Las Vegas

Las Vegas Destination Guide

Las Vegas is probably best known as a city of casinos. Established in 1905, it officially became a city in 1911, and by the close of the century it was the most populous city in Nevada, and also the most populous American city founded in the 20th century.

Two of the world’s largest Fortune 500 gaming companies – Harrah’s Entertainment, and MGM Mirage have their headquarters here in Las Vegas, and tourism and gaming lead the economy here with retail and dining following them closely.

Las Vegas earned for itself, the title ‘Sin City’ because of it’s tolerance for various forms of adult entertainment. Because of this, it’s been used as the setting for a number of films and TV shows over the years. In actual fact, the 4 mile long resort area known as the Las Vegas Strip or Las Vegas Boulevard is actually just outside the city itself.

The Las Vegas Strip is home to many of the largest hotel, casino and resort properties in the world. Nineteen of the worlds 25 largest hotels (by room number), are on the strip and between them they have over 67,000 rooms. One of the most famous hotel come casino resorts located here is ‘The Mirage’. This 3,044 room hotel is home to the largest free standing marquee in the world, and is connected by free tram to Treasure Island another resort on the strip.

There are many strange and wonderful sights to be seen along the strip that you just won’t see anywhere else. For example, every night, there is an artificial volcano that ‘erupts’ ever hour on the hour between 5pm and 11pm. The sight is accompanied by a soundtrack of actual volcanoes erupting to enhance the experience. To stop the whole event smelling nasty, a pina colada fragrance is added to the natural gas stream that feeds this event.

Outside of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino is the Fountains of Bellagio. A complex mixture of lights, water and music are cleverly interwoven to create a show that is dynamic and excellent to watch. The shows take place every few minutes, and don’t last long, but are a rather lovely thing to stop and watch.

The Las Vegas Monorail is almost 4 miles long, and runs on the east side of the strip from Tropicana Avenue to Sahara Road. It closes a gap in the strip and saves people having to walk from one section to another. It takes about 15 minutes to travel its full length.

There are of course many things to do here that don’t involve gambling, such as the Las Vegas space flights – this zero gravity experience is available for anyone who wants to give weightlessness a go. A specially designed Boeing 727 performs the effects of a real space flight giving people who travel on it the chance to experience what it might be like to be in outer space.

The Stratosphere Towers is the tallest free standing observation tower in the USA, and the view from the top is spectacular. As if this isn’t enough, they’ve added a rollercoaster at the top which is the world’s highest roller coaster, the Big Shot which is a reverse bungee jump that shoots you 160 feet into the air at 45 miles per hour, and also Insanity the ride. This is a mechanical arm that extends 64 feet out over the edge of the tower, and spins you at 3g force for a truly mind bending experience.

Getting to Vegas from the UK is easy with flights to Las Vegas operating daily from London and other UK airports.