15 Things to do in Downtown Las Vegas

 

Downtown Las Vegas, commonly known as DTLV, is the heart of historic Las Vegas.

It’s located north of the infamous Las Vegas strip and has become a hot destination for those wanting to explore the Old Las Vegas and take in the modern and lively entertainment scene.

Visitors to DTLV will find themselves spending quite a lot of time on Fremont Street, making it easy to hit several attractions in one day.

Not sure what to do in downtown Las Vegas? Then you’ve come to the right place! Here’s a list of our top 15 attractions, many of them unique to the Las Vegas downtown experience.

Drum roll, please, for our top choices!

New year's eve at the Fremont Street Experience.

New year’s eve at the Fremont Street Experience. Photo credit: vegasexperience.com.

Fremont Street Experience

It’s hard to believe that a pedestrian mall would be a top attraction, but The Fremont Street Experience has entertainment and gaming attractions you won’t want to miss (I don’t think you could even if you tried).

It encompasses a five-block radius with such a large number of neon signs that it earned the nickname, “Glitter Gulch.”

For a long time, it was where producers shot images of Las Vegas’ glittering lights.

There are street performers and three stages where you can groove along to a free concert. The main feature, however, is an overhead canopy that extends from Fourth to Main street.

The Viva Vision canopy is the biggest video screen in the world. On New Year’s Eve 2019, they will be debuting their $32 million renovation, and it’s sure to bedazzle.

The Viva Vision light shows only last about six minutes and run every hour from dusk to dawn. It’s something you will gawk at with 22 million other visitors who show up annually.

A great way to view the show is by Slotzilla.

Learn more about the Fremont Street Experience

The Slotzilla zipline at the Fremont Street Experience.

The Slotzilla zipline at the Fremont Street Experience. Photo Credit: vegasexperience.com.

Slotzilla

Leave it to Las Vegas to have you ziplining over the city, taking in aerial views of the Fremont Street Experience.

The zipline experience runs over a third of a mile with two options, the Zipline or Zoomline. Both options are reasonably priced, with the Zipline costing a mere $29 and $49 for the Zoomline.

The more thrilling Zoomline takes you ten stories high, and you can find yourself traveling up to 40 miles per hour. If that’s not extreme enough, try it superhero style, and imagine yourself saving the city from some overstuffed monster.

Learn more about Slotzilla

A look at the pool at the Golden Nugget.

A look at the pool at the Golden Nugget. Photo Credit: goldennugget.com.

The pool at the Golden Nugget

It’s hard to say no to an outdoor pool in Vegas, but one that has a 200,000-gallon shark tank in which you can swim?!

And even more icing on that cake is the three-story Shark Chute you slide down next to the sharks.

Afterward, you can contemplate what you just did in the rejuvenation falls or lounge poolside with a drink in hand.

Visit the Pool at the Golden Nugget

A shot of the 20s decor at the Laundry Room.

A shot of the 20s decor at the Laundry Room. Photo Credit: @laundryroomlv.

The Laundry Room

Inside the Commonwealth is The Laundry Room.

It’s not where you hang your ex-boyfriend out to dry. It is, however, where you can find a bar with an intimate feel, speakeasy vibe, and unique cocktail drinks.

Many historical figures have graced this must-see attraction in DTLV.

To enter, text 702-701-1466 and pray there’s space available, or see if the red light above the door is on. In this case, red means go.

Vegas Vic Sign

Strolling down Fremont Street, you can spot another iconic treasure, the Vegas Vic sign, a friendly lit-up neon cowboy.

Back in the day, it used to wave and say, “Howdy Pardner!” It even had a moving cigarette, which is a sure sign of the times.

It was initially erected outside the Pioneer Club in 1951, but the casino has been long gone.

In its place is a souvenir shop, but your photo in front of Vegas Vic is souvenir enough you’ve done DTLV.

Diners enjoying themselves at Hugo's Cellar. Photo credit: fourqueens.com

Diners enjoying themselves at Hugo’s Cellar. Photo credit: fourqueens.com

Hugo’s Cellar

Winner of the 2016 Open Table Diner’s Award, Hugo’s Cellar (located in the Queen’s Hotel and Casino) is a classic that continues to serve top-rate old school meals.

This place serves meals reminiscent of Old Vegas–Angus steaks, Beef Wellington, rack of lamb–just a few items to get you drooling.

Your dinner also includes a tableside salad cart that’s made to order.

If that’s not enough, women are greeted with a long-stem rose, and for dessert, complimentary strawberries dipped in chocolate round out your meal. Did we forget to mention the excellent service?

Visit Hugo’s Cellar

Visit The D in Las Vegas for some horse betting action. Photo Credit: thed.com.

Visit The D in Las Vegas for some horse betting action. Photo Credit: thed.com.

Sigma Derby at the D Las Vegas Casino

Sigma Derby is a mechanical track game that includes five horses. For only a quarter, you bet on which horses will be first and second.

This game used to be a staple at casinos, but now only two of these games exist, at the MGM Grand and on the second floor of the D Las Vegas Casino. Get there before this one, or your horse runs out of luck.

Visit the D Las Vegas

The mural on the side of the Plaza Hotel Casino is a big attraction. Photo credit: plazahotelcasino.com.

The mural on the side of the Plaza Hotel Casino is a big attraction. Photo credit: plazahotelcasino.com.

Shepard Fairey Mural

Shepard Fairey became well known all over the world after creating his 2008 Barak Obama “Hope” poster.

His art mural called, “Cultivate Harmony,” is one of the most massive art pieces in the world (it’s over 21 stories high), and can be seen on the side of the Plaza hotel.

According to Fairey, he made the mural to “remind people that peace and harmony with each other and the planet itself are the only way(s) to maintain what sustains us.”

Visit the Shepard Fairey

A bar tender pours a drink at the Griffin. Via Instagram: @lasvegasgriffin

A bartender pours a drink at the Griffin. Via Instagram: @lasvegasgriffin

The Griffin

No tourist destination is complete without a bar where you can escape to, especially from the Fremont frenzy.

Enter The Griffin and relax by one of the two circular fire pits. Check out the stone bar or gaze at the intricate brick ceiling pattern.

Sometimes there’s live music to dance to, and there’s always a jukebox that kicks out great hits.

Guests enjoying the Backyard Playground. Photo Credit: goldspike.com.

Guests enjoying the Backyard Playground. Photo Credit: goldspike.com.

Gold Spike’s Backyard Playground

Gold Spike is a co-working space by day and a party venue by night. At night, the indoor space is transformed into the Living Room, with DJs mixing the latest beats for a lively house party.

The backyard is truly your playground (pun intended), with games like Twister or giant Legos, Four Square, Cornhole, Shuffleboard, and Beer Pong.

During the day, the whole family is invited to the Backyard Playground to engage in some wholesome fun. Local musicians play, and on Friday and Saturdays, live bands perform.

Don’t miss out on the bar installation built entirely out of a shipping container.

Visit Gold Spike’s Backyard Playground

An exhibit at the Neon Museum, Vegas' most prolific history of signage and attractions. Photo credit: neonmuseum.org.

An exhibit at the Neon Museum, Vegas’ most prolific history of signage and attractions. Photo credit: neonmuseum.org.

The Neon Museum

The Neon Museum is an outdoor exhibition hall dedicated to preserving iconic Las Vegas signs.

There are guided tours, immersive shows, and special exhibits. It’s larger outdoor exhibition space, The Boneyard Main Collection has over 200 unrestored neon signs.

At sunset, they light up all the signs creating a truly illuminating, “boneyard.” The Neon Museum is also one of downtown Vegas’ most popular photo opportunities.

They offer a photo walk where you are allowed to bring your camera and gear to take photos of the signs for personal use only. All photo walks should be booked in advance during one of the pre-scheduled tours offered.

Visit the Neon Museum

Downtown Container Park featuring the mighty Dome! Photo credit: downtowncontainerpark.com.

Downtown Container Park featuring the mighty Dome! Photo credit: downtowncontainerpark.com.

Container Park

I thought repurposing shipping containers were all the rage. In DTLV, that’s yesterday’s news.

The Container Park opened in 2013 and is an open-air shopping and entertainment venue almost entirely built out of shipping containers. It’s a hub of unique boutiques, restaurants, and galleries.

If that alone isn’t a draw, check out any of the free movies or music, or the dome. The dome is a 360-degree HD immersive entertainment experience.

The entire dome lights up above the reclining seats, and you can watch movies to relive the dinosaur age, see the universe or hear the classic rock tunes of U2, Pink Floyd, or Led Zepplin.

You can’t miss finding the Container Park since there’s a 55-foot praying mantis sculpture that shoots flames out of its antenna. After 9 pm, this place becomes a 21+-year-old party place.

Visit Container Park

The Heart Attack Grill has been fighting anorexia for a long time now... Photo credit: heartattackgrill.com

The Heart Attack Grill has been fighting anorexia for a long time now… Photo credit: heartattackgrill.com

Heart Attack Grill

If you want to have an outrageous Los Vegas adventure, visit the Heart Attack Grill, a hospital themed restaurant where the waitresses dress like nurses.

One of the most famous downtown Las Vegas restaurants, Heart Attack Grill claims to have been fighting Anorexia since 2005! 

Upon entering the establishment, one of the servers dressed as a nurse will give you a hospital gown or doctor’s outfit to wear.

Here you can sip your drink through an IV line, which helps wash down the contents of the Bypass Burger of your choice. You can enjoy your weekly calorie intake for the week by ordering a quadruple bypass burger, which has 9983 calories!

The Guinness Book of World Records gave this burger the highest calories in the world award! However, whatever you do, don’t order more than you can eat, because if you do not clean your plate a nurse will give you a spanking!

Visit the Heart Attack Grill

A fun night at Dino's. Photo credit: yelp.com.

A fun night at Dino’s. Photo credit: yelp.com.

Dino’s Lounge

Never trust a list that doesn’t include a dive bar. Dino’s Lounge is an old favorite dive bar with a bonus, karaoke on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights.

They’ve got great drink specials and a large crowd of locals, making your bar even more divey.

Want sweets? We got your sweets. Via Instagram @donutbar.

Want sweets? We got your sweets. Via Instagram @donutbar.

Donut Bar

When it comes to choosing where to eat, downtown Las Vegas has a lot to offer. However, there’s one place that truly stands out. 

Every day at the Donut Bar, owner Santiago Campa makes 2,000 doughnuts. Once he sells out of these fresh beauties, he closes for the day.

He stocks the shop with traditional donuts but also has one-of-a-kind flavors like creme brulee, salted caramel, french toast, or the Homer Simpson.

The verdict is out on these donuts–they’re delicious and reasonably priced, making it possible for you to live large on the rest of your DTLV tour.

Visit the Donut Bar