5 unexpected things you have to do in and around Las Vegas

Las Vegas is a paradise for a wide range of humanity, from gambling aficionados to people looking to make any number of interesting life choices.

But Las Vegas is more than just casinos and buffets. It’s a city filled with a wide range of experiences for people of all ages, destination for everyone to enjoy. But if you go, there are five things you must plan to do.

The Neon Museum

Since 1996, The Neon Museum has been at the forefront of protecting the heritage and history of Las Vegas. Specifically, it has collected and preserved the classic neon signs that typified Vegas in its early days but have disappeared with those hotels and casinos.

Going to The Neon Museum is a trip. The visitors center is contained in the lobby of the iconic and eclectic La Concha Motel, which is actually pretty cool. But the main draw is the Neon Boneyard, an outdoor exhibit space that contains their impressive collection of vintage neon signs.

Go sports!

Las Vegas

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – JANUARY 14: Robin Lehner #90 of the Vegas Golden Knights makes a save against the Anaheim Ducks in the third period of their game at T-Mobile Arena on January 14, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Golden Knights defeated the Ducks 5-2. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

For a long time, the only major sport people thought of when someone mentioned Las Vegas was boxing. But that has changed incredibly quickly in recent years. Both the NFL and the NHL now call Las Vegas home, and have added a new dimension to the Vegas experience.

The Vegas Golden Knights brought the NHL to Sin City in 2017, followed by the Las Vegas Raiders and the NFL in 2020. Additionally, the WNBA arrived in 2018 with the Las Vegas Aces. It’s not hard to imagine that the NBA won’t be far behind.

The Mob Museum

Situated in Downtown Las Vegas, The Mob Museum was developed in the restored former U.S. Post Office and Courthouse building. It was originally built in the 1930s, so it fits the museum’s overall vibe perfectly.

The museum is filled with rare artifacts highlighted via an interactive, immersive experience. It guides visitors through the history of organized crime and law enforcement, particularly its influence on the early days of Las Vegas.

Get your food on in Las Vegas

BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA – JULY 23: Gordon Ramsay attends the TCA panel for National Geographic Channels’ Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on July 23, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

There was a time not that long ago that the food scene in Las Vegas was a bit of a joke, particularly on the strip. It was filled with cheap buffets and mediocre eateries that were there to service gamblers and roving bachelorette parties.

But the last couple of decades have seen a huge change. Some of the world’s biggest chefs have built Laz Vegas outposts, creating a surprisingly vibrant food scene in every hotel along The Strip. Old school Vegas is still around but so are the likes of Gordon Ramsay.

Ethel M Botanical Cactus Garden

As if going to a chocolate factory isn’t cool enough, this place also has an impressive botanical cactus garden. Just outside of Vegas, Ethel M Chocolates is home to some of the finest handcrafted, small batch gourmet chocolate around.

On top of that, the Botanical Cactus Garden features over 300 species of plants. And roughly 50% of those plants are cacti and succulents. There’s nothing quite like a relaxing day of chocolate and cacti to complete a trip to Las Vegas.