sun 12.00 pm – 8.00 pm every half hour; 8.00 pm – 12.00 am every 15 minutes.
  • Eiffel Tower Experience: The Eiffel Tower Experience, which features a panoramic, bird's-eye view of the Las Vegas Strip from 460 feet above ground, is now open from 9:30 am to 12:30 am, seven days a week. Tickets can be purchased at the Eiffel Tower.
  • Forum Shops At Caesars: The Forum Shops at Caesars features over 150 boutiques and shops such as Nike Town, as well as 15 specialty restaurants.
  • Volcano explosion at The Mirage.
  • Sky Jump: Stratosphere’s new SkyJump will be the trip of your life—no matter what you might be yelling… when you experience the controlled freefall from the 108th floor.

 

Day 3:

  • Red Rock Canyon: The panoramic 13-mile scenic loop drive, best seen early in the morning, exposes visitors to the geological history and splendor of the canyon. Some cliffs reach up an astounding 3,000 feet. One of the more scenic parts of Red Rock Canyon is the Keystone Thrust Fault. This amazing conservation area is also home to about 200 different mammals which include burros, rabbits, coyotes, bighorn sheep, red tailed hawks, golden eagles, hummingbirds and even a few wild horses, bobcats and mountain lions.
  • Exotic driving experience where you can drive three exotic cars on a thrilling, beautiful 30-mile road course in Las Vegas. You will cruise on an open road through either Red Rock Canyon or Lake Mead, rotating through each supercar at checkpoints. Location will be determined on the day of your experience.
  • Bonnie Springs Ranch: Petting zoo, cowboys and cowgirls, a miniature train ride, and on weekends and holidays, a "posse" show where the kids can even help track down the 'bad guy". This little old mining town offers simulated gunfights in the streets, an 1880's melodrama in its Saloon, even a public hanging, with an obliging Stuntman swaying in the wind.
  • Machine Guns Vegas: If you want to be a real hot shot when you come to town, head to Machine Guns Vegas. With an ultra-lounge look and feel and a state-of-the-art indoor gun range, MGV gives you plenty to get trigger happy about. It's what they like to call "Las Vegas on full auto”. MGV features an array of firearms including pistols, fully automatic machine guns, vintage weapons from World War II and one-of-a-kind weapons used by United States Navy SEALs.
  • Catch a show in the evening, with a variety of options from the Cirque Du Soleil, the Blue Man group, musical, comedy, magic and adult shows.
 

Staying connected


  • There are two main GSM service providers in the USA - AT&T and T-Mobile.
  • Both offer 3G services across the 850 MHz / 1900 MHz bands which supported by most modern quad-band phones.
  • If you have an “Unlocked” phone then you can purchase a prepaid / Pay As You Go SIM card for your phone. Check this link for tariff rates
  • Prepaid SIM cards are readily available – both at the airport as well as at convenience stores like Walgreens.
  • You could consider purchasing a SIM from either of the two bigger players, which might have a broader coverage, or from Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) like Ultra Mobile, Black Wireless and H2O, which might have a more flexible pricing.

Eat / Drink


Local

Las Vegas is not only known for being the city with the most famous casinos, but also for its infinite cuisine. The city features two restaurants that have won the AAA Five Diamond award: Le Cirque, serving French specialties; and Picasso, with the menu by executive chef Julian Serrano, inspired by the regional cuisine of France and Spain; both are located at the Bellagio hotel.

Popular dishes:

  • Vegas Strip Dog - It is a version of the traditional hot dog, with two sausages in the same bread, served with mustard, onion, cheese, guacamole and jalapenos.
  • Delmonic Lobster - Lobster tails served with spiced fries or with arugula salad and champagne vinaigrette.
  • Kobe Stripsteak - Kobe, beef cut with thick potato slices fried in duck fat.
  • Nachos
  • Arepas: Thick griddled corn cakes

 

Some notable restaurants serving the local specialties include: 

Gourmet

  • Le Cirque 
    • Cuisine: French
    • Awards: AAA Five Diamond rating for 13 consecutive years.

 

  • Aureole 
    • Cuisine: Continental
    • Awards: Aureole has been bestowed with all the top awards from Four Diamonds to Michelin Stars.

 

  • Picasso 
    • Cuisine: French
    • Awards:  AAA Five Diamond Award 13 times.

 

  • Joël Robouchon
    • Cuisine: French
    • Awards: Winner of Michelin's Three Star, Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five Diamond awards, and Wine Spectator's Grand Award. Robuchon was also named France's Chef of the Century by the Gault Millau restaurant guide.

 

  • Nobu 
    • Cuisine: Japanese
    • Awards: 2014 Top 25 Hot Restaurants in the U.S. 2014 Best Las Vegas Seafood Restaurants, Hot 10 Las Vegas Restaurants, Top 10 Las Vegas Seafood Restaurants, Top 10 Las Vegas Sushi Restaurants by Gayot, one of the 25 Most Innovative Brands by Robb Report, One Michelin Stars (2007), and Diners' Choice Awards.

Vegetarian

  • Slice of Vegas  
    • Cuisine: Vegan-friendly, Ovo, Lacto, Italian, American, Pizza, Gluten free
    • Review: HappyCow

 

 

Drink

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Banner image credits: Pedro Szekely