I may have mentioned once or twice how much I love Sin City, so this year when I head off to Las Vegas I am going to try out a few new places. In the meantime just to whet your appetite and allow me to reminisce here are a few of my all time favourites.
There are loads of great hotels and I’ve stayed in several on and off the strip. This year I am returning to The Flamingo, mainly due to its incredible central location and reasonably priced rooms. The hotel has been undergoing a bit of a renovation but has retained its retro feel. The Paradise Garden buffet looking across the wildlife habitat is great value for money and is really popular with those who are regular visitors to Vegas.
If you manage to get a room overlooking the fabulous High Roller Wheel at the Linq you will absolutely love the view. I didn’t close my curtains the entire time as I just wanted to see the changing lights of the wheel every time I looked out. It’s also home to some great shows and Donny & Marie have the residency here. I always go to at least one show when I am in Vegas as the whole experience is fantastic no matter what your taste there is something for everyone.
The Flamingo exits straight out to the new Linq plaza where you will find more restaurants, shops and bars, including Gordon Ramsey’s Fish & Chip shop. The wheel is the centrepiece and you can ride the wheel day or night, with or without the bar package and there’s even a chocolate tasting option. Make sure you pre-book your tickets. And of course, at The Flamingo there are real flamingoes so what’s not to love?
My favourite bar is the Carnaval Court open-air bar outside Harrahs. As soon as I arrive I head here and take a seat at the bar to enjoy a few cold beers and some great banter from the bartenders. They generally have live music and entertainment and it’s also a brilliant spot for some people watching.
Deuce to Fremont
The Deuce bus runs up and down the strip and it’s a great way to get around. A nighttime trip on the Deuce down to the Fremont Street Experience is an absolute must added to that you pass all the Wedding Chapels including the drive-thru. Get a FREE 24 hour Deuce Pass online. Fremont Street is home to The Golden Nugget and The Four Queens, the original Vegas before it sprawled out. Each evening the Fremont Street sky is lit up in neon and the light show is accompanied by anthemic music, the atmosphere is terrific and everyone has a great night. You will also spot the iconic neon cowboy ‘Vegas Vic’ here.
You can’t go to Vegas without going to Caesars Palace and of course quote that inimitable line ‘did the real Caesar live here?‘ Additionally, you always have to play the Hangover slot machine and head into the store for some bad taste Hangover merchandise. There is a great choice of restaurants and the shopping is good here too. Celine Dion and Elton John are usually the headliners here.
Try out one of the Minus 5 Ice Bars. As the name suggests everything is made from ice; seats, bar, walls, floor. Throw on a fur coat and gloves and head in for a drink or two depending upon how long you can stand the cold. As a Geordie lass, it’s no problem for me to stay until last orders! There are 2 bars, one in The Monte Carlo and one at Mandalay.
Fabulous & Iconic
Of course, you must visit the iconic Vegas sign for a great photo opportunity.
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On the way back call into Mandalay Bay and tour the Shark Reef. The Bayside buffet here is also good value. I play the ‘My Vegas’ slot machine app on my phone so that when I am on holiday I can cash in my rewards for complimentary food and drinks and usually use them at Mandalay Bay.
Although there is so much to see and do here because you’ve travelled all of that way, no trip would be complete without a tour of the Grand Canyon. It is one of the most spectacular places on the planet!
I’ve been a couple of times and absolutely love the thrill of stepping out onto the Glass Bridge at the West Rim. A phenomenal feat of engineering, the Bridge gives you the most exhilarating of views with eagles flying beneath you. It’s an awesome experience and one I would thoroughly recommend. If you get the opportunity to see the cowboy at The Ranch doing card tricks he is brilliant.
There are loads of great places to eat and all of the hotels have lots of restaurants to suit all types of tastes and budgets, from Denny’s Diner to Michelin starred chefs. Champagne Sunday Brunch is my favourite and you will usually find me at The Wicked Spoon which is nestled in the Cosmopolitan.
The newer hotels are more sophisticated, boutique and chic although my preference is always the themed hotels as there is so much to see and do as you tour around. From the Egyptian themed pyramid of the Luxor, Medieval castle of Excalibur, New York with its outdoor roller coaster and Statue of Liberty to Paris with its replica Eiffel Tower, the Venetian with stunning Grand Canal and Gondolas all the way down to Circus Circus (I don’t have to spell out the theme here) there is nowhere quite like Vegas.
Shopping on the Strip
For shopping, I like the Premium Outlets at the North end of The Strip and the Fashion Show Mall which is more in the centre and which is a bit like the Tardis once you get inside. The Miracle Mile shopping is in Planet Hollywood and features a rainstorm periodically throughout the day. The Forum at Caesar’s also has great shops.
I almost forgot to mention that you could stand for hours watching the Bellagio fountains although they are best viewed at night when they are all lit up. Even better viewed from the outdoor patio of Helix with a drink, good food and a comfortable seat.
And as for gambling, there’s always time to chance your hand with Lady Luck playing a few slots and a couple of hands of blackjack. Don’t worry if you do run out of time the airport is full of slot machines so you can even get your fill before departing.
I just can’t wait to get back. ♥️♠️♦️♣️
For the best deals on tickets for attractions for heading to Vegas, we recommend visiting here or for amazing Groupon offers to check here. For hotel savings….you guessed it, click here. Have you been to Vegas? We’re heading back in November and would absolutely love to hear about your favourite places to go, things to see and where to eat.
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