There are lots of free shows and things to see and do if you’re willing to walk around Las Vegas Blvd. Two free shows my girls enjoyed were the fountains at the Bellagio and the volcano at the Mirage. The Bellagio fountain show takes place every 15 minutes in the evenings (and every half hour during the afternoon), so you can definitely find time. The Mirage volcano only erupts at 8 and 9 pm, so that takes a little more planning.
M&M World was another huge hit with my kids, and you don’t have to spend a ton of money in there either. A 1/2lb bag of candies is only $6.99, and there’s a silly little 3D movie you can watch for free inside the store as well.
We stayed at the Monte Carlo, and it was fine for our family. The kids loved the wave pool and lazy river. My only advice is to get to the pool early if you want a chair! The Monte Carlo is in a great location because it’s right by New York, New York, and not far at all from the Bellagio, Paris, the Luxor, etc. The Monte Carlo, and many other hotels, have a McDonald’s in the food court and you know if you have kids, that is very convenient.
Speaking of New York, New York- there is a roller coaster there that can be ridden for $14 if you are taller than 54 inches. There is also an arcade. It’s worth going to see this casino just for the replica Statue of Liberty located outside.
Las Vegas casinos are really cool for adults and kids. The Venetian, for example, offers gondola rides. Circus Circus has a small amusement park (Adventuredome- all day rides for $31) located inside. Circus Circus also has free shows you can watch, such as clowns and acrobats. Mandalay Bay has a small shark reef aquarium inside. The Bellagio has free botanical gardens you can walk through. There’s really no end to the entertainment in Las Vegas, even if you don’t go see a show by Cirque du Soleil (although that’s an option too!).
Another fun place to go in Las Vegas is Fremont Street. If your kids are older or you’re not particularly prudish I would recommend going at least once just to check out the crowd. It is a bit of a wild scene down there. Not dangerous, just not as classy as other parts of the strip. You just might see girls dancing on the bars in very little clothing or a mostly naked dude playing a guitar. We went and had fun anyway because we did the zipline ($25 per person) and it was awesome. The ceiling of Fremont Street lights up too.
One of the yummiest places we ate while in town was 800 Degrees Pizza. You build your own pizza and they bake it for you. I really enjoyed that meal. We also ate at Gordon Ramsay’s Burgr inside Planet Hollywood. DELICIOUS!! There are no shortage of excellent eateries in Las Vegas.
Some downsides to Vegas- taxis can get pricey. I suggest checking into the shuttle bus if you’re not in a huge hurry. Also, all food and drinks are expensive. Well, really everything is expensive, but if you plan ahead it’s doable. Your kids can’t hang out in the casinos, obviously, so if you really want to gamble, you may want to have a backup plan, or save it for another visit.
Even though Vegas is known as “sin city”, we really never saw or heard anything terribly inappropriate. I would take my kids back again in a heartbeat. We visited for 4 full days and didn’t get to do 1/4 of all the things there are to do here.
It’s definitely an interesting, fun, trip!