When it comes to the ideal family holiday destinations, Las Vegas is probably the last place on people’s minds. A casino hotspot in the American desert that is commonly known as ‘Sin City’ does not immediately conjure up images of a wholesome family getaway.
However, poker and blackjack aren’t the only things to do in Las Vegas, far from it. The surrounding countryside is rich and varied, with an incredible assortment of trails and hiking routes for all ages and ability levels. Forget the strip, the slot machines, and Caesars Palace, head for hills beyond the lights and have a Las Vegas holiday that the family will never forget.
Red Rock Canyon
Red Rock Canyon is a conservation in Clark County, Nevada, approximately 16 miles west from the centre of Las Vegas. The area is named after its striking red rock formations, with sandstone wall and pillars jutting up to heights of up to 3,000 feet.
The area is filled with exciting hikes and adventure opportunities. Kids will love the strange, alien landscape too, its like they’ve left earth and been transported to Mars. An easy trail in Red Rock Canyon that will suit even young children is the Lost Creek Canyon Trail. This is a one-mile hike with easy terrain, it has picnic tables, onsite bathrooms, and even a seasonal waterfall. Head in springtime to catch the waterfall before it dries up for the summer. The area has plenty of fun rocks for the children to climb, but while this can be enjoyable it can also be dangerous. Ensure you’re fully covered with travel insurance ahead of time in case anything should happen. Check out Staysure, for a policy as they offer cover for medical expenses and pre-existing conditions if have some.
If you’re looking to go a little bit further out, Mount Charleston lies about 35 miles northwest of Las Vegas. This impressive mountain is the eight highest mountain in the state, sitting at 11,916 feet in elevation. The mountain has a number of hiking trails, as well as ski resort, hotel, and a restaurant.
Check out the Fletcher Canyon Trail, this kid friendly hike will give you fantastic views of Mount Charleston and lead you through beautiful forests and limestone rock formations. The trail is used often by dog walkers and horse riders, so kids will enjoy meeting some furry friends on their hike.
Wetlands Park in Clark County is a 3,000-acre wetlands reservation area, a strange sight in the middle of a desert. The area is home to an incredible array of wildlife, including ducks, herons, hawks, and owls. Dogs are not allowed inside Wetlands Park, to preserve the finely balanced natural ecosystem that has developed there.
The Nature Preserve Loop is a fully paved trail that runs through the park. Perfect for kids of all ages, from babies in prams to older children, they will love the unique atmosphere and feel of the park and can have fun trying to spot some of many species of animal that live there. The Park contains a number of other trails, as well as bathrooms and shaded areas.
Las Vegas isn’t just bright lights, glitz, and glamour. The surrounding areas have much more to offer than one might initially suspect, and it’s a shame that the this is often forgotten by visitors to Nevada. Take opportunity to see some of the most stunning scenery in North America, there are numerous options for routes and trails to take, with some available for people of all ages and physical ability. If it’s a sense of fun and adventure you’re looking for, it’s hard to beat Las Vegas.