Top 10 Favorite Cities Visited – #8 Las Vegas, United States of America

Top 10 Favorite Cities Visited

With 33 countries under my belt, I’ve experienced some of the most amazing cities that the world has to offer. From great beaches, climate, friendly people, personal interests, world-famous attractions, architecture, history and culture, there are many different factors that make a city great, let alone top ten!

#8 – Las Vegas – United States of America

While Paris may hold the official title, the City of Lights is better represented by America’s Playground, Las Vegas. This notorious destination offers visitors every opportunity to make it or break it, beckoning them with pulsating neon and the chance to win big, not to mention plenty of great restaurants, bars, clubs, and shopping venues where you can proudly flaunt your winnings. The weird thing is… it is none of these things that make Vegas part of my top ten cities in the world. With legendary remnants from around the globe, the most luxurious resorts, unbelievable shows and entertainment, and endless new adventures, Las Vegas has made my top ten.

Las Vegas has reinvented itself many times over the years. The 1990s were the heyday of the themed resort in Vegas, which resulted in a building boom of megaresorts modeled after famous places and monuments. Replicas of world-famous landmarks, statues, and buildings popped up all over the Strip including the pyramid-shaped Luxor, the Big Apple knockoff New York-New York and the French-themed Paris Las Vegas. With Vegas’ take on spots like the canals of Venice and the Eiffel Tower, you don’t have to travel halfway around the globe to see some of the world’s most famous landmarks. They might not be the real thing, but sometimes they’re so close you can hardly tell the difference.

The Grand Canal Eiffel Tower The Colosseum Statue of Liberty Trevi Fountain  The largest 5 Diamond resort in the world, The Venetian & The Palazzo, is in the heart of Las Vegas. With spectacular suites, top shows, exquisite dining, and an abundance of amenities, The Venetian & The Palazzo Resort offers it all; it is a center piece, a piece de resistance, for Vegas. During our four night stay, we were able to experience all that Vegas is known for and has to offer by visiting just one resort. Amenities like “all-suite” rooms, Prestige level services, pools, gondola rides, world famous chefs, top entertainment, and the Canyon Ranch SpaClub leave the Five-Diamond award unquestioned.  If this resort were located anywhere else in the world, the nightly rate would be insurmountable, but in Vegas it’s affordable because that’s what Vegas is! The entertainment list in Vegas reads like a phone book. I’ve been there four times and experienced completely different forms of entertainment each time. The Blue Man Group is oddly entertaining while Criss Angel’s Believe offers the most spectacular illusions from the magician of the century, and KA is an unprecedented, gravity-defying production. If you’re looking for more extreme forms of entertainment or adventure, take the 108th floor plunge off of The Stratosphere Las Vegas Hotel & Casino‘s Sky Jump. Not even the sky is the limit in Vegas.

Every time I go to Las Vegas it’s different. With so many things to see and do, Vegas is a cocktail for the senses. Do you want screaming adventure, luxurious resorts at great prices,  world-class entertainment, and a replica trip around the globe? You can have it all in Vegas.

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123 thoughts on “Top 10 Favorite Cities Visited – #8 Las Vegas, United States of America

  1. I have to be the naysayer here and say that Las Vegas is not my favorite place. I just don’t like the vibe. But if you give me a million bucks and let me loose, I could well change my mind! 🙂

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      • Lesley I visited Las Vegas as an impoverished student in 1980. A group of us had worked in a summer camp in upstate NY, then transported cars across to California. Las Vegas was a must to see for us, and I’ll never forget coming over a hill at night in our cars and being stunned by this shimmering, sequinned blob in the desert…I was appalled by the anomaly between what I saw as strangely strict American rules (no alcohol till age 21, speed limit of 55mph!) and the free papers at the side of the road advertising 13 year-old prostitutes. I hope it’s changed! An interesting book to read is Umberto Eco’s ‘Travels in Hyperreality’ which is about the reproduction of the rest of the world in the US – fascinating!
        I’m particularly interested that a well-travelled adventurer loves Las Vegas! There’s no accounting for whether a place talks to your soul or not, but I suppose the people who built Vegas in such an inhospitable place must have been dreamers, adventurers and pioneers in their own way.
        Really enjoying your blogs!

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    • I enjoy your review of Las Vegas. The first time I went to Las Vegas, I was predisposed it because I didn’t like the idea of serial gambling and runaway vice. But you’re right: Las Vegas is so much more than gambling and drinking. The pure sensory experience is enough to bring me back time and time again. I know a lot of people who go to Vegas frequently to drink and gamble, and I think they’re missing out on what makes Vegas so special.

      I mean, if all you want is booze and slots, just stop in Primm.

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    • I know it seems like an odd choice but it was in Vegas that I was able to jump off the Stratosphere; it was in Vegas that I was able to ride a gondola with my husband; it was in Vegas that I witnessed the greatness of Cirque du Soleil; and it was in Vegas that I felt like royalty at the top Five Diamond resort. You can always try something new in Vegas.

      🙂

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      • Love your blog and getting to know you through your writing. I would suspect you would find something to enjoy no matter your surroundings as you seem to be totally comfortable with who you are. Great writing, beautiful photos! Thanks for liking my so far meager blog, I am still experiencing technical difficulties but am going to stick with it! You are a total inspiration for me and living proof that where you set your sights is where you end up! Your little girl is so fortunate to be coming into a world where her parents will have the effortless attitude that she can be and do whatever she dreams!

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  2. I love your description of Vegas and that you provide a million options without the demand of gambling and debauchery. I’m not saying I don’t enjoy those aspects too, but I think your post creates so many other trips. These are the options that don’t have to “stay in vegas.”

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    • I completely agree. I’ve never been to Vegas because I thought it wouldn’t really appeal to me. I don’t like to gamble, and I like to actually remember my vacations rather than spend them in a drunken stupor. Maybe I’ll have to look into going sometime. It’s supposed to be pretty affordable too.

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  3. Thanks Lesley…great post! We’ve been to Vegas several times…lots of fun, lots to do. You can relax, or gamble or go to shows or eat…all in a glitzy kind of Hollywood atmosphere. You can spend a lot of money or keep within a modest budget…it all depends on what you want to do and where you want to do it. 🙂

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  4. Hi Lesley,

    I rarely chip in but it’s not that I question your choice of Vegas, I don’t. However, I have stayed in many resorts/hotels in Vegas and The Venetian is one that truly disappointed me for many reasons. Could it be that you were given a better treatment because they knew you would blog? Service was not up to par to it’s rating. Plus the room I was in was definitely not up to a 5 star (it did look like the one you pictured). Believe which I attended in the inaugural week was terrible IMHO (and I LOVE Cirque du Soleil and Criss Angel’s old TV show). Blue Man Group is what it is. A good, fun show to pass the time. KA, IS spectacular. A true Cirque du Soleil show.
    Anyhoo, just had to put in my two cents.

    I enjoy your blog, however, even when I don’t agree at times!

    Best to you on your “venture”, that wonderful bundle of joy you have in you.

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  5. Hey aurora eclipse! i was shocked that your mother does not approve of lesley’s blog. lesley represents the joy of a free spirit, yet she has total respect for others and a high code of honor. some people are uncomfortable with strong women who are true to themselves. your mother probably means well. hang in there, and don’t lose your inner spark.
    lesley, keep rolling forward! hopefully one day you’ll tour the unique country of ecuador!
    siempre,
    z

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  6. Well Vegas, as many have said, is not on my top list. However I wouldn’t mind visiting someday, when given the money to do so haha 😀 and well, part of me wants to go for the hangover movie 😀 (stuipid? maybe) but i love such incidents (not exactly how they went in the movie though, that was extreme)

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  7. Hi Lesley…..

    Your pictures are amazing!!!

    I am actually, if all goes well, going to be in Las Vegas in March. I may have to fly something like 15-20hrs, but by the looks of your pictures; it will be worth the trip.

    So your blog couldn’t have come at a more perfect time!!!

    Thanks

    Nicole

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  8. My piggy loves vegas probably more than anywhere else in the U.S. the best part for me is he doesn’t like gambling or strip clubs so we can have lots of fun of all kinds and explore. Yay vegas!

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  9. Was just there myself last weekend. Great place to watch football playoff games – I recommend Lagassi’s Stadium in the Venetian. I’ll also be sure to send you some of my posts from Here and There Travel.

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  10. My husband and I got married at The Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. When I tell people that they ask me if I got married by Elvis!! The thing is anything goes in Vegas..You can have a quickie wedding (done by Elvis) or a more intimate wedding at one of the lovely chapels many of the hotels have right on sight!

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  11. My husband and went to Las Vegas in 2006. I am not a gambler but loved all the different themes of the hotel. We went to the Eiffel Tower at night, what a view. I also loved the Venetian. There was a woman singing a very beautiful opera piece. This is a video he shot of the dancing fountains:

    We had a great time.

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  12. I was born and raised in Vegas and always loved it…but not because of the Strip. I never went there unless out of towners came and made me take them. I loved Red Rock and Mt. Charleston around it…and Boulder Dam. But Vegas did make for fun homecoming and prom dates in high school. Lots of good places to eat and shows.

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  13. Your blog is so exciting. Thank you for sharing your adventures with us. It’s inspiring to see how you and your family live. Actively living.

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  14. I dare say you’d find an adventure anywhere. Perhaps places like Las Vegas make it just that bit easier to track them down!
    You make me eager to get back in action after a pause while some internal patches knit. Then, whoo-hoo! The secret on keeping active after passing 70 is to keep active!

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  15. The last time I was in Vegas I had the most fun walking the Strip and people-watching. Not to mention the strolls through the older resorts, classic architecture and style! One thing I would love to do if I went back – visit the “Sign Graveyard”, where all the old strip signs have found a home. Not the biggest fan of the city for a lot of reasons, but you made it sound incredible!

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  16. I am not a Las Vegas fan. Actually lived there for a year and it’s the strangest place to live let alone visit. I find it way too over the top for me. BUT if you like to hike then you should visit Red Rocks National Park, it’s 20 minutes outside of the city and beautiful.

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  17. Wow really nice pictures of you and your husband 🙂 I went to Vegas two years ago and was astounded by all the changes, mainly the Civic Center and the hotels like the Vdara and Aria….they were not there when I visited some years ago.

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  18. ooh I absolutely love your pics! Something I must know, how do you get away with taking them and not look like a tourist, or get those you’re with cranky. I feel like so many people make fun when I pull the camera out.

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    • My husband loves to take pictures as well so we don’t worry about the other people around us and we always try to get lots of different shots. They are the keepsakes for the rest of our lives and we want to have lots of them 🙂

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  19. U, to be honest, no I don’t (answer to last question). I love travel and finding new places, but I don’t much like cities. Nonetheless, here are some I do like: Copenhagen; Vienna; Durham (North-east England); Istanbul; Savannah (Georgia, USA); Mombasa (Kenya); Krakow (Poland). I would also have voted for Sarajevo (Bosnia), but I haven’t seen it since the war.

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  20. I would like Las Vegas more if it wasn’t in the middle of the desert. I was there once on a layover and won $10.00 playing penny slots. I almost missed my connecting bus trying to get all of those pennies.

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  21. Really nice pics! I will say Vegas is not a destination of choice for me. It seems somewhat fake without any real sense of culture. Of course….I’ve never been so I really can’t talk. My mother loves it though.

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  22. Hey Lesley,
    Vegas would also have to be up there for me – my wife and I were there for four nights in July and we were blown away by it’s amazing welcome and even more spectacular and over the top hotels. The place is like a fun fair for adults and whenever I see it on television or reminded about it, I get really excited and long to go back!! You were in the Venetian and didn’t see Phantom??!

    Mark

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  23. Have you been to Cape Town yet? I have been to most of the cities on your list and I liked them all but recently I was in South Africa, and Cape Town is my new favorite. It is a city for adventure close proximity to rock climbing, surfing, hiking, cycling, and the wine land region is stunning.

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  24. Hey girl! Thanks for checking out my 12 Months blog – totally love your blog and all the adventuring you’re doing with your life! Kudos to you! I’ve been doing a lot of new adventures in the past few years; skydiving, kayaking, rock climbing, hot air ballooning and firewalking – but traveling has not been the priority that I would like it to be. Time to get that part of my bucket list going! Thanks for the inspiration =) Loving your blog and look forward to following along!

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