We all know Las Vegas as the casino capital of North America. It has also become known for many other attractions to enjoy while not playing the tables and slot machines.
Las Vegas is not that far from Payson -- about a six-hour drive on good roads. Hotels are varied and plentiful. There are always deals on the Web -- for example Mandalay Bay from $140.95, Planet Hollywood from $99.95, New York-New York from $79.95 and the Plaza from $34.95. There are usually restrictions as to the number of nights booked, the time of the week, etc. Some hotels offer discounts if you are a member of AAA, a former government employee and so on. Also, if you have a mole on your left cheek, there may be a special discount. Play the field and see what rate you can get when booking your lodging.
Some of the better hotels include the Bellagio, Wynn Las Vegas and Four Seasons -- if you want to spoil yourself.
Las Vegas has also become the show capital of the world. The best selling shows right now are Blue Man Group, V-Ultimate Variety Show, Stomp Out Loud and KA Cirque du Soleil.
Among the performers appearing in August are George Lopez, Aug. 3-4; Jerry Seinfeld, Aug. 3-4; Wayne Brady, Aug. 3-30; Celine Dion, Aug. 16-19; and David Spade, Aug. 17-18.
Most leading hotels feature outstanding entertainment. Headliner shows feature Wayne Newton, Barry Manilow, Bette Midler, David Copperfield, Elton John and many more top names. Vegas is the place!
Besides the shows and casinos, there are other interesting activities you may find to your liking. You can see the white tiger exhibit at the Mirage. Siegfried & Roy's show stopped when Roy was bitten in 2003. Go inside the lobby and look to your left for the lavishly painted habitat. There is gondola watching at the Venetian. You can view gondoliers maneuvering their elegant boats through the hotel's canals. Walk through the Forms Shops at Caesar's Palace and watch a seven-minute show of special effects, as Roman statues come to life.
The Paris Hotel offers a copy of the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe. The tower legs are rooted in the hotel's giant casino that stretches 50 stories high. Walking through the hotel you can find the cobblestone pathways of the "City of Light" featuring French boutiques, street performers and singing bread deliverymen.
New York-New York features a copy of the Statue of Liberty, a Coney Island-style roller coaster and a re-creation of Central Park.
Every afternoon and evening, the Bellagio Hotel features dancing waters as the turquoise lake becomes the staging for a 1,000-foot long fountain display. Jets of water burst 240 feet in the air.
The Flamingo Hotel volcano features some 300 birds and tropical foliage.
Other attractions include the Lake of Dreams at Wynn, with a 140-foot mountain covered with 1,500 trees, waterfall and three-acre lake. You can get face-to-face with the sharks at Shark Reef at the Mandalay Bay and then there is the classic car collection at the Imperial Palace. You can see dolphins at the Mirage and visit the Liberace Museum at 1775 E. Tropicana.
You can also see one of the world's largest gold nuggets at the Golden Nugget and take a paddle wheel cruise on Lake Mead.
There is horseback riding, hiking, skydiving and just about anything you might want to do in Vegas.
Consider purchasing a VisitTicket to see the Best of Las Vegas that will save a lot of money when visiting some of the paid attractions. Phone 1-800-566-5868 for more information.
Leading bars and clubs are the Caramel at Bellagio, Cleopatra's Barge at Caesar's Palace, Coyote Ugly Bar and Dance Saloon at New York-New York, Drai's at Bill's Gamblin Hall & Saloon, the Empire Ballroom at 3765 Las Vegas Blvd., S. Foundation Room at Mandalay Bay, Gilley's at the New Frontier and many more.
Have a great time and if you break the bank, give me some!