The lights, sights, and thrills usually get all the attention in Las Vegas, but action-packed adventures await beyond the casinos on the Strip. Whether you choose to fly high above the city in a state-of-the-art helicopter, hit the greens the pros play on, or zoom over the mountains on a zip line, it’s not hard to find ways to get your adrenaline pumping.
Fly High on a Helicopter Tour
Take a helicopter tour of the city for a thrilling bird’s-eye view of the larger-than-life Vegas skyline. Hop aboard a night flight to marvel at the city lights in all their colorful glory and enjoy the best views of eye-catching casino designs. Viewing the Luxor’s sleek pyramid and the Paris’ half-scale replica of the Eiffel Tower from the air is a one-of-a-kind experience.
Just half an hour from the Strip between Las Vegas and the Hoover Dam, Bootleg Canyon offers zip-lining through the Red Mountains at speeds of up to 60 miles an hour. Make a game of spying desert wildlife as you zoom over the Mojave, or hop on a mountain bike and tackle the canyon’s more than 36 miles of trails. Experienced mountain bikers can take in views of Lake Mead from the mountaintop before testing themselves on the exciting downhill trails.
Golf Like the Greats
If golfing on professional courses is what gets your motor running, tee off among the lush rolling greens and cleverly designed water hazards at some of the country’s most spectacular courses carved into the Nevada Desert. Architect Tom Fazio’s Shadow Creek is a 20-minute drive from the city, while Coyote Springs, designed by Jack Nicklaus, is about an hour away. In Mesquite, also an hour’s drive from Las Vegas, challenge yourself on courses like Wolf Creek while taking in dazzling desert views.
Red Rock Canyon
Tackle the 2.5-mile Calico Tanks Trail, and clamber over multi-hued sandstone in brilliant shades of red in the Mojave Desert’s Red Rock Canyon, just west of Las Vegas. Hike by a former sandstone quarry with pools of water that reflect the massive sandstone formations, and take in stunning views of Calico Basin and Las Vegas Valley. Near the end of the trail, stop and take a break at the overlook to enjoy the views of Las Vegas. (Caution: temperatures are dangerously hot during the summer months.)
The Valley of Fire
About an hour’s drive from the Strip, trek the trails of Nevada’s awe-inspiring 40,000-acre Valley of Fire State Park to check out petroglyphs that are more than 2,000 years old and fantastic rock formations of red sandstone layered within gray and tan limestone. Wind your way along trails with interesting names like Elephant Rock Loop and Rainbow Vista. Gaze in awe at petrified trees and natural arches and basins shaped by water and wind over the eons.
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