Best Tours and Excursions in Las Vegas

Las Vegas' best tours and excursions take the guesswork out of sight-seeing

It can be tough deciding what to do when you’re in Las Vegas, but an easy way to solve the riddle is to sign up for a tour or excursion. Someone else figures out the details, and you get to enjoy the sights, stress-free.

You can cover a lot of ground with Big Bus Tours, where guests can hop on and off the bus to explore more of the Strip or Downtown Las Vegas. If you’d like something more specialized, try Lip Smacking Foodie Tours. Their knowledgeable guides will take you to three or four of the city’s best restaurants where you’ll enjoy special tasting menus, with a side helping of interesting information from your guide.

Vegas tour companies can take you on excursions that let you see the sights from a helicopter, an ATV or a horse. Papillon’s helicopters will give you a birds-eye view of the Strip or Grand Canyon, while Cowboy Trail Rides gets you back down to earth with four-legged transportation in Red Rock Canyon. Awesome Adventures will take you on an ATV ride to a gold mine and a ghost town.

Las Vegas is close to many scenic and iconic destinations. It’s a great place to launch an expedition to places like the Grand Canyon or Antelope Canyon. MaxTour offers one, two, and three-day excursions to both places, giving you the chance to see spectacular scenery without the hassle of driving and planning.

Keep reading for more on Las Vegas’ best tours and excursions.


To really get to know a destination, it helps if you can get out and walk around. Las Vegas Walking Tours takes guests on walking tours of Downtown Las Vegas, which is where the city really got its start when it was a railroad stop. Two tours are offered: "Fremont Street Past to Present," which takes place during the day, and "Fremont After Dark--The Glitter Gulch." During the two-hour tours, guests will get interesting and fun facts as they stroll around the area, walking by sights like the Fremont Street Experience and Container Park. On the daytime tour, an add-on will take you to Gold & Silver Pawn, where the reality series "Pawn Stars" is filmed. Walking distance for the tours is about a mile.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: Las Vegas Walking Tours takes small groups on tours of Downtown Las Vegas and gives guests interesting and fun facts about the area.

Terrisa's expert tip: Children are allowed on morning and afternoon tours, but not on the "After Dark" tour, which is restricted to guests who are 21+. Valid ID is required.

Read more about Las Vegas Walking Tours →

If you're interested in exploring the Southwest, Las Vegas is an excellent place to use as a basecamp and MaxTour has you covered for guided explorations to some of the region's most photogenic spots. The company's tours can take you close to the city but also provide one, two, and three-day tours to the beautiful Antelope Canyon, Horseshoe Bend and Lake Powell as well as the Grand Canyon. They offer a half-day tour to Seven Magic Mountains and Hoover Dam; a full day tour covers both those attractions plus Grand Canyon West. Guests who want to see the exquisite Antelope Canyon can choose from a one or two-day tour. If you'd like to see more of the striking landscape of the Southwest, especially the often-photographed Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend, MaxTours can take you there.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: MaxTour offers small group tours to the unforgettably scenic Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend in Arizona, as well as other locations closer to Las Vegas.

Terrisa's expert tip: MaxTour keeps the size of its tours small, with a maximum of 14 people per tour. If you want to take one of their tours, be sure to get signed up quickly so you can be sure to get a space.

Read more about MaxTour →

The scenic Red Rock Canyon is the perfect place for a horseback ride, and Cowboy Trail Rides is ready to help you saddle up and ride. Three rides into the canyon are offered. The Canyon Rim is a two-hour ride that leaves early in the morning; Red Springs Ride take guests hour and half into the desert with a view of the Spring Mountains and departs in the late morning; and the Sunset Trail Ride and Western BBQ is an hour and 45 minutes that gives guests a great view of the canyon from horseback, as well as a tasty barbecue at the end. For the Canyon Rim and Sunset Rides, transportation is offered via shuttle to the departure point, which is just outside of Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: The Old West is alive at Cowboy Trail Rides, where guests can mosey on down the trail with a view of Red Rock Canyon.

Terrisa's expert tip: Check out Cowboy Trail Rides' website to see pictures of the stable's horses and mules. They have profiles for them that include their names, heights and brief bios.

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Outside the City

The desert around Las Vegas is filled with mines, ghost towns and ATV trails--and Awesome Adventures brings all three of those things together. Their tours take guests to Eldorado Canyon and the tiny settlement/ghost town of Nelson, Nevada, where they can ride ATVs or Razors through rugged terrain to the Techatticup Gold Mine. Tours of the mine take 45 to 60 minutes and give visitors a look inside the mine, which operated from approximately 1858 until 1945. Guests can expect the entire experience to take six to seven hours. No experience with ATVs is required. Awesome Adventures will pick you up from your hotel and transport you to Eldorado Canyon, about a 45 minute drive.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: Awesome Adventures provides everything you need for an ATV ride through the desert to a gold mine.

Terrisa's expert tip: Be sure to dress appropriately, with completely closed toe shoes-- no Crocs, no flip flops. Awesome Adventures advises against wearing shorts because of the terrain and abundant cacti.

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Las Vegas is well-known for its sizeable array of award-winning restaurants, many with celebrity chefs at the helm. For most visitors who are trying to figure out where to eat, it's often a classic case of too many restaurants, too little time. Lip Smacking Foodie Tours seeks to solve that problem with walking tours that take guests to a selection of three or more restaurants, where tasting menus and VIP service await them - including zero wait times for seating. Tours encompass the most notable restaurants in Las Vegas, like Bardot Brasserie, Estiatorio Milos or Mastro's Ocean Club--although the actual restaurants are a surprise for each tour. Tours cover eateries on the Strip and Downtown Las Vegas, with new tours and restaurants consistently coming online.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: Lip Smacking Food Tours is the best way to experience a variety of the most notable restaurants in Las Vegas.

Terrisa's expert tip: For an extraordinary experience, try the Savory Bites & Neon Lights tour, which tops off an evening tour of four restaurants with a helicopter tour over the Las Vegas Strip.

Read more about Lip Smacking Foodie Tours →

The railroad tracks around Boulder City, which is just outside of Las Vegas, have a history that goes back to the building of Hoover Dam (then Boulder Dam). Rail Explorers takes guests along those tracks with specially designed rail road cars, called bikes, that people can pedal. The vehicles have a long history that goes back to the 1850s, when they were used for maintenance, but today they offer people the an unusual way to go sightseeing. Several tours are offered, all beginning from the Nevada State Railroad Museum and ending at Railroad Pass, a distance of about four miles. Tours include the Morning Ramble, Twilight Ramble, the Neon Lights Tour (the bikes are lit up on this one), and the Sunset Railbike Ride. Riders are transported back to the start on one of the Railroad Museum's historic trains.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: A trip along the railroad tracks in one of the Rail Explorers' special rail bikes gives guests an unforgettable experience.

Terrisa's expert tip: Be sure to also visit the Nevada State Railroad Museum, where the tours begin. Visitors can see historic trains and learn about the history of the railroad in Southern Nevada.

Read more about Rail Explorers Las Vegas →

If you'd like to see experience the wind in your hair and the road up close but don't want to rent a motorcycle or a Vespa, Scoot City Tours has the perfect vehicle for you. Their adorable two-person, three-wheeled scooters don't involve straddling anything, but you'll still get plenty of up-close-and-personal time with the road. Tours are made up of several of the little cars traveling together with tour guides and take guests to Red Rock Canyon. The tour takes you along Red Rock's scenic loop road with stops along the way, so you'll even get a chance to do a little hiking. Pickup is offered from several Strip hotels and from the Golden Nugget in Downtown Las Vegas. Total tour time is about 4.5 to 5 hours, including pick up and drop off.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: With their fun three-wheeled vehicles, Scoot City Tours offers visitors a unique way to see Red Rock Canyon.

Terrisa's expert tip: While drivers must be 21 years of age to drive one of the scooters, no motorcycle license is needed. Guests get the opportunity to trade off who drives.

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Big Bus Tours operate in several cities throughout the world, offering guests the chance to get off and back on the bus during a tour. The buses have open tops, which provide excellent views of the Strip, especially at night. Big Bus Tours have routes that cover the Strip, Downtown Las Vegas and even the Grand Canyon. The two major routes in Las Vegas are split between the day and night tours. Guides are on onboard to offer commentary and answer questions, and pre-recorded narration is also offered. Once you're on the bus, you can hop off at any of the stops to do some exploring and then re-board a bus when it comes along. They offer an app to help with navigation and in finding the nearest pick-up spot.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: Big Bus Tours lets guests get on and off the tour bus, plus their vehicles have open tops for maximum sight-seeing.

Terrisa's expert tip: During the hot summer months, guests should keep in mind that seats on the top of the bus can get very warm and are in direct sunlight during daytime tours.

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The distinctive pink jeeps of this well-known tour company will carry you into the rugged desert around Las Vegas to places you can't see on your own. This company got its start in Sedona, Arizona, home to amazing red rocks and New Age vortexes. In Las Vegas, the company takes guests into Red Rock Canyon on a signature tour that will take you up and over the cliffs on the Rocky Gap Road. Pink Jeep Las Vegas also offers tours to the Valley of Fire, Death Valley and the Grand Canyon. You can also take one of their tours to Hoover Dam, or along the streets of Las Vegas. They know it's easier to see the sights when someone else is driving, and their custom-made vehicles are designed just for tours.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: Pink Jeep Tours shows people the sights in and around Las Vegas in their custom-designed, off-road- ready pink vehicles.

Terrisa's expert tip: Guests who are concerned about sustainability will be glad to know that Pink Jeep works closely with federal agencies to maintain, rebuild, and re-vegetate trails. Their team regularly volunteers for trail clean ups.

Read more about Pink Jeep Tours Las Vegas →

Papillon Grand Canyon Helicopters
Photo courtesy of Papillon Tours

Papillion has been taking people on tours since 1965, which sets it apart from the average Las Vegas tour company and tells you they must be doing something right. Some of the most popular tours takes visitors to the West Rim of the Grand Canyon, where helicopters can actually land on the canyon floor. Nighttime tours of the Las Vegas Strip are another favorite, offering guests an unforgettable view of the Strip at night with all its lights. For true adventurers, Papillon also provides tours that include rafting, ATV riding or a stroll on the Grand Canyon Skywalk, which is the glass-bottomed observation area that juts out over the Grand Canyon's West Rim.

Recommended for Tours and Excursions because: Papillon's helicopter tours offer guests breathtaking views of Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon.

Terrisa's expert tip: Papillon picks up from most major Las Vegas hotels but not from private residences. Guests who aren't staying at one of the designated hotels can still catch the shuttle from the pick-up spots.

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Meet Terrisa Meeks

Terrisa Meeks is a native born, life-long resident of Las Vegas. She's watched Las Vegas grow and change over the years, especially the ever-evolving Las Vegas Strip. She still enjoys hanging...  More About Terrisa