Nevada offers such an incredible mix and range of activities. From the glitter of Las Vegas to the rugged beauty of Bootleg Canyon, to the engineering wonder of Hoover Dam, Southern Nevada has something for everyone.
My group on this trip was one of my favorites. I am lucky that I get to meet such amazing people when I travel. This was a global influencer group, so there were several of us all from different countries.
Where We Stayed in Southern Nevada
Boulder City is a great home base for exploring the nature side of Southern Nevada. The dry desert climate produces a dizzying array of fun things to do. From Bootleg Canyon to the west, to Hoover Dam and the jaw-dropping expanse of the Grand Canyon to the east. We spent two nights at the historic Boulder Dam Hotel. It was built in 1933 to accommodate visitors to the construction of Hoover Dam.
And Las Vegas isn’t just for gamblers! You won’t have to even touch a slot machine to be dazzled, entertained and well-fed at every turn in Sin City. On this trip, we stayed one night at the Strat which is home to the Stratosphere Tower…the tallest freestanding observation tower in the US. We also stayed for two nights at the LINQ which is centrally located right on the strip.
Black Canyon Rafting
What could be more refreshing than a motorized rafting tour far below the awesome Hoover Dam? The natural gorge of the Colorado River is perfect for exploring the beauty and desert wildlife of this unique and mostly inaccessible area. Along the Black Canyon National Water Trail, you can see Bighorn Sheep, Osprey and Blue Heron in their natural habitat. Rafting down this river was so calm, and we learned so much from our guide he was so sweet. Our guide was the Black Canyon Adventures.
Bootleg Canyon Biking
On the north side of Boulder City is the Mountain Bike Park. This is an epic ride, consisting of different types of trails and include cross-country and downhill. And this bike park is the real deal – it was designed by artist and bike enthusiast Brent Thompson. Biking was so fun, and it was crazy cool and but let’s be real Bella and mountain biking aren’t good combo It was hard but super fun. The tour we went with was called Bike Blast Las Vegas.
Make sure you bring along lots of water, camera, sunscreen and a face covering if you are sensitive to dust. I find the best mini backpacks have a number of pockets and are lightweight for excursions like this.
Aerial views of Hoover Dam and Lake Mead inside a 180-degree view helicopter is like none other helicopter ride you will experience. Noise cancelling headsets with accompanying music and pilot-to passenger communication only heighten the experience. The view of the landscape of Southern Nevada is completely unforgettable!!
Fun fact: There is enough concrete in the Hoover Dam to build a highway from one end of the U.S. to the other, about 3,000 miles!
If y’all know me you know I can never say no to a good helicopter ride. I always love being in the air. It is so freeing and you get to see the world in a completely different way. We went up with Papillon on this helicopter ride. If you follow along with my blogs you will remember a Vegas heli ride that I took over the city at night on this trip.
Where we Ate in Southern Nevada
For dining while in Southern Nevada, check out these places that I enjoyed during my visit. So many great choices to check out!
- Top of the World – located in the Strat in Las Vegas with an amazing view of the city.
- The Dillinger – Super good burgers, and they had gluten free options (Yeah!)
- The Coffee Cup – They had flavorful salads and sandwiches. Yummy!
- Boulder Dam Brewing Company – There was gluten free beer (YESSSS!!!!) and lots of food options here.
- Maxie’s – Lots of opportunity for fun food photos here. There was crazy colorful cotton-candy covered food but only 1 gluten free option which had dairy in it.
- Beauty & Essex – Here they serve family style, so it’s a great way to try many things.
- Pioneer Saloon – This is a great spot for super tasty burgers in the desert.
Lip Smacking Foodie Tour
Avoid the lines at four of Las Vegas’ best restaurants and get ushered to your table in style. Get treated like a VIP as you sit and have signature dishes laid out and explained for you in detail. In between restaurants, your guide will provide stories and facts about what you’ll see along the way. Check out the Lip Smacking Foodie Tour on your next visit!
What used to be the Old Imperial Palace Hotel is now the new and improved LINQ Hotel. A newly constructed promenade was built alongside it, with shops and restaurants. But the best part about it? The Strip’s best Zip Line experience, soar 550 above the LINQ promenade for a truly adrenaline-pumping experience. It goes by really fast but its super fun!
Sadly, I couldn’t bring my camera on the zip line, so check it all out in my vlog here. You can watch on YouTube in higher quality.
High Roller Experience
The tallest observation wheel in the world is the High Roller. With 28 enclosed compartments, it takes a half hour to ride one rotation with the best views of Las Vegas and the valley beyond. Pretty impressive!!! The High Roller let’s you see Vegas from an entirely different perspective.
Indoor Sky Diving
A visit to Vegas Indoor Skydiving had me floating, flying and free-falling through the air with wind speeds up to 120 mph. It was so fun to experience the thrilling sensation of skydiving, without a parachute or airplane! I also did this when I was in Orlando and it is a blast! A great activity for a rainy day or when it is too hot to be outside. It is a bit challenging at first but as soon as you get in the groove, it is easy to do!
RZR Through the Desert
Abut an hour southwest of Las Vegas is Goodsprings, the gateway to the Mohave Desert. Go off-roading with Vegas Off Road Tours as you explore breathtakingly steep canyons, and gorgeous desert farmland in this unique climate. We went off-roading and boy was it fun I love getting out and getting dirty, but I am being real here…I woke this day with such a bad eye ache and I couldn’t even see but I still went. Later that same day I ended up in the hospital with a huge scratch on my eye!!!
Always make sure you have travel medical insurance coverage, friends.
I hope this post helps you plan a trip to southern Nevada. There are so many great activities around Las Vegas. You may want to make time to check out some of the free shows in Las Vegas, too!
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This Southern Nevada blog post is brought you in collaboration with Travel Nevada. Thank you for supporting the destinations that support me.
Bella Bucchiotti of xoxoBella is a storyteller, food lover, dog mom and adventure seeker living on the Pacific coast. She shares her passion for recipes, dogs, sustainability, adventures, travel and philanthropy, in hopes of encouraging followers to run the extra mile, try new recipes, visit unfamiliar places and stand for a cause. Bella lives with Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac Disease.
Bella Bucchiotti is a freelance food, travel, and lifestyle writer for MSN and the Associated Press Wire.