@jodigrundig
Jodi
Have a weekend trip with kids in Las Vegas, Nevada! Fun family travel and things to do.This post contains affiliate links and/or ads, you can read more about it on my Disclosure +Privacy page. There are also non-affiliate links for your convenience. This is NOT a sponsored post. Even though I am a travel blogger there are plenty of places that I have never been to before. I have kids, I grew up with very little, and I spent my younger adult years going to a community college and then getting married. Now that I am older, my kids are a little bigger, and I live in California, I have finally made it to Las Vegas, Nevada! It seems like a right of passage to go to Vegas, walk the strip, and do whatever you do in Vegas. I may have missed my chance to do that in my “single” years but I now have it checked off my list. It was a pretty neat place to visit and there were highs and lows. As a family with small children, I want to share some things that I learned and what we did so hopefully it can inspire you to go for the first time or revisit, provide you with some insight into things you might want to do differently, or give you details that you may not have thought of before. This post is a little longer than my usual because everything is so close together in Vegas and you can fit in a lot in a short amount of time. Thank you so much for stopping by this post, I hope it is helpful! On the Road Again Getting to Vegas can take a short amount of time, or end up feeling like the longest short trip in the world if you are driving and try to arrive at the “wrong” time. We live in California and on this particular trip to visit with some family we left the greater LA area at around 1:30 on a Friday afternoon (it is a 4 hour drive to Vegas). We did not arrive in Vegas until about 8pm! On our way back on Monday 4am, we made the drive in 4.5hrs. Worst times to travel: Going towards Vegas on a Friday afternoon. Leaving Vegas on a Sunday. Need some tips on how to make the trip more manageable? If you know you’ll be stuck in traffic, prepare so you can at least be comfortable. Snacks for Road Trips with Kids Road Trip The Strip The Las Vegas Strip is quite impressive, it was all so much bigger than I had pictured in my mind! The hotels/resorts are massive! You will want to visit this part of Vegas, although I suggest have a little list made ahead of time of the things you want to see the most. There is so much that you will probably miss some things. Time flies very quickly walking around town. What to bring when out with the kiddos: Stroller Comfy shoes Drinks + Snacks Diapers + Wipes Sunscreen Each resort has something to offer along the strip. There are of course casinos which you cannot do with the kids in tow, but there are a lot of neat things that your children will enjoy looking at or doing in this area as well as you. Bellagio Fountain Lights at night Fountains and shops at Caesars Palace Valcano at Mirage Street performers Transportation The strip is so long that it would take quite a long time to walk the entire length of it, and throw in walking through a few of the hotels and casinos inside. Your feet might fall off. But really, you will want to consider catching an Uber or Lyft around town when the walk is too far. You can also get a full day pass for the city bus which costs $10 for adults and children 5yrs old and younger are free. Still, wear some comfortable shoes. Weed In addition to a lot of alcohol being consumed, marijuana is legal! I was sort of surprised to smell weed all over the place during the day and night during the weekend. I must live under a rock, I did not know that it was legal in Las Vegas!  I don’t know if this would affect your plans to visit, but just as an fyi . . . it’s everywhere. Caesars Palace Caesars Palace was not originally on my list of places to walk around but when walking past we thought all the statues looked super cool and we wanted to check it out more. There were lots of fountains and statues throughout and the entire place is massive! We were very impressed and decided that we would love to stay there sometime in the future. One thing I worried about a tiny bit with Caesar’s Palace is that there are so many fountains (also one of my favorite things about this place). With little kids, they always want to splash in the water! So I would be careful and keep a little closer to the kiddos to make sure no one goes swimming on accident. This place is huge! We did not get to explore the entire place, I bet you could spend an entire day looking at everything here. M&M World My boy’s Grandmother was highly interested in stopping by the M&M World near New York New York. This store has an impressive four floors to it and an entire wall of over 100 flavors of M&Ms! You can request help to sample some flavors and when you are ready you fill up a bag, or two, or three. The one tip that stuck in my mind from an employee was to not mix mint with any other flavors because it would turn everything minty. Grandma bought little bags with the flavor of choice for our kids, my husband, and herself and Grandpa. The kids chose based on their favorite colors pretty much, and our youngest got mini M&Ms. I, however, was convinced by my husband to get a little bit of the pumpkin pie flavored ones. I love pumpkin pie, and the M&Ms are ok (although not nearly as good as a homemade pie). But I won’t buy them ever again, so why not get a little? So I grabbed some and hubby bought them for me. Excalibur One of my favorite things about this trip to Vegas (as well as my kids favorite) was our dinner at Excaliburs Tournament of Kings, compliments of Grandma and Grandpa. Note: You can buy tickets online but have to pick them up from will-call before dinner time. They may or may not sell out ahead of time as well. Although the Excalibur dinner show is a bit corny, it is a fun experience. Dinner is simple, and they give you no fork, knife, or spoon to eat with. You use your hands! Everything was served a good warm temperature and I did not burn my fingers. Soda options are limited to sprite or Pepsi and dessert was a danish of some sort. I thought the food was tasty and well enough prepared to eat with my fingers and watch a show at the same time. The show was knights of the round table having a dance with some girls, a tournament with jousting, and a little battle with the bad guys. Photography was encouraged (no flash) and so was participation. Our five-year-old could not sit still in his seat, he was so excited and amazed by the horses, fireworks, singing and dancing. Our four-year-old was a little scared though! Fremont Street Downtown After spending one day at the strip, we went downtown to Fremont street on Sunday. I had not thought about it until we arrived, but I had seen this place in so many movies over the years! It’s a popular spot and quite interesting as well. This entire section is covered and here there are many gift shops, more casinos, a junky food court, real dining, and lots of street performers and entertainment. We ate at the food court near White Castle, the food was mediocre and priced a bit higher but it did the job and filled our bellies. What I would really have loved to try out is one of the restaurants just down the street a bit at the Container Park. The Container Park on Fremont street at about 7th is a section of the block with shops, restaurants, and outdoor stage, and free playground. The shops and restaurants are made from old shipping containers, hence the name of this area. The playground is massive, made to look like a big tree. Moms and dads can play in there with kids as well since it is so large. The kids really enjoyed playing here and it was a nice area, I would go back! I have read good Reviews (Tripadvisor) for the food at Container Park, so I would also be interested in eating at one of the restaurants. Tips for Fremont Street: Morning is a bit slower and there is more room to walk around and let kids roam! Bring your trusty stroller. Check some reviews ahead of time to find some good food if you’ll be around for a meal. Keep your bags close. Stay away from the long walkways that are tucked away from the street, they are covered in pee and smell horrible!! Circus Circus Where to begin (laughing). So I kind of have a love/dislike relationship with Circus Circus. I’ll try to outline the good and the bad for you because I truly think that this is an awesome casino/hotel for families but it is also not the greatest place ever. This is where we stayed for the weekend, in the RV park and also in a hotel room. Fun for Kids Let us start off with the good things! Circus Circus is definitely fun for families. upstairs in the big pinkish, reddish dome thing on the back side of the hotel is the Adventuredome. It doesn’t look like much until you are inside, where there are stages for entertainment, cotton candy vendors, roller coasters for grown-ups, and plenty of smaller rides and arcades for kids. We got all day ride passes for our kids and it was a great idea. They went on rides in the morning after breakfast and then again at night after dinner and a show at Excalibur. They had a blast and this is very possibly their favorite part of the entire trip. There is a lot available at Circus Circus. The Adventuredome, RV park, lodging, water slides and pools, casino, and more. Friday night when we arrived, we were sleeping in a motorhome with our kids Grandparents. One thing to remember is that Circus Circus is basically part of the old strip, it’s at the far end and their facilities are a bit dated. I did not know this and was surprised by how ghetto the RV park felt! There was no gate, what felt like very little monitoring, and small old restrooms available for patrons. After one night in the RV park, my husband and I decided that if the kids and grandparents were up to having a sleepover without us, we were going to get a room at a hotel for the rest of the trip. So we did, and because it was the weekend the cheapest rooms available were at Circus Circus! Our room was the perfect location, being the furthest building out from the main casino and towers and closest to our kids in the RV park. Hotel Rooms at Circus Circus We were really looking forward to a real bed with actual sheets and blankets. (sad wah wah) The towers were totally booked and I bet those are nicer. But old building E by the RV park smelled heavily of marijuana and our room had no extra pillows, no extra blankets, peeling wallpaper, a hole in the wall, only one layer of blackout curtains that left a gap between them, and the tub had caulking to cover mildew. Gross. I was pretty sure I would have a roach crawling across my foot in there. Sunday morning I felt the urge to bring my bag with me out of the room and I am glad that I did. When we returned for the night with the kids so we could depart early the next morning, the room had been cleaned. And everything we left in there had been thrown out. All the snacks that we wanted for the road. All my nice soaps and toiletries in the bathroom were gone as well. Room service ignored our calls, and when my husband walked the quarter mile to the service desk they would only give us the “resort fee” refunded which was $36. But then we spent $36 in the hotel to replace all the snacks they threw out. What the heck? Staying in the hotel was maybe the lesser of two evils. But yeah, I would NOT stay there again. I would PLAY there though! I am so sad that the only buffet I got to eat at in Vegas was at Circus Circus! Because we were so close we chose this spot and although everything seemed fresh enough and a fair quality, I know there are way better buffets out there. The selection was so weird for a breakfast buffet, with tacos, kung pao chicken, spiraled ham, and a small variety of breakfast foods. It was alright, but at $20 per adult, it was way overpriced. All in all, we had a good time, with a few annoyances here and there which is totally normal when traveling. I would love to go back and try out a few more things (like sleep in a decent room and eat some good food). One tip I have for you if you are trying to visit Vegas: Do your research and have a few lists of the different options that meet your needs for fun and food. Always have a plan b. And c. And d. And e. You get the idea. Enjoy!
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