Normally on a trip I make my way up/down the strip gambling at a mix of new/old casinos, intermingled with some shopping for the wife/kids at the usual malls/outlets, and I usually end up back at wherever i'm staying playing roulette/poker/slots into the small hours before heading(stumbling) to bed to fight a mainly losing battle with jet lag.
I'm looking for a few tips for my next trip Vegas in Feb 2012, but not the normal shopping and strip based things to do, something a bit off-beat, off-strip, off the usual tourist route etc.
How to do Vegas without doing Vegas? First, head Downtown. Seriously. It's really come into its own and is one helluva good time. There's a Mob Bar with employees dressed in period flair. Insert Coins beckons to those who love Frogger... and bottles. Check out Rick's Restoration. Hang with Pawn Stars. And, did we mention the deep-fried Twinkies and Oreos? Oh, and don't forget about Vegas StrEATS.
And, First Friday! By February 2012, there will also be a new Mob Museum to explore (knock on wood) and a bar that's a real drag (but, in a good way). There's even more than this so you might just want to bookmark our Downtown Guide now.
A short drive from downtown, there's the amazing Boneyard where old neon signs shed light on Vegas past. Head in the opposite direction and find the Pinball Hall of Fame, the Atomic Testing Museum, the scenic Springs Preserve, and the newly relocated Nevada State Museum.
DR also sought suggestions on where to stay in Vegas, having booked a stay at Palazzo but being open to a change. He has previously stayed at The Cosmopolitan, ARIA, Bellagio, Excalibur, Luxor, MGM Grand, Planet Hollywood and Sahara. whew! Continuing on the off-beat vein, why not consider staying off-Strip? Head downtown to try out Golden Nugget's Rush Tower or El Cortez's Cabana Suites.
But, unfortunately, we're not able to help with DR's last query:
I must admit that all the lookalikes (especially) and pan handlers got to me on my last trip, is it just me or is this becoming more of an issue every year?
Nope, it's not you. It's just another day on the circus that is now The Strip.
Do you have a question about Vegas? Send it to us and if we deem it clean enough, we'll post it here on VegasChatter!
(Photo: Rachaelle Larsen-Grimsrud on Facebook)