Just over a century ago, Las Vegas was first established as a small desert settlement in southern Nevada. The community experienced its first population boom after the 1928 Hoover Dam construction and Nevada’s 1931 legalisation of gambling. In under a decade, Las Vegas supplanted Reno as the world’s gambling capital, a title Las Vegas still holds to this day. Car hire in Las Vegas can take visitors to any of the massive casino hotels in the downtown area, the Fremont Street Experience, and the city’s iconic Strip.
Although Las Vegas does have an international airport, most visitors still enter the city by car, especially those from neighbouring California. Buses are the only other form of public transportation which travels directly into Las Vegas, but there is also a monorail running along the Strip’s east side as well as trolley service along the Strip and downtown areas.
Car Hire Las Vegas
Shuttle buses frequently travel between McCarran International Airport and its car hire facility. However, the Strip also offers nearly as many places to compare car hire as casinos. No matter where motorists rent their vehicles in Las Vegas, advance booking is highly advised during major conventions, weekends and other busy occasions.
Speeding is one problem drivers rarely encounter in Las Vegas thanks to the constant police patrols on the city’s wide streets. However, traffic often grinds to a virtual halt along the Strip, whose less than seven kilometres often take an hour to navigate on weekends and other busy periods. Visitors should follow the lead of Las Vegas locals and drive along Interstate 15, the main thoroughfare between Las Vegas and southern California, then take the closest exit to their Strip hotel.
Things To See and Do
Several Las Vegas visitors never leave the Strip, but it’s worth using car rental in Las Vegas to drive the 13kms to the imposing 221m Hoover Dam along the Colorado River. Las Vegas also lies within easy driving distance of some of the world’s most beautiful desert landscapes, including Bootleg Canyon’s mountain biking trails, the Valley of Fire State Park’s stunning red sandstone cliffs, and the Lake Mead National Recreation Area centred around its namesake manmade lake.
Best Time To Visit
There really is no low season in Las Vegas, whose desert climate can cause temperatures to soar as high as 42°C on hot summer days and plummet as low as -2°C on cold winter nights. Autumn and spring temperatures have less extreme variations between 20°C and 30°C. Rain is much rarer in Las Vegas than the sunshine the city enjoys on an average 315 days per year. Visitors wishing to save money and avoid crowds should come to Las Vegas during December’s first three weeks or on July weekends.