Even though I got the worst headache of my life from drinking too many piña coladas poolside and I’m still battling a little bit of heat rash, it doesn’t matter–Las Vegas was so. worth. it.
Rain and I had a stellar time in Sin City. Even though it was just a short 48 hours, we saw plenty of what it had to offer and still had some opportunities to relax. We did plan a bit for our trip and chose a few spots we didn’t want to miss, but we also allowed time for walking around, gambling, and lounging by the pool. In general, I don’t like having a detailed schedule while traveling–it seems to sort of defeat the purpose of exploring for me. While I do research to pick out a few must-dos, I try not to “plan” more than three definite things each day. Everything else should just happen organically.
Planning a trip to Vegas is perfect for non-planners. It’s the easiest trip to take because there’s so much to do and so much to see! Even if all you did was book a flight and hotel, you can just step out onto the Strip and find something fun in any direction you go. Ask any hotel/casino employee what they recommend, and they’ll rattle off some of the best activities based on your interests (no, seriously, Rain and I spoke with a man who works at the Bellagio for nearly 15 minutes about things to do). If you wanted to, you could spend an entire day just wandering around in Ceasar’s Palace.
As the saying goes, what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas, so I won’t give you all the nitty gritty–at least not yet. Besides, there literally is so much to do in Sin City that I’d be writing a post for days about everything we did and saw. But if I were to return to Vegas tomorrow, or to offer up some suggestions to someone going there, I’d want to share my top three. Of course there would be lots of exploring and discovering things along the way, but these would be the must-dos for the trip:
3. The Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas Sign
Because it’s located at the southernmost part of the Strip, it’s impossible to just stumble upon the Las Vegas sign. I think that’s why I find it such an off-beat, special thing to do. It’s still an incredibly touristy spot, but because you have to hop in a taxi and escape some of the craziness by the casinos, not everyone makes it to the sign during a Vegas trip. It’s worth it, though, to get the most classic photo opp in town.
I was definitely excited about this, but all credit goes to Rain for suggesting it and making sure it was high on the priority list. We took a taxi over without any troubles, but neither of us really wanted the meter running while we waited in line (there were about 20 people there when we arrived). We crossed our fingers and waved the cab goodbye in hopes that another one would come along soon enough after we finished. Sure enough it did, and all that worrying was for nothing. Actually, the only difficult part was figuring out how to get all the photos we wanted–we had two iPhones and two Instax cameras! Luckily, some super nice folks in line helped us get all the pictures we wanted, and a huge thanks to them for taking such killer pics!
2. The Flamingo Go Pool
When I would stay at hotels with my parents as a child, I remember waking up, immediately putting on my swimsuit, and obnoxiously bouncing around the room until someone finally agreed to go with me to the pool.
Evidently, nothing’s changed.
I could barely sleep on our designated pool day, so once 8:30 (yes, A.M.) rolled around, I got up and started getting ready. I was practically all set to go when Rain woke up, and I waited as patiently as I could while she got ready for what felt like forever. Torture!
The wait was worth it, though, because I have never seen a pool like the one at The Flamingo. In fact, I’m usually found lounging in beach chairs and enjoying the sunshine, but this pool kept luring me in. There were cabanas, waterfalls, tiki bars, beach balls, and cozy spots to sit in the middle of the pool and people-watch. But the best part? The water was only 3.5-4 feet deep, and since it’s 21+, you could easily bring your drink into the pool with you. I was in heaven!
Looking back, I don’t honestly know how we spent seven straight hours at the pool. Oh but we did! And I have the tan lines (and almost completely gone heat rash) to prove it.
1. The High Roller at The LINQ
This was by far the most unexpectedly cool thing we did the entire trip. My mom had sent me a newspaper clip about The LINQ (thanks, Mom!), and when we looked up some information about it, we saw that it was located right next to our hotel. We meandered over, got ourselves a margarita to enjoy during the ride, and wowza, what a view!
The High Roller is the world’s largest observation wheel, and it offers up the best views of Vegas. The ride was nearly 30 minutes and the best views are at the very top (obvis), so you get to really sit back and enjoy it. You’ll see all the hot spots on the Strip, and way off in the background you’ll see desert and mountains. We went during the daytime, and it was absolutely spectacular.
If you do decide to take a ride on The High Roller–and you should!–just make sure you get in one of the little pods with some cool people because you’ll be stuck with them for the whole ride. The folks we were with were super kind and had wonderful senses of humor…but I’m sure they thought we were kind of weird!
What would be your top 3 for Vegas? How do you like to plan for your trips? Do you create a very detailed schedule or do you avoid planning altogether?