Quick Guide to Las Vegas

Las Vegas is one of the world's best-known holiday destinations, and this man-made neon city in the desert has to be seen to be believed. But don't save it for stag parties and shotgun weddings, there are so many cheap flights to Las Vegas these days that a holiday could be more affordable than you think. If you've always wanted to see the Bellagio Fountains or risk it all on the roll of a die, this might just be your year!

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Getting to Las Vegas

Las Vegas is situated in the state of Nevada in the west of the USA, and is served by McCarran International Airport, just four miles from the city centre. Direct flights from London to Las Vegas take about 10 hours, although you're likely to find a wider range of cheap Las Vegas flights if you opt for indirect, where LA is the usual stopover. You'll be able to find a range of cheap flights to Las Vegas from London, with flights departing from Heathrow and Gatwick. Holidays to Las Vegas direct from Manchester are also an option.

If you're travelling elsewhere in the USA, why not arrange some Las Vegas car hire and make the trip by road? It's a popular route with spectacular scenery. Don't forget to look for Las Vegas holiday packages too; often you can find great value flight and hotel deals, sometimes with a show thrown in too!

What to do in Las Vegas

Gamble! You really can't go to Las Vegas without having a little flutter. You may not have perfected your poker face, but there's nothing to stop you having a go on the one-armed bandits. Warning: they're highly addictive! And the casinos are a sight to be seen; you won't believe the sheer size of them and how time just slips away when you're playing. Head to the Luxor, the MGM Grand and Caesar's Palace for starters.

The roller coaster at New York New York is a great ride for thrill-seekers, giving you a fantastic view over the bright lights of the city, if you can bear to keep your eyes open throughout the barrel rolls and twists.

The Bellagio Fountain Show takes place on an eight-acre lake outside the Bellagio hotel. Every 15 minutes the show begins, sending water jets dancing and shooting up to 500 feet in the air, all set to music. It's best to catch it at night when the lighting makes it extra pretty.

Vegas is a great place to catch a show, with enough going on to rival Broadway and the West End. Artists from Celine Dion to Cee-Lo Green put on regular concerts, and some of the world's most popular musicals such as Jersey Boys are performed here. For experiences only to be found in Vegas, try the shows by the Blue Man Group or Cirque du Soleil, and prepare for your mind to be boggled.

Las Vegas holidays are all about playing hard and to really experience this city you really do have to visit at least one casino, but try not to limit your experiences to inside! South of the Strip you can escape the casino crowds in the shops and boutiques, seek out some shade in a pool or visit the Ethel M Chocolate Factory and Botanical Cactus Gardens.

When to go to Las Vegas

As Las Vegas is in the middle of a desert, the weather's going to be warm at the best of times. Winters are pretty mild with average temperatures of 7-8°C in December and January, and it's likely to get to over 30°C in July and August - in fact, over 40° isn't uncommon! The least popular months are the hottest, so either go in these months to avoid crowds, or don't to avoid the heat. You're bound to have a brilliant time on a holiday in Las Vegas no matter what time of year, and let's face it, it's at night when the entertainment really comes alive. The evenings can get chilly, so remember to pack a jumper.

In Las Vegas you can find some of the most luxurious accommodation in the world, but it's not just five-star villas, there are plenty of good value Vegas hotel options available too. If you don't insist on staying right on the Strip in the middle of the action, hotel prices are likely to be much more reasonable and you can still spend your Vegas holiday in style. You can get to the strip in no time by taxi, or by stretch Hummer if you're feeling particularly flashy. You can also save money by avoiding Friday and Saturday nights when hotel prices go up; Vegas parties every night so don't worry about missing out.