Sure, you COULD go to Vegas and make a beeline for the casinos (apparently it has a few), thus putting the nail in the coffin of your already meager student finances. OR you could travel outside the box and check out some of the awesome stuff to do below: we’ve swerved the gambling and the booze in favor of activities that won’t leave you economically destitute and battling a hangover that could be sold to science. Winner!
1. Be dazzled at the Neon Museum
Neon is part of Las Vegas’s DNA – the city simply wouldn’t be the same without it – and this museum is doing all it can to preserve the city’s flashy heritage. You could visit in the day but we recommend going at night. (Obviously!)
Cost: from $23
2. Do some window shopping along the Venetian Canals
Las Vegas has a bit of a thing for Europe, boasting its own Eiffel Tower and Colosseum. But the Venetian Resort has taken things a step further and seriously delivered on its name: a network of canals run in and out the building, lined with luxury shops.
3. Sit back and watch TV
Hear us out! It’s not just any TV. It’s the BIGGEST TV IN THE WORLD. Named Viva Vision, you can find it looming high above the Fremont Street Mall. The screen has over 16 million megapixels and is almost 1400ft long!
4. Zipline over Fremont Street
While you’re at Fremont Street, you should check out the Slotzilla zipline. You have two options: the Zip-Zilla line, which descends seven stories and travels for two blocks, or the Super-Hero Zoom, which is 11 stories high and travels five blocks.
Cost: $39 / $59
5. Take an organized tour of organized crime
Vegas was pretty much invented by the mob – they certainly ran it for a long time – and this museum charts the history of that early period through interesting artifacts and interactive displays.
Cost: from $30
6. Soak up local culture at a street festival
Vegas is a diverse city and boasts a culture that ranges far beyond the casino stereotypes. One place to soak this up is at the First Friday street festival (so-named because it takes place on the first Friday of each month) – expect amazing street food, among other things.
7. Brave the thrill rides at The Strat
Question: what’s better than a theme park on the ground? Answer: a theme park on a skyscraper. That’s exactly what The Strat offers, and its rides aren’t for the timid. There are three to choose from: Big Shot, which shoots you up vertically 160ft at 50mph; Insanity, which dangles you via a giant claw from the side of the building at 900ft; and X-Scream, a rollercoaster which involves teetering over the edge of the top of the tower.
Cost: from $29
8. Get awestruck at the Hoover Dam
The Hoover Dam is only a 30 minute drive from downtown Vegas and is definitely worth a visit. One of the world’s engineering marvels, the 220m structure was built in the 1930s and today creates hydroelectric power for Nevada, Arizona and California. You can take a tour to see how everything works too!
Cost: from $10
9. Watch the Bellagio Fountain Show
No trip to Vegas is complete without witnessing the truly iconic Fountains of Bellagio – you can find them outside the Bellagio Resort on The Strip. With over 1200 jets, over 4700 lights and water that goes as high as 460ft, this is a show you won’t forget – definitely a top choice for Las Vegas bucket list ideas.
10. Get a selfie in front of the famous sign
No explanation necessary – just get it done!