Here’s the Thing…
Being the avid Las Vegas lover that I am, I feel like I am constantly having the conversation with people about how they don’t like Vegas because they don’t like to drink or gamble.
This always makes me chuckle because I literally grew up going to Vegas at least once a year for my whole life and I will be the first to say that there are TONS of things to do that don’t involve drinking or gambling.
I am a firm believer that you do not need to do “typical” Vegas things to have a great time.
Below I have compiled a list, casino by casino, of things you can do that do not involve drinking or gambling. Some of these are kid-friendly, and some obviously are not.
Radiating luxury and elegance, the Bellagio is modeled after Lake Como, Italy. It is most easily distinguished by the 8-acre lake that sits on Las Vegas Blvd. and routinely puts on a fountain water show, synchronized to music. Upon entering the resort, guests are greeted with more than 2,000 glass-blown flowers that cover 2,000 square feet of the lobby. Home to the Cirque du Soleil’s famous aquatic masterpiece ‘O,’ the Bellagio is a pristine example of Las Vegas charm.
Conservatory and Botanical Gardens
Situated inside the resort is the Bellagio’s Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, featuring five seasonal changes including Chinese New Year and the four seasons. Understandably, the gardens are centered around intricate floral designs, which vary each year and usually boasts a fountain and other distinguishable features such as a butterfly habitat, saltwater aquarium, or other theme-related sights.
Fountains of Bellagio
The Fountains of Bellagio is a massive choreographed water show that is paired with accompanying music and lights. Located directly in front of the resort on Las Vegas Blvd., the show can be seen from many surrounding vantage points and takes places every 30 or 15 minutes depending on the time of day.
One of the most iconic and elegant resorts in Las Vegas and the world, Caesars Palace was created to give guests the feeling of being in the Roman Empire. The resort is composed of many defining features such as columns, statues and a huge, 20-foot statue of Julius Caesar himself. Also, if you are a grammar nerd like me and you are wondering why there is no apostrophe in Caesars Palace, I found this article to explain the phenomenon!
The Forum Shops
Originally build as an extension of the resort, the Forum Shops are a massive 636,000-square-foot luxury mall. Boasting spiral elevators and replicas of famous fountains, the mall consists of many exclusive shops such as Cartier, Gucci and Tiffany and Co. The shops also feature a fountain show which depicts the story of the Lost City of Atlantis through special effects and animated features.
Living up to its name, Circus Circus is a carnival-themed resort that features circus acts and games; making it a must-see when visiting Las Vegas with children.
The Adventuredome is a 5-acre theme park located within a giant glass dome connected to the Circus Circus resort. It offers many attractions including roller coasters, mini golf, rock climbing and arcade games. A year-round attraction thanks to its convenient dome, the Adventuredome is a favorite attraction for kids and adults alike.
The Encore is the sister resort to the Wynn Resort, and both are considered to be a couple of the most prestigious hotels in the world. Combined, the Encore and Wynn boast the title of the world’s seventh-largest hotel.
Covering more than 40,000-square-feet of indoor and outdoor space, the XS Nightclub was modeled after the curvature of the human body and features a 10-foot rotating chandelier and a black, gold and brown color scheme, adding to the overall elegance. Voted the number 1 nightclub during its first year of business, XS has housed distinguished artists such as Avicii, David Guetta, and the Chainsmokers.
Named after King Arthur’s sword, Excalibur lives up to its name, featuring an iconic castle theme and echoing the Medieval time period of dragons, wizards, and jousting.
Thunder From Down Under
If you’re in the market for a bachelorette party or just a girl’s night out, Thunder From Down Under is your go-to show. Featuring chiseled men straight from Australia, Thunder From Down Under is a showcase of charming routines, flirtatious humor and an irresistible appeal you won’t be able to deny. But be careful: this show is fully interactive, and you won’t be able to get through it without touching a set of abs or two!
Tournament of Kings
An iconic dinner/show experience, the Tournament of Kings is a reenactment of the story of King Arthur and takes place in a 900-seat round arena within the Excalibur resort. A full-immersion experience, this show takes the audience from modern-day Las Vegas, straight to the Medieval times for a performance of boldness and betrayal. Complete with lots of live action, horses, and theatrics, guests can enjoy their authentic, three-course meal while they witness the battle between good and evil.
The Flamingo resort is a hidden gem along the Las Vegas Strip. Formerly known as the Fabulous Flamingo, it is modeled after Miami and South Beach and stays true to its name by featuring a courtyard home to many, you guessed it, flamingos.
The Garden Courtyard
The Garden Courtyard, nestled within the Flamingo Resort, features a variety of animal habitats including flamingos, ducks, various other birds, koi, and turtles. The best part about this attraction is that it is absolutely free!
Having undergone many remodels and change of names over the past 60 years, The Linq was again renamed in 2014 in order to join the Linq Promenade which features many shopping and entertainment options.
The High Roller is a massive Ferris wheel situated within the Las Vegas Strip. Holding the world record for the tallest Ferris wheel, the ride is about 30 minutes long and features private and shared pods. Riders who embark on the High Roller journey will witness a view of the Strip unlike any other.
Situated on the southernmost end of the Strip is the Mandalay Bay Resort. Although there are hints of a beachy-vide, this resort is best-known for its glamorous and polished feel. Some unique amenities include a beach-style pool, a lazy river, a wave pool, and even a topless section for those that are interested. In addition, this massive resort boasts an aquarium, a couple clubs, upscale shopping and live shows.
Shark Reef Aquarium
Shark Reef is far from your average aquarium. From the moment guests step into the facility, they are instantly hit with sensory overload from various sights, sounds, and hands-on experiences. Featuring unique and rare animals from the depths of the tropics, Shark Reef Aquarium takes visitors through an abandoned underwater temple that is being taken over by the creatures of the sea. With over 2,000 animals swimming through the various tanks, Shark Reef provides guests with a unique experience on the Las Vegas Strip.
Daylight Beach Club
Imagine this: the outdoor fun of a pool mixed with the upbeat feel of a nightclub. Enter Daylight Beach Club. Forget just having an average day at the pool: Daylight Beach Club is the definition of Las Vegas sophistication. Partygoers also don’t have to wait for the sun to set to get the party started! Daylight features all the amenities a typical club would offer including renowned DJs, great music, and full bars, but also has several pools where guests can just relax with a drink or dance to the music. A summer trip to Vegas wouldn’t be complete without stopping by Daylight Beach Club.
Featuring the famous “erupting” volcano, The Mirage has flecks of Polynesian influence, making it an iconic resort along the Las Vegas Strip. Boasting unique attractions such as a large saltwater aquarium and a dolphin habitat, The Mirage has remained a Las Vegas classic throughout many shifts in casino culture.
Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat
Tucked deep inside The Mirage resort lies the Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat, home to some of the world’s most unique and beautiful creatures. The main attraction is the dolphin habitat, where visitors can observe, learn about and interact with friendly Bottlenosed Dolphins. In addition, the facility has other exotic animals including leopards, white tigers, white lions, and many more.
The New York New York resort is pretty self-explanatory: modeled after the 1940s New York skyline, it features iconic buildings such as the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building and, of course, the Statue of Liberty. The resort interior is also named after iconic New York City landmarks including Times Square (the casino) and Greenwich Village (the food court).
Big Apple Coaster
Themed after New York City taxi cabs, the Big Apple Coaster has been an iconic feature of the New York New York since its opening in 1997. Although it may not always be the smoothest (or cheapest ride), it is worth experiencing the looping coaster that snakes in and out of the New York skyline.
Distinguished by its signature tower looming high above the Las Vegas skyline is the Stratosphere, the tallest freestanding tower in the United States. Although the Stratosphere is further down the strip than the traditional resorts, it is often included due to its novelty appeal. Oddly enough, it is the only resort actually located within the Las Vegas city limits; the rest are in Paradise, Nevada.
Deemed the “Best View” in Las Vegas, experiencing the attractions atop the Stratosphere tower is a must for every Las Vegas visitor. Thrill seekers will be happy to discover the jaw-dropping attractions that seem to defy physics, including a bungee jumping experience, rides that hang off the side of the tower and a Supreme Scream style ride located at the tip-top of the tower. For those who are less eager to fly off the side of the tower, there is also an observation deck as well as a restaurant, both offering breathtaking views of the Las Vegas Strip.
Also known as TI in order to appeal more to adult audiences, Treasure Island is a risque pirate-themed resort, situated comfortably amongst some of the most upscale resorts on the Las Vegas Strip.
A breathtaking Cirque de Soleil show, Treasure Island’s Mystere takes audiences on a journey through the imagination where fun and discovery are all that matter. Featuring upbeat music, bright colors, and awe-inducing acrobatics, Mystere is perfect for the whole family and is captivating from start to finish.
So That’s the Thing…
As you can see, Las Vegas is much more than just a place to gamble and drink. If you aren’t into that scene or you are visiting with kids, I highly recommend checking out some of these attractions. From roller coasters to animals to shows, there is truly something for everyone is Las Vegas.
What are some of your favorite things to do in Las Vegas?