‘I don’t believe it, I’m actually in Las Vegas!’
I grinned, gobsmacked at the neon lights of the city that glittered and blinked around me as I gazed around me, high above from the rooftop VIP pool party that raged behind me.
Taking a gulp of my cosmopolitan cocktail, I turned round just in time to see well-dressed people whether in their cocktail dresses or suits jump into the pool, fully dressed, as the thumping beat of the music crescended and strobe lighting shot forth, lighting up the ambience of the water that saw women burst out below the surface, mascara running down their faces.
This is Las Vegas, I thought to myself, again.
Taking another gulp, I watched the feathered and scantily clad dancers perform feats of the human body high up on their podium, cheered loudly on by local Americans in town for the weekend and by bashful tourists, surprised as me at the debauchery and outrageousness of it all.
I felt tired.
But good tired.
It was truly a long day, started off from the Grand Canyon, early this morning, and driving back to this city in the Nevada desert crossing States after stopping off at iconic American sights that were etched into my mind from a young age through film and literature.
Ten fun-packed days has whizzed by, testing my limits from the hikes in the many national parks visited, particularly from the 12 mile journey within the Grand Canyon that saw my calves ache well into the next few days.
I was proud.
Particularly that my premiere travelling in my sixth continent had involved all the American culture and nature I could lay on my hands in this quite short time.
I wanted to come back. Explore more of the good old US of A. There were so many more things to see and do. I wanted to spend a few more days in Las Vegas before chilling out on the beaches of California, riding the trolleys in San Francisco, checking out the Windy City of Chicago and be dwarfed by the Statue of Liberty in New York.
But most of all, I wanted to experience the warm and helpful American personality that I found at every destination in the three states that I visited (Nevada, Utah and Arizona).
High above on this rooftop with the city before me, you couldn’t help but reflect. But I knew one thing:
I had an AWESOME time!
And it was all thanks to Trek America.
They showed me where to go, what fun things to do, getting us to laugh all the time, teaching us far too many facts that we didn’t know and getting us to push ourselves. The two tour leaders, Tommy and Christine, were absolutely fantastic, patient, meeting our every need and just being themselves!
So, before I start blubbering into my now empty fancy cocktail glass, I’d better get another and show you what happened on our journey from Grand Canyon to Las Vegas.
It’s gonna be one hell of a ride.
First, check out this video:
High Expectations of Route 66
Packing up our tents for the last time after sleeping comfortably for the last two nights in the Grand Canyon National Park, I was still feeling mega tired from the epic hike the day before and serene from seeing the wonderful sunset lighting up the ancient rocks when we had our dinner on the overhanging rock.
But I was also excited.
Later on, for the first time, I would get to see the famous Route 66!
Visions of riding with Hell’s Angels soon crossed my mind and I couldn’t wait to publicly announce that my feet would firmly touch the iconic highway.
Why is Route 66 so popular?
Well, Route 66 runs from Chicago in Illinois to Santa Monica in California covering a total of 2,448 miles. So it’s easy to see how many people close this route as it snakes its way through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. It’s the perfect sightseeing route!
I was a little disheartened that we would get an hour to play on Route 66. But I knew why as we had to get to Las Vegas on time.
But actually, an hour visiting a rest stop in Route 66 was more than enough.
It was probably the most let down I felt on this 10 day trip and it was all my own fault.
I built it all up in my mind and my expectations were sky high of an experience that I didn’t know what was going to happen.
Souvenir shops lined the highway at the rest stop and after a few pics, I swiftly moved on to the old fashioned cars and statues that were indeed a tourist draw.
It was probably the first time in ages where I truly felt I was in the presence of tourists and they absolutely annoyed me as I cursed them for ruining my romantic notion of Route 66.
It was just too busy and to be honest, too gimmicky.
However, I did enjoy the 1950s style architectural monochrome look and neon lights buzzed happily almost in tune to the drifter who strummed tunes on his guitar. His story was amazing. He had travelled all his life through America far and wide shown on the signatures on his guitar. We left him as he bade us farewell with another song.
Armed with my fridge magnet and postcard of the route, we could now move on to our next American icon on out way to Las Vegas.
The Dam Feeding Las Vegas
Surprisingly for me, we came across the Hoover Dam!
It was a nice little visit as we got to see this mammoth engineering project up close.
But did you know that the Hoover Dam marks the border between Arizona and Nevada?
We were getting closer to Las Vegas…
The Las Vegas VIP Experience Beckons
Rolling into this gambling capital at 4pm, we had a few hours to kill after checking in into the prestigious Bally’s Hotel & Casino. The room was pretty gorgeous offering great views of ‘The Strip’ where we could see Caesar’s Palace, the Bellagio and more!
It was all so rather thrilling!
But I had a mission. A BIG mission you could say.
I’ve got size 14 feet and I need brand designer shoes to make look good and feel good!
So, here I am in the city of malls and I had the perfect chance to shop until I drop!
Fast forward a couple of hours of enjoying the mall experience and I finally had the shoes of my dreams:
A blue pair of Steve Maddens!
At the risk of turning into a squealing fashion blogger, I can’t help but rave constantly about them!
They were sleek, shiny, comfortable and dare I say it, sexy?
What’s more, they were size 14!!!
So, donning the Steve Maddens, fixing my hair, throwing on an outfit and finally shaving my face, I was to go on a night out on the town with Trek America.
This wasn’t going to be any old party in Las Vegas on our last night in America, oh no.
It was going to be a VIP party starting with our very own stretch limousine down the Las Vegas Strip!
This mammoth limo had all the works. A pole to dance on, disco lights, champagne on ice and an iPod dock to play all of our favourite tunes.
I couldn’t believe it.
Could this be like The Hangover?
What a way to start the night out in Las Vegas!
And as if we hadn’t realised already we were in Las Vegas, the limo pulled up at the iconic ‘Welcome to Las Vegas sign’.
Of course, we skipped out with our champagne and cheerily poses for a picture with the sign to signify we made it in Las Vegas.
After another ride in the stretch limousine staring out of the window at the famous casinos and hotels; the raucous visitors on the sidewalks; and the big displays of neon lights, we were dropped off outside the Majestic to watch the stunning fountain displays.
At this point, I must stress that if you do go to Vegas, remember to take your passport with you. No passport, means no entry. As some of us discovered.
Within Lily’s, there was an eclectic range of cocktails to be had… far too many!
But there was no time to waste as we would enjoy the views of the Bellagio Fountains even further from our very own exclusive VIP Hyde Bar.
With a huge dance floor full of pumping tunes and grinning faces, you cannot avoid being swept up in the party atmosphere as you bounce up and down with fellow strangers who treat you as friends.
Now, what happened for the rest of the night?
That would be telling! You’ll simply have to book a trip with Trek America to find out all about the VIP Experience in Las Vegas!
Leaving USA and Trek America
That’s what all I thought as I tucked into my iHop Raspberry and Blueberry Pancakes for my breakfast the next morning.
Today, we would be leaving.
I couldn’t believe it. After visiting all those National Parks, Trekking the hell out of them, screaming with adrenaline in my blood, experiencing all those VIP adventures, I was actually leaving.
Soon enough, we were at the airport ready to take our flight from Las Vegas to Los Angeles where we would take a long transatlantic flight with DELTA.
But really, what did I think about my Trek America experience?
So fricking AWESOME!
Check out more of my iTrekHere Trip Articles: