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Bec & Simon

Las Vegas, USA

USA | Sunday, 14 June 2009 | Views [1197]

Us on top of the Stratosphere

Us on top of the Stratosphere

After San Francisco we headed to Las Vegas to win a fortune playing poker to fund the rest of our adventures! Vegas via Yosemite and Death Valley National Parks. Both were great, but incredibly different. Yosemite was beautiful and green with waterfalls (and even some snow!) everywhere. Death Valley was amazing in it's absolute nothingness. We drove for two hours through rock and sand. No water, no animals and only the odd scrubby little bush here and there. We could certainly see how it got it's name.

Entering and leaving both national parks required climbing and descending thousands of feet each time. In Death Valley we saw signs saying to turn off our air conditioner to avoid overheating, which I bet happens a lot! Luckily for us we drove through quite early, when it was still fairly cool and Sandy handled the climbs like a pro! Worth every penny.

We spent the next three nights in Vegas, sightseeing, eating, drinking and the odd flutter on the pokies (or slots as the Yanks call them). Didn't hit the poker tables and definitely didn't win a fortune, but we took full advantage of the free cocktails while playing the slots and ended up not too far behind. 'Not too far behind'...gamblers lingo for 'got my butt kicked'. 

While we weren't busy losing money, we were flat out trying to see as much off The Strip as possible. Not an easy task, and I'm pretty sure we missed a lot. The Strip in Vegas is incredible. It is an absolutely crazy, ridiculous place, but exciting and very entertaining and it just has to be seen. The casinos are huge and all have their own shops, restaurants, bars, clubs and theatres. Then they all have their own particular 'show-off' item. Our hotel, for example was a needlepoint tower with three thrill rides on the top. One shoots you straight up in the air above the tower, one shoots you straight over the edge and catches you at the last minute, and the third hangs you over the edge and spins. Needless to say that I watched from a safe distance. 

The Venetian is a Venice themed casino (obviously). Walking through the interior is like walking through the streets of Venice, complete with canals, gondolas, blue sky and even St. Mark's Square. There are casinos with rollercoasters, an imitation sphynx, the eiffel tower, an erupting volcano and a lagoon with two pirate ships. The list goes on.

So we tried hard, but I really don't think we saw half of what there is to see in Vegas. It is a very crazy place, not somewhere I had ever been desperate to go, but I absolutely loved it! 


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