Sin City but is it really? Years ago it was an adult paradise. You remember the slogan “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas”. But when was the last time that you heard that?
It’s been a couple of years at least. Now you see a different focus than just gambling. Don’t get me wrong there is plenty of gambling going on. But there are also many other attractions, thrills, dining, and so much more.
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From zip lining on Fremont Street to taking a little drive out into the desert. A Vegas Vacation can be a fun time for the whole family. Even the kids will love it. Here’s a list of some of the best things to do in and around Las Vegas with kids.
1. Mandalay Bay Aquarium
The Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino is fun for all ages. This aquarium is a nice change from what you would normally find around vegas. No bright flashy neon lights. Just the soft blue glow that you’re used to in aquariums from around the world.
If you have kids that are 13 or older you can purchase special animal encounters from feeding sharks or sea turtles. Ages 5 and up can feed stingrays. Even if you don’t partake in the different encounters, just walking through the aquarium is an amazing experience for children.
2. Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat
Do your kids dream of growing up and being a dolphin trainer? I know my little girl does and this is the place she wants to visit when she turns 13. Not only can you have a special experience for the day learning how to be a dolphin trainer. For children 8 or older can have an amazing time painting with dolphins.
Don’t worry there is more than just dolphins here. After all, it is called the secret garden too. This place is located at the Mirage and while it may be called the Secret Garden it’s not much of a secret. Good thing too. You and your kids will have a wonderful time here.
3. Fremont Street
Come take a look at old Vegas and see all the amazing sites around. The best time to visit is after 6 pm when the Viva Vison Light show is happening. Your kid’s eyes will be wide open and darting all around.
If your kids are 50 pounds or more they can do SlotZilla. The zip line that zips overhead of Fremont Street. If you are looking for a thrilling experience to have with the kids. This might just be the thing for you.
4. Venetian Hotel
The Venetian Hotel on the Vegas Strip offers too unique opportunities for kids to enjoy. Many of us will never be able to take our kids to Venice to ride the Gondolas thru the canals. However, at the Venetian, you can do just that. It is an experience like no other. One that they and you will remember for years to come.
The other attraction that is great for kids is Madame Tussauds. I’m sure you have heard of this place before. There are a few of them located around the country. For those of you who don’t know what Madame Tussauds is.
Well, it is a wax museum. Don’t worry these figures won’t come to life and haunt your dreams. The wax figures here REALLY do look like who they are supposed to. Plus here you can really get up close and personal to them. This is one museum where they can touch. Their friends at home might even think they meet the “real” person.
5. Vegas Strip
You wouldn’t think the Vegas Strip would be a good place for kids. You wouldn’t necessarily be wrong either. However, some of the casinos are spectacular to look at.
It can almost feel like you are traveling around the world. Want to visit Egypt? Head on over to the Luxor. Dying for a night in Paris? There’s a replica of the Eiffel Tower right along the strip.
You can even catch a glimpse of the New York City skyline. But the Strip also has more than just replicas of famous and historical places. Just be sure to go around dusk for the amazing fountain show at the Bellagio.
The water shoots up to 460 feet into the air. It’s sure to put a smile on the whole family’s face. You may just have to drag your kids away kicking and screaming since they will want to see more.
6. Red Rock Canyon
Just a short 20 miles from the Vegas Strip is Red Rock Canyon. If you are coming from the East Coast, chances are you have never seen anything like it. I know I never did when I first visited.
This is a great place to go with the kids and explore. You can either drive or hike about. Plus you won’t have to worry too much. Not really any chance of the kids or you falling from a high place unlike…..
7. Grand Canyon
This is like a MUST do when out in Vegas. Sure Grand Canyon west doesn’t offer the most spectacular views. But it does have the skywalk. While it can be a little pricey, I find it to be worth it.
Where else can you walk out into the Grand Canyon? Nowhere that I know of. Grand Canyon West is about a 2 and half hour drive from Vegas. Now Grand Canyon National Park is about a 4-hour drive from Las Vegas.
The views from the National Park are amazing. Some of the most breathtaking views you will find anywhere in the world. I do think it’s worth an 8-hour round trip but only if you have help driving some of the way. It can be a very long day for the whole family. But it would be one everyone would remember.
8. Hoover Dam
Another one of those can’t miss places is the Hoover Dam. Everyone has read about it while in school so it might still be fresh in your children’s minds. This is also one spot where you can have half your body safely in two states at the same time.
Depending on the time of year your body can be in two different time zones as well. Arizona doesn’t follow daylight savings time so half the year it is the same time as Nevada and the other half it’s an hour earlier.
9. Ethel M Chocolates Factory
There is more here than just delicious chocolates. It is also home to the largest Botanical Cactus Garden in Nevada. Come out and see over 300 different types of cactuses.
When you’re done outside swing on in, to the self-guided tour at the factory viewing aisle. See how Ethel M Chocolates are made and packaged. A visit is a great way to spend half the day. I would suggest you stop before or after a visit to the Hoover Dam.
Ever take your kids to the circus? I know I haven’t taken my daughter to one. Not that I haven’t wanted to. Just hard to ever see one coming around and if they do. I have to find the time to get off of work.
At the Circus Circus Hotel on the Vegas Strip, every day they have a FREE circus going on. That’s right FREE. You can’t beat that price at all. See trapeze artists, clowns, jugglers, contortionists, and more.
While you are at Circus Circus Hotel be sure to hop into the AdventureDome. You won’t want to forget what happens here. From family rides to junior rides and even coasters. There is bound to be something for everyone here. Visting Las Vegas with kids hasn’t been easier with a place like Circus Circus around.
11. High Roller Observation Wheel
You couldn’t miss this even if you wanted to. This is the tallest observation wheel in the World soaring a mind-blowing 550 feet into the air. You will get amazing views of the surrounding area including the Strip.
This 30-minute ride will give you plenty of time to soak in the beauty of Vegas. Tickets cost a little more after 5 pm but if it is dark out it is well worth it.
You won’t get a better view anywhere else except from a helicopter.
12. Caesars Palace
No, the real Caesar didn’t live here (anyone remember the reference?). However, they did a pretty good job recreating what it would have looked like hundreds of years ago. It’s a great way to visit Rome without having to travel across an Ocean.
If you are planning on doing a little shopping the Forum Shops is the place for you. If you happen to be here on the hour your kids will be in for a treat. The “Fall of Atlantis” show has everything kids love. Water, Fire, and talking statues. You may not like it but I am sure your kids will love it.
Maybe it’s just me but I would like to watch a volcano explode. I just think it would be amazing to photograph (from a distance). The Volcano at the Mirage is the closest and best thing for us parents.
Not only can we witness a Volcano explode in all of its glory. Your kids will love the show that is put on. Most nights the show is only done twice at 7 and 8 pm. But this is one that you don’t want to miss.
14. Valley of Fire
Only about an hour from the Strip is the Valley of Fire. If you and your family love hiking outdoors this is a must-see place. Everyone might enjoy this a little more than Grand Canyon West.
The views are amazing and the photos are spectacular. Much like Red Rock Canyon, this place will blow your mind with its stunning beauty.
As you can see Vegas is filled with things that both kids and adults enjoy. Las Vegas really is a family-friendly destination to visit. So instead of spending an arm and a leg to visit Walt Disney World. Just spend an arm for a week-long vacation in Vegas. Visiting Las Vegas with kids hasn’t been any easier than it has been in the last few years. Plus every year they keep improving.
From hiking to just exploring the strip. There is so much for you to see and do that you would need 2 or more weeks just to see everything.
Did you know there was so much in Vegas for families? Let us know in the comments below. Also, tell us if you will be planning a trip to Las Vegas anytime soon. It’s no longer just an adult’s playground. There still is plenty of adult-only entertainment but also plenty for families.
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