With a nickname like Sin City, it is hardly surprising that Las Vegas has a certain reputation. The city it is known for excess, decadence, quickie marriages and, of course, the biggest, glitziest casinos and nightlife anywhere on the planet. Movies like The Hangover, Showgirls and Oceans Eleven also serve to reinforce the impression that this is a place for high rollers and adult adventurers.
Arrive on the strip, however, and you quickly understand that all this is more a case of not letting the truth get in the way of a good story. Sure, there are groups of guys on stag weekends and the like, but these are outnumbered by everyday families. The truth is, you will see people aged from two to 92 exploring the rich variety of leisure and entertainment on offer in this unique city.
Check out the city
There is no better way get your bearings than with one of the Big Bus Tours – the ticket will allow you to hop on and hop off as many times as you like, so if something catches your eye, go and check it out – another bus is never far behind. For an all-encompassing introduction to Las Vegas, though, head for the High Roller – no, it’s not a casino, save that for the evening. The High Roller is actually the tallest Ferris wheel in the world. At a height of 550 feet, there’s no better way to see the city. You will find it at Caesar’s on the strip.
Try your luck
You can’t visit Las Vegas without checking out the casinos, so take advantage of the professional babysitting services on offer and enjoy a night on the town with your other half. The “something for everyone” principle applies here, too, and Vegas casinos are not all about high stakes poker. In fact, if you’ve ever played an online casino game on your PC or phone, the games will look highly familiar, from popular slots like Starburst to traditional table games such as blackjack and roulette. Each of the casinos has its own character and atmosphere, from the sophistication of the Bellagio to the more raucous Golden Nugget, so it is worth checking out a few to decide which best suits your mood.
Visit the aquarium
With more than 100 sharks, plus crocodiles, piranhas and numerous other underwater creatures that would eat you as soon as look at you, the aquarium at the Mandalay Bay is an unforgettable experience for all the family. The underwater tunnels provide a unique opportunity to glimpse a whole new world, and there are plenty of activities for the kids to get involved in, such as feeding the stingrays and turtles.
Catch a show
Magic, laughter, music or a blend of all of them, there’s certain to be a show on that will capture your imagination. Las Vegas attracts the biggest names in showbiz. Cher, Aerosmith, Penn and Teller, Rod Stewart, Jay Leno, Diana Ross and Cirque du Soleil are just a few of the shows on offer over the coming months.