Las Vegas and gambling go hand in hand. So much so, most people don’t realise that Las Vegas is more than just a gambler’s paradise. It is a mecca of all things opulent, excessive, and amazing. Even if you don’t feel the urge to flutter away your money and time, Las Vegas has more than enough things to keep you entertained. This post takes a deep dive into alternative things to do in Las Vegas if you don’t gamble.
Surprisingly, Las Vegas is home to many fantastic museums. Even if you are like us and don’t traditionally enjoy museums, these may change your mind. Despite not being one of the most typical things to do in Las Vegas, visiting a museum is the perfect activity if you don’t gamble or just want to learn more about the fascinating history of Las Vegas.
Both museums we discuss are off the Las Vegas Strip, however, they are only a short taxi ride away.
1. Neon Museum
The neon museum is one of the most unique museums in the world. it houses a collection of classic Las Vegas neon signs. If you are looking for a quintessentially Vegas experience that dives into the history of this amazing place.
We recommend visiting the Neon Museum at night to really experience the signs lit up in all their former glory.
Pre-booking is advised, especially if you are looking to go in the evening.
2. Mob Museum
Located within walking distance of the iconic Fremont Street, the mob museum gives you a unique look back at Las Vegas’ history. Discover the influence of the mob on sin city and much more at this fascinating museum. Visiting the Mob Museum is the perfect thing to do to complement a trip to Fremont Street (downtown Las Vegas), especially if you don’t gamble.
Las Vegas is a shopper’s paradise, especially if you love (and can afford) high-end labels. However, even if you are on a budget, there are plenty of great shops and shopping malls to be enjoyed.
Some of the best places to shop in Vegas include
Best shops with high-end brands:
For high street shopping:
For a complete overview of all the shopping destinations in Las Vegas click here
4. Area 15
One of the most exciting new things to do in Las Vegas in recent years (even if you don’t gamble) is to explore Area 15. Area 15 is a unique experimental entertainment experience that combines interactive art, shopping, and leisure activities.
You can find Area 15 located just off the infamous Las Vegas strip and can be reached by car, taxi, or rideshare. It is an approximate 10-minute ride from The Strip and also Fremont Street.
Area 15 is free to visit, just make sure you book your space in advance. However, if you are looking to partake in any activities, or have something to eat or drink, you could end up spending a small fortune.
The most popular attraction at Area 15 is Meow Wolfs Omega Mart.
This is an interactive art exhibition that plays on the concept of a traditional American supermarket. However, don’t be fooled, not everything is as it seems. Omega Mart is essentially a large-scale escape room and adventure quest which can be solved by tapping your store loyalty card.
This is an extremely vague attempt to describe this once-in-a-lifetime art exhibition – however, if you are wanting to know more, and don’t care about seeing a few spoilers, check out this post by MrEricSir.
5. Visit Fremont Street
No trip to Las Vegas is complete without visiting Fremont Street – even if you don’t gamble.
We recommend visiting Fremont Street in the evening after a trip to the Neon Museum or a day of shopping at the nearby Premium Outlets.
There is plenty to do and see that will keep you occupied for hours. Arguably one of the most iconic attractions on Freemont Street is the zipline, Slotzilla, that runs the entire length of Fremont Street. Watch all the little people go about their business as you sore overhead! There are two options on how to ride the zipline, the first is in a traditional seated harness, or if you are a daredevil, why not try flying through the air Superman-style?
Another thing to do when visiting Fremont Street is to view the impressive light show that illuminates the street overhead. This show occurs hourly from 6 pm to 2 am.
Finally, whilst you’re here, we recommend checking out the Heart Attack Grill. This is a quirky restaurant that spanks anyone who doesn’t finish their meal. A good sense of humour is advised if you visit here. To find out more about this restaurant and many others throughout Vegas, check out our post linked below.
6. Bellagio Fountains
The Bellagio Fountains are a staple on the Las Vegas Strip and no trip to Vegas would be complete without standing at the edge of the lake and drinking their beauty in.
The Bellagio Fountains look better at night when you can truly appreciate them illuminated, however, can be enjoyed throughout the day. Every show is slightly different as the fountains dance to different songs.
If you are rich enough you can even pay for the pleasure of picking the song and hitting a button to make the fountains start – although we warn you – this experience could set you back a minimum of $25,000 (apparently)!
7. Top Golf
Top Golf is a relatively recent addition to the Las Vegas Strip and is absolutely worth the hype.
One cool thing about the Top Golf in Las Vegas is that it doesn’t lose the quintessential party atmosphere, there is music playing, plenty of alcohol flowing, and even video poker to be played, which if you don’t gamble, may not interest you, However, we have saved the best unique feature of this Top Golf until last.
There are 2 swimming pools!
Swimming pools at a glorified driving range, you say?
Yup – this place is over the top and amazing!
Any patron can use the pool on the third floor, however, if you are looking to access the pool on the fourth floor, you are going to have to pay for the use of the exclusive Chairman’s suite which will set you back at least $5,000!
8. Visit Shark Reef Aquarium
Located in Mandalay Bay, you may be surprised to find an aquarium – and it ain’t small!
This aquarium is home to over 2,000 animals, including sharks and even Komodo dragons – although not in the same enclosure! You won’t find a larger collection of marine animals in the desert, that’s for sure!
Shark Reef Aquarium also has a few unique experiences you can pay for during your time at the aquarium. These exclusive excursions include feeding sharks and/or stingrays. If you are scuba certified you can even swim amongst the sharks in a 1.3 million gallon tank!
9. Titanic Artifact Exhibit
The Titanic Exhibit is located in the Luxor Hotel. It is absolutely huge and a fitting tribute to the most beloved ocean liner of all time.
Here you will find over 350 artifacts recovered from the Titanic wreckage. There are also numerous re-created rooms from the ship, including the iconic staircase into the ballroom.
Transport yourself back in time as you observe the largest piece of the Titanic that has ever been recovered – a 15-ton piece of the Ship’s hull. Put yourself in the shoes of those who were faced with almost certain death as you experience the water temperature the night the Titanic sank.
This moving exhibit will leave a profound impact on you. It will leave you feeling amazed, in awe, and utterly heartbroken.
10. Real Bodies
Real Bodies is located at the Horseshoe Hotel and Casino (formerly Ballys). This unique thing to do in Las Vegas showcases the human body from the inside out and unsurprisingly is the perfect activity if you don’t gamble. It delves deep into what makes us what we are. It is an educational experience wrapped in layers of fun and gore.
Upon leaving Real Bodies you will be infinitely more knowledgeable about anatomy, the digestive system, how movement is achieved, and much more. You will be an asset to any pub quiz team with the wealth of knowledge you will have gained.
11. The Rides at the Strat
The rides at the Strat attract thrill seekers from across the world looking to test their mettle. If you like theme parks and thrill rides, visiting the rides at The Strat is a no-brainer.
There are 4 rides in total, all of which push you to your limits. Located at the top of the tower, you may find yourself suspended over the side looking down at the people below, or if you are really brave, you can even jump off the edge!
To find out more, check out the post below where we give you an in-depth and honest review of every ride at The Strat.
12. Circus Circus
This hotel is jam-packed with fun activities and experiences for children and adults alike. Perhaps most notable for its Adventuredome which houses over twenty rides, including two rollercoasters.
We personally think that this experience is a little pricey, however, it is a completely unique activity that you can’t do anywhere else on The Las Vegas Strip, furthermore, it is the perfect thing to do if you have kids, or the weather is too hot (or cold), or if you don’t gamble.
Whilst at Circus Circus it is worth viewing the amazing circus acts flying high above your head. The circus acts at Circus Circus are one of the only free things to do or see in Las Vegas, especially if you don’t gamble.
If you are a thrill seeker and want to push yourself outwith your comfort zone whilst visiting Las Vegas, we recommend you check out our post detailing all the hair-raising activities you can do in and around Las Vegas. Be warned, this isn’t for the faint-hearted.
13. Fine Dining
When in Las Vegas you would be a fool to NOT try some of the best food on the planet. The gold standard in fine dining is often defined by a Michelin star. Unfortunately, Michelin hasn’t awarded a Las Vegas restaurant a star since 2008 as they no longer published a restaurant guide for Las Vegas. However, this does not mean that Las Vegas is void of Michelin Stars, or Michelin starred chefs. In fact, Las Vegas is actually the home of the first North American Chinese restaurant to earn a Michelin star – Wing Lei.
Some of the most notable restaurants in Las Vegas include:
The best in French cuisine:
- Joel Robuchon – elegant French cuisine by an internationally renowned chef. This restaurant was awarded 3 stars, the highest accolade by the Michelin Guide. It is located in the MGM Grand.
For seafood lovers:
- Michael Mina – Located in the Bellagio, Michael Mina is in a class of its own when it comes to seafood. They fly in fresh fish daily on a private jet! If you value the freshest fishy flavours, then Michael Mina is the place for you.
The best steakhouse:
- Bazaar Meat by José Andrés – Exquisite adventurous cuisine set in an intimate seductive setting. This restaurant is one you certainly shouldn’t miss. Surprisingly, it even offers a vegetarian menu too!
However, if you are a fussy eater like us, you won’t want to bother with the restaurants listed above. As opulent and exquisite as they are, they don’t cater to those of us who have less refined palates. But don’t worry, there are still plenty of amazing dining options available in Las Vegas. Check out our post below to find out the best places for fussy eaters – whether you are looking for a casual dining option, or something a little more refined.
One thing Vegas does better than anyone is providing world-class entertainment nightly. Whether you are looking to catch a superstar singer, a circus, or even a magic show, you will find something to tickle your fancy.
We personally recommend seeing a Cirque du Soleil show. Many people may cringe at the thought of seeing a circus, however, we cannot express enough just how incredible these shows are.
We firmly believe that (almost) all shows in Las Vegas are worth going to. We have seen approximately 20 Las Vegas shows and all but one blew us away!
And because we don’t want you to be disappointed, we will reveal the show that left us bored to tears, and it may surprise you! It was the Beatles Love by Cirque du Soleil. Utter snoozefest!
So, if you don’t want to be left disappointed, we recommend you check out our post about all the best shows in Las Vegas for every budget down below.
Vegas is infamous for its crazy nightlife and rightly so. It is home to several top-tier nightclubs boasting extremely famous headliners.
They are opulent, extravagant and a guaranteed good time – if you have a lot of money!
Suppose you are trying to do Las Vegas on a budget. In that case, you may not enjoy the bigger nightclubs, because not only are the drinks extortionately priced but you won’t even be allowed on the dance floor without purchasing a table – which we felt let down the Las Vegas nightclub experience.
A slightly more budget-friendly alternative would be to go on an organised pub/club crawl. It is still a little expensive, but the value for money is much better. Or if you are looking for the ultimate value-for-money nightlife experience, we recommend going to Señor Frogs nightclub, where there is an open bar from 9 pm-2 am! This excursion will cost approximately $100.
I think we can agree that Las Vegas has plenty of things to do if you don’t gamble. So whether you are looking to spend your time sampling world-class food, partying the night away, or even opting to expand your knowledge at a museum or exhibition, there is no shortage of things to occupy you!
If this list wasn’t enough to keep you busy, why not check out our post below which discusses all the unusual activities in Las Vegas for thrill seekers, that don’t involve you having to gamble your money away? This list features over 10 additional activities to try when visiting sin city. However, these are not for the faint of heart!
If you are planning a trip to Vegas and are looking for a bit of guidance, why not check out our amazing in-depth analysis and comparison of all the budget hotels on the central stretch of the Strip?
For all of our posts about Las Vegas, click here