Helicopter View Canyon Sunset

Nevada may be best known as home to the iconic Las Vegas Strip, a glittering desert paradise filled with an endless list of activities built to satisfy a lust for entertainment. But the Silver State has even more to offer beyond the city limits of Las Vegas, a gateway to getaways. From the lush oasis that is Lake Las Vegas to the monumental fixtures of Red Rock and the Grand Canyon, here are six cool day trips worth venturing to from Las Vegas. 

Lake Las Vegas

Retreat from the heat at Lake Las Vegas, a luxurious, green paradise host to resorts, spas, golf clubs, scenic hiking trails and a 320-acre artificial lake. Located in Henderson, Nevada and just minutes away from the Las Vegas Strip and McCarran Airport, Lake Las Vegas is the perfect escape for visitors and locals alike.

Encompassed by the untouched beauty of the mountains and surrounded by Lake Mead, the posh resort area is an ideal setting for fun-in-the-sun recreation and amenities. From the Marina you can rent stand up paddle boards, pedal boats and kayaks, or cruise in a Duffy electric boat or aboard the La Contessa Yacht, available to reserve for parties with cocktails, Hors d’oeuvres and relaxing sit down dinners. Looking for something a little more rigorous? Rocket above the lake with a flyboard, or dip, flip and pull off your best midair tricks with a jetpack rental.

Grand Canyon Sunset Tour

See Las Vegas and its surrounding landmarks like you’ve never seen them before from the seat of an Airbus EC-130 helicopter, with Sundance Helicopters offering an unmatched bird’s eye view of the world below. You’ll be escorted from your hotel in a swanky stretch limousine to a chic pre-flight lounge before boarding a luxurious aircraft operated by top-notch professional pilots. 

From there, you’ll be whisked away for a three-hour flight soaring thousands of feet above legendary Hoover Dam, the awe-inspiring Mojave Desert, Lake Mead, the largest man-made lake in the United States, the stunning Colorado River, and the breathtaking Grand Canyon, one of the seven natural wonders of the world. 3200 feet below the rim of the canyon, you’ll enjoy wine and a Insta-worthy picnic before returning to Las Vegas. Experience the city of lights with a fly over iconic sights like Stratosphere Tower, Caesars Palace, the skyline of New York-New York and the sky-piercing beam of the Luxor pyramid. 

Exotic Driving Experience

Feel the need for speed? If you’re over 18, you can do your best Vin Diesel impersonation as you get Fast and Furious with an official Exotic Driving Experience. Live out your high-speed fantasies and take an exciting racing tour around — and out of — Las Vegas as you get behind the wheel of three supercars through a 30-mile, 180-minute open road course. Whether you cruise through Red Rock Canyon or Lake Mead, you’ll rotate through three rides at checkpoints.

If NASCAR is more your style (or speed), zoom around a track at SpeedVegas, with a coach taking the passenger seat during the driving portion of your thrill ride. Maybe the Ferrari 458 Italia catches your eye ($79 per lap), or maybe you want to take off in a Lamborghini Gallardo ($59 per lap)? There are 11 models of cars to choose from, including an Audi R8 ($49 per lap), a Corvette Z06 ($59 per lap) and a Lamborghini Aventador ($99 per lap). Sweet.

ATV Ride through Hidden Valley 

Tucked away just 30 minutes outside of Las Vegas, you can take a rough-and-tumble ATV ride through beautiful Hidden Valley. After complimentary (and air-conditioned) pick-up from select Las Vegas Strip hotels, you’ll journey to a staging area in Jean, Nevada for a thorough safety briefing and orientation to prime you for your rugged, fast-paced, up-close-and-personal adventure through the Nevadan desert.

You’ll explore the Mojave Desert on a rented high performance quad bike, adventuring through Primm and the McCollough Mountain Range, trekking over 100 miles of desert trail on a three-hour tour. Fun for beginners and experienced riders alike, the Las Vegas ATV Tour: Hidden Valley Primm Adventure experience is currently $189 per person.

The Pioneer Saloon’s Star-Gazing Tour

The bright, brilliant lights of the Las Vegas Strip make it difficult to see the stars — and for anyone wanting to stare into the natural glory of the universe, a stop at the Pioneer Saloon is a must. Just 25 minutes outside of Las Vegas in Goodsprings, Nevada and removed from the light pollution of the city, the Pioneer Saloon offers a breathtaking look at the desert night sky.

An on-hand astronomer will be your guide to the galaxies above as you star gaze with 25x100 binoculars, astrophotography telescopes, high power laser pointers and professional cameras. During your two and a half hour star gazing tour, you’ll journey through a sea of stars with customized trips tailor-suited to you and your group for a unique experience. The Pioneer Saloon even offers complimentary pick up and drop off transport from Las Vegas with 24 hours notice, making it even easier to relax and enjoy the view. Tickets are $200 per person and are available for select dates. 

Hollywood Freedom Tour 

You just might see other stars — and even feel like one — on the scenic Hollywood Freedom Tour. A 14-hour round trip from Las Vegas to Los Angeles, you’ll make passage through the Nevadan desert to the City of Angels on a spacious, VIP coach bus. Stops for photo opportunities at iconic landmarks like Rodeo Drive, the TCL Chinese Theater, Sunset Boulevard, the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the instantly recognizable Hollywood sign are a given.

And after your possibly star-studded trip to Hollywood, you’ll enjoy a complimentary lunch at the gorgeous Santa Monica Pier and even have the chance to frolic in the Pacific Ocean. The VIP Mercedes Sprinter picks up guests from all hotels on the Las Vegas Strip, and tickets start at $168.