Friday, May 20, 2016


One-hour Vegas Attractions

You just had lunch at a buffet and there’s still plenty of time to kill before your dinner reservation and show. There’s not enough time to tour the Hoover Dam. You’re not going to spend the afternoon gambling. You’ve already seen the Bellagio fountain show a half dozen times. What is there to do? We’ve got you covered. Check out our list of Las Vegas’ best one-hour attractions the whole family will enjoy.


Sports

Work off that buffet meal with some quasi-athletic activities on the Strip. The newest addition to the Las Vegas golf scene, Topgolf, located behind MGM Grand, features four levels of hitting bays, two pools with private cabanas and RFID-equipped golf balls that automatically keep score for each golfer. Pole Position Raceway, less than 2 miles from the Strip, offers indoor electric go-kart excitement. The karts boast a maximum speed of 45 mph, pretty fast considering you’re sitting only a couple of inches off the ground. There are also a slew of shooting ranges on and near the Strip that allow visitors to fire everything from pistols to chain guns.

Shopping (window or otherwise)

If you prefer karats to karts, Las Vegas is home to some of the world’s best shopping. CityCenter’s Crystals gives shoppers plenty of options, including North America’s largest Louis Vuitton. Around 40 high-end retailers and a number of public art installations are sure to kill an hour or two. The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace and Miracle Mile at Planet Hollywood are other high-end options for shoppers. For the other 99 percent, Downtown is where you’ll find the Las Vegas North Premium Outlets, a popular outdoor mall with 150 stores, and Container Park, another outdoor mall housing all locally owned businesses and made entirely of recycled shipping containers.

Amusement Rides

Perfect for kids and kids at heart, the Strip’s amusement rides provide a break from the usual Las Vegas attractions. Stratosphere’s Big Shot ride has been a favorite for 20 years and worth the price for the views it offers. Other notable amusement rides can be found at the Adventure Dome at Circus Circus and New York-New York’s Manhattan Express.

Museums

For travelers seeking out culture in Sin City, you’ll find a breath of fresh air at Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art, which hangs rotating exhibits on loan from institutions like Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts. While on the property, you’ll also want to swing through the conservatory and botanical garden. One of the city’s best kept secrets, Neon Museum houses more than 200 historic signs in its Neon Boneyard. Hour-long tours are available seven days a week and are entirely outdoors, so come prepared. More pop culture-minded museum goers will enjoy a visit to Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, located at The Venetian.

Animals

Get in touch with your wild side at one of Las Vegas’ animalistic attractions. Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat at The Mirage gives visitors an up close view of its majestic white tigers, black leopards and lions. You can also paint with the habitat’s dolphins, whose style lean more toward Pollock than Monet. Mandalay Bay’s Shark Reef Aquarium is another fun option. It takes about an hour to view all of the aquarium’s 2,000 creatures. If you’ve yet to get your fill of lions, the Lion Habitat Ranch houses MGM Grand’s former menagerie. Located in the southern portion of the valley approximately 30 minutes from the Strip, this nonprofit organization is open Friday through Monday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Scenic Views

Shutterbugs looking to capture that perfect shot of Las Vegas might just find it at one of these locations. Paris’ replica Eiffel Tower is the best place to watch the Bellagio fountains, and once the sun sets, the views of the Strip are spectacular. The 550-foot-tall High Roller is currently the world’s tallest observation wheel. Each passenger pod provides unique Strip views and cool cocktails. Yes, there’s a bar on board. Stratosphere is, of course, another great option. The observation deck atop Stratosphere is a great place to take photos of the Strip skyline in its entirety … well … sans Stratosphere.

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