No matter where your interests lie you can always find fun in Las Vegas!
Vegas is a city that truly has it all. When you think of the “typical” Las Vegas experience, the city’s incredible (and countless!) casinos probably come to mind. But truth be told, there are so many other interesting things to do in the Entertainment Capital of the World.
No matter where your interests lie you can always find fun in Las Vegas. And the best part? Unlike most other major resort cities, the clock never stops here so you can explore day and night and make the most of your short stay.
You’ll likely arrive in the late afternoon or early evening, so make your way to your hotel (more on our recommendations later), drop your bags, and head to the world-famous Strip. Stroll beneath glittering lights, and get the lay of the land.
Head to Skybar at the Waldorf Astoria (previously the Mandarin Oriental). Skybar is indoors, but it offers fantastic views of the Las Vegas Strip. Watch the sunset with a drink in your hand, before heading to dinner at one of the incredible Vegas dining spots in Vegas.
Las Vegas restaurants have evolved from the steakhouses and buffets that the city was once known for. Pick a type of cuisine—odds are, you’ll find it within walking distance. Our list of Las Vegas’s best restaurants supports this great mix: high, low, old, new, innovative, and iconic. Start your stay with dinner at Restaurant Guy Savoy, which is set in the Caesars Palace hotel’s Augustus Tower and has its own valet entrance. The restaurant features minimalist, modern dishes like artichoke and black truffle soup, kusshi oyster concassee, and seared foie gras.
TLW Tip: The wine list is so magnificent and large, it comes with its own stand to support it; come ready to enjoy.
Once you’re full, head back to the Vegas Strip and catch the Bellagio fountain show. The dancing waters of this Las Vegas landmark are a familiar sight in Hollywood movies (like Ocean’s Eleven) and they never fail to impress in person. The signature dancing fountains are arguably the most popular attraction on The Strip. The geysers—more than 1,200 in all—are nestled in the eight-and-a-half acre lake in front of the resort. Set to music, the fountain erupts every half-hour in the afternoon and every 15 minutes throughout the evening until midnight.
Standing on the sidewalk of congested Las Vegas Boulevard in 115-degree weather is definitely a bad idea, so the evening is the perfect time to catch the show.
After the 15-minute fountain show, head inside to the Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens. This airy central conservatory, which opens up right as you enter Bellagio, was inspired by the Art Nouveau conservatories of Paris. The garden gets a top to bottom transformation five times per year with fresh flowers; towering animatronic butterflies and birds; burbling fountains and bobbing lanterns.
The gardens are open 24-hours a day, and are truly like a miniature Disneyland for plant fans.
If you’re looking for a lavish experience, Vegas is the perfect place to find it. Start day two with a once in a lifetime driving experience at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Choose from different supercars including models by Porsche and Lamborghini. The experience varies depending on which company and package you book, but overall you’ll be schooled on how to steer a super-fast set of wheels by experienced, professional race car drivers. After whipping around the track, head back into town and enjoy some shopping.
Vegas is chock-full of incredible shopping spots, but try the Shops at Crystals. From the exterior, you can tell that this isn’t going to be your typical Las Vegas shopping experience. The futuristic-looking building located out front of Aria contains 500,000 square feet of shopping. Shops include luxury brand outlets like Versace, Giorgio Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, and Louis Vuitton. It’s so special that it’s often the first place where limited edition or exclusive release products will drop.
TLW Tip: Depending on where you stay, your hotel may be accessible via a free tram that connects Vdara, Bellagio, Park MGM, and Aria.
Grab a bite to eat at Wing Lei, known for being the first Chinese restaurant in the United States to be awarded a Michelin star. This Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star winner serves Cantonese, Shanghai and Szechuan flavours, featuring delicacies like tableside-carved Imperial Peking duck and wok-fried Maine lobster. Chef Ming Yu’s dishes are served in a lavish gold dining room inspired by classical Chinese jewel boxes, and bursting with bright white, jade, and gold colours.
On night two, be sure to take in a show. Whatever your taste in music and entertainment, Las Vegas has something you’ll love. Cirque de Soleil is always a great option; five resident shows fill theaters along the Boulevard. For the most definitive display of Cirque’s charms, book O at the Bellagio, a marvelous spectacle based around a stage that transforms into a pool in the blink of an eye and is stocked with astonishing acts, inventive engineering and the company’s clowns.
Another popular show is Absinthe at Caesars Palace. It’s a part burlesque, part circus and somewhat comedy show with some old-world charm and racy entertainers.
Take in the View
Las Vegas is full of breathtaking views all around, from the bright lights of the Las Vegas Strip to the natural wonders and canyons that surround this desert region. Take in the sights with a once-in-a-lifetime helicopter experience. Rides include a champagne toast and aerial views of Sin City. Other options include rides over the Hoover Dam and Lake Mead.
After you’ve had your fill of the hustle and bustle of the Strip, head to a spa-almost every luxury hotel features an incredible one. The world-class Waldorf Astoria Spa & Salon (formerly the Mandarin Oriental) features a 27,000-square foot oasis. The Spa’s pièce de résistance is its Hammam, a tranquil steam room with beautiful mosaic tiles and glistening lights. Other facilities include vitality pools, ice fountains and Experience Shower Journeys.
Another great option is the Spa at The Linq, an indulgent therapeutic spa with a Himalayan salt cave that naturally soothes allergies and congestion.
Cap your stay in Vegas with dinner at Twist by Pierre Gagnaire. This place is as special as special occasion restaurants get, featuring some of the most imaginative dishes offered in Vegas, single ingredients are elevated to complete pieces of art, and every course will surprise you. Some of the world’s rarest and best wines are featured in the extensive list, but be sure to try a signature cocktail first, as the restaurant is well-known for its inventive offerings.
Where to Stay
This Lake Como–inspired wonderland opened in 1998 as a model for the over-the-top Vegas extravaganza resorts that would follow; its fountains remain the biggest free show in town. Once past the fountains and inside the hotel, you will instantly find yourself transported to an elegant European resort, replete with award-winning restaurants and a luxurious spa, surrounded by works from the world’s most renowned artists.
Nobu Hotel at Caesars Palace
Nobu Hotel has a different feel than most Las Vegas hotels, and features Japanese-inspired décor mixed with sleek, modern touches. Situated inside a separate tower at Caesars Palace, guests will feel miles away from Vegas. This boutique hotel also includes in-room dining from Nobu restaurant.
Waldorf Astoria Las Vegas
The Waldorf Astoria—formerly a Mandarin Oriental hotel—is the only Forbes triple 5-star luxury hotel at the heart of The Strip. With views of the city and the desert, the hotel offers the perfect mix of style, serenity and luxury in a non-gaming and smoke-free environment.
For Andrew, travel is so much more than just learning history or taking photos. Rather, the value of travel is witnessing a lifestyle, bonding with locals, and gaining rich cultural experiences. That’s why he founded the Luxury Wanderer; a place to share itineraries, offer advice, swap stories, and foster a like-minded community of curious travellers.