Theresa's Mixed Nuts: Viva Las Vegas with Teens

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Viva Las Vegas with Teens

When I told people that we would be hitting up Las Vegas on the first leg of our summer vacation, I received a lot of strange looks from people. "Why are you taking the kids to Vegas? That's no place for young girls!" I get it. Vegas has a sex, drugs, and rock n' roll reputation, so I can see where the concern was coming from. But, in reality, we hardly came across anything seedy during our 3 days in the city. We went into our trip making no plans ahead of time. We were just going to go with the flow and scope out the attractions when we got there, basically doing everything on the fly. What we found was Las Vegas is a fantastic place for teens to explore. There's so much for them to do, there was never a dull moment!

Las Vegas Sign

You can't go to Las Vegas without taking in a show, and we found half price tickets on Groupon for The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater, so our first stop was at the V Theater. Here you can see domesticated animals, such as dogs, cats, birds, and even geese do a few circus tricks. The girls loved it, but here's my tip. Do not pay for upgraded floor seats. The seats on the floor are not staggered and if you have people in front of you, it is hard to see the entire stage. Stick with the cheap seats for a better view.

V Theater Las Vegas

We also went to a showing of Cirque du Soleil's KA.  The girls thought this show was pretty good, but we thought it was going to have a lot of dragons and fire due to the pyrotechnics on stage before the show and the big dragon sculpture outside of the theater, but it did not. It was mostly martial arts, which were fantastically performed, but I think if you have girls, Cirque's O might be a better choice.


Walking through the major hotels like the Bellagio, Venetian, and Mandalay Bay offered free entertainment. Each hotel has unique sculptures, gardens, and artwork, we spent half a day walking through each one to admire the art.




My kids are thrill seekers, so we knew we weren't getting out of Circus Circus without a stop in the Adventuredome. Here you'll find an entire amusement park indoors, roller coaster included. But, be prepared to take a hit to the pocketbook because the rides are not cheap. One trip on the roller coaster was $15! They do have wristbands for unlimited riding that will save you cash if you plan to be there all day, but we were only taking a quick stroll through, so the girls just hopped on the coaster, then we left.

Adventuredome Las Vegas
Adventuredome Las Vegas

They were also very eager to get to the Stratosphere where you can ride the top thrill rides in Las Vegas. One of the rides was down, so they were only able to do the X-Scream, a ride that catapults you head first off the building and dangles you over 109 stories in the air, and also the Insanity, a giant mechanical arm that spins you out off the building and over the city. Again, these are not cheap, coming in at about $25 per ride, but after seeing t.v. shows on these rides over the years, my kids did not want to miss the opportunity to hop on them.

Stratosphere
Stratosphere Insanity

I'll be honest here and say that my girls have grown up going to Cedar Point frequently, which has some of the scariest rides in the country, so they were quite disappointed with both at the Stratosphere. My 13 year old commented, "That wasn't even scary!" when they got off the rides. There was a girl behind them crying because one ride scared her so much, she asked the girls, "What the hell is wrong with you two? That was terrifying!" So, if you are used to these kinds of thrill rides, you probably aren't going to get the rush most people are looking for when deciding to purchase the tickets. If not, hop aboard and be prepared to feel your heart pound.

If you hit up Fremont Street, you can zip line under the glitter of the Vegas lights, all the way down the shopping plaza.

Zipline Las Vegas

If your kids aren't thrill seekers and need entertainments that's a little more tame, head over to The Venetian for a gondola ride. The gondolas go through the indoor shopping plaza, so you can ride them rain or shine.

Venetian Gondola

Also, while you're at The Venetian, be sure to pop into Madam Tussaud's. The girls had a blast posing with their favorite celebrities!

Madam Tussaud's Las Vegas

There's quite a lively scene on Fremont Street after sundown. We went with the intentions of people watching and ended up stumbling upon a free Good Charlotte concert. We learned that you can catch free concerts of famous bands most weekends, but I imagine you have to get there early to get a good viewing spot. Since we stumbled upon it, we were way in the back, but we could still see the band members even though they were tiny on stage. But hey, free is free, right!? They do project the live recording on the lights of the ceiling, so even if you don't get a good view, you can see what's going on just by looking up towards the sky.


Of course, there's a lot of shopping to do in Las Vegas, but my kids were mostly drawn to the candy stores. They were in heaven browsing through It's Sugar, Hershey's, and M&M's World.

Hershey's World Las Vegas
M&M's Racing Car

Additionally, there are no shortages of character photo opps on the Las Vegas Strip. You'll find all the popular characters to pose with (for a small donation, of course) like Mickey Mouse, Frozen, and even wicked cool Transformers.

Transformers Costume


As you can see, there were no shortages of clean, wholesome activities for my teens to participate in during our stay in Las Vegas. It may be called Sin City, but my girls had a blast with all of the less sinful things that Vegas has to offer.


Shows, rides, or just taking in the scenery, what would you do in Las Vegas first?




47 comments:

  1. OMG chocolate world!
    How on earth does Vegas find the energy for all them lights is beyond me! Do they have nuclear powerplants working just for the city? Or massive solar fields around da city?

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    1. I don't even know where the power comes from, but they sure do use a lot. I know they are working towards using sustainable sources for their energy, using things like solar panels, but aren't quite up to 100% yet.

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  2. I always wanted to visit Vegas

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    1. I'm sure you will get there some day. You and Daisy will have a blast when you do.

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  3. Wow, I never knew there was that amount of stuff to do for teens. All you ever see on TV is gambling and such. I'd do the zipline and the dangle off the building one. Cheap seats for the win? Who knew. Never knew they had an amusement park indoors either. Can sure spend a bunch of dough in Vegas without gambling once.

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    1. Yeah, Vegas is good for sucking the money right out of your wallet. I only put in $1 into the slot machine because you can't go there without a little gambling, right? Of course, I lost though. The night life is seedy, lots of people trying to get you to the clubs, but if they see you have kids in tow, they don't bother you.

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  4. Vegas is soooo much fun with the kids. Most people think craps and show girls when they think of Vegas, but there is so much more to do there, and so much of it is family-friendly!

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    1. It truly is family friendly. The night life can get a bit questionable, but it was nowhere near as bad as I thought it was going to be. Such a fun place for everyone!

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  5. I got married in vegas so I love it there! Hope to get back there one of these days!

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  6. I haven't been out to Las Vegas in ages and I am definitely LONG overdue for a trip! I have never heard of The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater, I will have to check it out!

    Tracy @ Ascending Butterfly

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  7. I know it is still not a kids town but you have shown that there are plenty of things to do for teens. We have never been and would love to go with or without kids.

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  8. Las Vegas is really a nice place.

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  9. I live in Las Vegas. lol I've been here for 30 years and I had my daughter here. I now have a 4 year old grandson here as well and my daughter has been taking her son to a lot of the places that you all went to. There's quite a few nice places to take kids.

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  10. It looks like a wonderful place to take the family. I want to go and check out all of the hotels.

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  11. There really is so much to do in Vegas, no matter your age. I went with family when I was a teen!

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  12. There's so much that you can do with the kids here, which is awesome! I'm sure my kids will enjoy the entertainment and the rides! I'll enjoy a trip to that Hershey's Chocolate World the most, lol!

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  13. I haven't been to Vegas in so long! It's so nice to see that there are so many things in store for the kids! These will definitely keep them entertained!

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  14. I have two boys who I know would enjoy these rides! They're quite the thrill seekers as well. I hope they enjoy the Stratosphere although I wouldn't count on it since your girls were a bit disappointed. There's still a number of things to look forward to when we go here with them!

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  15. We haven't gone with a teen, but we did go when he was younger, three times! We love Vegas, and I think it is a great family vacation spot.
    Mitch

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  16. The stuff there is to do in Vegas is mind blowing! That Hulk Breaker suit was enormous.

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  17. Vegas is so much more than that! I hate when people view it as an adult only place. Looks like you found some amazing places to visit!

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  18. Your girls must of had a blast! I love Vegas with kids, there's so much to do!

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  19. I went to Vegas this year but didn't get to see the sights. I need to go back and see everything.

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  20. I have only been to Las Vegas on business, so I didn't get to see anything. I would love to go back with my teens and explore the city.

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  21. So fun Vegas can even be great for kids. The rides are totally a win!

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  22. Ooh, what an awesome trip! I have to go on one of the gondola rides at The Venetian one day.

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  23. I think this place is a must visit, looks like me and the kids will surely enjoy here.

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  24. Good to know that there are things to do there with kids. Ive been thinking about going there some time.

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  25. We do a bit of everything. We love walking through the casinos and seeing the new architectural changes.

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  26. This looks awesome! I went to Vegas when I was a teen, and there really was a lot to do and see without encountering any of the inappropriate stuff. I would have loved to go to the Adventure Dome! What a great list things of fun activities.

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  27. Growing up, my grandma lived right outside Vegas. We never took advantage of all the town had to option during our visits. Now it's time to head back and check out the thrills and the shows.

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  28. My husband and I love visiting Las Vegas, but we haven't visited with our kids before. Looks like you guys had a blast.

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  29. Looks like a lot of fun - never been to Vegas, but it's another one on my bucket list! If we were to go to Vegas, I would want to check out the shops and shows - although my daughter and I both love thrill rides, so we would probably do a couple of those. The zip lining looks like fun!
    We have an ITS SUGAR store in Charleston - it's fun to browse through. The cereal sized boxes of skittles or nerds always boggles my mind. LOL! That a LOT of candy!

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    1. The girls wanted to take some of those huge candy boxes home, but I told them there wasn't enough room in the luggage. It was the first we have ever heard of It's Sugar, but we saw some in Cali too. I am going to have to see if there are any in Chicago they can go to on our next visit there. It seems they may just be located in the bigger cities.

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  30. I love the dragon and the big Transformer images of the girls. I've never been there before. I bet it was super fun! Lots of bright colored lights.

    I'd like to just take in the scenery I think. My boys would totally dig the rides.

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    1. I think your boys would probably like the Transformers too! There was quite a bit there that I think would appeal to boys too.

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  31. How cool! I would love to be there just for the photo opps! Your daughters sure looked like they had loads of fun!

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  32. I'd drop a slot in a machine. ;) I'm not a huge gambler, but if there are a bunch of slots, I want to give them a try. :)

    We posed with Elvis on the strip. Vegas was a lot of walking. I don't remember the zip liners being there on Fremont St., but it's been a long time now since I went. I do agree on your assessment of the Stratosphere rides. Cedar Point is king for a reason. :)

    I'd like to see a show there if I go back. I don't know if I'll go back though, I'm one of the few people who don't love Vegas. I did forget about how pretty the hotels were. You're right, they really know how to do up the scenery.

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    1. I put $1 in the machine and that was it. Lost it right quick, but you can't go to Vegas and not gamble just a little, right?

      We wanted to pose with Elvis, but the lines were super long, so we went back the following morning right at sunup so would could snap a pic in front of the sign without a wait. I guess Elvis isn't an early riser :(

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    2. He parties too much at night. ;)

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  33. How exciting! I have only been to Las Vegas once and I am wanting to go back! It is so true that there are other things to enjoy in Las Vegas other than the casinos.

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  34. Wow it's all so exciting and colourful! I'd love to visit that theme park one day :) Everything seems so exhilarating but I think I won't be able to last for more than 3 days there too.. too much excitement for me and my systems would be wayyyyy overloaded hahaha

    Ai @ Sakura Haruka

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  35. I've actually never been to Las Vegas. You took some fantastic photos! I think I'd enjoy taking my teens there. I totally want my picture taken with a Transformer! My 22 yoa step-daughter went to Vegas on her 21st birthday. As you can guess, she doesn't remember much of the night!

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  36. My husband and I LOVE Vegas and have been about 5 times...I've lost count haha. We want to take our son and may plan it for his 21st. He loves rides- so zip lining and the Strat rides would be so fun!

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  37. I enjoyed this post so much, and I'm glad that you found lots of places to take your girls. It looked like they were having a blast! I've been to Vegas countless times, starting with my first trip in August, 1973. I've never gone there and not had a good time. Have a good one, Theresa!

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  38. I just realized I haven't really written the story of our trip to Vegas! It was fun indeed and surely you enjoyed the trip as well

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Thanks for your comments! I appreciate every one of them :) Except promotional posts with added links. Those will be deleted.

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