Las Vegas is about to get a lot more fashionable. As the spring tradeshow season kicks off, Sin City opens it’s doors to buyers, bloggers and vendors–that all dress well. You may be one of these aforementioned and, if so, it’s probably not your first rodeo. You’ve done the dinners at TAO and the parties at Tryst. You’ve spent way too much time in the long open hallways of the Mandalay and even more time in line trying to get a cab. You’ve ended up at The Rhino, only to regret it the next morning. But what about all the things the big state of Nevada has to offer besides gambling, booze and strippers?
Without traveling too far, there’s tons of stuff to do in Vegas that won’t leave you feeling bad about your choices. If you can get an hour, afternoon or a day away from PROJECT, MAGIC or capsule, check out these 10 Things to Do Off The Vegas Strip.
Valley of Fire State Park
What it Offers: Breathtaking views of trippy, Dali-esque, rock structures along with Picasso-type, abstract sedimentary swirls of color. It’s like a natural art museum.
Location: 29450 Valley of Fire Road, Overton, NV 89040
Best Way to Get There: If you aren’t too pressed for time, take the scenic route. I-15 to Lake Mead Blvd. will give you the best opportunity at Insta-gold. You can’t miss the miles of breathtaking natural wonder.
Insider’s Tip: Unless you want a lap dance in a wheelchair upon returning to the strip, don’t try to climb the optical-illusion-looking rocks.
Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort
What it Offers: Blackjack is great, but when saying “hit me” gets monotonous, get mountainous. This one is going to take a full day, but you can get your snow sports on just 45 minutes north of The Strip.
Location: State Highway 156 Mt. Charleston, NV
Best Way to Get There: It’s a really simple drive. Just take highway 95 north to Highway 156, which will take you right to the resort.
Insider’s Tip: With airline baggage fees at an all-time high, rent your snow gear and save some cash to then later blow on gambling.
Ethel M Chocolate Factory and Botanical Cactus Gardens
What it Offers: Two unique experiences right next to each other. Check out a modern day Willy Wonka, try some fresh chocolate and then peruse the porky-pine plants at the Botanical Cactus Gardens located right next door.
Location: 2 Cactus Garden Drive Henderson, NV 89014
Best Way to Get There: Take a cab.
Insider’s Tip: No matter how fuzzy you think the cacti are during your drunken Vegas binder, please don’t try to pet them.
Hot Springs Las Vegas
What it Offers: This is a way cleaner version of your hotel’s hot tub. So when you’re too sober to hop in a Vegas Jacuzzi (who know what happened there last nigh), take the short trip to Hot Springs Las Vegas.
Location: Ash Springs Way Las Vegas, NV 89129
Best Way to Get There: Take a rental car I-15 North to US-95. Take exit 83 for Cheyenne Ave. After that, pay attention because it goes quick. First left onto N Rainbow Blvd, left onto W Gowan Rd., right onto Hobble Stone, left onto Brambly Creek Ct., right onto Ash Springs Way.
Insider’s Tip: Do not use soap or shampoo at the springs, as they contain many endangered fish. You don’t want to be that guy.
What it Offers: The throwback vibe of the Beauty Bar includes vintage 50’s hair dryer seats and linoleum floors. It’s a fun gimmick and with a martinis-&-manicures happy hour. Yes, you can get a man manicure.
Location: 517 Fremont Street Las Vegas, NV 89101
Best Way to Get There: Take a cab.
Insider’s Tip: If you’re ballin’ on a budget, $1 beers and $3 Sailor Jerry’s on Karaoke Mondays could be your best bet. What’s more fun than getting plastered and making a fool out of yourself in a drunken rendition of “Come Sail Away”?
What it Offers: With over 150 signs dating back to the 1930’s, the Neon Museum plays the role of art gallery and Vegas history lesson. From massive high-heels to gigantic yellow ducks, the “neon graveyard” is an exhilarating blast from the past, featuring the structures that once lit up the Vegas night.
Location: 770 Las Vegas Blvd N Las Vegas, NV 89125
Best Way to Get There: Just take Las Vegas Blvd. straight north!
Insider’s Tip: Bring a camera (or just use the one on your phone), these signs are pretty cool.
The Villaggio del Sole Pool at M Resort
What it Offers: Located just south of The Strip, the Villaggio del Sole Pool located at the renowned M Resort is one of the most epic places to go for a swim. With a 110,000 sq. foot pool and a couple Jacuzzis, this grandiose swimming attraction will have you floppin’ the day away, before you gamble your night away.
Location: 12300 S Las Vegas Blvd, Henderson, NV 89044
Best Way to Get There: Just take Las Vegas Blvd. straight south!
Insider’s Tip: Along with the massive pool, comes a few incredible signature cocktails. Try sipping on a Coco Cabana, Mango Passion or Tropical Dream while you enjoy your poolside visit.
MGV: Machine Guns Vegas
What it Offers: Shooing a firearm in Vegas is sort of like a right of passage. But do so in a safe environment. Machine Guns Vegas offers up a unique firearms experience they like to call “Las Vegas on FULL AUTO.” It’s the look and feel of an ultra-lounge, but with a state of the art indoor gun range.
Location: 3501 Aldebaran Avenue, Las Vegas, NV 89102
Best Way to Get There: Hop in a cab. It’s right off the Las Vegas Fwy.
Insider’s Tip: They have a ton of different packages to choose from. Check them out here.
Lotus of Siam
What it Offers: The spicy cuisine offered by Lotus of Siam is some of the greatest Thai food offered in North America. Nationally renowned, this restaurant flaunts authentic Bangkok grub at an affordable rate. Just a few minutes north of the strip, there is no reason to miss out on these unbelievable eats.
Location: 953 E Sahara Ave Las Vegas, NV 89104
Best Way to Get There: Take I-15 to exit 40 for Sahara Ave. Turn right and it’s just .3 miles down the road.
Insider’s Tip: The crispy duck will make you quack. And be sure to escalate your evening with a few glasses from their extensive wine collection.
Desperado Roller Coaster
What it Offers: There’s a large structure that may have caught your eye, if you drove from California to Nevada. The Desperado Roller Coaster, reaches speeds up to 90 mph and possessing a 200+ ft. peak. This ride is nothing short of ill.
Location: 31900 S. Las Vegas Blvd Primm, NV 89019-9119
Best Way to Get There: It is conveniently located on I-15 right where California and Nevada meet.
Insider’s Tip: When riding the roller coaster, do like Waka Flocka and “Look ma, no hands!”