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Was never interested in Las Vegas, but since I'm flying out of there, I'm considering spending either a few hours or a full day seeing it and need opinions.

Was never interested in Las Vegas, but since I'm flying out of there, I'm considering spending either a few hours or a full day seeing it and need opinions.

Aug 13th, 2005, 05:28 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,793
Was never interested in Las Vegas, but since I'm flying out of there, I'm considering spending either a few hours or a full day seeing it and need opinions.

I'm going on a walking tour to Bryce Canyon, Grand Canyon and Zion in Sept. It begins and ends in St. George, Utah, which is a shuttle ride away from Las Vegas airport. So, since I don't want to fly home eastward late in the day, I have to stay overnight at least one night in Las Vegas so I can fly in the morning. I have still not made my plane reservations, because I'm undecided about whether to spend one or two nights after arriving in LV in the evening.

I've never had any interest in Las Vegas, and I know I'll never go there specifically to see Las Vegas. But, since I have to be there anyway, it would probably be foolish not to look around to see what it's like.

My tour ends late afternoon on a Friday, in time to take a shuttle from Utah arriving in Las Vegas 8 or 9:30 p.m. So I have to stay that night in LV. If I fly out the next morning, I'd have time to take a taxi or hotel shuttle ride to see what Las Vegas looks like (hotel is near airport, unless I switch). I'll be alone. I'm not at all interested in gambling, and I don't want to spend time/money on shows or big fancy dinners, but would like to see what things look like. If I stay two nights in Las Vegas then I'll have a full day, which I think would be too much for Las Vegas given my lack of enthusiasm for it. But I was thinking that maybe I could find either a public bus or a tour leaving from the hotel that goes to Hoover Dam or Red Rock Canyon (canyon? park?) or a tour to Valley of Fire Park. Then I'd probably still have some time left to see one or two of the big fancy places with the fake scenery like Bellagio or Caesar so I could get some superficial idea what Las Vegas looks like.

Do you have any opinions/suggestions re one night (just a few hours to see LV in the dark by taxi or hotel shuttle bus) vs. two nights (with full day Sat.). I'm especially interested in how easy/difficult it might be to squeeze in a day trip outside of LV on the Saturday if I stay two nights and fly home Sunday a.m.
cmt is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 05:49 AM
Join Date: Apr 2005
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Book a room for at least one night, mid-strip--in or near TI, Mirage, Bally's, Venetian, Paris, etc. Weekends are much more expensive that other days. Check Las Vegas web sites for tours, bus schedules, and so on.
magiccarpet is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 06:34 AM
Join Date: Jul 2003
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I would think that the uniqueness of the place would warrant a full day for sight seeing. If you stay at San Remo, you will be close to the action and save money by not staying right on the strip.

If you spend just one night, you should try to leave Las Vegas late in the afternoon to allow you some time.

Just my opinion (but I'm someone who spends at least a week per year there)
simpsonc510 is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 06:45 AM
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As someone who is in Vegas about 4 times a year (I live in Arizona), I probably am not too objective .. however, I'd stay stay the 2 nights (be prepared to pay a higher rate for Fri. and Sat. nites however, those are primetime (weekend). Even if you are not interested you may just find yourself fascinated by it all. I have been to places I thought I would not care for at all only to find out I really enjoyed them. In any case, as long as you will be there anyway stay over an extra night and see the sights. There is plenty to do without spending money on shows or fancy dining.

Stay mid-strip for best walking possibilities in both diretions. You can always take a 1/2 day tour to Hoover Dam or whatever and still have plenty of time to "do the strip". All major hotels have info on tours.
Lori is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 06:46 AM
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My hotel reservation is at La Quinta Las Vegas Airport on Paradise Rd. I can try to find something else if that's not a good location. It has free shuttle to airport and to various places in LV, and someone on Tripadvisor posted that, even without the shuttle, it could be walking diostance to town (strip?).

I'm going to change my res. to two nights (though I can still switch to naother hotel if not too much $). But I'd still ike to find out about excursions during the full day I'll be there, since I can look around LV in the second evening. (Can't do much the first night, because I'll arrive so late.)
cmt is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 06:57 AM
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I'm more of an outdoors person as well and went to Vegas because of my Mom. I think it is quite a spectacle that everyone should see once. It is most interesting to me at night, so it depends on how late you want to stay up after arriving from the national parks whether you need one night or two. The things to do at night are to walk up the strip, see the lights, go up somewhere like Stratosphere and see the view of lights at night, go downtown to Fremont Street and see the light show. Then, as you said, walk through some of the casinos and their environs. It really is interesting to see the flashing lights with the slot machine noises in the background, changing skies on the ceiling in Ceasars, roller coasters on buildings, etc.

The interiors of the casinos could be done on Saturday morning after seeing the lights and exteriors on Friday night. I personally find LV depressing during daylight. It is an urban area in a desert so during the day to me it loses its shine with lots of strange buildings. parking lots, the dusty brown natural tones, and heat. The casinos are quieter. But at night LV is something to behold.

I know there are many companies running day tours from LV. I haven't used any as I had a car each time (and drove up to Zion last time).
For example:
Kay2 is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 06:59 AM
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cmt, you sound like me. I never had any interest in seeing it...didn't care about "fabulous" hotels, sure didn't care about gambling, and aside from Cirque, didn't care about the shows. We went only because Vegas is a convenient airport for Zion and Bryce, and well...we were there so we might as well see it. We spent one night on the strip, saw Mystere, and believe me, that one night, although we had a nice time, especially at Mystere, was plenty for our family--(my husband and myself, and our adult kids and their spouses.) Now I've been...I'm glad I saw what I did, but I never have to go back. Last time we did Zion, last Thanksgiving, we stayed overnight in Vegas again as we had a morning flight out, but never even went into the strip. Once was enough.

Las Vegas is prettiest at night when everything is lit (and the sleaze is somewhat hidden, LOL.) By the time you check in, I'm not sure how much time you'll have to see anything unless you are up for staying up fairly late, which, if you've been hiking that day, you may not be. If that's the case, you might want to add one more night, just to see it well enough so that when you go back to Zion (you will love it...we could go back again and again) you can skip Vegas completely without any niggly feelings that you might be missing something.

Your trip sounds terrific. Hope you fall in love with that area as much as we have!
OO is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 07:26 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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I second OO comments. Our trip to Las Vegas was to meet up with friends and I admit I was curious about what all the talk was about. Now that I have seen it once, that was more than enough. Yes the lights are pretty at night, but one night was plenty for me. (We were there two and the second night did not visit the strip instead went to the aquarium at the Belagio) As far as the casinos go, I did not find anything really spectacular about a bunch of gambling machines. I much prefer the great outdoors and the natural sights of the area.
It just goes to show you everyone has there own preferences on what they like and do not like.
ceg is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 07:34 AM
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I third OO's opinion. We were in the exact same situation last year, and we decided to stay two night. MISTAKE! You can see all you sound like you want to in a few hours. To me the most interesting hotels were NY/NY and Paris. Fake, but at least they were representing some form of real living. Have NO desire to ever go back and am still mad we didn't take the bump we were offered, which would have eliminated our first night there!
Celiaanne1 is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 07:42 AM
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There's an aquarium? I might like that. Is it a big one with a lot of variety and different habitats?

I'm glad to see there are others like me who were not attracted to LV but managed to get something out of a quick visit since they were there anyway. I think because this is so totally different from what I know, being from the east coast, and yet it's part of my own country, it's something I should see once.

This whole trip will be so different for me. I usually go to Europe, but this year I really wanted to see more of the US or Canada. I've only been west twice--a short trip to California 24 years ago and a rafting trip on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River in Idaho nine years ago.

I just made a second night's reservation at the hotel (second nght $10 lerss than the first for some reason). It's at La Quinta Las Vegas Airport on Paradise Rd. Does anyone strongly advise that I not stay there?
cmt is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 08:09 AM
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cmt, you sound just like me and I fourth OO's opinion. Once (one afternoon) in Las Vegas was more than enough
cmt, can you rent a car for a day? If you can drive yourself for one day to Death Valley National Park you won't regreat. This place is for those who appreciate outdoors and there are many hiking trails.
Red Rock Canyon National Conservation area is a great place for spending a few hours or all day. Many hiking trails.

I would stay in las Vegas for two nights only because of all possible places you can visit from there
Mama is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 08:16 AM
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Las Vegas holds no charm for me, but...it is a unique city on the planet and to be there anyway you really should check it out. I would say at the very LEAST stay an extra night and would say that two nights would be more than sufficient. Who knows, you might love it and want to go back, and if not..well then you'll see what "all the shoutin' is about."
crefloors is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 08:16 AM
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My boss told me yesterday that his wife has a work conference in Vegas coming up and he wasn't sure if he wanted to go because he doesn't gamble. He said if they were going to plan a vacation on their own, Vegas would not be on the list. But he thought he'd go with her and at least check it out.

I suggested he take some side trips, including the Grand Canyon and Valley of Fire. I told him that he will see some of the most unbelievable God-created sights in the world, and some of the most unbelievable man-made sights in the world all in one trip!

I say go for it, even if you think you'll hate it. Spend at two nights and one full day - you're going to be there anyhow! You can then go home and tell your friends that you hated it even more than you imagined, or that it was more fun than you thought, or whatever.

Maybe after so many days in nature, you might enjoy letting loose a bit. Then again, I love everything.....mountains, oceans, country, cities.

Have a great trip!!!

P.S. If you're gonna be in Vegas, I say stay on the strip the entire time.
BuffaloGirl is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 08:42 AM
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See above for where I have my cuirrent hotel reservation. For those of you who advise staying on the strip, can you recommend a place? I'd rather not spend even MORE than I'm spending with the current reservation. (My current hotel is $103 the first night, $93 the second, and has free airport shuttle.)
cmt is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 08:52 AM
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I would just get on the first plane out of Vegas as it already sounds like you will not enjoy yourself. Have a great time in Utah!
vegasnative is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 08:57 AM
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Other posters who travel there more often will be able to give you better hotel advice than me.

We are lucky enough to have a friend who was working at the MGM on our last trip. We booked and paid for the cheapest room, and he upgraded us big time. Here's how I found the cheapest room. I went to the travel agent and picked up a few of those Vegas packages books. The thing is, you don't have to book the whole package, you can just book the room. We got an Emerald Tower room at MGM for $79 per night on a weekend in October!

If you don't want to do that, I would suggest starting a new post re: Vegas hotels. Also, check out websites for Harrah's, NYNY, Bally's, etc. They are some of the older properties. Again, you'll get more up to date info. from the frequent travelers.

Also try www.lvol.com (Las Vegas online) and see what deals they have.

I hope this helps!
BuffaloGirl is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 09:24 AM
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cmt: Paradise Rd. runs parallel to the Strip but you would have one long walk - frankly I would think if the hotel was near the a/p it's a little far for walking. (I honestly cannot place the hotel in my mind, but I would not attempt walking from a/p to the strip).

Strip hotels will be expensive if you are staying over the weekend, but check anyway, you never know. Treasure Island may have a do-able rate as well as Flamingo, Harrah's, Bally's and all are good location for walking to various other hotels. Go to each hotel website and plug in your dates and see what comes up. You might also want to check www.vegas.com and see what hotel rates are there.

If you are interested in animals there is the Secret Garden and Dolphin Pools at the Mirage $15 admission). They are well worth a visit. Siegfried&Roy have many of their tigers, lions, elephant, leopards on exhibit at Secret Garden and there are also two large dolphin pools where you can watch the dolphins playing, being fed, etc. There is also a white tiger habitat at the front of the Mirage where you can watch a white tiger from behind glass windows for free.

Even if you are not a shopper a wander through the Forum Shops at Ceaser's Palace can be fun. Vegas is what you make it in the long run I think. We travel to Europe often and have been all over US/Canada/Hawaii/Mexico but we still enjoy 'Vegas - we just think of it as a fun place for a few days now and then.
Lori is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 09:37 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Vegas is cheesy... agreed, but oh the fun you can have! Go to the Luxor and take the boat ride that tells all about the hotel... go to New York New York and just look around... count how many Elvis impersonators you can see (We once ran into a convention of them and there were many, most in old convertible cars... crazy!) go to the Hard Rock and see if there are any good concerts, white tigers at the Mirage...the statues at the Forum at Ceasars Palace. Just see what you can see and enjoy!
moneygirl is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 09:49 AM
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Does anyone know whether MOST hotels have free shuttles to the airport and to other places along the strip? I looked at a few hotel websites (e.g., San Remo) and didn't see it mentioned. I don't know whether to assume that if they don't feature it on thier site, they must not, or whether it's pretty standard.(Most of the hotels were much more expensive than I want, but SR is not that much more that Q.) The Quinta that I booked does have this shuttle, and I viewed it as a plus, but maybe they all have it, so that it doesn't give that hotel any edge.

I think I could find a lot of things there entertaining, even if it's not "my type" of place. So I'm now getting interested in going there as something totally new and different for me.
cmt is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 10:03 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
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Hi cmt,

Las Vegas, in theory, has absolutely nothing I enjoy, which is why I didn't want to go there with my DH for a tennis tournament. I ended up having a ball and even returned a second time. If you enjoy people-watching, find a perch at the California Pizza Kitchen inside the Mirage (or at the "outdoor" cafe in the Paris hotel...I'm sure there are dozens of spots) and enjoy the free show. The later into the night it gets, the more fun characters you see. Las Vegas is quite a spectacle.
Jocelyn_P is offline  

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