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World Travel Guide > Guides > North America > United States of America > Nevada > Las Vegas

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Local time Las Vegas

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Travel to Las Vegas

Flying to Las Vegas

Airlines offering direct flights to Las Vegas from the UK include British Airways and Virgin Atlantic. Las Vegas is a year-round destination but if you hunt hard (and early), you can find cheaper flights. New Year is particularly expensive, whereas the exceptionally hot summers are often the best time of year to find cheap flights. Multiple airlines fly to Las Vegas from other cities within the USA.

Flight times

From London - 10 hours 20 minutes; New York - 5 hours 30 minutes; Los Angeles - 1 hour 15 minutes; Toronto - 4 hours 40 minutes; Sydney - 16 hours 30 minutes (including stopover).

Travel by road

Driving in Las Vegas is the easiest way to get around. Speed limits are 121kph-129kph (75-80 mph) on freeways, 105kph (65mph) on primary highways or multi-lane roads, and 48kph (30mph) in built-up areas. Traffic drives on the right. The minimum driving age in Nevada is 16 years (full licence) and proof of insurance is compulsory.

Drivers from outside the USA must possess a valid licence from their home country. An International Driving Permit is useful if your licence isn't in English.

The AAA (tel: +1 800 922 8228; www.csaa.com) provides emergency roadside assistance and a variety of automobile-related services.

Emergency breakdown services

AAA (tel: +1 800 222 4357).

Routes

Las Vegas is bisected by Freeway 15, connecting to Mesquite and Salt Lake City in the north and California (Los Angeles and San Francisco via Interstate 5) in the south. Freeway 515 connects to Fort Mojave Indian reservation in the south. Freeway 215 encircles most of the city, and is a convenient way to bypass rush hour congestion.

Coaches

Greyhound (tel: +1 800 231 2222; www.greyhound.com) operates intercity services out of Las Vegas, linking to major western destinations, including Salt Lake City,

Megabus (tel: +1 877 462 6342; www.megabus.com) runs buses from Las Vegas to Anaheim, Los Angeles and Riverside, California. Buses depart from the RTC South Strip Transfer Terminal, 6675 Gilespie Street.

Time to city

From Los Angeles - 4 to 5 hours; Salt Lake City - 6 to 7 hours; San Francisco - 8 to 9 hours.

Travel by Rail

Services

There is no Amtrak rail service to Las Vegas. The closest railway stations are Needles (CA) and Kingman (AZ).

Operators

Amtrak’s Southwest Chief runs daily between Chicago and Los Angeles, stopping at Kingman and Needles. Contact Amtrak (tel: +1 800 872 7245; www.amtrak.com) for timetables and tickets. When checking Amtrak’s website, don’t be confused with Las Vegas, New Mexico, which is a stop on the Southwest Chief route.

Journey times

To Kingman (AZ): from Chicago - 35 hours; Albuquerque - 8 hours; Los Angeles - 7 hours.

Transfer

Greyhound (tel: +1 800 231 2222; www.greyhound.com) runs coaches between Kingman and Las Vegas (journey time - 3 hours).

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Featured Hotels

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New York New York Hotel and Casino

This 2,000-room resort and casino is easy to spot: it's the one with the Statue of Liberty out front, standing proudly beside a miniature Brooklyn Bridge. Rooms in its Empire State and Chrysler Building towers are large, well-appointed and can be surprisingly good value. If you pick upon the faint sounds of screaming coming from outside, don't be alarmed. It's adrenaline junkies hurtling around the full-size rollercoaster that loops around the perimeter.

The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas

With a stellar location on the Strip, attentive service and the best rooms boasting balconies overlooking the Bellagio's water fountains, The Cosmopolitan has deservedly become one of the top-rated hotels in Vegas since it opened in 2010. Rooms are sophisticated, modern and spacious, and amenities include a casino (of course), a nightclub, restaurants, rooftop pools and a spa. Make sure to have a cocktail in the bar built inside a giant chandelier featuring two million Swarovski crystals.

Fremont Hotel

It may not have an Eiffel Tower outside or a Grand Canal running through it, but the Fremont has a longer-standing claim to be one of Las Vegas's best-loved landmarks. Now the heart of the Fremont Street Experience, when it was built in 1956 it was the first high-rise hotel in the downtown area. Its history might be long in the tooth (for this city), but the 447 spacious guestrooms are regularly renovated and modernised.

El Cortez Hotel

One of the more modest casinos in Las Vegas, El Cortez's roots actually go back to the era of 'Bugsy' Siegel, one of the city's founders. These days, this Las Vegas hotel advertises a modest selection of rooms with furnishings that are generally simple but comfortable. The friendly atmosphere and central location to downtown attractions have long been one of the draws, despite it now being outmatched by the grandiose casinos of the Strip.

MGM Grand Hotel and Casino

An inventory of over 5,000 rooms makes the MGM Grand one of the big players in terms of volume, but they've done their best to retain some character. Black-and-white movie photos adorn the guest rooms, and the art deco furniture also helps. Joël Robuchon, Michael Mina and Tom Colicchio add their names to the top-class dining rooms. The casino is gigantic, with Cirque du Soleil among the entertainment options.

Green Valley Ranch Resort

Located in Henderson, a short drive outside of Las Vegas, Green Valley Ranch Resort puts the focus on pampering and provides a break from the pace of The Strip. The resort is a rambling Mediterranean hacienda and houses eight restaurants, a cinema and a European-inspired intimate casino. The main buildings open onto the pool area with a small sand beach and private lounging beds in a more modern European setting.