Before moving to Las Vegas I had a job that took me to Los Angeles a few times a year. If there was an excuse to make a pit stop in Las Vegas on the way home my co-workers and I would take it. Some of the pit stops in Las Vegas were for work and play and other times it was all play.
Some of my favorite trips to Las Vegas are now known as “One Night In Vegas.” The visits could have lasted 24 hours but they also could have lasted 8-12 hours. One night in Las Vegas doesn’t leave much time to do a lot but that doesn’t mean we didn’t try (and succeed).
Many of these One Night in Vegas trips have become legendary for the people that have enjoyed them. It’s a different way to experience Las Vegas. A normal vacation leaves plenty of time to enjoy much of what Las Vegas has to offer. When you’re visiting Las Vegas for 8 to 24 hours you don’t have much time to travel to do many different things when you include travel time.
Some of the visits kept my friends and co-workers in the same casino all day and night. Why waste time walking or taking a car to another property when everything needed is in one place? Time is valuable when you only have a few hours.
One of the great things about Las Vegas is that many casinos have everything you need for a day and night. Casinos like Mandalay Bay, MGM Grand, Caesars Palace, and The Venetian probably offer enough amenities for you to stay inside for a week but that’s a different story (note to self).
How would you spend 24 hours or fewer in Las Vegas?
A great “One night in Vegas” starts with choosing the right casino. Since time is limited there isn’t much time for a good time. Traveling to different locations isn’t the best use of time. Find a casino with everything you want to enjoy inside or nearby. Crossing the street from Planet Hollywood to the Cosmopolitan doesn’t take much time if you want a different casino environment. Similarly, Mandalay Bay, Luxor, and Excalibur are connected and offer quick access to different environments.
Taking a ride to downtown Las Vegas or an off-strip property from the Vegas Strip might be excessive for a 24-hour trip. However, staying in either location might suffice for one night in Vegas.
Many of the off-strip casinos have plenty of activities to keep you busy all day and night. Red Rock casino has a nice casino with a variety of games, restaurants for any mood, a movie theater, bowling alley, arcade, great pool, a poker room, and a great sports book.
Downtown Las Vegas offers a lot for a night in Vegas in a different manner. It takes almost as much time to walk from one end of the Fremont Street Experience to the other as it takes to walk through MGM Grand. There’s a great variety of casino experiences in downtown Las Vegas and they’re all within walking distance.
Since moving to Las Vegas I’ve taken a few days to relive my 24 hours in Vegas trips. The experiences aren’t quite the same but they’re always fun! These quick trips have taken place on the Vegas Strip, downtown Las Vegas, and at casinos away from the tourists.
I’ve shared some of the fun Low Rolling In Las Vegas trips before but a night in Las Vegas doesn’t have to be done on the cheap. One night in Vegas that consists of a great steak dinner and a show followed by a night of gambling is equally as much fun. There’s so much to see and do in Las Vegas that’s it’s sometimes more enjoyable to book a vacation an plan for a week of one night in Vegas experiences.
How would you spend a day or night in Las Vegas if you only had 8 to 24 hours? Sleep is not an option.


Marc Meltzer covers Las Vegas, gaming and men’s lifestyle for various outlets. Check out his blog at Edge Vegas.
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