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Las Vegas photos


U.S.A. facts & history in brief        U.S.A. Map

Las Vegas is in southern part of the Nevada State, U.S.
The city is divided into the downtown called Glitter Gulch, and the Strip, a boulevard of hotels and casinos few miles south of downtown.
The Paiute Indians used Las Vegas' natural spring just north of the present downtown on their seasonal visits to the area.
Rafael Rivera a Mexican scout rediscovered it in 1829, and the area soon became known to overland travellers as las vegas - 'the meadows' - a place with water and feed for horses and rest for the weary travellers.
The Mormons built the town's first structures, a small mission and fort, in the 1850s.
The fort later became a ranch house and later the land was sold to a railway company in 1902.
The railway company subdivided and sold the land when the railway reached the town.
During those days Las Vegas had a few workshops, convenience stores, hotels and casinos.
In the mid 1920s the railway company laid off hundreds of people but most of Las Vegas' population was saved by the huge Hoover Dam (then known as Boulder Dam) project, that commenced in 1931.
The same year Nevada legalised gambling and simplified its divorce laws.
The first big casino on the Strip, the El Rancho was built by Los Angeles developers in 1941, starting the development of today's Las Vegas.
In 1946 mobster Bugsy Siegel, built the Flamingo, setting the trend for the new casinos.
Improvements in transport, air conditioning and reliable water supplies, Las Vegas became one of the country's most popular tourist destinations.
Las Vegas is of course synonymous with attractions, but here is a short list of some of theme apart from what the Casinos, Hotels and other attractions have to offer.

Downtown or Glitter Gulch is the intersection of Fremont and Main Streets, where millions of lightbulbs and miles of neon tubing keep the Gulch in perpetual daylight.
Some of the city's most famous casinos are here, including the Golden Nugget and the Gold Spike, strip clubs and souvenirs shops.

The remains of Old Las Vegas Mormon Fort State Historic Park is a mile north of downtown, it used to provide refuge for travellers along the Mormon Trail between Salt Lake City, Utah, and San Bernardino, in southern California.

The Strip Is where many of the larger casinos, hotels and theme parks are like Circus Circus one of the original casino-cum-theme-parks.
The Imperial Palace Auto Museum, where you will find some rare models and vehicles once owned by the rich and famous.
There's Czar Nicholas II's 1914 Rolls Royce, Japanese Emperor Hirohito's 1935 Packard and Adolf Hitler's 1939 Mercedes and many more.

The nearby and architecturally beautiful Hoover Dam and the 180 km long Lake Mead created by and for the Hoover Dam, is an hour's drive southeast of downtown Las Vegas.
A 50-story elevator ride takes you down to the turbine room at the bottom of the dam.

30 kilometres west of the Strip is the 65 million years old Red Rock Canyon with 900 metres high walls of striking multicolored sandstone, jagged peaks and Joshua trees with many spots for picnicking, hiking and climbing along the way.

Two hours' drive from Downtown Las Vegas is Overton, that was settled in the 1880s, with a few motels, bars and stores most of them restored to reflect another time, in sharp contrast to the glitter of Las Vegas.

The 1000 year old Anasazi Indian pueblos (Reconstructions) are just north of Overton about 80 kilometres northeast of downtown Las Vegas.

The Grand Canyon, America's second most popular national park is only a few hours' drive east from Las Vegas.
The canyon is 365 kilometres long and nearly 16 kilometres wide, multicoloured rock, dropping about 1600 metres down to the 1.7 billion year old rocks and the Colorado River below.
There are excellent opportunities for hiking, horseriding and rafting.

In Las Vegas the summers are hot and the winters are cool, making spring and fall the best times to visit.

The city with a good International Airport, has excellent air bus and railway transport service.

Las Vegas' population is about 1 million and covering an area of 215 sq kilometres.

Just as well there's no law to stop people like Hui Chin and I entering Las Vegas, who visit places seeking out all the bargains and enjoying ourselves to the max.
After our arrival, as usual we went to ask a few questions from the Tourist Information Kiosk lady, who was very pleasant and helpful.
Took one of the many shuttle buses to Circus Circus.
We picked up a "free Accommodations paper in San Francisco, which advertised rooms at US$35 for two at Circus Circus.
There were a couple of cheaper ones listed in that paper, but we didn't know where they were in relation to the centre of the 'Strip'. Location is essential on our 'shoestring budget'.
Our only reliable and affordable transport are our two feet.
At the 'Reception' we've received the usual story.
All the $35 rooms are taken, only $49 ones are available.
If we staying more than 1 night, the following nights going to be $59.
Now that didn't make much sense, because normally it is the other way around, but what could we do?
There was a $1 surcharge for phones too, which riled us too.
We didn't know anybody in town, so we wouldn't be making any phone calls. It wasn't mentioned in the advertising either.
(A couple of days latter I overheard an elderly man talking to another elderly couple about that 'phone charge'.
The man was talking about, being so furious about that 'phone charge', that he and his family were coming to Circus Circus for two weeks, biannually for the past seven years, but they are so upset, that they will not come anymore.)
After settling in and going for an 'exploratory walk', we found out that the other cheap place, the 'Travelodge' was right next door.
Too late now!
Over the next few days we had 'Sweet Tours' as our tour to Hoover Dam , through the Mojave Desert to Williams and to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon "One of the 7 wonders of the world in the U.S."
This Tour was rather expensive at US$129 per person, but was much more enjoyable, as there were only 9 of us plus our friendly, chatty and likeable driver/tour guide Nan.
7 years ago I went in fully booked large tour bus to the west rim with Interstate Tours.
The tour was 'hijacked' by a large group of Korean visitors and their guide who only conducted his group, in their lingo, not allowing time and opportunity for our driver to conduct the tour to the 6 of us, who did not understanding Korean.
I've complained at the time, to Interstate Tours, the tour firm and the Las Vegas Tourist Office and the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce, they never even bothered to answer.
I had to get off my chest.
Hui Chin and I enjoyed Las Vegas very much.
The 'Strip' was bright, glittering and entertaining enough to impress us a 'bit'.
I, being a 'HUGE' gambler, borrowed a couple of dollars off Hui Chin in an effort to make my fortune on the 5 cent 'poki'.
I left the 'pokis' about 20 minutes later, thinking - with about $5 in my cup - that I was well ahead,
Seven years ago I worked out a strategy after some observations.
I stood back from a bank of machines and watched as gamblers come and try their luck on each or some machines and walk away in frustration to try another one.
Standing back I watched how many spin they had and whether the machine paid anything out.
If someone walked away after a few, say ten or more spins, without a 'strike', I would go and try that machine, usually with some luck.
Well I did say, I'm a big gambler, didn't I?
I am a lousy loser in fact.
I don't like gambling because I might lose, that's all.
Hui Chin I walked up and down the 'Strip" and Downtown many times trying out all the attractions, trains, monorails, Bungi's, free beer, free food, free Margaritas, and cheap food (And I wish I would have been allowed, - cheap woman. I'm joking here of course.) the next best thing after free food, of course.
Well, it has been said before by Elvis, Viva Las Vegas.
We enjoyed Vegas very much.
'Viva Las Vegas'.

You can click on these photos for an enlargement.


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