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43 Unique Things to Do Off the Strip in Vegas (non-touristy hidden gems)

43 Unique Things to Do Off the Strip in Vegas (non-touristy hidden gems)

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Do you want to see parts of Las Vegas that most tourists (and many locals) don’t even know about?

If you’re looking for something different to do in Vegas besides clubbing, partying or gambling, I’ve spent my last 6 trips searching for the most unique activities off the Strip.  

If the crowds and noise get to you after a couple of days, these off strip adventures and scenic spots will be a welcome addition to your Vegas itinerary. 

So whether you’re a seasoned Vegas veteran or a first-time visitor, be sure to check out these unique things to do in Vegas.

Also, you don’t need to rent a car to get to most of these places.

You can make use of the many rideshare options (Uber, Lyft, etc), or book a tour which usually come with hotel pick up and drop off.

This post contains affiliate links, meaning if you click through and make a purchase I may make a small commission. I only share information about things I know, love and trust!

1. Sunrise Horseback Ride and Cowboy Breakfast

Book a tour with Wild West Horseback Adventures who will bring you to a gorgeous ranch setting in the Nevada desert where you’ll ride horses among the red rocks, Joshua trees and canyons.

After the ride, you’ll be treated to a hot cowboy breakfast or country-style dinner.

This is a great excursion in Vegas if you’re visiting between October and April.

2. Lion Habitat Ranch

man feeding lettuce to a giraffe

This is one of my favorite places to visit in Vegas that no one seems to know about, and one of my favorite non touristy things to do in this city.

If you’re looking for something truly unique, consider taking a trip to the Lion Habitat Ranch, a nonprofit animal sanctuary.

This ranch is home to a variety of animals, but its main residents are the 30+ lions, most of which are descendants from the lions used in the MGM shows up until 2012.

Visitors can take a tour of the property and learn about the lions, as well as get the opportunity to feed them.

You’ll also get to meet Ozzie the giraffe who paints pictures and has quite the personality! It’s a once in a lifetime experience that’s sure to create memories that will last a lifetime.

3. Red Rock Canyon for Scenic Views and Hiking

Just outside of Las Vegas, there is a hidden gem known as the Red Rock Canyon, which offers visitors a chance to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city and explore the natural beauty of the Mojave Desert.

This area is famous for its stunning red rock formations, which were formed over millions of years by wind and water erosion. 

The canyon is full of color and texture, and the hiking trails are well-marked and easy to follow.

The views from the top of the canyon are absolutely stunning, and there are plenty of opportunities to take photos. 

You can explore the area on your own, but the best way to see all the best viewpoints is with a tour guide. 

This Red Rock Canyon hiking tour will pick you up, and let your group choose what type of hike to do based on your hiking level and interests.

Your guide will lead you through canyons for outstanding views and point out the best photo opportunities. 

4. Boulder City and Hoover Dam

The Hoover Dam is one of the most iconic and popular tourist attractions in the country, and it’s only a short drive from Vegas.

For those interested in learning more about the dam and its history, there are tours available that provide an in-depth look at the structure and its construction. 

Try this Hoover Dam mini tour – perfect if you have limited time or don’t want to spend a full off the Strip. 

Additionally, Boulder City is a quaint little town that offers a charming alternative to Vegas’ neon lights and glitzy casinos.

The city’s historic downtown area has plenty of hidden gems, including cute cafes and antique shops.

Nelson ghost town

Boulder City Half Day Tour – enjoy the convenience of hotel pickup, and have a few hours to explore this historic city full of charming shops, famous eateries and historic exhibits around the city. 

Looking for a full day tour? 

On this unique experience, you’ll discover Seven Magic Mountains, Nelson Ghost Town, explore the historic district of Boulder City and roam around Hoover Dam. 

5. Lake Las Vegas

Lake Las Vegas

Located 30 minutes from the Strip in Henderson, Lake Las Vegas is an oasis in the middle of the desert.

A peaceful area with a beautiful waterfront, shops, high end resorts and European-inspired architecture, it’s a great place to stroll for an afternoon away from the city. 

6. Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks

For those who want to explore beyond Nevada, Zion National Park in Utah is an adventurous day trip from Las Vegas.

This world-famous national park is known for its stunning sandstone cliffs, canyons and rivers.

There are plenty of hiking trails to explore, and the park also offers ranger-led tours and educational programs.

Since Zion National Park is a 3 hour drive from Las Vegas, I recommend a small group tour so you can cover a lot of ground.

This highest-rated tour will bring you to both Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks for hiking among the pastel colored canyons, cliffs and otherworldly landscapes.

This tour includes lunch and plenty of scenic overlooks. 

7. Valley of Fire State Park

The Valley of Fire State Park is another great option for those looking to get away from the crowds and explore nature.

This park is located just north of Las Vegas, and it features some impressive rock formations, petroglyphs, a historic ranch and even a lost city museum.

It’s also home to some unique geological features such as natural arches and balancing rocks.

Book your Valley of Fire Experience here

8. Lake Mead National Recreation Area

Another great option for those who love the outdoors is to visit Lake Mead National Recreation Area.

This large, beautiful lake offers opportunities for swimming, boating and fishing, as well as hiking and wildlife viewing. 

There are also a number of scenic drives and picnic areas.

And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can even go parasailing or take a helicopter tour.

9. Emerald Cove Kayak Tour

Emerald Cove – image credit Viator and River Dogz

This is the highest rated day trip from Vegas!

Escape to the peaceful paradise of the crystal clear waters of the Colorado River.

On this tour, you’ll kayak to emerald green coves and swimming and hiking spots.

You’ll have no idea this tranquil oasis is only one hour from the Strip. 

Read more about the tour here

Watch my video visiting some of the most unique places in Las Vegas!

10. Neon Boneyard Museum

One of the best things about Las Vegas that never gets old is all the glittering lights.

At the outdoor neon sign museum you’ll get to walk through and view all the vintage neon signs from the golden days of Las Vegas. 

Inside tip – plan to arrive just before sunset so you get views of the lights during the day, golden hour and evening. 

11. Fergusons Downtown

This is an old motel that has been converted to local artisan shops.

At this real life Etsy store you’ll find plant stores, vintage shops, photography, natural remedies and more.

There are also restaurants, a café and a bar on site.

Come for the vintage Las Vegas vibes, stay for the great shopping. 

Fergusons Downtown is located at 1028 E Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101, United States.

Inside tip: if you’re planning to visit Fremont Street in the evening, leave a couple hours early, visit Fergusons and then walk 5 minutes to Fremont Street.

12. Pinball Hall of Fame

a warehouse with vintage pinball machines

One of the best cheap Las Vegas attractions and perfect for families.

Escape the Las Vegas heat and enter a world of hundreds of vintage pinball machines and retro and classic arcade games.

It’s free to enter, you just need quarters to play the games (most will run you 50 cents to a dollar or two).

You can find the Pinball Hall of Fame at 4925 Las Vegas Blvd S, Las Vegas, NV 89119, United States.

There’s lots of free parking, and it’s easy to find for Ubers, Lyfts and taxis.

Tip: if you’re visiting the “Welcome to Las Vegas” sign, you can walk from there to the Pinball museum.

13. Hollywood Cars Museum & Liberace Garage

Here’s your chance to see famous cars from Hollywood movies and pop culture.

Think James Bond, Dukes of Hazzard, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Batman and Back to the Future vehicles!

This is a great off-strip attraction and affordable for families as children under 16 are free. 

A great way to save admission to this museum and other top Las Vegas attractions is by using your Go City pass.

Enjoy savings and other perks on more than 35 experiences in Vegas. 

Hollywood Cars Museum & Liberace Garage is located at: 5115 Dean Martin Dr UNIT 905, Las Vegas, NV 89118, United States

14. Las Vegas Arts District 

This is an up and coming neighborhood south of the Fremont area.

Explore the hundreds of murals and tasteful graffiti, several craft breweries, quirky local dive bars and vintage shops.

I recommend visiting Servehzah for michelada beer flights and a great patio or Able Baker Brewing for a massive selection of unique beers on tap. 

To get the most out of this up and coming neighborhood, take a fun evening tour consisting of hidden murals, vintage cocktails, champagne and an off-menu dinner.

Your guide will also take tons of photos of you and your group! 

Just read how good the reviews are on Viator!

Read more of my favorite things to do in the Las Vegas Arts District here!

Or watch my full YouTube video touring around the Arts District neighborhood:

15. The Mob Museum

The Mob Museum in Las Vegas is a must-visit for history enthusiasts and crime aficionados!

It offers a captivating journey through the city’s notorious past.

Housed in a former courthouse, this immersive museum delves into the fascinating world of organized crime, showcasing artifacts, interactive exhibits, and gripping tales of gangsters like Al Capone and Bugsy Siegel.

It’s a one-of-a-kind experience that brings Sin City’s darker history to life.

Grab your ticket to the Mob Museum here

Inside Tip for Visiting: If you’re not interested in the Mob history stuff, you can still visit the hidden speakeasy and enjoy some of the most unique cocktails you’ll ever try.

  • Grab the secret password from their website
  • Head to the side of the building, and find the staircase that leads to a green door with a doorbell

16. Las Vegas Showgirl Museum

If you’re a fan of the glitz, glam and the amazing costumes synonymous with Las Vegas, you’re going to love this hidden gem museum.

Every inch is packed with costumes, jewelry and props from some of the best Vegas performers of the 1950s to the 1980s.

If you’re in Vegas for a bachelorette party, this is a perfect stop on your itinerary. 

Las Vegas Showgirl Museum is located at: 3217 Gaucho Dr, Las Vegas, NV 89169, United States

Read more fun ideas for a bachelorette party in Vegas

17. Primal Steakhouse 

This is the number one rated restaurant in Vegas, but tourists don’t know about this place yet!

A quick drive from the Strip, this restaurant makes you feel like you’ve stepped onto a Game of Thrones set.

Dimly lit by candlelight and wall sconces and decorated with blood red curtains and armor, this is just the beginning.

Once you glance at the Viking-themed menu, you’ll want one of everything.

Inside Tip: Try the Viking punch (served in a horn) and the tomahawk steaks. 

Primal Steakhouse is located at: 3542 S Maryland Pkwy, Las Vegas, NV 89169, United States

18. Gäbi Coffee & Bakery 

colorful cakes and pastries on display

This place is what I call a speakeasy coffee shop.

Located in a nondescript spot, it feels like you’ve walked through the door of Narnia into a lush warehouse full of plants and pretty pastries.

Come for the lavender earl gray cake and stay for the vintage décor. 

Gäbi Coffee & Bakery is located at: 5808 Spring Mountain Rd #104, Las Vegas, NV 89146, United States

19. Vickie’s Diner

A staple breakfast spot among locals in Las Vegas, including a full breakfast spreads for under $8.

Enjoy home cooked diner favorites among the pink rockabilly vibe.  

Vickie’s Diner is located at: 953 E Sahara Ave Suite A-2, Las Vegas, NV 89109, United States

20. Luv-It Frozen Custard 

This hidden gem dessert spot has been a staple in Las Vegas among locals since the 1970s.

Stop by for sweet treat at a place Vegas locals rave about.

Grab some dole whip, a classic banana split, or choose from dozens of flavors of smooth and creamy frozen custard.

It’s walk-up only, so plan to drive here. 

Luv-it is located at: 505 E Oakey Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89104, United States

Tip: this isn’t the best neighborhood, so visit during the daytime and its best if you have your own vehicle.

21. Juan’s Flaming Fajitas 

The best kept secret restaurant among locals in Las Vegas. It’s where you go for the best Mexican food in town.

You must try the fajitas that are lit on fire right before they’re served to you.

The sizzle is real! Try and make it for daily happy hour for margaritas under $5. 

Juan’s has several locations around Las Vegas. We went to the one located at: 9640 W Tropicana Ave, Las Vegas, NV 89147, United States

22. Squeeze In 

A huge selection of omelets and home cooked biscuits and gravy.

If you’re in the mood for a great breakfast spot with quirky décor, come here!

It’s also a great restaurant to bring kids in Vegas – you can draw and doodle on the walls!

23. Back to the 80s Cafe

This place will hit you right in the nostalgia. Completely decorated in 1980s pop culture, you’ll travel back in time to one of the most outrageous and colorful decades.

Vintage video games at each table and popular 80s movies are streamed all day.

Come for the memories, stay for the themed burgers, fries and milkshakes. 

Foodie Tours and Unique Bars 

24. Atomic Liquors

The oldest freestanding bar in Las Vegas.

In the 1950s, Patrons used to climb on the roof to watch the nuclear testing 60 miles away.

Nowadays, it’s a fun and casual dive bar and a cool spot to relive Las Vegas’ history. 

25. Downtown Vegas Foodie and Sightseeing Tour

Learn about the city’s history while you eat your way through it!

Combine a walking tour of downtown Vegas with stops at 5 hidden gem eateries.

You’ll see some of the best sights in downtown Las Vegas (Fremont area) that most tourists often miss. 

26. Pioneer Saloon

An old western saloon, surrounded by abandoned buildings nearby.

This saloon has been here since the late 1800s when the town of Goodsprings was in the middle of the mining boom.

If you’re a fan of Fallout, you’ll recognize that an exact replica of this saloon was made for the video game.

27. Winery Tour, Death Valley Highlights & Stargazing

So many experiences packed into one day! Start with a stop for wine tasting and a picnic lunch at the Pahrump Valley Winery.

Then you’ll make your way through several scenic viewpoints as you enter Death Valley National Park.

You’ll visit Badwater Basin, salt flats that sit almost 300 feet below sea level.

As the sun sets, you’ll watch this incredible mother nature display in a secret spot called the painted hills.

Finally, you’ll get a chance to stargaze – with no light pollution here, most nights you can see galaxies and shooting stars. 

28. Exotic Car Racing

One of the most popular adrenaline-rush activities in Vegas is exotic car racing.

You can race Lamborghinis, Ferraris, Porsches and more at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Choose from 20 supercars and enjoy the feeling of no speed limits for 2 hours!

29. Desert Range and Speedboat Adventure

If you want to do something wild with your group of friends for your birthday, bachelor party or bachelorette party, this is the tour you want. 

On this tour, your first stop is at an outdoor desert range where you’ll get to use some automatics, then stop for breakfast followed by a few hours on a speedboat and pontoon boat on Lake Mead with stops for swimming, cliff diving and complimentary alcoholic drinks. 

Book your tour on Viator

Read more reviews on Tripadvisor

Tip – For more ideas about some of the main attractions in Las Vegas, I recommend looking into the Las Vegas Go City Pass.

You’ll get great discounts and extra perks on over 35 attractions and experiences. 

30. Join the Mile High Club, Privately

Image courtesy Love Cloud

When they say you can do anything in Las Vegas, they really mean it. This might be one of the most unique experiences I’ve come across yet.

Reach new heights in your relationship by taking a private plane specifically for joining the mile high club.

You’ll have complete privacy (the pilots even put on noise cancelling headphones) and a comfy bed to get the deed done.

Not only that, but you’ll get a bird’s eye view of Red Rock Canyon, Hoover Dam, Lake Mead and the Las Vegas Strip.

More information & book this tour with Love Cloud.

31. Neon Museum

The Neon Museum in Las Vegas is a vibrant homage to the city’s luminous history.

It’s a captivating open-air museum where retired neon signs from famous hotels and businesses find their final resting place.

Take a mesmerizing stroll down memory lane exploring the iconic symbols of Las Vegas’ past.

You can take a self-guided tour during the day, or a guided tour at night when all the signs are lit up.

Tip: buy your tickets online in advance (if you can) and combine a visit to the Neon Museum when planning to visit the Fremont Street Experience (it’s only a few minutes away).

32. National Atomic Testing Museum

This museum is a BLAST…get it?

The National Atomic Testing Museum the story of nuclear weapons testing program in the greater Las Vegas area, throughout the state of Nevada and the country as a whole.

It’s filled with thousands of artifacts and rare photos.

There’s also a theatre that simulates an atomic blast through light, sound and air pressure (this was the coolest part)!

This museum is about a mile and a half east of the Strip on Flamingo Road and Admission is $24 for adults

Money Saving Tip: it’s also one of the attractions included in the Las Vegas Go City pass.

33. Las Vegas Cat Cafe

Did You Know Las Vegas has a Cat Café?

This is a hidden gem in Las Vegas for all you cat lovers out there, or anyone who loves animals and might need a relaxing break from the hustle and bustle of the Strip. 

It’s not just a chill place to drink coffee and play with kittens, it’s actually a non profit rescue and adoption agency. 

Rescued Treasures is located at 4155 N Rancho Dr  about a 20 minute drive northwest of the Strip. 

The cafe opened in 2019, so if it’s been a few years since you’ve visited Vegas, this might be something new for you to try!

Visitors can book a one hour time slot for $12 per person, and this includes playing with cats & kittens, as well as coffee, water and snacks.

At any given time there could be a dozen to 25 cats, including kittens! It all depends on intakes and adoptions, which happen daily. 

34. Omega Mart at Area 15

Meow Wolf’s Area 15 in Las Vegas offers a surreal and creative experience with Omega Mart as its main attraction.

The $49 entry fee provides access to an unconventional grocery store that transforms into a mind-bending journey through hidden doorways and portals, creating a sense of intrigue and wonder.

This self-guided tour offers a unique, confusing, and captivating adventure, making it a worthwhile and creative way to spend time in Las Vegas.

Here are some tips we found useful when we visited:

  • It’s $49 but you can find value pricing, usually mid week during the day which is $10 cheaper
  • It’s free to enter Area 15, you just pay for each individual experience inside
  • It’s family friendly, kids and teenagers will enjoy this – but Anyone under 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
  • There’s a great Bar with drinks and snacks within Omega Mart – so you can take a break and then go back in (the cocktails are SO cool).
  • As far as accessibility, wheelchair users and those with mobility issues can still navigate Omega Mart
  • If you are prone to seizures or sensitive to flashing lights I wouldn’t recommend visiting.
  • For the best experience, I recommend going as early in the day as possible for fewer crowds.
  • Watch my full YouTube video, which gives you an overview of what to expect!

35. Hike to Natural Desert Hot Springs

If you’re visiting Las Vegas in the winter months (October to March) take a day trip into the Mojave Desert where your guide will lead you on a hike to some hidden natural hot springs.

You’ll get to explore ancient petroglyphs from Mohave and Paiute tribes, witness the vivid transformation of the rock face, and soak in secluded backcountry hot springs while enjoying lunch.

Good to know:

  • The hike is considered moderate, with a little scrambling and climbing a ladder
  • Bring an extra pair of dry socks, as you’ll be traversing through water
  • The hike is about 7 miles in length

Book this hiking & hot springs tour here

If you’re not interested in hiking, there’s a hidden hot springs oasis just outside Death Valley National Park, a little over one hour from Las Vegas – Tecopa Hot Springs

On this evening tour, you get to soak in the warm natural springs under a mesmerizing night sky after a scenic drive through the Spring Mountains and Great Basin National Desert.

Tip: this tour is from 6 to 10pm, the perfect choice if you need a chill evening in Las Vegas!

Book the evening hot springs tour here

37. Kayaking & Hot Springs at Hoover Dam

Escape the glitz of Las Vegas for a truly unique day trip that combines Hoover Dam kayaking with a hot springs adventure.

This experience is tailor-made for adventurous souls, with all kayaking equipment provided for a hassle-free journey.

As you paddle through the breathtaking Black Canyon and visit the renowned Emerald Cave, the day unfolds with encounters in a geothermal sauna cave and soaking in serene hot spring pools.

Things to know about this tour:

  • You’ll meet at the Hoover Dam Lodge and Casino
  • It’s a small group tour, capped at 15 people
  • suitable for both beginners and advanced paddlers

This is the most unique way to experience Hoover Dam!

Book the Hoover Dam Kayak & Hot Springs experience here

38. Kayak to Emerald Caves

Ditch the Vegas Strip for a memorable adventure in the great outdoors.

On this guided kayaking tour, you’ll paddle 2 miles up the historic Colorado River, passing through towering canyon walls to reach the iconic “Emerald Caves.”

Enjoy refreshing dips in crystal-clear waters and keep an eye out for wildlife like Bald Eagles and Big Horn sheep.

With a small group of 12 or fewer, this tranquil escape includes stops for snacks and is conveniently accessible with round-trip hotel transport from Las Vegas to Willow Beach in Arizona.

Good to know:

  • there are several tour operators who offer this experience, but booking with EPIC Emerald Cave Tours offers the smallest group tours available, making your trip more comfortable with VIP treatment.

Book the Emerald Cave kayak experience here

39. Zion & Bryce Canyon National Park Tour

Head out on an unforgettable day trip from Las Vegas to explore the natural wonders of Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks.

If your visit to Las Vegas is a once-in-a-lifetime trip, you don’t want to miss these incredible sights.

Witness the breathtaking beauty of towering red rock formations and lush green canyons in Zion, followed by the mesmerizing hoodoos and amphitheaters of Bryce Canyon.

With both parks within a manageable drive from Las Vegas (albeit, it will be a long day), it’s an awesome chance to soak in the stunning landscapes of southern Utah while still enjoying the Vegas vibe.

Book your small group tour to Zion & Bryce Canyon with Coexist West Coast

40. Visit Soulo – a Japanese Head Spa

Las Vegas’ newest relaxation attraction is getting a treatment at Soulo Japanese Head Spa.

There’s all kinds of different services you can choose from, but they all include head massages, scalp treatment, steaming, hot towels and shampoo and conditioning treatments.

Soulo Hair Spa is located in Chinatown at 5020 Spring Mountain Rd unit 5, Las Vegas, NV 89146.

Plan to book your appointment at least a few weeks in advance!

Discover a hidden gem on a hike that leads to a breathtaking viewpoint that even many locals haven’t discovered.

Starting alongside the picturesque Las Vegas Wash with its year-round flowing water, ponds, weirs, and unexpected lush vegetation, the journey takes a scenic half-mile route before it transitions to a rocky trail that leads to an enchanting ridge.

At the summit, be prepared to be awestruck by the panoramic view of the entire Las Vegas skyline, stretching from Mandalay Bay to Downtown—a photo-worthy experience you won’t want to miss.

What to know about this hike:

  • It starts at 8pm
  • 1 mile each way
  • 500 meters of elevation gain
  • Your guide will provide lights & extra water
  • Plan for about 2 hours

Book the guided night-hike experience here

42. Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend Day Trip

Experience a 15-hour day trip from Las Vegas to uncover Lower Antelope Canyon’s stunning beauty, along with iconic Horseshoe Bend and Lake Powell.

Enjoy the convenience of spacious transport, a continental breakfast, a hearty hot lunch, plenty of snacks and guided exploration by Navajo experts.

Marvel at Horseshoe Bend’s monumental rock face and savor the tranquility of Lake Powell and Glen Canyon Dam, all included in this 5-star rated Las Vegas tour.

Book your experience to Antelope Canyon here

43. Flame Thrower Experience at Adrenaline Mountain

Experience a fiery adrenaline rush like no other when you ignite flames that shoot nearly 100 feet in front of you for a heart-pounding 8 seconds.

Following this explosive start, rip around in a 1-hour side-by-side UTV adventure in a private track through the historic mining district trails.

Your all-inclusive tour ensures a seamless day of excitement, complete with roundtrip transportation, a safety briefing, and comforting refreshments like bottled water, coffee, and hot chocolate.

Book the experience here

There are so many unique things to do off the Strip in Las Vegas, making it a great destination for people who are looking for something a little different during their vacation.

Whether you’re an adventure junkie looking for thrilling outdoor activities or someone who loves the arts and culture, there is something for everyone in Vegas.

So the next time you’re planning a trip to Las Vegas, be sure to add some of these unique activities to your itinerary and experience all that this city has to offer!