There's more to do in Las Vegas than just gambling, but with so many different activities to choose from, it can be difficult to narrow down what's worth your time and what you should skip. Whether you like the great outdoors, thrill rides, great meals, or just cozying up in a quiet bar with a great cocktail, we've rounded up 21 of our favorite things to do in Sin City.
Satisfy Your Need for Speed
If you've ever dreamed of driving a racing car like a Ferrari, Lamborghini, or a Corvette on a real race track, it shouldn't come as a surprise that in Las Vegas, there's a place for that. SpeedVegas offers the chance to get behind the wheel of an authentic race car and take it for a spin, without any special experience (you just need a valid driver's license and to be at least 18 years old). The price depends on the car you choose and the number of laps you want to drive, but for automobile fans, the chance to drive at over 200 mph is well worth the cost.
Step Back in Time at the Neon Museum
The Neon Museum in downtown is a tribute to one of Las Vegas' most iconic artifacts: the neon sign. The museum contains a vintage collection of neon lights from throughout the decades, but this museum is more than just a collection of old light bulbs. The signs from yesteryear offer a glimpse into Las Vegas' past and how the city has grown, and tour guides are on-hand to fill in your visit with historical context, so it's really like visiting a history museum with a fun twist. Not only that, but the lights are very Instagrammable, especially during twilight when they're turned on. Be sure to have your phone or camera ready for some otherworldly photos.
Attend a Cirque du Soleil Show
Cirque de Soleil is the largest circus producer in the world, although this circus has little to do with the Ringling Bros. version you may be thinking of. Dancers, acrobats, divers, flyers, and other incredibly talented performers put on a show that at times seems like magic, and it's sure to be an unforgettable experience. The original Vegas show is Mystère, which has been at Treasure Island since 1993. At the Bellagio you can see O, a performance that largely takes part underwater. Other shows in the city include tributes to The Beatles and Michael Jackson, and are must-see attractions for fans of their music.
Take an Excursion to Lake Las Vegas
If you're traveling with kids or have already lost too much money at the slot machines, then a break from the casinos can be a welcome respite. Just 30 minutes outside of the Strip is Lake Las Vegas, a manmade reservoir that is sometimes referred to as the "Lake Las Vegas Resort," because the amount of activities in the area is comparable to the resorts in the city center. There's an entire aqua park on the lake which is basically a giant inflatable obstacle course and fun for all ages. If you've enter dreamed of trying a jetpack, you can ride around the lake on a water-propelled version. There's also plenty of conventional lake activities to try, such as kayaking, paddleboarding, and water tubing.
Push Your Body at Sweat 60 At Cosmopolitan Las Vegas
After all the great dining and delicious drinks you've enjoyed, you might feel the need to burn a few calories. Luckily, Sweat 60 at Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas can help. This 60-minute upbeat circuit training class will kick-start your new workout routine and leave you feeling refreshed and ready to take on Vegas. It may not be the typical vacation activity, but this dynamic exercise class is popular enough that even non-hotel guests sign up to take it.
Lounge at the Mandalay Bay Pools
There are pools galore in Las Vegas, as every hotel tries to one-up their neighbors. But the pools—plural—that are a part of the Mandalay Bay resorts are some of the most talked about. The Delano Beach Club is perfect for renting a cabana and enjoying a cocktail, maybe even a poolside massage for ultimate relaxation. Nearby, the Moorea Beach Club is even more exclusive and has entire bungalows you can rent out. However, the Mandalay Bay Beach is perhaps the most well-known, with 11 acres of play on a recreated beach scene in the middle of the desert.
Spend a Night at the Club
Clubbing is one of Vegas's most popular rituals, and it's no surprise since it's home to some of the biggest clubs in the country. One all-time favorite: Marquee, at the Cosmopolitan. With more than 60,000 square feet (including a rooftop patio overlooking the lights of the Strip), Marquee brings in some of the best DJ and electronic dance talents from around the world. Beware that bottle service at Vegas nightclubs can be pricey—it's easy to spend $1,000 or more on a night out at the city's clubs!
Have Happy Hour on the High Roller
For a truly "only in Vegas" experience, enjoy happy hour from 550 feet in the air at the LINQ's High Roller. It's the tallest Ferris wheel in the world, and with a bar inside—it's Vegas after all!—you can enjoy a cocktail and watch the glittering lights of the Strip below. Unlimited drinks on the observation wheel mean you can drink a lot in 30 minutes, so if heights tend to make you feel woozy already, be careful with how much you indulge.
Jump Off the Stratosphere Tower
If you want to get your heart racing, sign up for SkyJump at The STRAT, an 829-foot bungee jump. If you're still looking for a thrill but don't want that much thrill, opt for the ride "Insanity." A massive mechanical arm that hovers 900 feet above the ground, spinning you and other passengers as part of an experience you'll never forget. The tower is also home to the X-Scream, a rollercoaster that propels you 27 feet over the tower's edge!
Swing Away at Topgolf Las Vegas
Everyone has fun at Topgolf Las Vegas. If you are there to swing a club, the facilities are actually what you would expect for a top-notch practice facility. If you love a good cocktail, they have enough bars and crafty bartenders to fulfill your every request. The menu is not just about bar food but about a real culinary experience. The atmosphere is all Las Vegas with lounge areas, pools, and plenty of action for more than just a golf date.
Buy a Souvenir at the Bonanza Gift Shop
Why would you be looking for a gift shop in Las Vegas when every hotel has one that is far more convenient? First, everything at the Bonanza Gift Shop on the Las Vegas strip is significantly cheaper than what you’ll find in the hotel store. The world's largest gift shop (seriously—it spans more than 45,000 square feet) has plenty of Vegas kitsch, souvenirs, gag gifts, T-shirts, and more.
Fly a Plane at Sky Combat Ace
Sky Combat Ace is among Vegas' best thrill rides, allowing visitors to pilot their own stunt plane over the city. Yes, really. With no experience necessary, you can send your plane into complicated maneuvers alongside one of the Sky Combat Ace's experienced pilots, who is in the plane with you. It's among the favorite activities in Vegas and for a good reason: There's just nothing else like it.
Have a Drink at the Bar at Delmonico
You'll find whiskey, whiskey, and more whiskey at the bar at Delmonico Steakhouse. With more than 700 options spanning a 40-page menu and a knowledgeable staff to guide you, be prepared to receive a mini-education in brown spirits. The list includes whiskeys from around the world and not just the usual suspects like Kentucky and Scotland, but you can try whiskey from places like India and Taiwan.
Explore Las Vegas's CityCenter
This sprawling complex is home to some of Vegas's most popular hotels and other attractions, but just walking around the property is must-do. It's home to nearly 20 pieces of incredible contemporary art, by artists such as Maya Lin, Julian Schnabel, and Frank Stella. Additionally, the complex is home to the Shops at Crystals, a mall featuring more than 50 upscale flagships, ranging from Tom Ford to Louis Vuitton and Prada.
Drive a Rock Crawler Through the Desert
Take an adrenaline-filled Jeep trip with Las Vegas Rock Crawlers. You'll drive along at slow speeds while climbing up red-rock faces and down sandy dunes in your own Jeep. The best part of all is that you are driving your own vehicle, without anyone else inside it. A guide will lead the group in their own Jeep, taking guests over all types of crazy terrain. If you're looking to escape from the clamor of the Strip briefly, this is one of the best ways to do so.
Go Bowling at the LINQ
Spend an afternoon at Brooklyn Bowl at the LINQ to enjoy bowling, food, drinks, live music, and even more fun. Bowling may not be one of the first activities to come to mind for Vegas, but this mega-bowling alley is much more. It has more than 30 lanes and a restaurant that is owned by New York City's popular Blue Ribbon group, famous for their heavenly fried chicken. It's also a venue for concerts and shows of major headliners, so don't overlook this attraction.
Visit the Downtown Container Park
For something out of the ordinary, visit the Downtown Container Park, an open-air shopping complex that's built from recycled shipping containers. There are plenty of shopping and dining options here to satisfy adults, but it's also a destination for kids as well—they'll love the interactive playground, known as the Tree House. There are a countless number of shopping options around Las Vegas, but the Downtown Container Park is hands down the most unique.
Ride a Zipline over Fremont Street
Get an adrenaline rush and a bird's eye view of one of Vegas's most bustling scenes all at once! Try the SlotZilla zip line, which will carry you two blocks down Fremont Street, all while you hover seven stories in the air. Or try the "Zoomline," which lets you fly even further, but on your stomach, like a true superhero.
Dive with the Sharks at Mandalay Bay
Come face-to-face with one of nature's most vicious predators in the shark tank at the Mandalay Bay Aquarium. The aquarium houses seven different species of sharks and certified divers have the opportunity to submerge themselves 20 feet to get up-close and personal with these incredible creatures. All of the necessary equipment is provided, from scuba gear to shark cage. Even if you don't want to get in the water with these fascinating animals, this aquarium is still worth a visit for all travelers.
While the Strip is filled with luxury and well-known places to eat, some of Vegas’s best restaurants aren’t along the main drag. For some unbelievable dining experiences, you have to get away from the Strip. Sparrow and Wolf is one example, opened by Chef Brian Howard who is creating magic in the kitchen while the bar is crafting serious drinks. A little farther outside the Strip is Honey Salt, specializing in farm-to-table cuisine with the freshest in-season ingredients.
See the Fountains at Bellagio
Vegas has no shortage of world-renowned attractions and the fountains at Bellagio Hotel and Casino are easily among the best. At this daily and free show, more than a thousand fountains "dance," choreographed to music and light. This mesmerizing show takes place seven days a week throughout the afternoon and until midnight, every 15–30 minutes depending on the time of day. If you have to see one attraction in Las Vegas—although you'll surely see several—this is one of them that you cannot miss.