City Break: Las Vegas

City Break: Las Vegas

City break (noun): a short holiday spent in a city, such as when on business travel.

Before there was bleisure travel, there was the city break—the short space of leisure time that grants you access to the cultural and culinary amenities that big cities offer. In this series from TripIt, we explore some of the world’s best cities for planning a quick getaway or extending a work trip.

Here are our tips for making the most of your city break in Las Vegas.

Where to fly in

Las Vegas metro area is served by McCarran International Airport (LAS), located five miles south of downtown Las Vegas. Travelers staying on the Vegas Strip can be to and from the airport in just 10 minutes. McCarran International Airport has two terminals—Terminal 1 (T1) and Terminal 3 (T3); each with its own parking garage, pick-up/drop-off locations, check-in area, and baggage claim. When flying out of LAS, travelers should familiarize themselves with the airline they’re flying—and the terminal they need to check in to—before arriving at the airport as the two terminals are not connected. If you do arrive at the wrong terminal, there is an inter-terminal shuttle that runs every 15 – 30 minutes.

Once on the ground at LAS, travelers can head to the Strip via the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC) bus service. You’ll want to plan your bus route from your respective arrivals terminal.

Prefer to move about the city on your own? Rent a car. The airport’s rental car facility is located just a few minutes from the airport and can be accessed via complimentary shuttle. Simply follow the signs to Ground Transportation to locate the pick-up area for the rental car shuttle.

Alternatively, taxis and ride shares are also available from LAS.

Where to stay during your city break

If this is your first time visiting Las Vegas, book a central hotel on the Strip to immerse yourself in everything the city has to offer. You can’t go wrong with a stay at the Bellagio, The Venetian, or Wynn Las Vegas—all iconic hotels offering the luxury amenities you’d expect in Las Vegas.

In Vegas on business? Here are our picks for where to stay:

  • If you’re attending an event at the Las Vegas Convention Center, you can’t beat the convenience of the Renaissance Las Vegas Hotel. Not only are you just a 10-minute walk to the convention center, business travelers will also appreciate the hotel’s many amenities, such as their business center, express check-out, and free Wi-Fi.
  • If you’re looking for an ultra-modern hotel, book ARIA Resort & Casino. Ahead of your stay, download the mobile app. There, you can check-in to the hotel (from anywhere!), gain access to your room with a digital key, plus book tickets to shows, restaurant reservations, and more.
  • Looking for a place to stay away from the hustle and bustle of the Strip (and near to the airport)? Book the Hyatt Place Las Vegas. This hotel offers a 24-hour complimentary airport shuttle, express check-in and check-out, as well as a 24-hour business center.

How to get around

As mentioned above, renting a car is your fool-proof way to traverse Las Vegas on your own—besides walking, of course. Vegas is highly walkable, and each hotel offers unique public spaces to discover as you explore on foot.

Prefer to stick to public transportation? Your options include the city’s RTC bus system; a two-hour pass costs $6.00, a 24-hour pass costs $8.00, or a 3-day pass costs $20.00. Download the RideRTC app to buy your pass and plan your journey.

Alternatively, Lyft and Uber are available in Las Vegas.

Tip: Use TripIt’s Navigator feature to search transportation options available to you. It will show you the estimated costs and travel times for each option, so you can decide which works best. You can find Navigator within your flight, hotel and rental car details screens. Plus, if you add a restaurant reservation to your itinerary (more on where to eat below), Navigator also helps you find the best transportation options for getting to your table.

Where to eat

Have breakfast on the brain? Head to The Crack Shack. The restaurant is best known for its breakfast-for-dinner menu items. No matter when you start your day, we suggest ordering the Bae—that’s bacon, avocado, and a sunny-side egg on an English muffin.

Craving Mexican? You’ll be spoiled for choice in Las Vegas. Choose from spots like Cañonita, China Poblano, and Mama Rabbit—the latter focuses more on mezcal and tequila than dining, but offers light traditional bites as an accompaniment.

In the mood for Italian? Head to Buddy V’s Ristorante in The Venetian for Sunday gravy and cannoli (of course!); visit Ambra, where diners can opt for classic Italian eats or head to the door marked “privata” for a drink in the restaurant’s own speakeasy; or, book a table at La Strega for dishes inspired by the chef’s roots in Lake Como and Sicily.

Finally, let’s talk sushi. Visitors can choose from a variety of fine dining options, including Zuma in The Cosmopolitan, Mizumi at the Wynn, and Nobu in Caesars Palace.

What to do on your city break

From world-class spas to pool parties, blackjack tables to rounds of golf, you’ll surely find something to do in Las Vegas, even if you just have a few hours after work to explore. If you’re headed to Vegas during hockey season, be sure to catch the Golden Knights at T-Mobile Arena. More of an NFL fan? The Raiders have taken their talents to Vegas and the recently built Allegiant Stadium.

There are also plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Las Vegas. Have a shark fan on your hands? The Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay allows visitors to get up close and personal with sharks, stingrays, sea turtles, piranhas, and more. Looking for a dose of adrenaline? Vegas is home to a number of zipline experiences, including SlotZilla Zip Line and Rio Zipline.

Adults only? By day, head to one of Vegas’s many attractions, including one-of-a-kind museums like Madame Tussauds or the Titanic Artifact Exhibition. Want to get out of the city? Head to Seven Magic Mountains for an Insta-worthy photo opp. Or, visit Ash Meadows Wildlife Refuge, located 90 miles outside Vegas, to hike its nature trails or take a dip in the reservoir.

By night, make your way to one of the city’s many shows. From Broadway to Cirque du Soleil, magic shows to comedy shows, Vegas has it all.

Note: As cities reopen around the world, be sure to consult and adhere to all local guidelines and travel restrictions, as they vary widely and will continue to change. One way to stay on top of changing guidelines is to consult the COVID-19 travel guidance feature in the TripIt app for destination-specific information, including current infection rates, quarantine rules upon arrival, testing requirements, and other information you need to know before visiting the area.

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