Nevada is an excellent place for a vacation. It has some of the best scenery in the world, with more than 300 days of sunshine each year. Nevada’s climate is also perfect for outdoor activities like hiking, biking, and camping. Want to take an early-morning balloon ride over the Mojave? You can do that too! However, finding great places to visit when you’re watching your spending can be a challenge. Where can you check out in Nevada if you’re on a budget? Here, we explore some of the most interesting locations in the state that won’t drain your wallet.
10 Las Vegas, Nevada
An aerial shot of Las Vegas, Nevada, showing off the bright night lights
There is precious little that needs to be said about the tour de force that is the city of Las Vegas. Internationally famous, with a reputation for being the global capital of debauchery, the truth is that there are a whole host of attractions to experience beyond the popular casinos. Maybe you’d love to experience the Gondola rides or marvel at the Bellagio’s 1,200 dancing fountains. Perhaps you’re most into the idea of unique museums. Las Vegas has that in spades. There’s the Atomic Testing Museum and Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum, to name just two. Whatever your interest, one thing can’t be denied – Las Vegas has never been called boring.
9 Reno, Nevada
Welcome sign into Reno, Nevada
Some people consider Reno to be another version of Las Vegas, but the truth is that it offers so much more that makes it unique and worthy of being on a list like this. Various attractions are on offer, from gaming to outdoor and natural experiences. You can experience the majesty of the nearby Lake Tahoe, for instance. Reno also has a wide variety of cultural and art experiences, including theater, history, and music. The Nevada Museum of Art is a must-see.
8 Red Rock Canyon, Nevada
Driving towards Red Rock Canyon, Nevada
Nevada’s Mojave Desert is a massive draw to the state. Red Rock Canyon is your best bet for those seeking to immerse themselves in the awe-inducing Mojave. There’s even a scenic drive in Red Rock Canyon, taking you through the heart of the desert. With miles and miles of trails that weave themselves throughout this region, you can hike, bike, and connect with nature to your heart’s content.
7 Carson City, Nevada
Carson Valley around Carson City, Nevada
Carson City offers a good mix of history, culture, arts, and outdoorsy natural attractions for anyone looking to have a vacation experience outside the stereotypical Nevada experience. In Carson City, you won’t find the flashy neon lights of Vegas, but for the right person, you’ll find something arguably more valuable. The Nevada State Museum and the State Railroad Museum are essential for history buffs. If you’re seeking a more active experience, you could always bike along the Blue Line Trail. Perhaps you’re into the arts, in which case many galleries and performing centers demand your attention.
6 Boulder City, Nevada
The Hoover Dam in Boulder City, Nevada
Mere minutes from the Hoover Dam (a must-see), it’s easy for people to overlook Boulder City. In terms of energy, this is as polar opposite to Las Vegas as you can get, exuding the quaint charm of a small town. This doesn’t mean that you should overlook Boulder by any means. Its location is critical, for one. In addition to being very close to Hoover Dam, it’s also about 20 minutes away from Vegas itself. Aside from the location, Boulder itself is also a joy to explore, with its Main Street being a particular highlight, playing host to several unusual and unique boutiques.
5 Sparks, Nevada
The Sparks Marina
If water sports are your thing, the city of Sparks may just be right up your alley. The Sparks Marina will see you kayaking, canoeing, boating, or fishing, and if you’re up for it, you can head to Rock Park and experience the thrill of white-river rafting. If history is more your thing, the Sparks Museum and Cultural Center will make for an exciting journey into the past.
4 Valley Of Fire, Nevada
Valley of Fire State Park
The Valley of Fire State Park is Nevada’s oldest park, operating since 1935. Hiking through the Valley of Fire is an experience everyone should experience at least once. Located close to Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam, the unusual, striking, and, frankly, incredible sandstone structures that populate this State Park are one of the major draws to the State of Nevada. Don’t miss out on the fantastic hiking trails, where you’ll see petrified forests, Native American petroglyphs, and many more unforgettable sights.
3 Sand Harbor, Nevada
Looking over the water in Sand Harbor, Nevada
With a primary emphasis on boating, swimming, jet skis, and various other water-based experiences, Sand Harbor also has a few notable nature trails for those partial to hiking. However, as far as Nevada goes, Sand Harbor is a must-see. Unbelievably picturesque, visitors will bear witness to 55 acres of white, sandy beaches, forested areas, inlets, coves, and more.
2 Great Basin National Park, Nevada
Road leading to Great Basin Nevada
Great Basin National Park is a nature buff’s dream, with a wide variety of biodiversity on offer and display. It’s even one of the most underrated national parks in the US and a great place to catch the stars on a dark night. Visitors to this park can explore and be led on tours of various caves, complete with preserved and historic rock art. One of the significant and unforgettable highlights of Great Basin is a night spent out under the stars while camping.
1 Floyd Lamb Park, Nevada
Nevada’s National Parks are quite a sight to behold
Located a mere 20 miles from the Las Vegas Strip, Floyd Lamb Park offers a unique park with four ponds perfect for gentle, easy fishing and scenic paths that demand exploration. There are many spots for all-day lounging and picnicking too. Not far is the Tule Springs Ranch, where those interested in paleontology can see fossils of animals long gone extinct, like mammoths and bison, alongside others.