You’ve seen the Bellagio fountains. You’ve marveled at the Eiffel Tower replica. You’ve been to the Stratosphere. You’ve hit all the casinos. You’ve even seen every magic act and Cirque show imaginable.
Bottom line? You’ve seen everything Vegas has to offer, right? Wrong. Dead wrong. You haven’t even scratched the surface. Today, we’re going to take you to an off-the-grid version of Vegas you didn’t even know existed. This is the Vegas you need to see and we promise you it’ll change how you view Sin City.
Buy Cuban cigars
The Cuban embargo is on its way to being lifted. Soon, Americans will be able to travel to Cuba for vacation and enjoy everything the island nation has to offer. Canadians, Brits, Germans, and people from all over the world have been taking in Cuban culture for years, enjoying Havana’s old-world charm and soaking up the sun on some of the world’s best beaches. Hotels are hit and miss, but for the most part you can stay at a 5-star resort for a fraction of the cost of a similar property in Mexico or Dominican Republic.
But right now, you can only travel there for specific reasons, and the trip must be approved by the US government. That’ll likely change soon, now that Barrack Obama is planning to visit Cuba next month. But until then, it means Cuban cigars are officially off the table in the United States. Unless, of course, you travel to Las Vegas, where the Don Yeyo Cigar Factory has been attracting tourists for years.
While the cigars don’t actually come from Cuba (it’s still illegal to import them), you can purchase a hand-rolled cigar on site, rolled by someone who has emigrated from Cuba. It’s just like the real thing.
Have dinner in the sky
Every major city on planet earth features a handful of restaurants claiming to offer the best view of the city. Actually, strike that. It’s usually not just a handful. We’re usually talking dozens of restaurants. And Las Vegas is no exception, with lots of restaurants offering great views from several floors up. The Eiffel Tower Restaurant, for example, provides great views of the Las Vegas strip from atop the famous Paris-inspired landmark. Even Todd English’s Olives offers upscale eating with breathtaking views of the Bellagio fountains.
But you’d be hard-pressed to find a dining experience that compares to Dinner in the Sky. Forget about taking an elevator to the top floor of a hotel. At Dinner in the Sky, you’ll take a seat at a meticulously constructed table with comfortable seating, right at the ground floor. And once you’re seated and fastened, a crane will pull the table up high above the Sin City strip. It’s unlike anything you’ve experienced before and it’s well worth the price of admission.
Hit Dick’s Last Resort
If a fancy dinner dangling above the skyline isn’t for you, head to Dick’s Last Resort for some great food and good laughs. Just be warned. The waiters are absolute dicks. We’re not trying to be mean. That’s their shtick. They’re famous for berating customers and being overly sarcastic. If you’re out there for a bachelor party, this fits the bill. If you’re wearing fancy clothes and trying to impress a first date, consider that dinner in the sky thing.
Have a blast—an atomic one, specifically
Forget about the war on terror. Well, don’t forget it. It should always be at top of mind. It’s best to be vigilant. But if you want to experience something catastrophically mind-blowing, check out the National Atomic Testing Museum in Las Vegas. Impressive exhibits include a simulated atmospheric bomb blast, a radiation monitoring tutorial, an underground testing experience, and for something truly useful, details on how to survive an atomic blast. There’s also an Area 51 exhibit if you dare.
Make no mistake, though. This isn’t some cheeky Niagara Falls style tourist trap. The National Atomic Testing Museum features a collection of more than 12,000 artifacts. It’s a great way to learn about the history of the nuclear bomb in a truly hands-on way. Well, as hands-on as you can get without actually unleashing an atomic bomb and ending the world.
Enjoy the dim lights of Vegas
Las Vegas is famous for reinventing itself. Remember Aladdin? I do. That was the first hotel I ever stayed at in Las Vegas. And I’m not talking about the original Aladdin circa the 1960s. I’m talking about the Aladdin that came after it. Yup, there were two Aladdins. The first was imploded in 1998 to make way for a new one, which opened its doors in August 2000. Today, Aladdin is nothing but a distant memory, with the property having been totally rebranded as Planet Hollywood.
This happens a lot. Famous landmark hotels are torn down to make way for new ones, or rebranded entirely. The hotels and casinos are stripped of all their glory, including their famous neon signs that once attracted gamblers to the casinos like moths to flames.
But don’t worry. Those signs don’t end up poisoning some landfill. Instead, they end up at The Las Vegas Neon Museum. There, the signs don’t just sit to die. Employees work hard to restore signs to their former glory.
Enjoy a bit of Vegas, right from home
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