The Hangover II

Trip Start Dec 09, 2009
Trip End Dec 10, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Nevada
Monday, January 11, 2010

So we had left Grand Canyon early in the morning, as we were so used to by now...

The drive certainly had more interesting scenery than the previous few.
After a couple of hours we swung off the freeway and turned right towards a town called Seligman.  Otherwise known as "The Birthplace of Route 66"!

We pulled up at the side of the road and once again trouped out of the van for a bit of an explore.
We crossed the road into one of the unusual shops which lined this one horse town.

All of the shops no matter what there underlying profession sold all manner of Route 66 goodies.
From signs and plaques to hats and lighters, everything you could have wished for adorned with with the typical Rd. sign.

The general store had mannequins of famous people outside, the petrol station had many old Cadillac's and taxi's parked outside and the Barber shop with it's one old school Sweeney Todd type chair filled only one tiny corner of it's building with the remainder dedicated to tid-bits and oddities donated from passers through.
They even had a Blue Peter badge in one cabinet under the counter.
The hot dog shop (which was closed for the Winter) had a backyard filled with old motors, some decorated to look like the car's from the Disney film 'Car's'!

We only stayed about 30Min's but we had a good wander around and probably saw everything there was to see.

Once we were back on the bus the next stop on our drive was the Hoover Dam.
Another two hours down the road we were stopped just before the drive down and over the Dam.  Due to the Americans over sensitivity we all had to file out of the van one by one and unload our baggage onto the road side.  Two security guards than asked us to unload part of our luggage, they had a very brief search and then asked us to re-pack and get back on the bus.
A thorough waste of time, but we were on our way towards the Dam.
We pulled into one of four car parks which line the winding road which leads down to the Dam and got out to take a few quick snaps.  To be honest this is just a great big water retainer!!

It took another 30 minutes until we came to the outskirts of Las Vegas and were able to see the strip in the distance.
I think there was a joint excitement about reaching Vegas, after it all everyone has their own preconception of what it's really going to be like.
We turned off the freeway and onto Las Vegas Boulevard, other side known as "The Strip".

Our first stop was inevitably the 'Welcome to Vegas' sign.  Smaller than I had expected!
We all got our posed photo's taken underneath along with several other tourists.
We drove for another 20Min's through the traffic up and down the strip taking in, briefly, what there was on offer.

Our Hotel for the next two day's was Hooters Casino & Hotel.  With it's bright Orange sign and wide eyed owl there to greet us!
We got checked in to the reception in the heart of the casino and took a couple of hours to get unpacked and ready for dinner.
Unfortunatly with a big night out planned ahead of us and with only a very limited wardrobe of pants and T-shirts an emergency shop was in order.
We dashed back out of the hotel and along the strip heading for Ceasers Palace home of the shopping forum.
Now on any other holiday this would have been prime shopping paradise.  Unfortunatly with a budget of $20.00 and some chewing gum these high end Gucci/Louis Vuiton type shops were just no good.
With 20 mins until dinner pick up we made for the M shopping mall.  Again finding a dispointing array of designer outlets.
About to give up and head for home the glowing red lights of H&M caught my eye.
I pointed and ran all in one large intake of breath, like slow motion runners we dashed through the doors and into the changing rooms grabbing various articles on the way.
I struggled to navigate my way around the crazy American sizes and tried on various pairs of skinny jeans.

Thankfully with only 15mins reamaining I ran to the check out threw the cloathes and my credit card at the cashier.
We sprinted back to hotel and managed to shower, shave and... shove our passports into the backpocket of my jeans before meeting in the doorway for dot on 6:00pm.

We had a reservation of the Luxor for one of those all you eat Buffet's. 
And we did - eat all we could and drink all we could for two hours until 8:30pm.

We had a Limo booked to pick us from outside the Casino and as we left the Luxor sure enough there was a beautiful white stretched Hummer waiting to meet us.  We were shown the door by the driver and were soon topping up on champagne while the we cruised up The Strip with the music blasting.
We stayed in the Limo for at least an hour and drove the full length of the strip singing along and dancing to the flashy lights inside.
Our first stop was a surprise we had planned, the old Vegas strip and light show.

Before the times of extreme money and flashiness Vegas was just one street - more or less the same but on a much smaller scale.
Now they have preserved the old fashioned Casino's and present a light show projected onto the ceiling each night on the hour.
We stood for the next 15Min's staring up at the movie playing on the ceiling to the soundtrack of Don McLean's American Pie.
We danced and sung along, videoed and took photo's.

But we weren't going to hang around long with the Limo waiting for us, so we quickly ran back into our little nightclub on wheels and carried on the journey back up the Strip.

Our final drop-off was the Bellagio Casino with it's famous water fountain display.
After more drinks from the Casino we all stood and watched a further two or three displays, blasting water in time to a tune.
The rest of the night was a beautiful blur, soaking up the atmosphere and a drink or seven.

We awoke after a good lie in the next morning and got a nice long shower before even thinking about going back out.

It was close to lunch time when we left and our plan was to take in as many sights as we could.
We had a couple of sights on the to-do list but we knew we would cover them all at a leisurely pace.
So we set of to the left and the top of the Strip - close to 'Welcome to Vegas' sign.  We took some photo's of the bigger casino's including the Luxor, now we could see them in all their daylight glory.
We took a long stroll around the Mandalay Bay Resort, looking at the fountains and the Shark Aquarium.
We stopped for a brunch at McDonald's - a bit of a cheaters way out, but we needed it!

We walked all the way to the very bottom of the Strip passing all the biggest casino's and visiting a couple on the way.
Spending about 40Min's playing in the Arcades in New York, New York's - Coney Island, walking around the various arcade games until we had enough tokens to win a smiley face bangle each!
Then Circus, Circus with it's juggling Ukrainians and games on Guitar Hero.

On our way back towards the main street we thought we had it covered taking a short-cut through a KOA RV park.  Getting completely lost and ending up wandering round the many caravans getting more and more confused.
We eventually found a sneaky lane which did lead us back to the Strip but by the time we had found it it was definitely time for another beer.
With no time to lose we grabbed a quick can of 99c American's best lager served, of course, in a brown paper bag and set of again in our journey.
This time back up the other side of the street with more Casino's to look in, run around and take photo's with various statues, plaques, gondola's & fountains.

We shopped and watched a 3D film with the M&M's in M&M world, fondled the goods in the Coca-Cola shop and stopped for further alcoholic refreshment in the Harley Davidson cafe.
Before heading back to Hooters we crossed the busy street again for dinner in the Diablo Cantina and shared a huge platter of Nachos and $3 Jack Daniels and coke.

We only had one more stop on our whirl-wind tour which we had been saving for the evening.
After a refreshing shower and another beer we set off in search of Hard Rock Hotel.
Home to enough rock memorabilia to keep anyone happy.

It took about 20Min's to walk to and was a little out of the way, but I do think it was worth the wait.
We played on the slot machines and took our photo's next to signed guitars, clothes, drum skins, skateboards & wetsuits belonging to every legend of rock that ever lived.

We had a nose around the Hart & Huntington tattoo studio and the Pink Taco restaurant.
We watched many stag parties gambling away their finances at the poker & roulette tables and enjoyed a drink in the Wasted Space bar.
All very good fun, but time was ticking on and after such a busy day it was time to head home.
We had one final stop to check out the Lion's in the MGM Grand before we hit the sack for our final full day aboard the Trek bus.

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