Las Vegas might not the first place that comes to mind when you’re planning a family vacation. Known around the world as “Sin City”, Vegas is most commonly associated with debauchery, self-indulgence, and an excess adult entertainment – not exactly the cultural experience you might have had in mind for young children.
Vegas may not seem family friendly at first, but when you look beyond the Strip, there are tons of adventurous and exciting things to do with your kids in “Sin City”. In addition to exploring the numerous museums and attractions Vegas has to offer, Vegas is also located within easy driving range to some of our nation’s most spectacular sights, including the Grand Canyon.
Vegas is a great home base for your next family vacation. To make it easy for you to ensure your Southwest adventure goes off without a hitch, we’ve compiled a few dos and don’ts for you to keep in mind when you visit Vegas with your kids.
Things to Do When Visiting Las Vegas with Kids
From museums and theme parks to spectacular shows and attractions, Las Vegas is full of exciting experiences that are almost tailor-made for children. In addition to some fantastic kid-friendly shows, here are some tips for exploring the city with your kids.
Do visit one of Las Vegas’s many kid-friendly attractions.
Forget Vegas’s reputation for adult entertainment – there are lots of attractions and shows to check out that are great for kids. Here are some of our favorites:
- M&M’s World. With four floors devoted entirely to M&M’s, visitors of any age can feel like a kid in a candy shop.
- Tournament of Kings at Excalibur. Enjoy a dinner show complete with medieval jousting, live entertainment, and lots of audience participation.
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- Bellagio fountains. Catch a stunning choreographed light and water show outside the Bellagio every half hour between 3:00 and 8:00 PM and every 15 minutes between 8:00 PM and midnight.
- Adventuredome Theme Park: Located at Circus Circus, Adventuredome is the world’s largest indoor theme park. We promise you’ll enjoy it just as much as your kids will.
Do any sight-seeing in the morning.
There are fewer people out and about in the mornings, including fewer people who might be advertising night time adult entertainment. Plus, exploring in the morning when the temperature is lower may help prevent any heat-induced temper tantrums (from you or your kids).
Do spend the afternoon poolside.
What better way to cool off after a morning of sightseeing than by relaxing poolside?
Do get out of the city.
The area surrounding Las Vegas is full of exciting adventures. From national parks and conservation areas like Death Valley, Red Rock Canyon, and (of course!) the Grand Canyon, there’s no shortage of fun and educational sights to see just beyond the city’s borders. Take a look at our tours – they all depart from Las Vegas.
Do consider booking a hotel off the Strip.
There are a number of casino-free hotels off the Strip that might be more appropriate for children. Smaller, off-the-Strip hotels are also less likely to offer and advertise adult shows, and they tend to be a bit cheaper and attract a quieter clientele than the partiers who may prefer to stay on the Strip right in the heart of the action.
Do see a show in the evening.
Live entertainment is the perfect evening option for your Las Vegas family vacation. Opt for kid-friendly shows like the Tournament of Kings of the Blue Man Group.
Things NOT To Do When Visiting Las Vegas with Kids
As many great things to do with kids as there are in Las Vegas, there is a reason why it’s affectionately referred to as “Sin City”. Follow these tips to make sure your family vacation to Las Vegas goes smoothly.
Don’t explore the Strip on foot.
The sidewalks are often very crowded and busy, and can be full of people promoting and selling experiences that aren’t exactly appropriate for children. Instead, take taxis – they are by far the easiest and fastest way to get around the Strip.
Don’t explore the Strip at night.
In Vegas, the party only truly begins when the sun sets. Solicitors, intoxicated people, and other characters are out in abundance at night, but if you explore during the day, you shouldn’t have too much trouble avoiding the more questionable side of Sin City.
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Don’t book your vacation without consulting a calendar.
Las Vegas is a popular destination for conventions and festivals, which can draw heavy traffic and large crowds to areas throughout the city. Before you book, check a calendar to see if any big events are going on. If you aren’t planning on attending any of these events, consider booking when there are no events scheduled.
Don’t book a hotel without doing your research.
Check and see what shows each hotel is offering before you book your accommodation. Chances are, that hotel will be advertising their shows throughout the building. If any shows seem less than suitable, consider booking a different hotel.
Don’t forget snacks!
Drinks and munchies are expensive in Las Vegas, and you’ll probably have to wait in a long line to get some anyway. Keep snacks and extra bottles of water on you at all times to keep you happy until meal time or to assuage any unexpected “hangry” outbursts.
Beyond Las Vegas
Las Vegas the perfect place to kick off or base your family’s Southwest adventure – the city is full of things to do with your kids, including museums, shows, and exciting attractions, and there are a number of amazing things to see and do only a short drive from the Strip. Las Vegas may have a debaucherous reputation, but don’t let that stop you from visiting the city with your family!
Check out these great tours just beyond the City’s borders:
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