Child-Friendly Las Vegas: The Flip Side to Sin City
Think Las Vegas is for adults only? Think again. As a former Vegas resident, I’ll let you in on a little secret – despite its dubious nickname, Sin City is a lot more family-friendly than most people think.
Affordable, compact, and lined with amazing attractions, here’s just a taste of what families can enjoy on a trip to Las Vegas.
Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat is the premier animal attraction on The Strip. The extensive exhibit has white lions, white tigers, panthers, leopards, and of course, dolphins.
Not to be outdone, the Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay is another enticing place to visit. The modern 100,000 square foot facility is home to hammerhead sharks, tiger sharks, endangered sea turtles, and a touch pool where visitors can get their hands on horseshoe crabs and rays.
Another animal highlight located on Las Vegas Blvd. is the Wildlife Habitat at the Flamingo. This free (yes, free!) attraction houses Chilean flamingos and other exotic birds as well as koi fish.
Fun in the Sun
Beat the heat with the kids and spend a day at the pool. Nearly all the hotels on The Strip have one, but Mandalay Beach and the MGM Grand Lazy River and Pools are two of the most family-friendly. Open to hotel guests, they both feature lengthy lazy rivers, waterfalls, and shaded cabanas.
Winter and spring visitors can take advantage of the beautiful weather with a trip to the Hoover Dam, located on the border of Arizona and Nevada. There is a new viewing platform that offers commanding views of the remarkable man-made structure, and guided tours of the dam and the power plant are also available.
Further east from Hoover Dam is the Grand Canyon. This great natural wonder of the world is one of those places that has to be seen in person! To get the full Grand Canyon experience, opt for an overnight stay at Bar 10 Ranch, which includes a guided tour of the North Rim and the chance to observe a real working ranch.
Only in Vegas
Where can you ride a gondola through the canals of Venice and take a whirlwind tour of the Manhattan skyline? Only in Vegas, baby!
Take a break from the bustle of The Strip and treat the kids to a peaceful ride through the beautiful canals at the Venetian and enjoy being serenaded by your gondolier. Closer to the southern end of Las Vegas Blvd, The Big Apple Coaster & Arcade at New York-New York will appease young adrenaline junkies. The thrill ride lets you sail right through a replica of the Manhattan skyline with views of the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty.
Beating out the Singapore Flyer as the world’s largest ferris wheel, the High Roller is Vegas’ newest family-friendly attraction. At 550ft tall, the 30-minute ride aboard one of the High Roller’s air-conditioned cabins offers amazing views of The Strip.
Of course, this is all just a taste of what Vegas has to offer you and your little ones. A few of the other top kid-friendly attractions located right on The Strip include the Adventuredome Theme Park at Circus Circus, thrill rides at the top of the Stratosphere, the SCORE! Interactive Sports Exhibit at the Luxor, and the Fun Dungeon at the Excalibur.
About the author
Cheylene Thongkham is a freelance writer and American expat living in London. She has a passion for all things travel and has spent the past four years exploring Europe and Asia. When she's not travelling Cheylene makes the most out of her London home base, discovering new neighbourhoods and hidden gems throughout the city. She blogs about her life in London at Girl in London and her travels at Wanderbliss