There are many exciting locations to visit, but for me, there is one that stands out above all others – Las Vegas, Nevada. Las Vegas is a city known today for its casino’s, luxury hotels and fantastic nightlife. Established in 1855 as a Mormon outpost – a fortified church of sorts – Las Vegas was an unlikely place to become such a popular destination. In 1902, the ‘town’ had a population of just 22 people (History of Las Vegas). It wasn’t until 1905, on May 13, when the town of Las Vegas was officially founded – it consisted of just 110 acres which were auctioned off by the railroad company. Situated next to the railroad, Las Vegas soon became an important railroad town, as it was in ideal location for both refueling and picking up and dropping off passengers. This area, laid out originally by J.T. McWilliams, is now known as Historic Las Vegas. However, it wasn’t until the 1930’s, with the construction of the Hoover Dam and Nevada’s legalization of divorce and gambling, that the city of Las Vegas began to grow into the city it is today (History of Las Vegas).
Today, Las Vegas is like a desert oasis Disneyland for adults. There is no place more iconic, more well known for its wild nights, extreme stories and unforgettable adventures. There have been countless movies set in Vegas, songs written about it – everyone knows about Vegas and its reputation. It has even earned its place in pop culture, as everyone knows the popular saying which refers to the wild times many people have when they go there – “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.” Despite its wild reputation, Las Vegas is a place where you can have a grand time no matter what interests you – whether is wild parties and gambling, shopping, or first class shopping and entertainment.
Las Vegas is known foremost as a destination for gambling. Beginning in the 1930’s, when gambling was legalized in Nevada, Las Vegas began to be developed by a number of savvy entrepreneurs, who built hotels and casinos to accommodate the growing inflow of residents and tourists. Today, a visitor to Las Vegas can indulge in gambling from the time they walk off the plane at the airport. Slot machines are placed in every conceivable location, from grocery stores to bars. You can play penny slots, card games, dice games or bet on sporting events – there is something to appeal to everyone. As a bonus, all casino’s in Las Vegas serve free drinks to their gamblers. You don’t have to be spending big money either, all gamblers receive the same benefit. Vegas insiders recommend gambling at the Wynn Hotel, where gamblers are served brand name tequila and mojitos drinks (The Guardian, 2011).
Despite being known for its gaming industry, Las Vegas has more to offer to tourists than casinos. If you don’t like to gamble, you can enjoy staying at luxury resort hotels and partaking in incredible amenities. Most hotels features resort style pools with swim up bars, several restaurants featuring international cuisine and incredible buffets, as well as host shows by famous performing artists and bands. Many famous shows – such as Cirque du Soleil – have been in residence in Las Vegas for years, and many people flock to Vegas just to see these live shows. In recent years, many older hotels have undergone renovations in order to keep up with the competition, including the iconic Flamingo, Bellagio and MGM Grand luxury hotels (CNN).
The list of things to do in Las Vegas goes on and on, which is probably why it often known as the city that never sleeps. For the outdoor types, you can take a day trip and explore beautiful desert that surrounds Las Vegas. The Grand Canyon, for example, is just a few hours away by car. There is also the Hoover Dam and the adjoining Lake Mead. If you’re really adventurous, you can even take a rafting trip down the Colorado, lasing either a day or up to a few weeks (Sunday Express UK). History buffs will find plenty to keep them busy in museums such as the Atomic Testing Museum and the Mob Museum (CNN and Sunday Express UK).
One of the most appealing things about Las Vegas is its laws, or lack of them. All cities in the state of Nevada enjoy the same laws – gambling is legal and divorce and marriage laws are simple and convenient. However, the entrepreneurs of Las Vegas have created a city of indulgence, one that makes the most of these lackadaisical rules. In Las Vegas, you can get married in your car in a drive through church, by an Elvis impersonator. You can play some slots at the pharmacy while waiting for your medical prescription. Las Vegas is a place where you can indulge in your hearts desire, any time of the day, everyday of the week.
Its not just any one of the things above that makes Las Vegas, in my mind, the most exciting place to visit. It is the fact that, in Las Vegas, you can choose from so many options at any given time. People go to Vegas to escape from the real world and have fun. Whether its for a weekend getaway with friends or a romantic escapade, people choose Las Vegas because of the endless opportunities for fun it offers.
- “10 of the Best Las Vegas Casino Secrets” (2011) The Guardian Online. Web. . 06 Mar. 2015 http://www.theguardian.com/travel/2011/nov/16/top-10-vegas-casino-secrets
- “9 New Reasons to Visit Las Vegas This Year.” CNN Travel. Web. 06 Mar. 2015. http://travel.cnn.com/explorations/escape/usa/9-new-reasons-love-las-vegas-019840
- “History (Official City of Las Vegas Web Site).” (2013) History (Official City of Las Vegas Web Site). Web. 06 Mar. 2015. http://www.lasvegasnevada.gov/factsstatistics/history.htm
- “Top 10 Things to do in Las Vegas” Sunday Express UK. Wb. 6 Mar. 2015. http://www.express.co.uk/travel/activity/562359/Top-10-things-to-do-in-Las-Vegas