Las Vegas with Kids: Sin City or Family Fun? SheBuysTravel Weighs In

Breeze Leonard Avatar

Exterior of the M&M store, one of the fun things to do in Las Vegas with kids
M&Ms store on the Las Vegas Strip. Photo credit: Cindy Richards

Some sections of this post are sponsored by Groupon.

When you think “family vacation,” Las Vegas probably doesn’t spring to mind. But there are a surprising number of kid-friendly attractions in and near The Strip. It’s a worthwhile detour if you’re exploring National Parks in the area, such as Death Valley, Bryce Canyon or Zion. Book one of the family resorts with a fun pool and take in a G-rated show. And don’t skip the dancing waters of the Fountains of Bellagio. Here’s what works for families in Vegas…and what doesn’t.

Las Vegas With Kids – Is It Worth The Gamble?

When our family attended a wedding in Las Vegas, Nevada, I kept asking myself, “Is Las Vegas with kids a good idea?” To be honest, “Sin City” was not high on my list of places I wanted to explore with my children. If you’ve ever walked the Las Vegas Strip at night with its scantily clad women, leering men and generally creepy vibe, you know why. I had always considered Las Vegas to be a girlfriend getaway or a couples-only destination.

But this city has a surprising number of entertainment options geared towards families including fun family-friendly hotels. The bright lights and neon-bright hotels are eye candy for kids (and adults). The wow factor is certainly part of what makes Las Vegas so memorable.

Here, I share with you everything I learned on this trip, my new list of dos and don’ts and the best things we found to do with kids in Las Vegas.

Read More: When Mommy Needs a Break: The Top Las Vegas Spas

18 Things to Do in Las Vegas with Kids

Now that you have the accommodations figured out, you’re going to want to plan some fun things to do in Las Vegas with kids.

SheBuysTravel Tip: Looking to make the most of your travel budget while maximizing the fun? With a wide range of deals on local activities, dining, and experiences, Groupon helps you stretch your budget by offering discounted options near you.

SheBuysTravel Tip: Consider buying a 2, 3, 4, or 5-day All-Inclusive Las Vegas Go City Pass for your trip. You’ll save up to 55 percent on combined admission to top attractions, tours and museums. A wide range of attractions are included, ranging from entrance to the interactive Marvel Avengers Experience to a daytime pass for the High Roller Observation Wheel at the LINQ to a tour of the Hoover Dam.

Here are our must-see attractions:

M&M's World in Las Vegas
M&M’s World was my personal favorite. Who wouldn’t love testing out all these chocolate flavors? Photo credit: Breeze Leonard

1. M&M’s World Las Vegas

My kids loved it at the M&M’s World. You will have several different floors, each with something new to see. My kids loved the quick show you could watch with your favorite M&M characters. I must admit, I was elated to try all the different M&M flavors. Who doesn’t love chocolate?

If chocolate’s your thing, book a 4-hour tasting tour to taste all the chocolate Vegas has to offer. This is a chocolate lover’s dream!

2. Paris Las Vegas Eiffel Tower Viewing Deck

Our kids loved the 460 foot-high observation deck atop Paris Las Vegas’ half-scale replica of the Eiffel Tower. What a view!

Skip the line with your All Inclusive Las Vegas Go City pass.

3. Madame Tussauds Wax Museum

This is a fun wax museum for kids because they can see some of their favorite Marvel characters at the new Marvel 4D Super Heroes Experience. What kid doesn’t want a selfie with the Hulk?

Admission to Madame Tussauds is included in the Las Vegas Go City pass.

A family-friendly show in Las Vegas -SheBuysTravel
Who knew there were a lot of kid-friendly shows in Vegas?! Photo credit: Breeze Leonard

4. Vegas Shows

You would be surprised at the list of family-friendly Vegas shows you can enjoy with your kids. Although Vegas isn’t known for its PG entertainment options, options do exist! Check out our list of shows that are appropriate for the whole family:

5. FlyOver Las Vegas

Created by the Disney Imagineer who created EPCOT’s wildly popular Soarin’, FlyOver Las Vegas. According to SheBuysTravel Editor-in-Chief Cindy Richards the attraction’s technology is so good, you’ll feel like you’re taking a helicopter ride. Read about her experience here.

Admission to FlyOver Las Vegas is included in the Las Vegas Go City pass.

6. The LINQ Promenade

This is a great spot to do some shopping, enjoy a meal and to find some kid-friendly entertainment including an observation wheel and ziplines.

Get a a daytime pass for the High Roller Observation Wheel at the LINQ as part of a Las Vegas Go City pass.

Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas -SheBuysTravel
The Conservatory & Botanical Gardens at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas. Photo credit: Breeze Leonard

7. Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens

Our family stayed at the Bellagio and while it’s not the most kid-friendly hotel, the Conservatory and Fountain show were both worth seeing.

8. The Marvel AVENGERS S.T.A.T.I.O.N. at Treasure Island

This Las Vegas Attraction is perfect your little Avenger fans! At this attraction you can delve into the history, science, engineering, genetics, technology and profiles of Captain America, Hulk, Thor and Iron Man! And it’s included in the All-Inclusive Las Vegas Go City pass.

9. Circus Circus Adventuredome Theme Park

You won’t want to miss this 5-acre indoor amusement park located at Circus Circus in Las Vegas on the Las Vegas Strip. There are so many kid-friendly activities: roller coasters, arcade games and even a roller skating rink. We always look for a good theme park or amusement park when we travel.

10. The Discovery Children’s Museum

This museum is located downtown and is a fun hands-on interactive museum. You can spend all day exploring this 58,000 square-foot Discovery Children’s Museum.

11. The High Roller Observation Wheel

Ride the biggest Ferris wheel in the world. You will soar 550 feet above the center of the Las Vegas Strip. The 360-degree views of Las Vegas are breathtaking. Kids under 7 get in FREE!

Skip the line and get tickets online here.

12. Tree House & Play Zone at the Downtown Container Park 

If you’re looking for a place to let the kids run around for a while, check out the downtown Container Park. There’s a play zone just for kids.

13. Fremont Street Experience

Every evening you can enjoy seeing the world’s biggest light show on four blocks of Fremont Street. The lights and music are sure to impress the kids. There is also a zip line at the Fremont Street Experience.

This guided tour through Get Your Guide is a great way to experience the area: Downtown Las Vegas: Fremont Street Pop Culture Walking Tour

14. Springs Preserve

This is a 180-acre attraction in Las Vegas. The website states that “The Preserve features museums, galleries, outdoor events, a colorful botanical garden and an interpretive trail system through a scenic wetland habitat.” This helpful guide tells you how to spend either 1-2 hours, half a day or a full day at Springs Preserve.

15. Gondola Rides at the Venetian

Not only are the gondola rides family-friendly but taking a family photo with one of the gondoliers makes the best souvenir.

16. Wildlife Habitat at the Flamingo Hotel

This is a great FREE option for families. You can escape the busy streets of Las Vegas and enjoy this 15-acre garden. There you will find streams, waterfalls, exotic birds, turtles and fish.

17. Cowabunga Vegas Water Park

A things to do in Las Vegas with kids list wouldn’t be complete without a water park. This one is located in Spring Valley, about 20 minutes from the heart of Vegas. (And another good reason to have your own transportation!)

18. Botanical Cactus Garden

Ethel M Chocolate Factory’s Botanical Cactus Garden is Nevada’s largest. How often do you get to see a garden full of cactus?

Enjoy Las Vegas with kids - SheBuysTravel
The Las Vegas Strip by day. Photo credit: Breeze Leonard

Dos and Don’ts for Las Vegas with Kids

Do Rent a Car

It’s best to have your own transportation, especially if you plan to stay off the Strip. If you can, drive to Las Vegas. If you fly in, plan to rent a car. Ultimately, that means you will save money. Prices for food and drinks along the Strip can be very expensive. Even budget-friendly places like CVS pharmacy and McDonald’s have unusually high prices. Next time, we will stay off the Strip and have our own transportation.

Don’t Visit the Strip at Night

This street becomes a whole new world after dark Every day we would get up early and walk the Strip. The Las Vegas nightlife is geared towards adults so when it got dark, my family could be found relaxing in our hotel. Try to plan your activities early in the day. If you are going to see a show at night, take a taxi and avoid walking the streets. If you’ve ever visited New York City with kids then you know that the nightlife can be very overwhelming for young kids.

Do Visit the Bellagio

Stick around the Strip just long enough to let the kids watch the dancing waters in front of The Bellagio. The show is mesmerizing during the day. It’s magical at night.

Do Choose the Right Hotel

We’ve all heard of The Bellagio, Wynn Encore, Venetian-Palazzo hotels; they have been featured in movies and are a staple of the area. They’re some of the greatest in Vegas, right?

Well, not necessarily if you are traveling with your kids. The best advice I have from our recent trip is to pick the right accommodations. Our family stayed at the Bellagio, and while this hotel was stunning and watching the Bellagio fountains at night was spectacular, I still would have preferred staying someplace that claimed to be a little more kid-friendly.

So where should you stay in Vegas with kids? We walked through several hotels during our stay and I spoke with my fellow SheBuysTravel writers. Here are some of the recommendations if you want to stay on the Strip:

The Mirage Hotel & Casino

There is a wide array of kid-friendly activities at this hotel. It is known for the nightly eruptions of the hotel’s signature man-made volcano. It’s also home to Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat (currently closed – check the website for updates) and shows like Cirque du Soleil. The Mirage appeared from our short visit to be a fun place to stay when visiting Las Vegas with kids.

Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino

Shark Reef Aquarium is a must-see! In addition to the awesome aquarium, the hotel has a giant pool complex that includes a wave pool and a lazy river. Another thing I noticed was the abundant kid-friendly food options at the hotel’s 20 restaurants. Mandalay Bay must know that kids love a good pool and food!

MGM Grand Hotel & Casino

Pools, waterfalls and river-pools are sure to please any family.

SheBuysTravel Tip: The Big Apple in Las Vegas Hotel New York-New York claims to be kid-friendly, but many have said to avoid staying here with kids. Just a heads up.

Explore the World Around Vegas

The best part of our Vegas trip wasn’t actually Vegas itself. I’m so glad we took the time to rent a car and explore the gorgeous desert landscapes near Las Vegas. Did you know it’s only a 2 1/2 drive to Zion National Park from Las Vegas, Nevada?

The days we spent at Zion were among my favorite travel memories to date. Read all about our trip to Zion National Park.

There are so many other nearby places that you’ll want to see like Red Rock Canyon which is only a 20-minute drive from Vegas. Hoover Dam is only a 40-minute drive. Even the Grand Canyon is only a short 4-hour drive from Las Vegas. .

If you don’t want to rent a car, Get Your Guide offers some great tours that include transportation to these recommended destinations around Las Vegas. Here is a list of these tours:

Read More: Las Vegas packing list: What to bring and what to leave at home

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Is Las Vegas safe for kids?

A: Yes, Las Vegas is generally safe for kids. However, it’s important to keep an eye on your children, especially on The Strip at night.

Q: Are there any kid-friendly attractions in Las Vegas?

A: Yes, there are plenty of kid-friendly attractions in Las Vegas, including the Adventuredome Theme Park, the Shark Reef Aquarium, and the Discovery Children’s Museum.

Q: Can kids go to shows in Las Vegas?

A: Yes, there are many shows in Las Vegas that are appropriate for kids, including Cirque du Soleil’s “O” and “Mystere,” as well as the Blue Man Group.

Q: What are some family-friendly hotels in Las Vegas?

A: Some of the best family-friendly hotels in Las Vegas include the Circus Circus Hotel & Resort, the Excalibur Hotel & Casino, and the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino.

Q: What should I pack for a trip to Las Vegas with kids?

A: Be sure to pack sunscreen, comfortable shoes for walking, and plenty of snacks and water. It can get hot during the day, so dressing in layers is also a good idea.

Q: Are there any free attractions in Las Vegas for kids?

A: Yes, there are many free attractions in Las Vegas for kids, including the Bellagio’s dancing fountain show, the Mirage’s volcano show, and the Wildlife Habitat at the Flamingo. 

Breeze Leonard Avatar
Breeze Leonard is a travel enthusiast and the affiliate manager for SheBuysTravel. A marketing and advertising specialist, she is also a social media strategist and travel writer, with several years’ experience writing for digital media. A Texan born and raised, Breeze left a corporate career to fulfill her passion for seeing the world with her three little girls. Their adventures have taken them across the globe, spanning visits to favorite Caribbean isles and motoring cross-country in an RV through some of America’s most beloved national parks. She believes that no adventure is too small and that every memory made, good or bad, is part of the family’s story.
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14 responses

  1. There is a right way and a wrong way to bring kids to Vegas. I just got back 2 weeks ago. There are fun things on the Strip for kids to do like gondola rides at the Venetian and the super cool arcade and roller coaster at New York New York. However, Vegas is largely geared towards adults and parents need to keep that in mind. Gambling, recreational marijuana, prostitution, and open containers of alcohol are all legal. One night on our vacation I tripped over a small child who had escaped from his stroller. I was gambling at a craps table at 10pm with a cocktail in my hand. Mom had the audacity to shoot me a look like I had just curb stomped a puppy which made me comment on her parenting skills. LOUDLY. As long as parents use some common sense about what is and is not appropriate for children, I say go for it.

  2. you for got to mention all the dame smoking !!! because i followed your advice or ideas while researching hotel to stay at in las vegas we chose to stay at the mandalay bay. the casino floor had smokers all over the place. you cants get you car without walking king the casino floor. not a healthy situation you should update you blog with The park MGM hotel as they are very family friendly non-smoking hotel and casino. They also let your family dog stay with you too!

  3. Awesome article. We were gifted a 7 day vacation and Vegas was the only destination with dates that we are able to travel. We have a 2 and 11 yr old and I was nervous about what we could do for 7 days.
    ***Off the wall question but I HAVE TO ASK!!! I am terrified od spiders and I hear there are desert tarantula in Nevada!!! Whats the likelyhood that we will run into them around and about Vegas including the Grand Canyon?

    1. not very likely no big spiders. keep in mind that the Park MGM is the better option. its a smoking free hotel and still has an amazing pool. but the best advice is always ask the the holet during your reservation all your question as they will be better at advising you.

  4. I know you stayed at the Bellagio, and that;s where I would like to stay for my wife; however, our kids will be with us as we quickly pass through Vegas. We intend on enjoying the pools and seeing the sights. My question is, would you opt for staying at one of the other hotels, like the Mirage in lieu of the Bellagio? We will only be there for one night and I kids in the age range of 6-12. I want them to see the Vegas lights, but not the inappropriate. I know, good luck, right!

  5. I have always wanted to go to Las Vegas, and now that I have a well-paid job, I have been able to save money to go but is it a good idea to take my children?. I love that you basically said “yes” to my question, and you made a list of all the activities that can be done and enjoyed as a family. I know I probably won’t be able to take them to all those places, but if we find other places down the road that seem attractive we’ll make sure we go.

    1. Have fun! Let us know how the trip goes.

  6. Why stay on the strip with kids? Stay downtown. I’m taking my 12 and 13 year olds and staying at Four Queens soon. You get Fremont Street free entertainment, and the light show, and the zip line. It’s like 5 blocks of fun, with *NO CARS*. It beats the heck out of schlepping up and down the strip in crowds and heat, with more beggers and porn than fun for the kids.

    1. Thank you for that recommendation! I checked them out and I will plan to stay there.

  7. Hi. Are you sure that the MGM Grand pool is open to kids? Someone posted on the Trip Advisor forum that it is not.

  8. We loved visiting Las Vegas with our kids when they were little! In fact, we visited Las Vegas and didn’t gamble at all – we just enjoyed all the fun stuff to do in the casinos with our kids. We had a blast.

  9. You remind me of my shock in my early 20s when I realized las Vegas offered more than the Strip vibe, and that people actually lived there.

  10. 4.5

  11. 5

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