The final destination on our journey was Las Vegas, Nevada, but the drive from Grand Canyon National Park to Las Vegas included several interesting guidebook stops.
One stop we made was in Seligman, AZ. Signs indicate that Seligman is the birthplace of Route 66; in reality, Springfield, Missouri is recognized as the birthplace of “The Mother Road.” It was dedicated to Will Rogers and gained fame in John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath.” Seligman is an interesting tourist stop, though, with many classic and historic automobiles parked along the stretch of Route 66 that goes through town.
We also drove through the Hoover Dam tourist area. It is impressive, though didn’t seem as large as the pictures we had always seen of it. We didn’t take the time for a tour, however, so we will need to make a repeat visit in the future.
We turned in our rental car at McCarran International Airport and left the rest of the driving to taxi drivers, a wise move in Las Vegas with its overload of traffic on The Strip. We checked in at The Mirage Hotel and prepared to enjoy the totally commercialized atmosphere of the Las Vegas Strip.
It would be easy to get the impression that there are just as many slot machines as hotel rooms in Las Vegas, since every hotel seems to have a large casino area that you have to navigate to get to the elevators.
We wanted to see a few other places, so we took a taxi further south along The Strip. We timed it perfectly to stop and observe the lovely fountain show at The Bellagio. This large display of fountains “dance” to music, and it is a popular stop for thousands each evening.
We also enjoyed walking through Caesar’s Palace and the Forum shopping mall. There is hourly entertainment in the mall, in the form of a mechanized show about the gods and goddesses, and numerous restaurants and shops. The Mirage also had some shops and restaurants, and we enjoyed dinner there both nights, at Samba Brazilian Steakhouse the first night and The Stack the second night.
The highlight of our time in Las Vegas was the Cirque du Soleil show “The Beatles LOVE.” For anyone who has seen a Cirque du Soleil presentation, it isn’t surprising to hear that it was great. This was the fifth such show we’ve seen, however, and it was undoubtedly the most exceptional. Much history was depicted using The Beatles’ many hit songs along with the outstanding performers, and there were some interactive moments to keep the audience engaged.
Las Vegas has various nicknames and is famous for the line “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.” It should be said, however, that Las Vegas offers a plethora of activities and events 24/7 and can be a fun family vacation or honeymoon destination or just a great place for a long, relaxing weekend.