21 Things To Do In Downtown Las Vegas
Located just a 15-minute drive from the Strip, Downtown Las Vegas is a side of the city you’re missing out on. Before the mega hotels and casinos, downtown was Las Vegas. It was where locals and tourists gathered at El Cortez and the Golden Nugget to try their luck at the penny slots, enjoy a steak, and take in a lounge act.
From the 50s to the 90s the area fell into disrepair, but luckily the situation changed when the Fremont Street Experience opened in 1995.
Nowadays, there are tons of attractions, casinos, museums, and restaurants to choose from when visiting this part of town.
Keep reading to see 21 things to do in Downtown Las Vegas.
Seeing the fire-shooting praying mantis at Container Park is one of the most fun things to do in Downtown Las Vegas.
When you’re looking for things to do in Downtown Las Vegas, know that there’s no shortage of unique attractions to keep visitors busy. Check out some of our top picks below.
Sure, hitting the jackpot is exciting, but it’s nowhere near as thrilling as the pure adrenaline rush that comes from a ride on the SlotZilla zipline.
Located under the Fremont Street Experience canopy, SlotZilla is a 12-story zipline attraction inspired by slot machines. SlotZilla has two levels. The lower level (Zip-Zilla) is a seated zipline ride 77 feet off the ground. The upper level (Super-Hero Zoom) is 114 feet high and launches riders in a horizontal position like Superman.
Whichever ride you choose, you’ll enjoy a bird’s eye view of the flashy neon signs and classic hotels inside the Fremont Street Experience.
Zip-Zilla Zipline: $39
Super-Hero Zoom Line: $59
Monday – Wednesday – Closed
Thursday – Sunday 12:00 PM – 2:00 AM
Monday – Wednesday 4:00 PM – 1:00 AM
Thursday – Sunday 12:00 PM – 2:00 AM
Address: E Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101
Downtown Container Park
Part mall, part park, part outdoor entertainment center, Downtown Container Park is a great spot if you’re in need of a little retail therapy or some diversion.
As its name suggests, Downtown Container Park is made up of old shipping containers repurposed and stacked together with shops, restaurants, and even a water slide. And that’s all without mentioning the giant fire-shooting praying mantis standing guard over the two-story complex.
After 9 PM, the park becomes an adults-only fun zone. Let your inner child run loose as you climb to the top of the massive treehouse and take a ride down on one of the twisting slides. Or chill out with a cocktail and listen to live music.
Whether shopping, playing, or dining, Downtown Container Park is one of the best things to do in Downtown Las Vegas.
Monday – Thursday: 11:30 AM – 10 PM
Friday: 11:00 AM – 1:00 AM
Saturday: 10:00 AM – 1:00 AM
Sunday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM
Address: 707 Fremont Street Las Vegas, NV 89101
Old Las Vegas Mormon Fort
The Old Las Vegas Mormon Fort is an often-missed state park that’s well worth a visit.
Originally built by Mormon settlers in the mid-1880’s as protection from Indian attacks, the fort’s three acres contain living quarters, authentic wagons, livestock barricades, and a host of artifacts.
After visiting the fort, enjoy lunch al fresco at one of the many picnic areas or pick up a souvenir at the gift shop.
Price: $3. Free for children under 12
Tuesday – Saturday: 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Sunday and Monday: Closed
Address: 500 E Washington Ave, Las Vegas, NV 89101
El Cortez is the longest continuously-running hot-casino in Las Vegas.
Sure, the Strip gets a lot of attention when it comes to gambling, but don’t write off Downtown Las Vegas’s casinos so fast.
While the Strip’s casinos may be flashier and more famous, they also have more expensive games and lower odds. On the other hand, Downtown Las Vegas casinos tend to have more low-limit tables and penny slots. Many also think players have better odds at these kinds of casinos.
So if you’re feeling lucky, check out our Downtown Las Vegas casino picks.
Golden Nugget Casino
The Golden Nugget opened in 1946 and in many ways it’s maintained the old-school Las Vegas ambiance. It’s one of the larger, more upscale casinos on Fremont Street so you won’t find a ton of bargains here, but the hot tables and high energy more than make up for it.
Here you’ll find slots, keno, a poker room, and a race and sportsbook. The wide array of minimums means that every gambler can find a game to fit their budget and style.
Address: 129 E Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101
The D Las Vegas
Originally opened as The Sundance, then changed to Fitzgeralds, and now in its latest incarnation as The D, this casino has been around for a while. The D’s assortment of modern and vintage games means that any player will find a game that’s just right for them.
If you need a break, LONGBAR offers over 1,000 feet of counter space, complete with friendly bartenders and video poker machines. Or head up to Vue Bar on the second floor for a fantastic view of Fremont Street that’s perfect for watching the Viva Vision light show.
Address: 301 E Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101
El Cortez Hotel and Casino
The El Cortez has been a Vegas staple for decades. In fact, it’s the longest continuously running downtown hotel-casino in the city.
This vintage casino is a great choice for those who want a taste of Old Vegas. Gamblers will find plenty of low-limit games, a laid-back atmosphere, and plenty of colorful locals. There are also over 200 original slots (including penny and nickel machines), as well as single- and double-deck blackjack.
Address: 600 E Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101
The Silver Slipper is just one of hundreds of neon signs you can check out at the Neon Museum.
If you’re looking to learn something new, or just add a dash of culture to your Las Vegas trip, museums are the way to go. Downtown Las Vegas has a selection of diverse choices, so you’ll be able to easily find one that appeals to your interests
If there’s one thing Downtown Las Vegas has in abundance, it’s neon signs. But what happens when they lose their glow? They’re sent to the Neon Museum of course!
Tour the Neon Boneyard or the North Gallery and see vintage signs like the Lucky Cuss Motel, The Silver Slipper, and Binion’s Horseshoe. Some date back as far as the 1930’s!
Price: $20. Children six and under are free.
Hours: Daily 3:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Address: 770 Las Vegas Boulevard North, Las Vegas, NV 8910
Step into the Mob Museum and discover the seedy underbelly of organized crime in Las Vegas. Housed in what was originally the Las Vegas post office and courtroom, a visit to this museum is perfect for anyone interested in Las Vegas history.
Exhibits date back to the prohibition era and include photos, biographies, and artifacts. There are also interactive exhibits like the Firearm Training Simulator and the Crime Lab.
If you need a break during your visit, head to the Speakeasy. The Speakeasy is a password-protected, 20s-style bar that serves up old-fashioned cocktails just like the mobsters used to drink.
General admission: $29.95
Deluxe Pass: $41.95 (includes entry to one interactive exhibit)
Premier Pass: $48.95 (includes entry to two interactive exhibits)
Hours: Daily 9:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Address: 300 Stewart Avenue, Las Vegas, NV 89101
Discovery Children’s Museum
If you’re visiting Downtown Las Vegas with kids, then the Discovery Children’s Museum is a non-negotiable. This three-story mega museum features 58,000 feet of themed exhibition halls with an incredible 26,000 square feet of interactive hands-on exhibits.
Ongoing exhibits include Toddler Town, a play area where little ones can enjoy the Crawl Zone and make new friends as they grow their social skills.
Older kids will fall in love with The Summit, a 70-foot, 13-level climbing structure that includes slides, climbing tubes, and hands-on activities. There’s also Eco City, an environmentally-friendly city where kids can practice going to the bank, the grocery store, and the airport.
Monday – Saturday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Sunday: 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Address: 360 Promenade Place Las Vegas, NV 89106
Zak Bagans’ Haunted Museum
Founded in 2018 by the host of the Travel Channel series Ghost Adventures, this museum is sure to get you spooked silly.
The 11,000-square-foot museum is housed in a 1930’s mansion that’s allegedly haunted. When visiting, you’ll have a chance to venture down the many dark hallways and secret passageways into more than 30 rooms filled with Bagans’ personal collection.
If you’re brave enough, you’ll have a chance to see authentic items like Dr. Jack Kevorkian’s “Death Van” and Charles Manson’s bone fragments. And be sure to look out for the scariest item of them all--the Dybbuk Box, a wine box supposedly possessed by a malicious spirit.
Thursday – Monday: 10:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Tuesday & Wednesday: Closed
Address: 600 E Charleston Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89104
The Viva Vision Light Show runs nightly at the Fremont Experience in Downtown Las Vegas.
Viva Vision Light Show
While you’re strolling through the Fremont Experience, be sure to look up. Not only is the canopy ceiling the largest in the world, but it also hosts Viva Vision, the world’s largest video screen. To put it simply, the Strip’s got nothing on this spectacular light show.
The screen is 1,375 feet long, 90 feet wide, and features 16.4 million pixels. The numbers may not mean much, but you’ll be amazed by the clarity and brilliance of it all. Light shows are accompanied by music that ranges from old-school rock to DJs like Tiësto and Steve Aoki.
Shows take place at the top of the hour starting at 6:00 PM and ending at 1:00 AM. They last about six to seven minutes.
Free Nightly Music Show
The Fremont Street Experience is the best place to enjoy Free live music in Las Vegas. The open air pedestrian mall has three stages and features a rotating schedule of performances from a variety of musical genres.
Nightly house bands include Alter Ego, a classic rock cover band, Dancing DJs, performers with killer acrobatic moves, and Tony Marques Band, a country group with a rockin’ twist.
Shows play every night starting at 6:00 PM. Check the calendar for more details.
Downtown Las Vegas Events Center
The Downtown Las Vegas Events Center, or DLVEC for short, is a massive open-air venue with space for 11,000. \
Past musical guests have included the Barenaked Ladies, The Goo Goo Dolls, and 3 Doors Down. In addition to concerts, DLVEC also hosts food truck festivals, sporting event watch parties, and MMA fights.
While DLVEC was on hiatus during the pandemic, things are already starting to look up when it comes to the return of large in-person events.
The eight-patty Octuple Bypass Burger at the Heart Attack Grill might be the naughtiest dish in all of Downtown Las Vegas.
If you’re spending a full day in Downtown Las Vegas (and we recommend that you do), it’s important to keep your energy up. Luckily, there are loads of quality bars and restaurants in this area.
Here are some of our favorites.
Located in the Arts District just south of Downtown Las Vegas, The Garden aims to reinvent the gay bar. Rather than serving up all you can drink specials served by scantily-clad servers, The Garden is all about craft cocktails, elevated snacks, and a luxurious ambiance.
If you happen to be there during the weekend, be sure to check out the Bottomless Drag Brunch. It promises “sickening queens, delicious food, and bottomless cocktails” and really, what more could you ask for?
Thursday 5:00 PM – 3:00 AM
Friday 5:00 PM – 4:00 AM
Saturday 12:00 PM – 4:00 AM
Sunday 12:00 PM – 3:00 AM
Address: 1017 S. 1st Street – Suite 180, Las Vegas
Flex Cocktail Lounge
Flex Cocktail Lounge has been a mainstay in the Las Vegas gay bar scene for more than 20 years. It has a reputation as an easy-going, divey spot to stop for cheap drinks and quality entertainment.
Regardless of the day, there’s some kind of live entertainment happening. There’s Movie Mondays, $2 Tuesdays, Dragaoke (drag karaoke) Wednesdays, and regular drag shows on Thursdays and Fridays, just to name a few.
Address: 4371 W Charleston Blvd, Las Vegas
Monday – Sunday: 12:00 PM – 12:00 AM
Carson Kitchen specializes in creative American cuisine and craft cocktails. Here the chefs elevate classic comfort food dishes by preparing them with upscale ingredients. Think baked macaroni and cheese, short rib steaks, and chicken thighs with white barbecue sauce.
In addition to their entrees, Carson Kitchen also has a variety of craft beers, global wines, and micro-brewed sodas.
Monday – Thursday: 12:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Friday and Saturday: 12:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Sunday: 11 AM – 9 PM (Brunch Menu 11 AM – 4:00 PM)
Address: 124 S 6th St Ste 100 Las Vegas, NV 89101
Le Thai deserves a place among our favorite Downtown Las Vegas restaurants for two reasons. One, because it was one of the first to make downtown an eating destination, and two because their food is just downright incredible.
Noodles and curries are the shining stars here. We recommend the three-color curry, a blend of red, yellow, and green curries, or the homemade Thai noodle soup.
Monday: 11:30 AM – 9 PM
Wednesday – Thursday: 11:30 AM – 10 PM
Friday – Saturday: 11:30 AM – 11 PM
Sunday: 4:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Address: 523 Fremont St Las Vegas, NV 89101
Heart Attack Grill
This aptly-named restaurant specializes in everything fatty, sugary, and highly caloric—basically foods that could give you a heart attack if you eat them enough. That being the case, the Heart Attack Grill has a medical theme.
When you arrive, your doctor (waiter) or nurse (waitress) will ask you to slip on a hospital gown. Wine is served in IV bags, while shots come in oversized syringes. The menu consists of burgers and fries, but don’t let that fool you. In addition to serving up “normal-sized” burgers, Heart Attack Grill also features quadruple, quintuple, and even octuple burgers (eight patties).
It’s nothing if not ridiculous, but when in Vegas, right?
Hours: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM
Address: 450 Fremont St #130 Las Vegas, NV 89101
Whiskey Licker Up
If you want a meal with a view, look no further than Whiskey Licker Up at Binion’s. The restaurant prides itself on three things: good food, good whiskey, and good music. What could be better than that?
The menu features specialty cocktails in addition to customizable burgers, po’boy sandwiches, and wings. While the food holds its own, it’s really the open-air rotating bar and great view of Fremont street that’ll keep you here.
Hours: 11:30 AM – 4:00 AM
Address: 128 Fremont St #2 Las Vegas, NV 89101
Vic & Anthony’s Steakhouse
After you’ve had your fun at the Golden Nugget, head for Vic & Anthony’s Steakhouse, located conveniently inside the casino. Here you can expect grass-fed beef, fresh seafood, and quality wine.
Sunday: 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Monday – Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday – Thursday: 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Friday – Saturday: 5:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Address: 129 Fremont St Las Vegas, NV 89101
If you can’t get enough of Prohibition-era bars, then head to The Commonwealth. Stepping into this bar is like stepping back in time. The interior is dark and is furnished with leather-topped stools and ornate chandeliers.
There’s also a rooftop terrace with sofa seating that makes for a great spot to sip on a cocktail as you watch the neon lights of Fremont Street come alive.
Tuesday – Thursday: 9:00 PM – 2:00 AM
Friday – Saturday: 6:00 PM – 2:00 AM
Address: 525 E Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101
To really understand the appeal of Atomic Liquors, you’ve got to know a bit of history. For starters, it’s Las Vegas’s oldest freestanding bar. But more than that, it used to provide patrons with some pretty crazy entertainment.
During the 50s and early 60s the military conducted nuclear tests at the Nevada Test Site about a 100-mile drive from Las Vegas. That meant patrons of the bar could head to the roof and watch a nuclear explosion while sipping on a drink.
Nowadays, Atomic Liquors is a little less atomic and a little more liquor, but it hasn’t lost its old-fashioned charm. Inside you’ll find a retro jukebox and the original 50s signage.
Monday – Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday – Thursday: 12:00 PM – 12:00 AM
Friday – Saturday: 12:00 PM – 2:00 AM
Sunday: 12:00 PM –10:00 PM
Address: 917 Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101
Downtown Las Vegas Is Waiting For You
Now that you have a grasp of all the things to do in Downtown Las Vegas, it’s time to book your ticket and start having fun. For even more information about planning your next trip to Las Vegas, check out our 3- and 5-day itineraries, as well as our top show and tour recommendations.