If you’re a full grown adult this post is not for you. However, if you are considering taking your young children to Las Vegas you can learn from our mistake. Last summer our Man of Steel announced he had to attend a conference in Vegas and invited us to tag along. I thought it was a spectacular idea. The kiddos and I could relax at the pool all day and in the evening we could take in some of the sights like the dancing fountains at the Bellagio. We booked the trip before I did my traditional family vacation research and planning. All I knew was at one time Las Vegas was marketing itself as a family vacation destination. Certainly there would be many activities for children. Well, if I had it to do all over again, I would definitely NOT take my children to Vegas. If you read this post and still want to take your kiddos to Vegas, I’ll be back with another post highlighting recommendations for your Vegas family vacation.
7 Reasons Why I Would NOT Take My Children to Las Vegas
1. It is HOT!
- When we visited Las Vegas last July it was 115!
- Even at the pool our skin felt like it was sizzling.
- Walking from here to there was miserable for the children.
- We are from South Texas and are accustomed to long hot summers. The dry heat in Vegas is different and at a sizzling 115 it is hard to enjoy any time outdoors. You seriously feel like a piece of bacon frying.
- If you’re gambling all day in the casino the heat won’t bother you much; however, that’s not an option with two little kiddos.
- If you’re not traveling in the summer, again the temperature won’t be of much concern. But most families traveling with children take their vacation during the summer.
2. Too much walking!
- You can not avoid walking even if you take advantage of the monorail.
- Just to get out of your hotel you have to walk and walk and walk. The hotels do not make it easy to find your way out!
- The monorail only runs behind one side of the hotels. It is not very convenient with little ones.
- We took the kiddos to Caesar’s Palace to view the Fall of Atlantis talking statues and the giant fish tank. Both were great. Unfortunately, we had to walk forever to the monorail at the MGM. After riding the monorail we had to walk through the Flamingo, cross the street (which is more involved than it sounds), walk through Caesar’s Palace . . . But wait there’s more . . . The Fall of Atlantis is located at the very end of The Forum Shops. More walk, walk, walking!
- We took the kiddos to Shark Reef at the Mandalay Bay. Guess what, the monorail does not run on that side of the street. So you need to take a bus or taxi. Once you get to Mandalay Bay you must walk to the very ends of the earth to reach Shark Reef.
- I think you get the picture so I won’t bore you with more walking stories. However, know that even to get a bite to eat you must walk!
- If you’re an adult, the walking probably won’t bother you much. But add two children and the heat and the walking is too much!
3. There’s Too Much Smut
- Okay, okay, I know What Happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas. I’ve been to Vegas and I guess as an adult I just ignored all the flashes of flesh.
- From the moment we disembarked the airplane, there were giant video screens with male strippers ripping off their shirts and show girls prancing provocatively in their thongs and their scantily clad ENHANCED breasts.
- MacGyver is almost oblivious to the world if he’s not chasing a creepy critter. On the other hand, Miss Enigma is extremely observant and it’s hard to avoid giant movie screens.
4. There’s Very Little Entertainment for Children
- When I finally got around to researching and planning our Las Vegas trip, I was surprised to find very few recommendations for child friendly entertainment.
- The Vegas shows that are kid friendly are just too darn expensive. I know my kiddos would not appreciate the cost of the ticket price. They much rather play in the pool. But ummm, the pool closes early.
- I had been warned by MacGyver’s karate teacher that the pools close at 8:00pm. Swimming in the evening would have been lovely. But I’m sure the hotels want you spending money at their casino rather than lounging in the pool.
- In my next post, I’ll highlight the kid friendly entertainment that we did find: Shark Reef Aquarium, Fall of Atlantis Show, Giant Fish Aquarium, Bellagio Dancing Fountains, Bellagio Botanical Gardens, The Signature Condo Hotel at MGM Grand
5. It’s Too Expensive
- The bargain days of Vegas are long gone. If you want to dine or play you will pay!
- The children really enjoyed Shark Reef but it is not cheap and it is not really very big.
- Dining out with the children was difficult. In general the food is your average chain restaurant food but with prices way above average.
- You can find a food court here and there but a hot dog and fries will run your kiddos $12.00 (no drink).
- My kiddos will not eat enough to pay for the price of the Vegas buffets.
- I understand you can enjoy some outstanding fine dinning experiences but I’m not going to splurge on fine dining with 2 young children.
- In my next post, I’ll highlight the kid friendly restaurants we did find: The Cheesecake Factory, Earl of Sandwich,
6. Too Many Crowds
- We had a very nice stay at The Signature Condo Hotel at MGM Grand. The Signature has several lovely little pools but we also had access to the sprawling pool area at The MGM Grand. I ventured to the Grand with the kiddos to enjoy the Lazy River. OMG! So many people. Toobs bumping into toobs. There were so many people that it was hard to keep an eye on the kiddos. Next, we wandered over to one of the larger MGM pools. Suddenly, everyone was rushed out of the pool. The pool had been contaminated! Of course it was . . . all those kids and all of those people drinking . . . enough said. After that we stayed at our cozy little pools at The Signature!
- We are beach people. We are nature people. We are even cool city people (think San Francisco). We had to admit we are not concrete city, wall to wall stinky bodies people.
- I’ll make a confession. We are spoiled! Since we homeschool, we travel and do our sightseeing during the off-season. We aren’t accustom to crowds. I know spoiled! It’s one of the benefits of homeschooling.
7. Did I Mention, You Cannot Avoid the Smut
- If you walk through any hotel, you’ll be assaulted with advertisements for shows such as “Peepshow” and the “Pussycat Dolls Lounge.”
- If you walk along the strip, you will be treated to enormous video screens displaying advertising for provocative shows.
- Also as everyone walks along the strip, they are handed baseball style cards of topless women advertising strip shows. Most people are uninterested so they throw the cards on the ground creating a sidewalk wallpapered with topless women. Just another treat for your little kiddos.
- Pretty much everywhere you go, you’ll encounter people drinking from two-foot tall hurricane glasses.
- I’ll be up front with you, we indulge in adult beverages. However, our children only see us drink responsibly. We typically do not drink a two-foot strawberry daiquiri while pushing their baby stroller.
- I’m sure some of you are thinking we are overprotective prudes. It’s this simple. We rather not encourage our little girl to wear a thong and shake her booty for men and we rather not introduce the birds and the bees during a family vacation to Las Vegas.
So you still want to take your children to Las Vegas -or- you’ve already booked your trip . . .
We survived our trip just fine and actually had some fun experiences. Simply in hindsight, I would have left the kiddos with Grandma and Grandpa. If you’re planning a Vegas trip, my next post will share tips for surviving Vegas with small children. Never fear, I do have some good stuff to highlight.
Life with Jeannine