Set in the middle of the vast Mojave Desert, Las Vegas was created entirely to entertain and has been described as the world’s largest theme park. This psychedelic city of sin is home to over a million people and welcomes 35 million more each year to its lavish hotels and casinos. Visitors today are amazed that only 70 years ago this thriving metropolis was a backwater with less than a thousand inhabitants whose only guests were railway passengers stopping off to stretch their legs on the long journey between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City. Things started to change in March 1931 when the State of Nevada legalised gambling; one month later the City issued six licenses.
Then in 1946, Mafia don Ben ‘Bugsy’ Siegel opened the sensationally lavish Flamingo Hilton on Highway 91. Las Vegas Boulevard was born and the city would never be the same again.
Soon stars like Elvis, Liberace and Sinatra were making the pilgrimage to what was fast becoming America’s premier entertainment Mecca. In the early days the Mafia dominated the gambling industry but in the 1960s their influence waned and soon all the large hotels and casinos were controlled by big business.
Las Vegas has 18 out of 21 of the largest hotels in the world and walking down ‘The Strip’ visitors will see the skylines of New York and Paris, discover the canals of Venice and the Pyramids of Egypt and, at Treasure Island, see a full on-sea battle between a Pirate ship and a British Galleon. Despite these excesses, room rates and restaurant bills are the lowest in the western world – all subsidised by gamblers intent on a free holiday.
Although the principal draw card is still gambling, Las Vegas is now marketed as a family destination and there is no shortage of theme parks, shopping malls or golf courses. However, the vast majority of visitors come to gamble and the incredible displays are mostly designed to lure passers-by into the casinos, and once there it’s hard to leave; the exits are discreetly hidden.
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14 day Tracks Across Canada ITINERARYMontréal | Toronto | Niagara Falls | The Canadian | Vancouver | Campbell River | Knight Inlet LodgeINCLUDES• All flights• 9 nights’ hotel accommodation• 4 nights on board VIA Rail’s ‘The Canadian’ train in Sleeper Plus class• 9 breakfasts, 7 lunches & 6 dinners• Services of local guides and expert nature guides for included sightseeing [...]
12 day Beautiful Sri LankaITINERARYColombo | Kotugoda | Wilpattu National Park | Sigiriya | Thirappane | Polonnaruwa | Passikudah | Gal Oya | Haputale | KandyINCLUDES• Return flights• 11 nights’ accommodation• 10 breakfasts, 4 lunches & 6 dinners• Services of an English-speaking driver-guide• Most sightseeing• All transfers• SAVE up to £325 per personHIGHLIGHTS• Stay in some of Sri Lanka’s best [...]
16 day Gorillas & Game ParksITINERARYNairobi | Lake Nakuru National Park | Eldoret | Kampala | Kalinzu Forest | Queen Elizabeth National Park | Kisoro | Gorilla Trek | Mbarara | Jinja | Kericho | Masai Mara National ReserveINCLUDES• Return flights• 15 nights’ accommodation• 15 breakfasts, 12 lunches & 14 dinners• Services of a qualified English-speaking guide• Selected sightseeing & [...]
14 day Colombia’s Caribbean Coast & Lost CityITINERARYCartagena | Minca | Tayrona National Natural Park | Taganga | Santa Marta | Trek to the Lost City of TeyunaINCLUDES• Return flights• 13 nights’ accommodation (9 nights hotel & 4 nights camping)• 13 breakfasts, 7 lunches & 4 dinners• Services of a Chief Experience Officer & local indigenous guides• Selected sightseeing & [...]
11 day Borneo Family HolidayITINERARYKota Kinabalu | Kinabalu National Park | Kinabatangan River | Sandakan | Turtle Island | Sepilok | Beringgis BeachINCLUDES• Return flights• 10 nights’ accommodation• 10 breakfasts, 3 lunches & 4 dinners• Services of an experienced English-speaking tour leader• Most sightseeing• Selected transfersHIGHLIGHTS• Small group tour designed specifically with families in mind• Great mix of socially interactive [...]
16 day Best of TurkeyITINERARYIstanbul | Bursa | Selcuk | Panukkale | Kayakoy | Kas | Antalya | Konya | GoremeINCLUDES• Return flights• 15 nights’ accommodation• 14 breakfasts, 2 lunches & 2 dinners• Services of a qualified English-speaking guide throughout• Most sightseeing• Selected transfersHIGHLIGHTS• Explore the remarkable ruins of Ephesus• Relax in the magical healing hot springs at Pamukkale• Take [...]
22 day New Zealand Multi-sportITINERARYAuckland | Rotorua | Tongariro National Park | Whanganui National Park | Raglan | Christchurch | Kaikoura| Abel Tasman National Park | Nelson | Lake Brunner | Franz Josef | Wanaka | Queenstown | Mt CookINCLUDES• Return flights• 21 nights’ accommodation• 17 breakfasts, 4 lunches & 5 dinners• Services of a Chief Experience Officer & local guides• [...]
8 day Iceland Winter ITINERARYReykjavík | Álftröð | Þingvellir National Park | Skógafoss | Blue LagoonINCLUDES• Return flights• 7 nights’ accommodation• 6 breakfasts, 2 dinners• Services of a Chief Experience Officer and local guides• Selected sightseeing• Selected transfers• SAVE up to £290 per person HIGHLIGHTS• Discover the city of Reykjavík• Explore a lava cave in the Bláfjöll Mountains• Visit the [...]
8 days in Jordan ITINERARY Amman | Wadi Rum | Petra INCLUDES • Return flights • 7 nights’ accommodation • 6 breakfasts, 1 dinner • Services of a qualified English-speaking guide throughout • Selected sightseeing • Selected transfers HIGHLIGHTS • Get a taste of both the ancient and modern sides of Jordan • Explore the capital city of Amman [...]
10 day Cape Town, Garden Route & SafariITINERARYCape Town | Hermanus | Garden Route | Eastern Cape SafariINCLUDES• Return flights• 9 nights’ accommodation• 9 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners• 10 days compact car hireHIGHLIGHTS• Enjoy beautiful Cape Town’s enviable climate and superb setting between the ocean and the craggy heights of Table Mountain• Pass spectacular coastal scenery en route to [...]
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