Zion NP - Grand Canyon North Rim - Las Vegas

Aug 6th, 2014, 01:38 AM
  #1  
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Zion NP - Grand Canyon North Rim - Las Vegas

Hi,

My sister and I are planning a trip for 11 days next May. Our trip is as follows:

18 May - Ireland to Las Vegas - overnight North Las Vegas
19 May - head to Zion, stay in Desert Pearl Inn in Springfield
20 May - visit Zion NP
21 May - head for Grand Canyon - overnight in a Western Cabin
22 - 28 May - Las Vegas - Leave for Ireland on 28 May.

We are stuck on where to stay in Vegas - either the Mirage or the Aria? I've been to Vegas a few years ago and stayed in the Bellagio but would like somewhere different this time. My sister is a sun-worshiper and wants somewhere with a great pool whereas I want somewhere central so that I can explore while she is lazing by the pool. Any suggestions?

Any shows we shouldn't miss in Vegas - or is it too early to book? Saw 'O' the last time I was there and loved it. Any restaurants we shouldn't miss? Is downtown the best price for blackjack and slots? $5 tables will be more in line for us rather than $100 tables!

Thanks for any advice you might have! Laura
Lauradublin is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 06:01 AM
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If you are planning on the north rim of Grand Canyon, then you need to be a bit flexible as if there has been a very snowy winter the road in may not be open May 21 although it usually opens in mid May.

I would want to spend at least a day in Bryce NP while you are so close and take a day from the time in Vegas.
emalloy is online now  
Aug 6th, 2014, 06:16 AM
  #3  
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Fingers crossed the snow is melted and we get to go!

I've visited both Zion and Bryce before but my sister hasn't. It's a stretch to get her to go to Zion so visiting Bryce again would be pushing it. Cousins are joining us for the pre-Vegas part of the trip so there is no way to extend it.

Thanks for the advice! Laura
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Aug 6th, 2014, 09:10 AM
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I agree with emalloy and you should do at least a day at Bryce and take a day or two off of LV.

Friends saw Terry Fator at The Mirage and thought he was great.
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Aug 7th, 2014, 01:03 PM
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The Mirage is ten years older then the Aria, but i tend to like the pool area at the Mirage better. Is there a price difference? I imagine there must be. The mirage also occupies a more central spot on the strip.
I don't think you can go wrong with any of the cirque shows. Though I've heard great things about Le Reve.
Desert Pearl is wonderful. Decent pool for your sister with majestic backdrops, sooooo different then Vegas.
Enjoy your trip.
mabella101 is offline  
Aug 7th, 2014, 01:09 PM
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Oops forgot to mention try to do the Narrows hike in Zion it will impress everybody.
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Aug 8th, 2014, 12:53 AM
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Thanks for the advice. I think the prices for both hotels are pretty much the same. Leaning towards the Mirage for the location. The Narrows is definitely on our must do list!

Thanks, Laura
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Aug 28th, 2014, 02:38 PM
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I highly recommend Mirage. We stayed there in July, and plan to go back again in October. My daughter interned for MGM Resorts Int'l over the summer, and now works for them. She has toured all of their properties, and although Aria is a beautiful hotel, I believe that Mirage is less "stuffy", and the pool at Mirage is very active (but not obnoxious with very loud music as some of the other pools can get)!
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Sep 10th, 2014, 05:02 AM
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Thanks for your comment, LoriKim. I have booked the Aria but am now reconsidering following your comments. I find it so hard to judge which is best!

Laura
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Sep 11th, 2014, 01:28 PM
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My favorite casino overall is The Venetian.
Shows - Blue Man and Cirque De Sol
http://www.usatoday.com/experience/l...o-see/8064845/
Same sun at any casino - Mirage has a beach/wave machine much like Edmonton, Canada Mall.

Now for North Rim Grand Canyon. All snow warning above are valid, but this is the era of Al Gore's Climate change - so toss the dice.
There are two touring parts: The park itself (sunset photo at Imperial Point of Mt. Hayen)and Kaibab National Forest. The latter has many roads to excellent view points of the canyon. Sublime is the best of North or South Rim. You MAY be able to drive there if the park service has repaired the road. Overall, you need a narrow high clearance vehicle to visit most of them. This is my favorite area of that park as the north rim has a steep drop than the south rim = better views.

The park has an attractive lodge. Before entering the park, there is a historic rustic lodge http://www.kaibablodge.com Jacob's Lake lodge is just a well run motel.

I don't have a recommendation for a book of the Kaibab Forest area. North Rim Hike - North Kaibab trail goes to the bottom, but it is strenuous hike back up. Just go part way for feel the canyon. For example: Roaring Springs.

Far less crowds than South Rim.

Kanab Motels. IF you are a historic movie fan, Parry Lodge was the favorite of those western stars. Stay in the same room, for example, John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, Frank Sinatra, etc. It is not 4-5 star, but...
B&B - Purple Sage (Name of a famous western book by Zane Grey and he stayed here) is an original, well maintained, Sears and Roebuck do it your self house!
http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Rev...anab_Utah.html

Vaga
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Sep 29th, 2014, 04:48 AM
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Vaga,

Thanks so much for the info. Not sure what type of vehicle we'll have so we will have to see when we get there what we can do. Fingers crossed the snow is gone. We're booked into a Western Cabin at the north rim, which I'm really excited about. Since I first posted, my cousin and her partner are joining us but it turns out two of our party are very afraid of heights, so no idea how that is going to work out! Think hiking down into the canyon will be out, but we'll see. At least there are two of us who don't have any issues with heights.

Laura
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Sep 29th, 2014, 01:58 PM
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For those just wanting a view with a railing, you can hike below the North Rim Lodge a short way. Then take the road out to Cape Royal and Point Imperial with a regular passenger car.

Fingers crossed on May weather.

Instead of North Las Vegas which is an armpit you might look at staying in Mesquite NV instead. We found Eureka Casino with newly remodeled rooms, comfortable and less expensive than Las Vegas. You will also be a bit closer to Zion.
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Sep 30th, 2014, 03:19 PM
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Mlgb,

Thanks so much for the advice about Mesquite. I'll have a look. Didn't know where else to stay the first night apart from North Las Vegas.

Laura
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Oct 1st, 2014, 05:32 AM
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Prediction: You'll regret spending so much time in Vegas and not enough exploring the amazing natural wonders of Utah. A little Vegas goes a long way.
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Oct 1st, 2014, 07:22 AM
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J62
 
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Many people love Las Vegas and find days lounging at the pool and evenings out on the town the ideal vacation. That's perfectly ok. I get that for many that is preferred over spending more time seeing the amazing natural wonders of Utah & AZ.

Personally, I'm the opposite. I get enough of Vegas on the way from the arrival gate to baggage claim and have no interest in the strip, casinos, pools, or or the nightlife.

I'm the type that could (and has) spend 1-2 weeks in both Zion and GC and can't wait to go back for more.

There is no right or wrong plan, only personal preferences.

I would recommend you find a way to spend an additional day or two in southern Utah/AZ so you aren't rushed.
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Oct 1st, 2014, 08:26 AM
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Re: Shows in Vegas: I go to Vegas probably twice a year and have seen most of the shows; my current favorite is Absinthe, if you aren't easily offended and don't mind off-color humor. It is in a small tent outside of Caesar's Palace; get tickets early, it sells out all of its shows and it is a very intimate setting. It is a combination comedy, variety, burlesque, acrobat, cirque-like show. Very unusual, but mostly hilarious! Look it up and see if it is the sort of thing you would like. Also Anthony Cools is very fun- he is a hypnotist. I like Cirque shows but sometimes you want to see something different....
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Oct 1st, 2014, 02:27 PM
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Hi all,

Thanks for all the feedback. If I was going on this holiday on my own, I would spend longer in Utah, in fact I already did a few years back but I' ve finally convinced my younger sister to come along. She's been strictly on the beach type vacation before now, so getting her to give that up is a major coup! I'm hoping one she sees the natural wonders I'll convert her but for now it's 6 days in Vegas. Sometimes you just have to compromise!

Thanks for the advice about Absinthe - that sounds like fun!

Laura
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Oct 1st, 2014, 03:04 PM
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If you get tired of Vegas, visit Red Rock Canyon and Valley of Fire, even if she relaxes by the pool. There is rock art in both if you are interested. We also enjoy doing a long day trip to Death Valley by driving north on 95 to Beaty then heading west, for fantastic panoramas when you are at the top of the ridge.
emalloy is online now  
Oct 2nd, 2014, 05:12 AM
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emalloy, I've always wanted to go Death Valley, so that well may be an option. Thanks for the advice.

Laura
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Oct 2nd, 2014, 07:30 AM
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It is awesome, there are pit toilets at the top of the ridge if you go via Beaty, and you can park and walk across the road for fantastic photo ops. Then go down to the floor of the valley, left takes you to Borax works, VC, Devil's Golf Course, Badwater (lowest point), Artist Pallet drive; and to the right Scotty's Castle,etc. In one day I would only do the left trip and head bac through Parumph with a stop at Zebriski point.
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