In the past, Las Vegas was typically known as an "adults only" destination. The gambling and other activities that were generally available didn't exactly portray the city as a family-friendly destination.
Fast forward a few years and add a healthy dose of strategy and rebranding and you have the Las Vegas of today. While Sin City still lives up to its nickname in many ways, it's also become a destination that appeals to families from across the world. With the addition of activities other than gambling, dining options outside of the traditional buffet, and a theme park atmosphere, Las Vegas is once again proving itself to be a destination worth considering.
While the little ones are sure to be in a constant state of delight from the neon and the city buzz, your teens might tell a different tale. Too young to take part in the 18+ activities, but too old for the kid stuff, you might feel that it will be difficult for your teen to enjoy Las Vegas, but that's entirely untrue.
These are just a few of the activities for teens in Vegas, and as parents, you just might enjoy them too.
Thrills and Spills
If your teen is an adrenaline junkie, then you couldn't have picked a better place than Las Vegas. From zip lines to roller coasters there are more than enough "you must be this high" rides to make your teen truly feel like they're in a class all their own.
Try the Big Apple coaster at New York that starts inside the casino before whipping its way into the Vegas sun. There's the Big Shot at the Stratosphere that will whisk you 160 feet into the air in the blink of an eye, though you may leave part of your stomach on the ground. And then there's what some may consider one of the best thrills in the city. The Sky Jump at the Stratosphere allows you to experience a controlled free fall from 108 stories.
Find Their Sweet Side
If there's anything that brings out the kid in people it's sweets. Luckily, Las Vegas has a sweet side that your teen is sure to love. From candy to ice cream and more, let them lead the way on this part of the trip, and they'll be like a kid in the proverbial candy store. One place to go is the Sweet Spot Candy Shop, where teens will find all the candy they could ever want.
You could also visit Hershey’s chocolate world Las Vegas and let them pick out any and all of their favorite chocolate goodies. They can even customize labels and take part in the store's interactive displays and experiences.
The adults might just enjoy this one too.
Take in a Show
Las Vegas has long been famous for its larger-than-life collection of shows. While many of them are still not entirely appropriate for all audiences, the tides have shifted and there are now more show choices than ever, especially for teens.
Cirque du Soleil is always a popular choice with teenagers, especially their current production of "Love" at the Mirage. Set to the music of the Beatles the story and the acrobatics that accompany it are whimsical and mesmerizing. The Blue Man Group is always a hit, and Penn and Teller's slight off-color jokes are perfect for teens without being too inappropriate
Play to Their Palate
Las Vegas is now known as one of the world's premier culinary destinations, and many visitors arrive solely prepared to eat. If your teen is a budding chef or loves to watch the cooking shows and competitions that dominate the television networks, then why not take them to a restaurant owned by their favorite chef?
Gordon Ramsay, Bobby Flay, Emeril Lagasse, and more all have restaurants scattered throughout the city. Try the Gordon Ramsay Pub and Grill, the Mesa Grill by Bobby Flay, or even Buddy V's Ristorante where your teen can try divine creations whipped up by the "Cake Boss" himself.
Or, at the very least, by his highly trained staff.
Fun, flashy, and filled with adventure, Las Vegas has become one of the most family-friendly destination in the United States. If you've got a picky teen and are concerned that they might not enjoy the city, think again. Vegas has more than enough fun to go around, no matter how old you are.