Discover G-rated Sin City.
Family-Friendly Las Vegas
Credit: Courtesy of Stratosphere Casino, Hotel & Tower

Everyone thinks of Las Vegas as an R-rated town thanks to its over-the-top nightlife and 21-and-up venues ranging from casinos and bars to shows and clubs. Few recognize its daytime hour potential, though, making it surprisingly underutilized as a family destination.

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Stratosphere Casino, Hotel & Tower

Rising 1,149 feet above the Strip, the Stratosphere Tower is the tallest structure in Las Vegas. Its two observation decks make it especially popular among pint-sized travelers; though parents can’t help but love the views from the revolving Top of the World restaurant (one of six at the hotel). The tower also has four thrill rides, including Big Shot—which catapults riders 160 feet into the air—and SkyJump Las Vegas, a controlled free fall from the 108th floor. The 2,427 guest rooms are basic but comfortable; “select” rooms contain updated amenities like marble floors and flat-screen TV’s.

Rainforest Café

A 10,000-gallon, double archway aquarium serves as the entrance to this jungle-themed MGM restaurant, where snakes hang from branches and animatronic elephants peek through the trees beside waterfalls. When the sounds of wild animals aren’t intermingling with dinner conversations, a simulated thunderstorm transforms the room with dimmed lighting and dramatic sound effects. This specialty restaurant chain of Landry’s is known more for its atmosphere than its food; however, dishes like the Mojo Bones (slow-roasted spareribs) and Tribal Salmon (a seared fillet topped with roasted hazelnut and Frangelico butter) are safe bets.

New York-New York

While this casino offers plenty for gamblers—it houses 1,723 slot machines, 39 table games, and live poker—it’s also home to the Desperado, one of the tallest and fastest roller coasters in the world, as well as a log flume ride that runs through the main casino floor.

Hoover Dam

This kid-pleasing site has a 500-foot elevator ride down the canyon wall. The tour includes a walk-through of the generators, diversion tunnel, and power plant and access to all the exhibits.