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Many of my Canadian friends find it difficult to understand why someone would want to move away from California. There were good reasons to stay and, in our case, better reasons to leave, but there are definitely things about California that I miss. Foremost among these are dear friends, the meyer lemon and fuyu persimmon trees in my yard, and the beautiful winter weather (summers I wasn’t too crazy about — blasted hot). And …
Anyone who stumbled onto this blog searching for “hashish” might as well leave, because that’s not what this post is about. It’s about good food, not good weed.
The Las Vegas food scene has changed a lot since I first visited the city many years ago. Vegas used to be a place that catered mostly to hard-core gamblers (a description that in no way describes me). Food was cheap, often not that great, and used to lure gamblers into an establishment. For example, I recall “all you can eat” breakfast buffets for $0.99, lunch buffets for $1.99 and dinner buffets for $3.99. Foot long hot dogs or large shrimp cocktail — $0.99. Those prices were hard to beat!
Fast forward three decades …
These are “The Cabins” in Nevada’s Valley of Fire State Park. Three small rooms were built from the local sandstone in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), who did a lot of similar work in the parks and remote regions of the country during the Great Depression (‘make work’ projects, like trail and road construction). These cabins were used by travelers for camping stays in Valley of the Fire, but have been abandoned. I couldn’t find any good information on how long they were used, but it’s clear when you visit that they’ve not been inhabited for some time. While the setting is beautiful, I think the summer heat would have been unbearable to many — …
Las Vegas is often described as the “Disneyland for adults”. Like Disneyland, the city does a great job of creating a variety of illusions and immersing you into them. Unlike Disney there’s emphasis on adult entertainment in the form of gambling, alcohol and much more if that’s what you’re looking for (we weren’t).
I especially enjoyed our visit to the Venetian, a resort that tries to recreate the atmosphere of Venice, Italy. From the winged lion of Venice, to canals and gondolas, to enjoying excellent coffee and gelato on St. Mark’s Square, one might argue that it’s the next best thing to being there. It was fun, anyway.
Here’s some of that looks like.
Tired of the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas? Had enough of the concrete canyons and smoked filled casinos of Sin City? Not sure if it’s day or night (there are no clocks allowed in Vegas casinos)? Then you should do what I do as often as I can when I visit Vegas — make a trip to Valley of Fire State Park and escape into the beautiful desert world that comprises much of Nevada. No neon lights, no massive buffets, no dancing fountains (in fact, little water anywhere)! Beyond usual Mojave desert landscapes, Valley of Fire has wonderful and interesting rock formations that alone are worth the journey. The park is is located 50 miles (80 km) northeast of Las Vegas and …
I’m quick to confess — I’ve a weakness for dessert, especially of the oven-baked or gelato kind. It’s nothing new, an affliction I’ve had for as long as I can remember, making me very sympathetic to the, “Let’s eat dessert first” crowd. Fortunately, I don’t have a gluten allergy or diabetes (or I’d need to make some major and unwelcome adjustments).
Of the buffets I’ve visited in Las Vegas, my favorite is the Bellagio’s Sunday Brunch spread, which I always head back to when I’m in town on a weekend. There are dozens and dozens of delicious hot and cold food items ranging from salads to sushi to carved ham and turkey, far too many choices for even a shutterbug like …
While strolling through the shops at the Venetian in Las Vegas, we came across a hat shop which had some of the most unusual hats I’ve seen in some time. Elaborate, feathery, colorful, highly decorative — the kind of had you might expect to see atop Kate Middleton.
Las Vegas is one of the most loved — and despised — travel destinations in the world. Some folks bask in and are energyzed by its non-stop action and adrenaline, the gambling, the booze, the neon lights — everything you imagine when you think of Vegas. Others visit once and never want to set foot in the city again. I’m sort of in between these extremes. I enjoy Vegas, especially if I’m there to meet friends or family, but only for short periods of time (a weekend visit is about perfect for me).
There are two main regions to Vegas that attract very different visiting clientele. “The Strip”, or Las Vegas Blvd, has completely transformed itself these past 25 years: from …