A Local’s Guide to Vegas Off-Strip

Yes, there’s more than Las Vegas than the Strip! From adventure activities around Boulder City (call they for shuttle service info from the Strip) to the exploding downtown and less expensive off-Strip casinos (that also offer shuttle pickup from the Strip), seeing Sin City away from Las Vegas Blvd is easier than ever.

12801 US-95, Boulder City, NV 89005, USA
Hunter S. Thompson fans can relive the daredevil writer’s off-roading experience at VORE in Boulder City. Using some of the same vehicles driven in the famous Mint 400 race, VORE lets you gear up, hop in through a window (these beasts of a car don’t have doors that open), and hit the dirt road. The dirt track has hills that allow you to get airborne, as well as hairpin turns. It’s one wild ride!
770 Las Vegas Blvd N, Las Vegas, NV 89101, USA
Reservations required—and no wonder. The tours at the Neon Museum sell out months in advance. A walk through the museum’s famous “Boneyard” (where neon goes to die) is fascinating, from motel row to the first integrated casino (one that shut almost as soon as it opened), and the Stardust, with its nuclear testing-inspired font. All of this comes alive thanks to the museum’s famous docents, all art history buffs with loads of family history or other personal anecdotes.
1 S Main St, Las Vegas, NV 89101, USA
Oscar’s Steakhouse boasts one of the best views in Las Vegas -- at 1 S Main Street at the Plaza Hotel, it overlooks bustling Fremont Street downtown. Named after our famous mob attorney-turned mayor Oscar Goodman (after he was term limited-out, his wife, Carolyn, won the race), the hot spot displays memorabilia from his exciting years in Las Vegas. Oscar is famous for always having a Bombay Sapphire gin martini in-hand (and two showgirls at his side), so why not swig a martini yourself before digging into the delicious steakhouse menu?
2300 Paseo Verde Pkwy, Henderson, NV 89052, USA
Beef connoisseurs swear that the steaks at Hank’s are the best in town—including every famous steakhouse on the Strip. But it’s the gorgeous front bar with an excellent pianist singing covers that draws the most animated crowd. There’s a reason this venue used to be called “Hank’s Fine Steaks and Martinis,” and at happy hour, those famous “shaken, not stirred” elixirs are half-off. (Although these guys stir, not shake.) Go for a smooth gin or vodka classic, or choose from their sweeter concoctions that play with ingredients like Godiva and banana liquors.
2300 Paseo Verde Pkwy, Henderson, NV 89052, USA
Green Valley Ranch has a stunning oasis of a spa with its own parking lot so drop-ins can skip the casino. Its cozy fitness studio features enormous windows to allow in loads of natural light—the perfect setting for yoga and Pilates classes, and even cardio dance.
1644 Boulder City Parkway, Boulder City, NV 89005, USA
Fun for all ages: Flightlinez takes children over 75 lbs and thrill-seeking adults on an aerial tour over the famous desert on the way to the Hoover Dam. Depending on the wind, guests of the Boulder City facility can reach up to 60 miles per hour, and get to zip over a mile and a half. There’s a small hike up to the first run, and then it’s nothing but high speeds and checking out the mountain scenery.
I have the pleasure of hiking in the beautiful Redrock Canyon area north of Las Vegas at least twice a year, but I have always been limited to the summer months for these treks. However, last winter, I had the chance to see the Mojave in winter. The cold blustery breeze, dancing off the snow topped Mt. Charleston, offered a chance to appreciate the early morning summer hikes, that much more. With the windchill, the temperature in this high desert ran between 18-23 degrees celsius. This is rarely experienced by the locals, as the winters are spend inside casinos and homes in the Las Vegas valley.
14200 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89054, USA
Nothing beats the rush of the racetrack -- but the thrill is over so soon! So if you’ve driven at the track and are looking for something less stomach-dropping, but more long-lasting, World Class Driving, located right off the Strip, is for you. They offer two categories: muscle cars and exotics. Depending on the length of your tour, you switch cars every 30-50 miles. The drive is a gorgeous one -- through Red Rock and out to ranch country. It is the first such experience to allow customers to drive the cars on the open road. Your plus one is allowed to ride with you (for a small fee), rather than watch from the sidelines like at the racetrack, and the prices are more budget-friendly, too.
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