Things to Do

Traveling to Las Vegas with Teenagers?

Las Vegas Airport welcome sign

Recently I was asked about bringing teenagers to Las Vegas. What is there for us to do with them? They have a 14-year-old daughter and 15-year-old son and are coming in October.

October is an interesting month in Las Vegas.  Not too hot, yet not too cold (for the desert).  It’s kind of the beginning of the slow season here.  So, the crowds should be easy to handle; there is no actual pool action that I can think of, and you probably could get some good deals.

Now, some people cringe at the thought of bringing kids to an adult version of Disneyland.  However, since we are now mostly owned by two corporations, we have become a little more family-friendly.


With teenagers, I would go first with the Horseshoe (formerly Bally’s). It’s the center Strip. It’s not too large; you can’t get lost in it. You don’t have to walk through the casino to get to the Strip. They also have a few attractions for families and teenagers.

The reviews on the resort remodel have been all good to excellent. It’s always been a clean and well-maintained resort.  Plus, the Monorail has a station there.

My runners-up in order would be Flamingo, Tropicana, Mirage/Had Rock, and finally, Excalibur or Luxor.

If you have a timeshare credit, my favorites are the Hilton Elara, Hilton Flamingo, and Marriott’s Grand Chateau. All are almost center Strip.

Polo Towers just changed owners; the guests I picked up there haven’t mentioned anything different. It was always a nice place to stay, especially for its location. (There is some construction going on in front of the property, but still an easy walk to the Strip.

Off-Strip Favorites: There are two Off-Strip places I often recommend for families not wanting the chaos of the Strip yet wanting to be close to the Strip. The Desert Rose is behind the Tropicana and OYO. Then on Flamingo is Tuscany Suites

Area 15 Does Not Exsist


    Vegas has some great places to take teenagers to keep them engaged as well as entertained.

    Area 15
    Keeping modern teenagers occupied is not easy.  The first place I would shoot for would be Area 15—a play on the mysterious Area 51. 

    There is no way I could easily explain this high-tech, modern digital entertainment complex. Just click the link!! Seriously! You will need an Uber or taxi to get there.

    Pinball Hall of Fame
    Down by the “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” sign is the Pinball Hall of Fame.  You can play pinball machines from the early 1920s all the way up to the modern version featuring some of the popular movies and television shows. 

    Plus, they have a lineup of the original video games we used to stand in line to play.  The last time I was there, they even had the original video game, Pong working! Some ambitious people like to walk there from their hotel. 

    Shark Reef

    At Mandalay Bay Resort is the Shark Reef Aquarium. Walk through and under the sea: over 2,000 different animals, both aquatic as well as land.  The tunnel is worth the price of admission!

    Titanic/Bodies Exhibition

    At the Luxor, we have the Titanic exhibit that steps you through the journey of the most famous shipwreck in history—100’s of artifacts recovered from the wreck set in realistic replicas of the cabins and decks.

    Next to that is: Bodies… The Exhibition. An eye-opening look at the human body and all that it takes to keep us moving and living. (Combo tickets for BODIES…The Exhibition and Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition are available at the box office only.)

    The Bellagio Fountains

    Bellagio Fountains

    Your trip to La sVegas is never complete until you visit the Bellagio Gardens as well as watch its iconic fountain shows.

    The Bellagio Fountains go off every half hour from noon to 6 pm, then every 15 minutes from 6 pm to midnight. Each show is synchronized to a different song.

    Inside the Bellagio Resort is the world-famous Bellagio Conservatory. It’s free, and the theme changes every three months or so. Open 24 hours. As you walk through the front entrance, look up and enjoy the impressive Dale Chihuly flower garden. Made with over 2,000 pieces of hand-blown glass.

    The Forum Shops at Caesars palace

    Forum Shops

    If you want to see how the other half shops while being surrounded by Roman gods and such, take a walk through the Caesars Forum Shops. Some of the most expensive shopping on the planet will be found here. Don’t forget to ride the circular escalators! 

    Mirage Volcano

    One of the most famous attractions in Las Vegas is the Mirage Volcano. Erupts in front of the resort at 8, 9, and 10 pm every night. 

    Catch it now; the new owners of the Mirage resort are changing the name of the resort to Hard Rock and replacing the iconic landmark with a silly looking guitar shaped hotel tower next year.

    The LINQ Promenade

    In what used to be an alley filled with trash cans and recyclables from the hotels is now a very popular outdoor entertainment district called The LINQ Promenade.

    Besides shops and restaurants, there is the High Roller observation wheel. A 550-foot giant Farris wheel on steroids.  Each pod holds up to 30 people, but they normally keep it limited to under 10 people or a family by themselves. 

    You can walk around inside it. They have narration to explain what you are looking at, along with some very inaccurate Las Vegas trivia.

    It takes thirty minutes to do a rotation.  This is really a great way to see the Vegas Valley at night.

    While at the Linq Promenade, take a zipline ride over it all. Called Fly LINQ. An actual zipline that goes over the promenade.

    Strat Adventures

    At the north end of the Strip, we have that tall tower thing. It’s called The Strat or the Stratosphere.  On top are five of the tallest rides in the world, with a beautiful view of the Las Vegas Valley from the indoor/outdoor observation deck. You can even jump off the side of the building if you want!

    A new addition to the Las Vegas entertainment list is called the arts district. I have not had time to visit this area. But it seems to be growing in popularity as well as in new entertainment options.

    Fremont Street Experience


    Fremont Street Experience.  Otherwise known as freak central on the weekends.  This is where Las Vegas began. The original downtown.

    The main attraction here, besides the poorly dressed character actors begging for tips for a picture, is the Viva Vision light show at night.

    One block off the Experience is the Mob Museum. A Look at the rise and fall of the American Mafia. The second floor is dedicated to the Las Vegas Mob.

    A little further from there is the Neon Boneyard/Neon Museum.  A tour of the iconic neon signs that made Las Vegas famous. Do the night tour for the best results! (taxi/Uber)

    A new addition to the Las Vegas entertainment list is called the arts district. I have not had time to visit this area. But it seems to be growing in popularity as well as in new entertainment options.

    Take a tour to Valley of Fire

    Get Out of Town

    October is a cool time of the year, so it’s the best time to get out and see mother nature.  Red Rock Canyon is beautiful to see. As is Valley of Fire.  Drive yourself or take a tour.

    We are surrounded by desert.  That means plenty of places to go and explore.  There are several excellent ATV tours and Dune buggies.

    One of the newest tour options is a Rock Crawling experience in a modified Jeep Wrangler.


    This one is difficult because of the variety we have here, and in the fall is when shows like to make changes to their cast and to the show itself. Fall is also when some go dark (close) and new shows start up.

    Two of my standard favorites are The Beatles LOVE by Cirque du Soleil. As well as the Original Must-See Cirque du Soleil Production Mystère. At ti (Treasure Island)

    If you are a fan of the TV show, America’s got talent. Las Vegas is filled with people who were contestants.  Piff the Magic Dragon (magic), Tape Face (actually a pretty funny show), and the newest one is America’s Got Talent Las Vegas Live at the Luxor. It claims to be an exciting show and a line-up of the biggest acts from the TV series.

    Obviously, there are a thousand other things you can do, but these are a good starting point. 

    Just remember that people under 21 can pass through the casino on their way to other places; they can’t loiter near any gaming device.

    Finally, my two most significant pieces of advice for people coming to Las Vegas are:

    1. Do Not over plan.  Come to Las Vegas and spend a lot of time exploring and enjoying. 
    2. Do not buy new shoes just for your Las Vegas trip. You are going to be doing a lot of walking.  Please make sure they are comfortable and ready to wear!! 

    Anything I miss? Any thoughts??