When traveling to Las Vegas, there are some rules and guidelines you will want to consider before and while traveling there. Las Vegas is a very unique city, unlike any other place in the world. The city breathes electricity and life, 24/7 and it is very hard not to get caught up in it. You wake up, get ready and head out to explore and experience Las Vegas, next thing you know you are checking your watch and it is 3 o’clock in the morning. Here are some good guidelines and rules to traveling Las Vegas (specifically the Strip).
10 Rules For Visiting Las Vegas
1. Getting Around
If you are traveling to Las Vegas, you need to stay on the strip, preferably right in the center of it. Although it may appear small and walkable from one end to the other, everywhere and everything you will be doing will be via walking. After one day of walking the strip and to and from everywhere, your legs will want a break. So the more central you are able to stay, the less you will have to walk to get anywhere.
My Advice: If the hotel room is just a place to crash, stay at Ballys, The Flamingo or the Imperial Palace. All three are very central and have some of the most reasonable room prices. If you want to stay somewhere nicer, The Bellagio, Caesars and the Venetian are central with many things to do right in their hotel.
2. The Strip
The lifeline and heart of Las Vegas. If you are heading to Vegas, you will never need to leave it. Just about everything you will want to do will be from Mandalay Bay to Treasure Island. There are still a couple Casinos past Treasure Island that you may want to Taxi or Bus to, Sahara’s, Circus Circus and the Stratosphere. This is easily walkable but you won’t want to waste your energy for just those three casinos, unless you plan on staying at them a while.
My Advice: If you are going more then several casinos (each one is about a block in length), grab a taxi or take the bus, otherwise you will tire yourself out for the rest of the trip. There is also a monorail but it is pricier and only covers about 3/4 of the strip.
The casinos may not be what you were thinking of. They are all segmented of into many smaller rooms, which all eventually with bring you back to the beginning. If their is an attraction in that casino, expect to have to walk down a very long walkway with every shop and restaurant possible lining each side.
My Advice: Each casino is unique and has different things to offer. If you just want to head out and do some gambling or slots, hit up one of the older casinos. If you want to get dressed up, see and be seen then hit up the newer casinos like the Bellagio or Venetian. The casinos are there for gambling, not as tourist attractions, so don’t expect too much from them (except Paris and NY NY).
Most nightclubs (at least the happening ones) are only from Thursday through Sunday. So if you are heading to Vegas for that, make sure you are not staying from Monday to Thursday. The weekend means the clubs are open but it also means Vegas is at its busiest. This means if you don’t have VIP or bottle service setup, you could be sitting in line for a long time and once you get in.
Once you do get to the front of the line, you better be wearing a collared shirt and black shoes, otherwise you are not getting into most clubs. Once you are in, be ready for very loud music, way too many people in one space and expensive cocktails.
My Advice: If you truly want to enjoy the Vegas nightlife and clubs, setup VIP or bottle service the club or clubs you want to hit. This is going to cost you several hundred per club but it gets you in the door immediately, a booth table and instant drinks. If that isn’t your scene, there are plenty of bars featuring, karaoke, dueling pianos and more.
5. Day & Night
Everyone has heard how Las Vegas turns from the beautiful city of neon at night to the dirty and ugly city during the day. Las Vegas is definitely not Paris or Rome during the day but it also does not live up to its reputation. As you pass through the endless sea of people “clicking” and trying to hand out adult entertainment cards, the city still boasts some of the most beautiful and largest buildings in America. At night may be when they are lit up and the prettiest but during the day is when you get to truly see how ornate, detailed and beautifully crafted they are.
My Advice: Enjoy both sides of Las Vegas. At night, go up top of the Eiffel Tower and Stratosphere to take in the breathtaking neon views of Las Vegas. During the day, walk the strip and Casinos and enjoy the master craftsmanship, ornate architecture and details to every casino and hotel.
This is not a city to bring your infants or children. Every casino is smoke filled, every other vehicle is a moving billboard to adult entertainment and every street corner has adult publications and handouts. The only child friendly place in Las Vegas is Circus Circus. Circus Circus boast amusement park style games, rides and entertainment, great for kids of any age.
My Advice: Leave them at home. With all the adult material and smoke filled streets and casinos, there are very few places for a person under 16 to enjoy. You wont have to be constantly worrying about them and they wont have to worry about what they can do.
7. The Maze
Your first time heading out, you will quickly learn how easy it is to get turned around and lost in and out of the casinos. The casinos are extremely large but segmented off, which can lead you in circles quickly. The strip can be the same. With just about every square inch in use and walkways guiding you up, over, down and around, you can quickly get lost but it is always easy to look up and find the Casino your are looking for or at least to get your bearing.
My Advice: Don’t be afraid to ask for help or directions. It can be almost impossible to find a specific bar, attraction or even the bathroom in a casino, so ask for help instead of wondering and wasting 20 minutes looking. As for the strip, dont be afraid to explore, every corner has a different bar, casino or attraction. As long as your know the general layout of the strip, you can just look up to get your bearings.
The downside of Las Vegas, is trying to figure out what you are going to do during the day. Your initial thought is to head out and start walking the strip and checking everything out. This is probably the best idea you can have, except it only takes one day to walk the entire strip several times and explore most everything it has to offer.
From there you may want to relax and enjoy the hotels pool and lounge areas. Once you have done both of those things (which can be accomplished in a single day), you start getting antsy and try to figure out what else you can do to pass the time until night time arrives and you can head out and enjoy the nightlife.
My Advice: Plan your trip during the warmer months of the year. This way you will be able to enjoy and relax at the pools (which some do close during the winter months). Also, take in a show at one of the hotels or plan a day visiting the botanical gardens in the Bellagio, the Secret Garden at the Mirage, the Canals of the Venetian or other similar attractions. Most are free and great to visit during the day.
Unless you are an experienced gambler or bringing enough gambling cash, don’t expect gambling to get you very far. Even the most experienced poker or blackjack player can burn through $100 in 10 minutes. As for the slots, you most likely are not going to get rich but if you find the right penny slot, you can easy kill hours out of the day (at least until boredom sets in).
My Advice: Set aside a set amount of money for playing the tables and set amount of money for playing the slots. Once you start playing, you will quickly see how long your money will last you. From there, allocate how much you want to spend and how quickly you want to spend it.
If you are going to be in Vegas for more then a couple days, then you will definitely want to setup an excursion. There are many options, the Hoover Damn, the Gran Canyon, Rock Climbing, ATVs, Dune Buggies and more. If you are anything like myself, I cant sit still for very long, which makes the Las Vegas days very long. An excursion is a perfect idea.
My Advice: There are many to pick from, so find one that interests you. If you haven’t seen the Hoover Damn or the Grand Canyon, then they are a must see. When built, the Hoover Damn was the world’s largest concrete structure and the world’s largest hydroelectric power station.
Final Advice: Bring a camera! Las Vegas is alive, always changing and full of electricity, CAPTURE IT! Take a minute and check out some of the ways I was able to capture it at www.KlementGallery.com. Enjoy your time and your memories from Las Vegas.
After taking my first photography class in high school, my love and passion for photography has only grown. To me, nothing is more relaxing then heading out with a camera. When I am out, I don’t see buildings or people, I see subjects and different angles to photograph something.