Shimmering from the desert haze of Nevada like a latter-day El Dorado, Las Vegas is the most dynamic city on Earth. At the start of the 20th century, it didn’t even exist. Now it’s home to two million people. Here, we take a look at some of the best places to stay in Las Vegas.
The information in this article is inspired by The Rough Guide to the USA, your essential guide for visiting USA.
In the old days, the casinos along Las Vegas’s legendary Strip were cut-throat rivals. Each stood a long way back from the road, and was a dark, low-ceilinged labyrinth, in which it was all but impossible to find an exit.
During the 1980s, however, visitors started to explore the Strip on foot. Mogul Steve Wynn cashed in by placing a flame-spouting volcano outside his new Mirage. As the casinos competed to lure in pedestrians, they filled in those daunting distances from the side walk and between each casino and the next.
With Las Vegas booming in the 1990s, gaming corporations bought up first individual casinos, and then each other. The Strip today is dominated by just two colossal conglomerates, MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment. Each owns a string of neighbouring casinos.
Once you own the casino next door, there’s no reason to make each a virtual prison. The Strip has therefore opened out, so that much of its central portion now consists of pedestrian-friendly open-air terraces and pavilions housing bars and restaurants.
Bemused by the options and wondering where to stay in Las Vegas? We’ve selected the best options on The Strip and beyond.
Explore the glitzy lights of Las Vegas with our tailor-made cross country USA trip to the 3 major US citites.
On the South Strip of Las Vegas Boulevard, close to the airport, are resorts and attractions from Mandalay Bay to Park MGM, including the huge MGM Grand Resort.
Start your visit at the famous 'Welcome to Las Vegas' sign just west of McCarran International Airport. Then walk through the shark habitat at Mandalay Bay, admire the 'Sphinx' in front of Luxor and appreciate the stained glass windows in the restored Tropicana building. The South Strip is also famous for its resorts.
While planning your holiday in Las Vegas take a look at the tips we have collected in our Las Vegas survival guide.
Find more accommodation options in the South Strip
Enjoy spectacular views of Las Vegas and the Strip from the top of the High Roller at the LINQ. Take a ride on this 550-foot observation wheel and look out over the city in an air-conditioned compartment.
The North Strip is the perfect mix of luxury and fun and it makes this area one of the best places to stay in Vegas. The North Strip of Vegas offers the best options for a variety of entertainment experiences.
Chain resorts dominate here and complement each other. The Venetian and The Palazzo, give visitors an Italian experience, guests can ride gondolas and admire indoor waterfalls.
Also, don't miss out on the Encore Beach Club, which offers a truly stunning daytime lounge.
Las Vegas Strip is full of attractions. For a glittering abundance of entertainment, read our list of things to do in the Las Vegas Strip. And if you're still searching for the best destination for your trip to the United States, perhaps our list of the best places to visit in the United States can help you.
Formerly nicknamed “Glitter Gulch” until city fathers tried to shed its dubious reputation by renaming it “the Fremont Street Experience,” Fremont Street is the centre of the action in Downtown Las Vegas and many serious gamblers prefer the Downtown casinos for their lack of touristic distractions.
The five-block pedestrian-only section of Fremont has 10 casino hotels, a single, somewhat sleazy but historic striptease joint, and the world’s largest LED screen, four blocks long and 90ft above the street, where the spectacular, free Viva Vision extravaganzas are shown nightly.
To the west, a run-down area on the edge of Downtown has been redeveloped as the 18b Arts District, a studio and gallery zone that comes to life with big street celebrations, once a month.
Find more accommodation options to stay in Downtown
Summerlin is an area in the Las Vegas Valley that lies on the edge of the Spring Mountains and Red Rock Canyon to the west. It is partly within the Las Vegas city limits and partly in unincorporated Clark County.
This rapidly growing area has everything you need to live, parks, public and public schools, houses of worship, golf courses, resort hotels, recreational facilities, shopping and entertainment centres, well-developed office parks, a medical centre and much more. If you are looking for where to stay in Vegas away from the hustle and bustle - Summerlin most likely to fit.
Find more accommodation options in Summerlin
Visit the West Rim of the Grand Canyon on a full-day excursion from Las Vegas. Stop at the Hoover Dam for a photo opportunity of the Hoover Dam and the Bypass Bridge.
In the summer months, you will want to start out as early as possible. From the Strip, take Tropicana Avenue east to Paradise Road and turn right. As you pass the airport, Paradise will merge into Interstate 215 and take you to Henderson 1, 12 miles from the Strip.
Near the Henderson entrance to man-made Lake Las Vegas. If you are not staying at the Hilton, this is the best place to start the tour. There’s a paved public walkway around the lake and the Hilton has its own sandy beach, with kayaks and bicycles available to rent for guests.
The more ambitious will find hiking trails running from the hotel into the surrounding vast, empty desert. In summer, the early morning sun warms the dry air fast: by 9.30, it may drive you back inside the air-conditioned hotel.
Another option is a visit to the nearby MonteLago ‘village’ resort with its quaint, cobblestone streets lined with chic shops.
Find more accommodation options in Henderson & Lake Las Vegas
If you're planning a trip to the United States, our list of the most beautiful places in the US will help you plot your route to stunning scenery.
If you prefer to plan and book your trip to New Orleans without any effort and hassle, use the expertise of our local travel experts to make sure your trip will be just like you dream it to be.
Ready for a trip to New Orleans? Check out the snapshot The Rough Guide to the USA. If you travel further in the USA, read more about the best time to go and the best places to visit in the USA. For inspiration use the itineraries from The Rough Guide to USA and our local travel experts. A bit more hands on, learn about getting there, getting around the country and where to stay once you are there.
We may earn commission from some of the external websites linked in this article, but this does not influence our editorial standards - we only recommend services that we genuinely believe will enhance your travel experiences.
Top Image: Welcome to Las Vegas © Shutterstock