We did something a little different this past New Year’s Eve and took our boys to Las Vegas. Kinda different, I know. Ha! We had a great trip and experienced some fun places while we were there.
If you find yourself there the few days leading up to New Year’s Eve, be prepared for lots of crowds. As a girl used to dealing with big crowds in the French Quarter area, it didn’t phase me much, but it’s still nice to know ahead of time in case that kind of atmosphere isn’t what you had in mind for a vacation.
I’ve broken down our activities for each day we were there, but be sure to keep scrolling for a few lists of other places to visit if you’re planning to be in Vegas.
Sidenote: While the Vegas strip is glitzy, full of entertainment and fun, I also highly encourage you to spend at least one day to venture out beyond the strip and see some of the gorgeous landscapes and nature exhibits. It’s incredible!!
Where We Stayed
We stayed at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas this trip. I’ve also stayed at the Planet Hollywood on the strip there as well. If smoking on the ground floor of a hotel doesn’t bother you, then Planet Hollywood is a fine place to stay. Personally, the smoking just really got to me and I ended up kind of making a mad dash through the casino area to get to our room every day. Not the best experience for me.
The Cosmopolitan was really nice though and I’d definitely stay there again. It’s a beautiful property with lots of amenities, places to eat and nice rooms. I even did a few minutes on the treadmill in their gym one morning and was really impressed with it.
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Our first full day started out with brunch at Cafe Lola in the shops at the forum in Caesar’s Palace and then we did some shopping inside. Cafe Lola has been on my list to visit for a while now and it’s just as pretty as the food is delicious. Next time I hope to visit one of there other locations.
Next we headed over to The Sphere and took in the multi-sensory, 18K resolution film. From wind, to movement, to the 3-D optics, it was a very cool experience that I’d definitely do again.
We finished out the day with some ice skating on the rooftop of the Cosmopolitan Hotel, which looks out over the Vegas strip. Pretty cool atmosphere with the snow machines going off every half hour and the music playing. I only wish the ice skating rink had been a bit bigger to allow for more space to skate (or fall) around. But honestly, since it’s a pool that they transform into a skating rink in the winter months, I can’t fault them for the size. I thought it was a charming little set up with a great drink and food menu, and fire pits you can reserve for roasting marshmallows and cozying up next to.
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We woke up at 5:45am, put on some cozy clothes and headed out to see The Hoover Dam and then over to The Grand Canyon, the world’s largest and most well-known canyon. We booked our day-long tour with Comedy On Deck Tours and had a really great experience with lots of laughs and information about the area. If you’re visiting the Vegas strip, I highly recommend getting out of the hustle and bustle of all the casinos for at least one day and see this incredible national park. It’s truly a spectacular sight to take in! And also plan the outing to take up the majority of the day.
We were quite worn out when we got back to the hotel at 8pm. We decided to stay in and grab a yummy late night bite at Holsteins Shakes and Buns.
We spent our last day in Vegas shopping at the Miracle Mile and having THE cutest late lunch at Rosa Mexicana. I really wish we had a location near me. It’s the perfect girl’s night out spot to grab some pink margaritas and chips and salsa!
And since it was New Year’s Eve, and we were in Vegas, Pete and I got dressed for drinks at The Chandelier inside the Cosmopolitan Hotel and then took a quick stroll out on the Vegas strip to see all the NYE crowd madness. As a girl from New Orleans, not much shocks me when it comes to party cities, but I was pleasantly surprised at how clean it was. By the strike of midnight though, I was the only one of us awake to see the fireworks and quietly ring in the new year from the window of our hotel room. And honestly, I didn’t hate it. It was nice reflecting on the new year to come and watching the view from the 23rd floor.
What Shows to See:
Michael Jackson One by Cirque de Soleil
Carrot Top (saw this one on my last trip to
Vegas and it was a fun one if you want a good laugh)
The Spere (such a great experience!)
The Titanic Artifact Exhibit (loved this from my last trip!)
What to visit:
The Mob Museum (with underground Speakeasy and distillery)
Welcome to Las Vegas Sign for Phototaking
Air tour the Grand Canyon
Zipline with spectacular views
The Neon Museum is fantastic at night!
The Commonwealth on Fremont St.
Where to Dine:
French Crepes in Henderson, NV
A Mano Italian Pizzeria (MUST try the Fat Baby’s!)