Situated in the state of Nevada, Las Vegas has established legendary status throughout the world. When walking the Las Vegas strip you’ll see various ethnicities from all corners of the globe, looking for their slice of unforgettable experiences. There is almost too much happening in Las Vegas, so jam packed full of events and activities, that you’ll most definitely never get through everything in one trip. So just what does this desert metropolis have in store for visitors and locals alike?
Casinos and Gambling
This section really needs no mentioning. The connection between Las Vegas and gambling is well-known. It all started with the construction of the Hoover Dam in 1929, in close proximity to the then town, which bought in loads of workers. This in turn, resulted in an illegal gambling industry cropping up, assisted by the Mafia. Nevada saw an opportunity to create a gambling hub, as well as a goldmine in legalizing gambling, and in 1931 decided to change the law and give their lawful blessing to potential casino owners.
Today ‘Sin City’ certainly holds the status as the No. 1 gambling city in the world. Mega Las Vegas hotels and casinos such as the Venetian and the Bellagio draw in myriad slots, poker, blackjack and roulette players, just to name a few.
Sports betting has also been legal since 1931, and although there is no longer a horse racing track or a greyhound track in the city every casino offer luxurious sports betting facilities for travelers looking to get in on some competitive action.
Music and Nightclubs
Many a musician have called Las Vegas home over the years, most notably Elvis Presley. It was reported in 2016 that a whopping 42.9 million people visit the city annually, and given that Las Vegas is smaller per square meterage than competitors in the ranks of New York and San Francisco, it means that the action is all highly compacted. Even better, catching a music concert is highly convenient. There is no shortage of famous acts, with a world famous artist performing in the city almost every night of the week.
Many of these singers/musicians take up residency for a contracted amount of time. Famous names to have done this include Cher, Celine Dion, Britney Spears, and very recently Lady Gaga. It speaks volumes that these performers can sell out shows on a nightly basis for years at a time.
The nightclubs of Vegas aren’t your run-of-the-mill discotheques—but rather super clubs—with the largest sound systems and, on stage, the world’s most in-demand DJ’s. They play nightly to packed out dance floors. Venues like OMNIA and Drai’s regularly see Tiesto and Calvin Harris taking up residency, while the décor and lighting of the clubs defy belief.
Shows, Of All Kinds
There are so many unique shows to catch while in Vegas that it almost presents a dilemma. Many of the world’s most high profile magicians are regulars on stage in any one of the high capacity arenas that fill out the mega-hotels. David Copperfield and David Blaine are among the must-sees, while Frederic Da Silva’s mind reading show will leave you speechless.
Comedians are also ever-present, with illusionists such as Terry Fator putting on what is perhaps the most entertaining show on the Vegas Strip. The multi-talented performer impersonates celebrities, sings, displays unreal ventriloquist skills and delivers hilarious jokes.
The town didn’t get the name Sin City for nothing, so expect to see flyers for adult entertainment and burlesque shows in abundance.
Such is the pulling power of Las Vegas that the city boasts the most AAA Five Diamond hotels in the world. While guests obviously have the chance to stay in some of the finest accommodation on the planet they also have access to the most prestigious and highly rated restaurants known to man. The hotels are always looking for ways to attract business, and the residency of celebrity chefs bring in visitors not only interested in gambling. Marc Vetri, Natalie Young, and Michael Symon are but a few high profile culinary maestros plying their trade in Vegas. If there’s a city in the world to own a restaurant, it’s Las Vegas.
Some Gems To Note
It’s no surprise to sees the tag line ‘The Entertainment Capital of the World’ attached to the city. If you enjoy scenery then there’s the world’s highest observation wheel—beating out the London Eye—The High Roller at the LINQ. You can also board a helicopter for tours of the Grand Canyon as well as various tours of Red Rock Canyon. The desert provides a playground for adventure seekers with quad bike riding and 4x4 adventure trails. Ziplining, sky diving and white water rafting are also on offer for the most hard-core of adrenaline junkies.
There really is nothing one can’t do when visiting Las Vegas. The embarrassment of entertainment riches are almost too long to list, while the history in terms of popular culture provides an aura so intoxicating that you’ll understand immediately why people flock to this Nevada city in their droves to take in what really is the trip of a lifetime.
Planning any trip can be overwhelming. And even though researching ahead of time is great, I always recommend bringing a travel guide—especially one that fits in your pocket— along with you. Here are some Las Vegas travel guides I recommend...
Also, a super common question I get is: What camera is best for travel photography? I use a Nikon D5600 and use both the kit lens and a Sigma wide-angle lens. I am genuinely obsessed with the wide-angle lens and think every travel photographer should have one.
And of course, if you have any questions DO NOT hesitate to reach out to me via Instagram, Twitter, or just shoot me an email at tessajuliette at gmail dot com.