Recently I took a trip to Las Vegas for the first time ever and had a much better time than I thought that I would. For most people like myself, spending a weekend in Las Vegas sounds like a weekend long gambling and drinking fest – which never appealed to me whatsoever. If I had a long list of places I wanted to visit in the US I think that Las Vegas would have been towards the bottom of that list, but after going for a 4-day trip I can honestly say that I thoroughly enjoyed myself and wouldn’t hesitate to go again.
I went with a pretty big group of about 20 people. Most people going with me had already been to Las Vegas multiple times which came in handy. I learned a few things along the way that I wanted to share.
1. Look into Airbnb
If you’re going with a small group of people or less, you may just want to get one of the many hotels offered on the stip. Those can certainly be pricey, so consider looking into a short-term vacation rental offered by services like Airbnb, VRBO, or Home Away. Our large group of 20 was able to find a huge home 20 minutes away from the strip that only cost each person $42/night! Not to mention this large home was in a quiet cul-de-sac, had a pool, Jacuzzi, basketball hoop, game room, and large patio with lots of seating for everyone. Getting to the strip was a breeze, we took turns getting a rideshare service like Uber or Lyft, and using the split fare option so it only ended up costing each person around $5-$8 to get to the strip.
2. Go to a buffet
One interesting thing I learned about Las Vegas is that it is home to some of the best buffets in the country. Just about all the major hotels on the strip have their own famous buffet. Someone in our group informed us all that they have tried most of the various hotels’ buffets, and the best one is located at Cesar’s Palace. It’s not cheap. We paid around $55 per person, and most opted for the $7 extra “unlimited mimosa” special. With tax and tip it came to around $73. Probably not a good idea for each meal, but definitely worth experiencing once during your trip.
3. Walk around the casinos
I wouldn’t consider myself a gambler, and to be honest the only time I used a slot machine was at the airport while I was bored waiting for my plane to arrive. Las Vegas provides some of the best people watching you can find, and just walking around the various casinos was quite entertaining. The casinos are so large that there is way more things to do inside them besides conventional gambling. I consider myself a huge sports fan, and seeing my first Vegas sports book area in person was very cool. I couldn’t help myself, and decided to bet $10 that my Cleveland Indians would go to the World Series. There are also many places to shop and eat all inside these gigantic casinos.
4. Check out a pool party
We’ve all seen the images of the typical Vegas pool party that just looks like a terrible time, with elbow-to-elbow people. I had a great time at a pool party at an MGM Grand pool. I’m sure you can run into large crowds on Fridays or Saturdays, but we went on a Thursday and had plenty of space. From about 11AM to 5PM we just laid around and enjoyed a few drinks in the sun. Also since we had a group of 6, we knew we would meet the minimum to use a private U-shaped booth with plenty of space for everyone. If you’re looking for something fun to do on a weekday, I highly recommend a pool party.
Many people love going to shows while in Las Vegas. I didn’t go to any, but if that’s your thing, Vegas is definitely the place for you. I’m sure there are countless other ways to enjoy yourself while in Las Vegas that aren’t so typical. Let us know below if you have any other ideas!