Around The World, In One Stop - My Family Travels
Las Vegas Strip

When you think of Las Vegas, Nevada, the first thought that comes to mind is gambling, right? Well, that is partially true of this city of lights, but there is a much bigger Las Vegas I visited over the summer months and had an awesome time as a teenager! I felt like I went around the world in just one stop! I absolutely love the Beatles music! Who doesn’t? When I heard the Mirage hotel had a show called Cirque de Soleil Beatles Love, I knew that is where we had to go. My parents aren’t big gamblers and always include my brother, Brendan and I on every family vacation, so we booked four tickets to the show.

Las Vegas is definetely a gambler’s paradise, don’t get me wrong! When we got off the airplane, the slot machines were even at the airport. I saw every walk of life there, before we even go the the famous Las Vegas strip. I never saw so much sparkle on a person in my life! The Beatles Love show was on the second night we were there and it was absolutely incredible! They had acrobatics, stunt men, women and kids, but most of all the music showed just how talented the Beatles are.  My family and I will never forget it.

Some of the photos looked like something you would see in London, England. We saw over thirty plus hotel/casinos on the famous strip.  I can honestly say I saw a bit of Paris, Italy, New York and even enjoyed the rock and roll memorabilia at the Hard Rock Hotel. It was this huge melting pot of cultures! You could eat any type of food you wanted, relating to that culture. Where else in the world can you go and accomplish that feat, in just one short stop?  They paid so much attention to detail, too.  You could ride a gondola in you pretend Italy or snack on a french pastry in Paris or even taste a good old fashioned New York traditional hot dog.

Of course, every trip isn’t perfect, is it? We live in a nice cool beach town with the average temperature between 60 – 70 degrees. The weather was 107 degrees on the day my mom decided we should find this ‘famous’ eclectic shop that was featured in a national Visa commercial.  We took a bus and the driver said it was a ‘short walk’ there. We quickly learned 20 minutes later, what it felt like to walk in a desert, literally. Red cheeks and all, we made it past the graffiti riddled buildings, to our destination.It was a hoot! The two-story building was filled with what looked like old show girl clothing and accessories. I was able to find a John Lennon I.D. case that I will always remember forever, especially the walk there!

When you live in a small beach town, you definetely won’t find an IMAX theatre on any street corner.  My brother and I were thrilled to go not only to an IMAX theatre there, but a 3-D one and see the latest Harry Potter movie. We forgot about the heat of Las Vegas and enjoyed the cool theatre.

If you are any kind of animal lover at all, you will find plenty in Las Vegas.  We saw so many gorgeous pink flamingoes at the Flamingo hotel, a bit stinky in the heat, but worth seeing. At the Mirage, Siegfried and Roy’s Tiger show is closed after the accident, but they still have the white tigers on display and a dolphin habitat. We even saw the new baby that was just 2 months old with her mother dolphin! You can spend days on end for free, going through each hotel and finding what unique things they have to offer.

Treasure Island has a ‘pirate’ show every night, the Mirage shoots off a towering, firey volcano, the Bellagio has a water and light show to music, the Rio has acrobatics that not only put on a free show in the air, but throw necklaces out, just like Mardi Gras! Almost every hotel has a shopping mall attached with one-of-a-kind shops. I had fun finding them!

A word of caution though! Plan on leaving very early before your plane leaves. The lines are endless in Las Vegas and you can hear couples arguing over money lost, kids complaining their hungry and then my mishap. We made it through the trenches of lines, got up to the security screener and we got pulled aside. To my surprise, my beautiful snow globe that I bought for my boyfriend, could NOT go through as a carry-on item? I had to throw it away or mail it! After several days of searching for it, throwing it away was not an option. My mom and I ran to the post office in the airport, with the security screener escorting us. I was crying, so I’m sure I gave people plenty to talk about. ‘What has she done?’ Luckily, we mailed it (and by the way, it made it in one piece okay). We made our plane with time to spare. Time enough for me to reflect on what had just happened and to realize it is for all of our flying safety. I didn’t realize that at the time! My family and I had the time of our life. Las Vegas isn’t just about gambling. There are lot’s of things to do for teenagers and kids alike. It was like traveling the world, in just one short stop!

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