Most people know Las Vegas because of all the casinos and gambling halls also called “The Strip”. Well actually the strip, which is on Las Vegas Blvd, is not located in Las Vegas. It’s located in the city of Paradise, which is part of the greater city of Las Vegas. I have been to Vegas a couple of times but always for business and never for pleasure, but used the time to see some of the famous sights and casinos along the strip. Now I had to revisit Las Vegas for business and was looking for more of the beaten path experience. I have here ten tips for you, what you should and could do in Las Vegas, away from the strip.
The building which houses the Mob Museum used to be a former courthouse and post office. This makes it the perfect location to display the history of the role and influence of the mob at Las Vegas.
This is where all the fun happens. You can find the oldest casino of Las Vegas here, there are numerous bars underneath the rooftop which also is a gigantic screen. The Viva Vision shows on this big screen run every hour beginning at dusk (6pm to 8pm, depending on the season) and run until midnight (1:00 am in the summer time).
Forget the ziplining adventures in jungles. What about an urban ziplining adventure. If you are interested you should visit the Slotzilla ziplining at the Fremont Street Experience. The tower is a 12-story tall slot machine with two ziplines. One sends you about half-way across the Fremont Street Experience and with the upper line, which starts at about 114 feet up in the air, you get to fly all the way across the Fremont Street Experience either prone or superhero-style. The lower line costs 20$ and the upper line will cost you 40§. This is an amazing experience.
The Fremont East District features a lot of great bars and restaurants. Spend the night here and get away from the crowded strip. Go two blocks down and you will see the Container Park on your right hand side.
The whole park is made out of old shipping containers. Pretty awesome architecture and reminds me about the one Starbucks in Seattle near Boeing Field. The park is very kids-friendly, there is a big play ground for kids in the center and around are shops and restaurants.
5. Binion’s Million Dollar Picture
Take a picture with one million dollars for free. Yes there is a stash of real bills behind a plexiglass cover and you can have your photo taken with it. This is absolutely free and you will get a print-out for free. Only one photo per person per day. You should definitely check it out. The stash is located inside the Binion’s casino. Once inside follow the signs to the one million dollar display.
The 200,000 gallon water tank is located inside the Golden Nugget Casino. You can tour the shark tank or use the three-story water slide to get a ride right through the tank. You can see the pool area and the tank from inside the casino, but to get a better and closer look at it, you should go outside to the pool area. If you are not a guest of the Golden Nugget, you can’t go outside to the pool. However the pool closes at 4pm (daily) and after that they open up the area to the public and you can get a closer look at the tank.
There is a actual piece of the Berlin Wall located inside the mens restroom. Women can ask to be escorted in by security to see this surprising curiosity, too. This is a hidden gem in a hotel/casino with a lot of curiosities from around the world.
Visit the Neon Museum for some vintage neon signs. They host guided tours through the neon boneyard, where you can see an incredible collection of retired neon signs.
This is a hospital themed grill, where you get burgers with names like “Quadruple Bypass”. To make it a bit more challenging that you will finish your bypass burger, you will get spanked by a nurse if you don’t. The waitresses are called nurses, customers are refered to as patients and orders as prescriptions. When you enter you get to wear a scrub to make you really feel like a patient. There is a big cattle scale outside and if you way over 350 lbs you get to eat for free as much as you want.
Get to know more about testing of nuclear weapons and the history and development of such.
11. Springs Preserve
This is by far one of the most family friendly attractions in Las Vegas. Located just west of Downtown Las Vegas. This is a oasis in the desert and not far from the Nevada State Museum. Check their website for the current events. It is a great place to learn about the live in the desert and about energy and water saving.
They offer four trails around the “birthplace of Las Vegas”. Where the springs supplied water to the valley. The longest trail is 2.21 miles long and is fully paved. which makes it suitable for wheelchairs. This one can also be done by bike, which you can rent at Springs Preserve. The trails are pretty worth walking and you don’t have to be an experienced hiker. But make sure you bring some water along the way.
7. Visit Shelby American Inc and the Carroll Shelby Museum
The new factory of Shelby American is not far from the strip. It gives you a great insight in the history of the founder of Shelby – Carroll Shelby – and in to the current available cars. You can tour the factory for free from Monday to Friday at 10:30 am and 1:30 pm as well as on Saturday at 10:30 am. No registration required, just be there in time. Hours for the Heritage Center and retail are currently: Monday through Saturday 9 am – 6 pm. There is also a gift shop and sales people if you want to buy one. I love the new Shelby Cobras, they look just amazing. You really should visit this location if you are into cars and in Las Vegas. See also my other post about this place.
Also check my thoughts on what you can do outside of Las Vegas here.