Explore Las Vegas

Can You Bring Kids to Las Vegas?

Travel Tips — By thmeeks on May 7, 2011 at 7:31 pm
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Summer is almost here, and the kids will be out of school soon. If you’re a parent trying to plan a summer get-away for the family, you might wonder: can you really bring kids to Las Vegas? You can, but there are a few things you should keep in mind. The legal age for drinking and gambling is 21. Kids cannot hang out in the casino even with an adult. This can be a challenge if you’ve been looking forward to gambling. Some off-the-Strip hotel casinos have in-house childcare—the Palms and Orleans, for instance. Hotels on the Strip may have babysitting or nanny services, or may be able to recommend local agencies. If you plan on taking advantage of any childcare options, be sure to check into the specifics about age restrictions, time limits, and what documents, like shot records, may be required.

Several Las Vegas Strip attractions are family friendly, and many are close together. Two areas are dense with kid-friendly attractions. At Tropicana and Las Vegas Boulevard, you can see the MGM Lions, ride the roller coaster at New York-New York, explore the Excalibur’s carnival midway, or take the tram to Mandalay Bay to see the Shark Reef. Currently, the MGM, Luxor, Excalibur, New York-New York, Mandalay Bay, and Mirage are offering “3 For $54,” a deal on tickets for any three participating attractions at their properties. Guests choose from: CSI: The Experience; Siegfried and Roy’s Secret Gardens; Shark Reef; NY-NY roller coaster; a Spongebob ride; Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition; and Bodies: The Exhibition.

Further north, at Sands and Las Vegas Boulevard, you can see the Mirage’s volcano erupt or visit the Secret Gardens and Dolphin Habitat. At the Venetian, you can check out the canals and gondolas. Caesars Palace’s Forum Shops has a talking-statue show. At night, the pirates and sexy Sirens battle in front of TI. The Fashion Show mall is here, adding to the high number of retail shops in the area, but without adding anything animatronic.

Be prepared for adult content. Las Vegas is a city full of billboards and signs that capitalize on its “Sin City” image. Hand-billers on the Strip pass out pamphlets for adult services—which lots of people take and then drop on the ground, resulting in interesting litter. To reduce your children’s exposure to these adult aspects of Las Vegas, you may want to minimize walking on the Strip. No one will hand anything to your kids, but you’ll still have to contend with a lot of ads for escorts. Also, consider doing your sight-seeing during the day and early evening. The later in the evening, the rowdier the crowds get on the Strip.

Take advantage of the pool. Las Vegas loves pools, and an afternoon in the water will entertain most kids for hours. The pool at Mandalay Bay has a lazy river, wave pool, and sandy beach. The Monte Carlo has an enclosed area for kids, as well as a wave pool and easy river ride. The MGM Grand has five pools and landscape that includes waterfalls.

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Photos courtesy of Lisa Padilla, Shireen Garcia, and Steven Damron

Tags: Family-Friendly, Kid-Friendly, North Strip, Pools, South Strip
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