Las Vegas
The Strip

Looking at the Strip on a map, it doesn't appear that big, but the blocks are quite long and in summer, it's just too hot to walk from Mandalay Bay to Circus Circus. Also, plan your day the way you would at any theme park - go out, do things, come back to your hotel and relax by the pool, then head out again with the kids in the late afternoon or early evening.

Getting Around -
Free trams - Take advantage of the three trams that run between Excalibur - Luxor - Mandalay Bay, Monte Carlo - CityCenter - Bellagio, and Mirage - Treasure Island.
Taxis - For a family, taxis are a good deal and they take you exactly where you need to go. Pick up taxis at the taxi stands in front of the hotels.
Monorail - We can't really recommend the monorail for families, as it's not a good value and not convenient. By the time you've found your way from the Strip through the casinos to the monorail stop blocks east, you might as well have walked.
Shark Reef Aquarium (Mandalay Bay) - Shark Reef is a stellar aquarium where kids can see a Komodo dragon, Burmese python, Amazon piranhas, giant Pacific octopus, golden crocodile, colorful Caribbean reef fish, touch a manta ray, and watch sharks and sea turtles gliding through a sunken shipwreck. One of our favorite things to do in Las Vegas.
Gondola Ride (The Venetian) - Go for a gondola ride down the Grand Canal in an authentic Venetian gondola, piloted by a singing gondolier in traditional clothing. There's an indoor and outdoor ride (in front of The Venetian), reservations required. Afterwards, have a gelato in Piazza San Marco, and walk over the Rialto Bridge.
Madame Tussauds Las Vegas - Kids can have their picture taken with famous wax figures of rock stars, movie stars, famous sports figures, presidents past and present. Also featured are famous inLas Vegas, such as Elvis Presley, David Copperfield, Siegfried and Roy, Blue Man Group. Older kids will get the most out of this Madame Tussauds; for younger kids, give it a miss.
Fountain show (Bellagio) - The fountain show in large Bellagio lagoon is a sound and light show of 1,000 fountains twirling and swirling like water sprites, and shooting high in the air. Show is every half hour from 3pm - 8pm, every 15 min. from 8pm to midnight, and is free.
Ceiling glass sculpture in the lobby - It's worth a stop in the lobby to see the extraordinary glass sculpture in the ceiling, 2,000 different hand-blown glass blossoms, a field of color!
Jean Philippe Patisserie - Everyone in the family will have fun at this elegant sweet shop sampling crepes, cookies, and chocolates, and checking out the largest chocolate fountain in the world.
High Roller (Caesar's) - Take a ride on the world's tallest observation wheel (550 ft. tall) at The LINQ outdoor promenade. A 30 minute ride in glass space age capsules, with panoramic views of Las Vegas (especially colorful at night).
Eiffel Tower ride (Paris Las Vegas) - Ride to the top the Eiffel Tower (half size) with panoramic views of the city and mountains in the distance. It's most fun at night, but the ride is also more expensive. Family packages are available, as well as 2 for 1 coupons.
Classic car collection (Imperial Palace) - For anyone who loves classic cars (very popular in our family), this auto collection is amazing. There's row after row of perfectly restored Rolls-Royces, Cadillacs, Ferraris, Corvettes, Maseratis, Porsche coupes, Mercedes-Benz roadsters, Jaguars, Aston Martins, more than 250 cars.
Roller coaster (New York-New York) - Teens will have fun on this coaster that spirals and loops over the Brooklyn Bridge, in front of New York skyscrapers, and behind the Statue of Liberty, even goes inside the hotel. Kids have to be 54' high to ride.
The Coney Island Emporium arcade has taxi bumper cars, coin-op video games, midway games (win stuffed animals and prizes), and a Daytona simulator.
Jelly bean Statue of Liberty - On the bridge level, check out the Statue of Liberty made out of multi-colored Jelly Belly jelly beans.
Adventuredome (Circus Circus) - Adventuredome is a large indoor theme park with rides for kids of all ages, plus a carnival midway and video game arcade. Little ones can take a turn on the carousel, younger kids will enjoy a splash in the water with Rim Runner, thrill seeking teens can take the Canyon Blaster coaster and drop rides. Try rock climbing, bungee jumping, and mini-bowling. Also, free clown shows and circus acts.
Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat (The Mirage) - The Secret Garden has a self-guided walk to see white snow lions, white snow tigers and white striped tigers, spotted leopards, and two adorable white tiger cubs, playing and romping around.
The Dolphin Habitat is an opportunity for kids to see bottlenose dolphins right under your nose, and watch the dolphins playing with their trainers. Be sure take the ramp down to the underwater viewing area where kids can watch the dolphins twirling through the water.
Volcano show - In the lagoon in front of the Mirage, watch plumes of fire flare up from the lagoon and inside the volcano, accompanied by a sound and light show. Every hour from dusk to midnight, free.
M & M's World (Showcase Mall) - Be prepared for the kids to go into sugar overload with 22 different colored M & M's to choose from, plus the Las Vegas sign made with 50,000 candies, toys, pillows and pajamas in bright M & M colors.
Atomic Testing Museum - Less than a 100 miles from Las Vegas, nuclear testing was done at the Nevada Test Site and in the 1950's, tourists could see the mushroom clouds in the distance. This museum is the story of the historic atomic testing program, with exhibits and a theater with atomic explosion movies. Good for older kids, open daily.
Shows - Las Vegas is famous for its splashy shows, and there's always a wide variety, such the Lion King, Comedy Pet Theater, Cirque du Soleil, etc.
Fun food
Kids probably won't order the $10,000 hamburger (lots of caviar) or $700 cupcake (too much gold leaf), but they will enjoy classic hot dogs Nathan's (New York), or Pink's (Los Angeles), and chewy New York style pretzels. Also, try refreshing gelato in rainbow flavors, all around the Strip.

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