When people think of things to do in Las Vegas, they naturally think of the Las Vegas Strip, with bright lights and 24/7 high-rolling action. However, there are a lot of fun things to do in Vegas that don’t include gambling, including free activities for both retirees and families with children.
Even better, if you venture outside of the city, you’ll find an amazing desert landscape ready for outdoor adventure. Let’s take a look at fun things to do in Vegas besides gamble.
Active Outdoor Activities in Las Vegas
Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area
Just west of Vegas is the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. This amazing desert landscape is a very popular place to hike, bike or rock climb. It’s one of the excellent things to do in Vegas if you enjoy an active outdoor life.
Red Rock Scooter Tour
It’s the number one outdoor activity for Las Vegas on TripAdvisor. A guided scooter tour will take you on a scenic ride through the Red Rock Canyon. You’ll also hear the tales of the Native Americans who lived there for thousands of years. This is one of the adventurous things to do while in Las Vegas.
Lake Mead National Recreation Area
The Lake Mead National Recreation Area is just east of the city. The striking desert landscapes and beautiful blue waters will delight your senses. You may even see one of Nevada’s iconic Bighorn Sheep perched atop the red rocks.
Lake Mead is a popular place to boating, kayaking, water skiing or fishing. Likewise, you can go hiking, or simply enjoy a leisurely drive to enjoy the views.
Black Canyon River Rafting
You can enjoy Las Vegas’ sunny weather and the state’s stunning scenery with a raft tour down the Colorado River. Marvel at the sheer rock walls, secret coves and even hot springs along the way. You may even catch a glimpse of Hoover Dam towering above you.
Hoover Dam, built in the 1930s, is not only a National Historic Landmark, it’s one of America’s Seven Modern Civil Engineering Wonders. Among the things to do in Las Vegas, taking a guided tour of this massive structure may very well be the highlight of your visit.
Attend a Sporting Event in Las Vegas
Las Vegas Ballpark®
If you love baseball, then you’ll love the all-new Las Vegas Ballpark® in Summerlin, on the western edge of Vegas. It’s the new, award-winning $150 million home of the Triple-A Las Vegas Aviators. It may be a minor league team, but it’s a great thing to do while in Vegas.
NHL Vegas Golden Knights Hockey Game at T-Mobile Arena
Las Vegas is right in the middle of the desert, but that doesn’t mean to locals aren’t crazy for hockey! In fact, Nevadans all over the state listen in on the radio whenever the Golden Knights play. Join the fun and watch a game at T-Mobile Arena.
Las Vegas Raiders NFL Game
The former Oakland Raiders have found a new home in Las Vegas. You can see the legendary team play their home games at the newly-built Allegiant Stadium.
Tour de Summerlin Bike Race
The Tour de Summerlin Bike Race is fun for anyone who likes to ride. In fact, cyclists of any skill level can join in the annual race, which takes place in April. The course takes to the streets around the pretty suburb of Summerlin.
There are more than 50 golf courses in Las Vegas, making it one of the top things to do in Las Vegas.
In fact, it’s one of the very top things to do in Las Vegas for retirees who love to golf!
The comfortable temperatures, especially in the winter, make playing a few rounds a pleasant way to spend the day. Plus, the stunning desert landscapes make a picture-perfect backdrop for the photos you’ll show your friends back home.
Black Mountain Golf & Country Club, is a 27-hole championship course and a good choice for any skill level. On the other hand, Desert Willow Golf Course is known as one of the most challenging in Nevada.
Other exceptional golf courses include the Reflection Bay Golf Club, The Revere Golf Club, the Rio Secco Golf Club, Chimera Golf Club, and the Wildhorse Golf Club.
Things To Do in Las Vegas with Kids
There are a surprising number of kid-friendly activities in and around Las Vegas, which make it perfect for when your grandkids visit.
In addition to the outdoor activities, the kids will love Lion Habitat Ranch, in the suburb of Henderson. The Lion Habitat Ranch is the place to go for animal lovers of all ages. Your grandkids will love to go see not only the lions, but also the giraffe.
Better yet, the kids can feed the animals. It’s truly an enriching experience for both you and the children in your family.
Cultural Things To Do In Vegas
The Bellagio Conservatory and Fine Art Gallery
You don’t have to leave the Las Vegas Strip to find and experience fine art and culture. The Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art boasts an impressive collection of 19th and 20th-century paintings. The rotating exhibits are just as awe-inspiring as any famous art museum anywhere in the world. Not only that, but the Bellagio also has a world-renowned conservatory and botanical garden.
The Neon Museum
Las Vegas is a world-famous oasis of flashing neon lights, but what happens to those iconic signs once they’ve served their purpose? The Neon Museum began in 1996, documenting Las Vegas’ colorful neon history. The museum features 2-acres of retired neon signs, called the Neon Boneyard, as well as a visitor’s center.
The Mob Museum
It’s common knowledge that back in the day, Vegas was a mob town. This unique museum documents the history of organized crime in America. The Mob Museum has three floors of singular artifacts, exhibits, presentations, and interactive displays. You’ll discover the real-life story behind good fella’s Al Capone, Tony Spilotro and Whitey Bulger.
The National Atomic Testing Museum
This unique museum is associated with the Smithsonian, and interprets the history of atomic weapons testing during the 1950s; much of the testing was done in the Nevada desert. The museum even has a B53 nuclear bomb on display (disarmed, of course).
More Fun Things To Do in Vegas for Retirees
Shopping is plentiful all across the Las Vegas metropolitan area, and you’ll find every kind of store from upscale designer shopping, hip, and trendy boutiques and all of the national brands. Window shopping is one of the many free things to do in Las Vegas.
The District at Green Valley Ranch is not only chock full of fun and funky boutiques, but it also has a splash pad for the kids. Shopping here is just one more fun thing to do in Las Vegas with kids. Not only that, but the District at Green Valley Ranch shopping center also has live music, a farmer’s market, outdoor movies, and other fun, family-friendly events.
The Water Street District is the place to go for unique small shops with an eclectic mix of handmade crafts and gifts. However, if you’d prefer a more epic shopping experience, head for the Galleria Mall. With more than 150 stores, you’re sure to find what you need. It also has an epic food court.
In Downtown Summerlin, you’ll not only find big box stores, but you’ll also discover small boutiques and diverse restaurants to fit any budget. Downtown Summerlin is a hidden gem that most tourists don’t know about.
Eat at a Buffet
If there is one thing to do in Vegas everyone knows about, besides gambling, are the world-famous all-you-can-eat buffets. This is also one more kid-friendly thing to do in Vegas, as well as one of the most popular Las Vegas senior activities.
Many of the best buffets offer senior discounts. You can choose your portions from a wide variety of food, at a wide range of prices. Like a lot of the best things to do in Las Vegas, buffets run 24/7.
See a Show
There are all types of live entertainment in Las Vegas, and some are even appropriate for your grandchildren. While most of the shows begin after dark, you can find a few that begin in the afternoon or early evening.
There are magic shows, circus shows, music shows, and comedy shows. Even some of your favorite performers have regular shows in Vegas.
Take a Helicopter Tour
There is a myriad of helicopter tours launching from Las Vegas; city light night tours, flights to the Grand Canyon, or even Hoover Dam. It’s the best way to not only see this fabulous neon city, but it’s also a great way to enjoy the serene desert landscapes that surround Las Vegas.
Last, but not least…
If you like to gamble, you’re in the best place in the world! From the loud conviviality of the casinos Downtown and on the Strip, to more laid-back casinos on the outer edges of the city, there’s something for everyone.
From penny slots to high stakes poker, roulette, Keno and Bingo, gambling is the name of the game in Vegas. Win or lose, you’ll want to come back (or move) to this fabulous city!