Belles on Location

3 Reasons to Fight the Urge to Avoid Las Vegas

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When I tell people I live in Las Vegas, the response is usually one of the following:

I love Las Vegas!

I hate Las Vegas!

I can’t wait to visit Las Vegas!

I never want to visit Las Vegas!

There’s just something about this Southwestern city that turns heads, turns stomachs and turns people’s opinions into blanket statements.

People who haven’t visited Las Vegas for themselves seem to assume that the streets are paved with slot machines, beer comes out of the water faucets and that money is torn up and thrown into the wind.

lights Vegas night

Photo Credit: Pixabay

When I ask people why they don’t like Las Vegas, the answer is usually some variation on the many stereotypes that rise from the commercialization and publicity of Sin City. People who haven’t visited Las Vegas for themselves seem to assume that the streets are paved with slot machines, beer comes out of the water faucets and that money is torn up and thrown into the wind.

I can appreciate where this stereotypical image is coming from; after all, Las Vegas isn’t exactly known for being quaint, cute and quiet. And having flown into the city dozens of times and driven up and down the infamous Strip more times than I can count, I acknowledge that Las Vegas is a bit out of control. After all, where else can you pass a pyramid, the Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty in under a mile? Is there any other city where people drop thousands of dollars they don’t have on a few smoky hands of poker, then wake up with a hangover that doesn’t even allow them to remember their dismal loss on the casino floor?

All of those stereotypes in Las Vegas … well, let’s just say that I can appreciate where the dislike of my current home comes from.

But for just a moment, open your mind. Give me the opportunity to share with you just a few reasons why you should fight the urge to avoid Las Vegas.

building heights Hotel

Photo Credit: Miles Crisostomo

1. There are some really strange and fascinating things to see and do in Las Vegas (beyond people watching). If you’re not into gambling (I’m not) but you don’t mind spending a few quarters, consider visiting the Pinball Hall of Fame. Yes, it is as geeky and fantastic as it sounds. Rows upon rows of old school as well as brand new pinball machines fill a warehouse-esque building, and visitors are welcome to play them all for just a quarter (for the old games) or two (for the new games). I’m also a big fan of the Neon Boneyard , which is where old neon signs go to die. If you think Las Vegas has no history, take a tour through the Boneyard, and I’m pretty sure you’ll change your mind.

2. We love our local stuff. What people outside of the city hear about most are the nightclubs and restaurants that are owned by people who use Las Vegas as a marketing tool. While those clubs and dining establishments have their place (and are definitely worth checking out), there’s a little part of my heart that is hopelessly devoted to the local Las Vegans giving it a go. Artists, musicians, entrepreneurs and other creative types are foraging their own paths in Sin City. You don’t hear about them or see them in mainstream media, but dig below the surface and you’ll find a sub-culture just steps off the Strip.

water building Venetian

Photo Credit: Ahmad Faiyaz

3. It’s weird, over-the-top and slightly unbelievable. I’m not denying the bizarre nature that has defined Las Vegas over the years, but it really is something that you have to see to believe. Traveling to Las Vegas is on a lot of bucket lists for various reasons, but even if it’s not on yours, it’s the type of place worth visiting at least once just to say you’ve been there. It also gives you a sound reason for passing it up next time around.

The love-hate relationship prevalent among so many people when it comes to Las Vegas is a sound one, but I think that if you give it a chance, you just might find a thing or two to fall in love with in Sin City. Whether you fancy food, fun or fame, Las Vegas serves it up in buffet-sized doses … but don’t forget to grab a hangover cure for the morning!

Fabulous Downtown Las Vegas Tour – YouTube

 

Header Photo by Pixabay

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This article has 12 comments

  1. Mike

    I love Las Vegas!

  2. Jessica

    I agree – Vegas off the strip is a whole different world. My in-laws live there – so when I go it’s for family not slot machines. There are some great little cafes and places to go around town. I love visiting Red Rocks (the park, not the casino). I have not been to the neon boneyard – but want to go on my next trip!

  3. jo@everydayjuju

    Yes, open your minds people! Even the most “out of control” parts of Vegas are a riot. I felt like Alice in Wonderland when I was there. Also, I agree that Red Rock is an amazing place to visit outside the city. It is wildly beautiful, and skydiving in the desert is a must as well!

  4. JoAnna

    The Neon Boneyard is fascinating! Definitely make plans to go next time you’re in the city!

  5. JoAnna

    I’ve never been sky diving in Las Vegas, but everyone I know who has done it loves it. Thanks for mentioning it. 🙂

  6. Michael Hodson

    I love me some Vegas and NEVER see the need to avoid it 🙂

  7. Jennifer

    I guess I usually fall in the camp of people who avoid Las Vegas, but there’s no denying its appeal. I certainly appreciate the things to do off the Strip…great guest post.

  8. abby

    You tell ’em, J! As you know, I was definitely a “who would vacation in Las Vegas” girl … Until I moved here. Now I can’t imagine living anywhere without a lively entertainment scene. See you tomorrow! Great guest post, Margo!

  9. JoAnna

    If you ever have the chance to stop by, Jennifer, let me know, and I can help introduce you to the not-so-overwhelming side of the city.

  10. JoAnna

    I knew my fellow Vegas gal would agree! Thanks for the comment, Abby!

  11. Donna Hull

    I’ve avoided Las Vegas but maybe it’s time I gave sin city a chance? Exploring Red Rocks and visiting Hoover Dam would be on the list. And I’d like to experience some of the over the top luxury hotels at least once. Good post, JoAnna.

  12. Leslie Slater

    LV would be a lot easier to like if it didn't suck the water out of aquifers & electricity from very distant hydro power facilities for all its frivolity.

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