Yes Las Vegas is known as the “City of Sin”, however, there are more and more family places to go popping up all the time. This list is not all inclusive by any means, but feel free to check out some of the places I have listed here.
Wayne Newton’s Casa de Shenandoah. Yes you have heard the name, you have heard his music, and you may even know him as Mr. Las Vegas. Wayne Newton now opens his home, his heart and his love of animals to anyone interested in viewing them. I was welcomed with such warm, smiling faces when I stopped over for a quick preview of the gift shop, to find out more information on tours and pricing. Everyone from the drivers of the private motor coaches, to the ticket operators, and the staff on location at Casa de Shenandoah were so helpful and kind. You get to learn a lot about the man Mr. Las Vegas, his family, and some hidden secrets that you may not know are there on the 52 acres of lush, beautiful grounds. The place has such a warm, lovely, family feel to it. I was even treated to a movie screening to learn more about Wayne Newton before we even bought our tickets!! (I only knew of his USO tours, some of his songs, and of course his Arabians!! The whole reason we were there.) I was grateful for the treat to know more about this wonderfully kind, human being that has contributed so much to so many. You will not be disappointed with this tour!! You can see his mansion, his family home where he grew up, his collection of cars, his private airplane where you can sit in the cockpit, a collection of awards and memorabilia, his Arabian horses, many of his animals he has collected over the years, as well as many photos of Presidents, Dignitaries, and Celebrities he has met along the way. It is a beautiful picture of a life well lived. Our favorite part was being able to see his beautiful horses live in action prancing around the arena, and watch a horse swim in her training pool. We only started off with the Gold Package, but there is so much more to see, and other packages to choose from. At this time they are not offering local discounts, but they do have special pricing for children. If you would like more information please visit his website at Casa de Shenandoah or call (702) 776-7491.
Horses 4 Heroes Community Equestrian Center at Tule Springs Park. This place has it all. A little slice of heaven and a hidden Las Vegas treasure you will never know was there. You can go horseback ridding, fishing, feed ducks, see wild peacocks, visit the petting zoo, or go on horse drawn carriage hay rides!! They also do birthday parties!! This place is amazing and does a lot to help the Veterans in our Community struggling with PTSD. You may visit their website at : http://www.theranchlasvegas.com/index.html for more information. To find out more about Horses 4 Heroes and what they do for our Veterans you can visit their website at: http://www.horses4heroes.org/.
See Wild Mustangs Roam Free at Cold Creek, Nevada. Just about 45 minutes north of Las Vegas in Cold Creek Nevada, you can see wild mustangs and donkeys roam free. This is a great place to take the kids to see these majestic animals in their natural habitat. Some things to note as I have visited out here a few times: There are no restrooms close by so please make necessary arrangements. Also there are no shops or restaurants in the area, so you will want to bring food and drink for your family if you plan to stay a while. I promise you the time will pass quickly as you almost get hypnotized watching these beautiful animals. Also some of them are very friendly, but please remember they are still wild animals and should be treated as such at all times. Please keep in mind it is illegal to feed the horses and donkeys out there. The directions are pretty easy to read and very accurate. Please see the PDF brochure at this link: http://www.blm.gov/style/medialib/blm/nv/wild_horse___burro.Par.93429.File.dat/Wild.Horse.Brochure.pdf. The area I recommend is # 16 on the map and has directions listed on the PDF.
Wet N Wild Water Park Las Vegas. Las Vegas’ original water park came back in 2013 to a new location. It has many similar slides as the location on the strip used to have plus a few new ones too!! If you are looking for a place to cool off with the family, you will love it! For ticket prices, season passes and more info please check out their website at: http://wetnwildlasvegas.com/.
Cowabung Bay Water Park Las Vegas. Henderson now has it’s own water park that opened in 2014. For ticket prices, season passes and more information please check out their website at: http://www.cowabungabay.com/LasVegas/.
Las Vegas Mini Gran Prix. Go Karts in Las Vegas!!?? Ohh yeah!! You would think you are heading out to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for a fun day of racing!! This place has a lot to offer: Go Karts for kids of all ages, rides, arcade games, birthday parties and more. If the place is really busy I recommend buying tickets instead of a wrist band as sometimes the wait in line can be longer than you would like. Otherwise the 1 1/2 hour wrist band, on a not so busy day, will get you through many rides and go Karts for a reasonable price. For more information please check out their website at: http://www.lvmgp.com/.
Discovery Children’s Museum. Do you think museum’s are boring? Well, you are in for a real treat at this place!! Three levels of interactive fun, building and playing will have your kids begging to stay longer or come back for more. You can use your imagination, science, technology, and don’t forget a little physical fitness at this place. I can’t spoil it with all my personal bias so here is the link for more information: http://www.discoverykidslv.org/.
Springs Preserve. Las Vegas no longer has a zoo, but you can get darn close to it at the Springs Preserve. Here you can learn all about desert animals, climate, adaptation and horticulture. There are lots of events they put on throughout the year especially around the holidays!! It’s a great place for field trips and they even have a store where you can bring in items for nature and exchange them for other items from nature, as long as they are not legally protected items or endangered species. If you would like to know more please check out their website at: http://www.springspreserve.org/.
Bonnie Springs Ranch. Just West of Las Vegas on your way to Red Rock Canyon you will find this little gem. It is an old west town complete with old west activities. Here you can watch a shoot out, a melodrama play, and a hanging in the town square. You can also ride a train, play at the petting zoo, let you kid ride a pony, or take the plunge and do a horse back trail ride. They also say the Opera House is haunted and was featured on Ghost Adventures. Check it out for yourself. For more information click on the link: http://bonniesprings.com/.
The Lion Habitat Ranch. Have you ever wondered what happened to the Lions that used to be at MGM Grand Lion Habitat? Well, they have been relocated to this habitat, and with a few modifications it has been opened to the public. Tucked on the south side of Las Vegas near the M Resort is where you will find this hidden gem. For a small donation; you can tour the facility, see lots of lions, a giraffe, and a few other animals. They do offer discounts if you are a Nevada Resident. Depending upon the time of year; you may be able to have your picture taken with a lion cub, help out with feeding, or even be a trainer for a day. This is definitely something to see, and the closest I have ever been to lions. For information on pricing, directions, and activities please check out their website at: http://www.lionhabitatranch.com
Circus Circus. Do you have really little ones? Do you like to watch free circus acts? Then this is the place for you!! They offer free shows every 30-40 minutes or so depending on the day. They also have a midway of carnival games if you would like to partake in a real circus style environment!! The prices are quite reasonable usually $1-$5 per game and your child, almost always, walks away with some type of gift as a souvenir. I have been taking my child here for years, and we have been working our way up to the Adventure Dome, also at Circus Circus, where there are lots of rides for the bigger kids. So this place has it all no matter the age range of your children, again some of it is free, while the games and rides are pretty reasonable. Don’t forget to ask about a wristband, if the bigger kids want to ride lots of rides multiple times. This may save you a few bucks. For more information on Circus Circus’ Free Shows Schedule, or Adventure Dome please click on the link: Circus Circus’ Information.