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Heather Turk: Experience Vegas entertainment without spending a dime

Heather Turk: Experience Vegas entertainment without spending a dime
Tourists take photos with the "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas" sign on the Strip Saturday, Feb. 6, 2016. (Sam Morris/Las Vegas News Bureau)

Living in Las Vegas, one of the most common questions I get from family and friends planning a visit is what they can do on a budget. While there are plenty of affordable shows and restaurants in town, many people are surprised to learn that there are free attractions they can enjoy, too.

Oddly enough, the first place I recommend that visitors go for some "priceless" entertainment is one of the Strip's most luxurious resorts, Bellagio. The property boasts three can't-miss free attractions, including the iconic Fountains of Bellagio. Guests can watch more than 1,200 fountains dance to a variety of songs, including nine holiday tunes during the holiday season. The resort is also home to Bellagio's Conservatory & Botanical Gardens, which features breathtaking floral displays that change five times a year. The world's largest chocolate fountain, which circulates nearly two tons of melted milk, dark and white chocolate, is at the resort's Jean Philippe Patisserie.

As an animal lover, one of my favorite free attractions is Flamingo's Wildlife Habitat. Guests can see more than 60 birds of various species residing on the lush tropical grounds — including Chilean flamingos — as well as large fish and turtles. The attraction is always a big hit with kids, as are the free circus acts at Circus Circus. Visitors can watch some of the world's greatest circus performers perfecting their craft daily inside the Midway.

For those headed downtown, Fremont Street Experience has nightly light and sound shows on its 1,500-foot-long, 90-foot-wide Viva Vision video screen, featuring music from artists like Tiësto and Heart.


Of course, for first-time visitors, no trip to Las Vegas would be complete without taking a photo in front of the Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign located just south of Mandalay Bay. It's the perfect complimentary keepsake!

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