Monday, September 3, 2007
Day 2: Welcome To Vegas, Baby
Once you touch down at Las Vegas at McCarran International Airport, you will notice the difference from other airports. Las Vegas is referred to as The Entertainment Capital of the World and it shows. Just look at all the entertainment billboards on the walls of the airport at the baggage claim area.
As you step out of the airport, you will immediately feel as if being put into an oven. It's hot and very dry. Although it drizzled a bit, a rare occasion in the desert, it didn't help a bit with the heat. If you have no idea how burning rocks smell like, after visiting Las Vegas, you will.
The shuttle cost US$5 down to Motel 6, where we are staying. It's on a street perpendicular to The Strip. Again, I think I found that on Google Earth and checked the reviews on Google Maps. Weekday rates are cheaper than weekend rates for most of the hotels. There's not much difference between weekdays and weekends in Vegas. Everyday is a weekend. So plan your trip on weekdays if possible to save on accommodation.
This is where we stay in Las Vegas. Motel 6 is budget motel with clean and modern rooms. The taxi driver who drove us on the last day thought otherwise. I can pretty guess why. When I arrived, I saw a street walker grabbing the-part-that-shall-not-be-named of a guy.
Look at all these freebies by the side of the road my friend picked up. Woo... Heaven is a place on earth... Woo... Heaven is a place on earth...
This is the famous MGM Grand (wiki) in its sinister green.
A billboard from Tropicana Hotel (wiki). Billboards are everywhere in Las Vegas.
This is New York New York. The skyscrapers are most probably the hotels.
Excalibur (wiki) looks unreal against the sky. Where are the bricks and texture? It looks like a toy castle blown up.
You will always have the urge to escape the heat by going into any casinos and shops. The photo above was taken in a M&M shop.
This is not cheap.
Now that I think back, I can't remember anything that's not made in China. You name it, they have it, and you can be sure it's from China.
This is their food court and they sell mostly fast food. Every now and then, I will read of obesity as a national problem of America. I can truly understand why. Fast food is cheaper than all other food. While on the streets, you wouldn't see people drinking water. It's either soft drinks or beer. Most of the fast food chains in Las Vegas offer free refills for drinks. I sympathize with the Americans, truly I do.
This is Paris Las Vegas (wiki). Eiffel tower looks small, not that I have seen the real one to compare.
This is the musical fountain display in front of Bellagio (wiki). It's called Fountains of Bellagio, of course. I was actually expecting some colours to go with the display but nope, it's all white. What's there to complain when it's free?
My camera battery went flat here. Apparently, having the LCD on all the time consumes lots of power. I'm using Canon 400D.
We went on to Mirage (wiki) to check out the water volcano before heading back to the motel. The walk from Mirage back to the Motel took almost 1 hour. Mirage was in the middle of The Strip.
The rest of the photos from Day 1 can be found on my Las vegas Flickr set.
Highlight of the Day: Southwest Airlines
It's pretty cool that Southwest air steward/ess can pretty much wear whatever they like to work. You'll differentiate them from passengers with the Southwest badge. I seem to remember the pilot wearing shorts.
Southwest has a sense of humour too. Here's what they said over the microphone," If you have a child or someone acting like a child, put the oxygen mask on yourself first before helping them."
All the days in Las Vegas:
Day 2: Welcome To Vegas, Baby
Day 3: Las Vegas, Can Dream Can Do
Day 4: Warehouse Sales, Cheap But You Don't Need Them
Day 5: Don't Overstay In Las Vegas
Day 6: Grand Canyon