Saturday, July 4, 2015

Free Things To Do In Las Vegas With Kids

Our family loves to vacation in Las Vegas.  My oldest daughter who is not yet six has been to Vegas over ten times in her life. People always think it's strange when I tell them I'm going Vegas with the kids, but I always tell them there is actually is lots to do in Vegas with kids.  Below is a list of things that we love to to when we go out there with the kids.  Most of them are free but if it has a price, then I try to list it.

1. Pool

Vegas has some of the nicest resorts for very reasonable prices.  I always say its one of the few places where you can stay at a 5 star hotel for less than 200 dollars a night.  For our family we love the hotels with the lazy river pools.  Mandalay Bay, MGM Grand (and Signature- because you can use the MGM grand pool), Monte Carlo and Tahiti Village all have lazy river pools.  Our kids and spend hours just floating around the lazy river.  All the above hotels allow you to bring flotation devices for your kids, but adults cannot bring their own tube.  You must rent/purchase an adult tube for all the hotels (except Tahiti Village, which includes them in the resort fee).  Mandalay Bay and Monte Carlo both have wave pools too.

2. Bellagio Fountains and Garden

This season the garden is under the sea theme.  The pictures below just don't do the garden justice. The flowers are always so vibrant and the air smells so sweet and fresh when you enter the garden. This is also a great place to take pictures, the lighting is amazing there.

The Bellagio fountains go on every 15 to 30 minutes.  I would recommend watching them at night.

3. M&M store,  Coke Store,  Hersheys Store, Ethel M's Chocolate factory tour (off strip).

I would recommend the M&M store with the free 3-D show on the third floor that plays every 15 -30 minutes.  I even enjoyed the show, it was pretty funny and entertaining.  Coke store has a coke around the world tasting (I don't know if they still have it but I think it was 5 dollars the last time I did it).  If you go during the winter the Ethel M's Chocolate factory has Christmas lighted cactus.

4. ABC Store for souvenirs.  If you have ever been to Hawaii, you should be familiar with the ABC stores.  The Vegas one is just as great.  It's a one stop shop to get your drinks, souvineers and any other essentials for reasonable prices.  There is a ton of cute Hello Kitty Vegas stuff also.  They also have macadamia nuts just like in Hawaii!  The prices are comparable to Hawaii prices with an 11oz bag of mac nuts going for 12 dollars.

There are also lots of places shopping places in most of the major hotels.  Ceasars and Planet Hollywood have shops, and MGM grand has a small strip of stores.  We saw the cutest soaps from a shop called Nectar in MGM.  Can you believe the pictures below are soaps?  It smelled even more amazing than it looked.

5. Shark Reef (Mandalay Bay - 19 dollars per adult),Secret Garden (Mirage 24 dollars per adult)

To be honest I just put these on the list because they are things to do for kids, but I can't say I recommend them.  The tickets are pretty expensive for what it is.  The aquarium is small and the variety of fish is limited.  I was able to get a free ticket playing myVegas slots, but if I had to pay to get in I would say just pass.

6. Ceasars Aquarium, Silverton Aquarium with Mermaid show, Silverton Bass Pro Shops  (Off strip)

If you want to see fish for free just go to Ceasars, or better yet go to the Silverton Casino where they have an aquarium with a mermaid show.  Keep in mind that its just one very large tank, but it is free and can keep the kids entertained for a little while (kids under 6 that is).  Next to the aquarium in Silverton is Bass Pro shops which has lots of taxidermy.  Tall stuffed giraffes, lions, and it even has a small tank of salmon to look at.

7. Free Tram 

Although this is not a point of interest, and if you have older kids or live in a big city with trains this may not seem exciting, but my kids loved the tram.  The following hotels all have free trams that take you between hotels: Monte Carlo, Vdara, Aria, Bellagio, Excalibur, Mandalay Bay, Luxor, Mirage, Treasure Island.  The tram doesn't take you to all those hotels, there is one that takes you between Monte Carlo, Vdara, Aria, City Center, Bellagio.  Another tram takes you to Excalibur, Mandalay Bay, Luxor and one for Mirage and Treasure Island. Not only is the tram a life saver in the hot 100 degree weather, but for my kids its an attraction in itself.  They love riding the tram back and forth, so on some nights we would just let them sit on the tram and go a couple of round trips before getting off.  

8. Monorail
The monorail is another option, but it does cost about 5 dollars per ride or there are daily and weekly passes.

9. Mirage Volcano and TI pirate show

I haven't seen these in a while, but I think they are still there.  The TI pirate show may be more geared for adults now though.

10. Arcades and Games

Circus Circus, Excalibur and New York New York all have arcades.  Circus Circus and Excalibur have the fun zone where you can win tickets and play carnival games.  Circus Circus also has a free circus show.  There is also a roller coaster at NY NY (I have never been on).

11. Flamingos and Penguins as Flamingo Hotel

Before the pool area there are pink flamingos and penguins that you can see at the hotel.

12. Container Park(Off Strip)

A new shopping area where they take shipping containers to build shops.

13. Town Square Playground (Off Strip)

Playground for the kids.

14. Pinball Hall of Fame (Off Strip Free to enter, games are 25 cents to 1 dollar)

15.  Venetian Gondola rides (not sure the price)

16. Shows (prices vary): Tournament of Kings, Nathan Burton Comedy Magic, Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum, Ceasars has a free show next to the aquarium, I can't remember the theme but its a 10 minute show where the sky changes and the statues move.

Random food places that we like:
Grimali's Pizza, Secret Pizza, Garrett's Popcorn, In and Out, Shake Shack, Mon a Mi Gabi, Bouchon Bakery

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