• Ben Webby

Las Vegas to Grand Canyon Road Trip

Updated: May 22

So...How about that ride in? I guess that's why they call it Sin City...

This is our four-day Las Vegas to Grand Canyon Road Trip itinerary. We started in Los Angeles and bussed to Las Vegas. We took on Las Vegas for two nights and then ventured across the desert and back to see the awe-inspiring Grand Canyon.


Day 1

Bus to Las Vegas

Mandalay Bay Resort

The Strip

Omnia Night Club

It was an easy decision to leave our RV in LA while we went to Las Vegas. We decided that a road trip across the desert would do our RV no good. Fearing another overheating incident. Instead, we caught a bus to Las Vegas. Our tickets were $12 each and it took just over 4 hours to get us to the Devil's Playground.

We had planned to do a mid-week trip to Vegas so we could be back to see a college football game in LA on the weekend. This worked to our advantage as accommodation is dirt cheap in Las Vegas midweek. We scored a room at the five-star hotel, Mandalay Bay, for an absurd cost of $7 each per night.

Our room had two king doubles, which meant someone would be on the floor each night. We played gambling dice to see who lost. But at $7 a night, we weren't complaining.

Hot Tip: Vegas accommodation is cheap midweek.

When we arrived in Las Vegas we were greeted by suffocating heat. We bought some beers and went straight to the Man-Made Wave Beach in the resort. We hung out in the water all afternoon just trying to escape the humidity. After spending the afternoon drinking by the pool we wanted to head out onto the strip. Unfortunately, there is only one nightclub open in Vegas on a Tuesday night. The club was called Omnia, it was on the other side of the strip but in our state, we decided it was a comfortable walking distance. It wasn't. We got to Omnia and the bouncer said we weren't in the correct dress code to get in. We were deciding whether to uber to the hotel and back when we heard it was a $50 door charge for guys. No way was that happening on our travel budget. Don't fret if you're a girl, door entry is free for girls, as is most of Vegas.

So we left and bar hopped our way back down the strip, unfortunately, there weren't many bars open and the ones that were were empty. Tuesday isn't really the best night to go out in Vegas.


Day 2

Man-Made Wave Beach

Breakfast Buffet

Light Night Club

Mandalay Bay Casino

We didn't leave the hotel all day. After a sleep-in in king-sized beds, we treated ourselves to a full buffet breakfast downstairs. It was a nice little luxury getaway from our cramped little RV.

After breakfast, we went straight back to our spot at the Man-Made Beach. We hung out in the lazy river and played in the wave pool for the afternoon.

There is a nightclub downstairs at Mandalay Bay and luckily they were open on a Wednesday night. There are extremely persistent strip club and nightclub promoters everywhere in Vegas. One of them actually came in handy for us the next night as he put us on 'the VIP list' for the club in Mandalay Bay, the Light Nightclub.

The club was insane. We had a great night but had to go back to our room when we wanted more drinks because it was over $20 for Vodka + Redbull. Once again, not suited to a travel budget.

At the end of the night, we all had a little dabble on the tables at the Mandalay Bay Casino. After some differing results, we decided it was time to crash out. We made our way to bed, hoping to not be too hungover for our road trip to the Grand Canyon.


Day 3

Hoover Dam

Route 66

We checked out of Mandalay Bay in the morning and filled up on Denny's for breakfast. Once we were satisfied, we headed out to the Vegas airport to pick up our rental car. We got a great deal online with Europcar. They had big cars which suited the 5 of us and we found a great deal. You can check out their deals here. Get 25% off your next rental by clicking here.

After a pretty wild 48 hours in Sin City, we set off on our road trip to the Grand Canyon.

Our first stop was the Hoover Dam. We were blown away by the dam and the insane feat of engineering it took to complete it. We all wanted to know more about it, so we watched an incredible documentary about it on Youtube that night.

Apart from the Dam and a handful of small towns, there is nothing but straight roads and barren desert between Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon. It is a harsh, rugged landscape that is pretty cool to see.

What shocked us about the landscape was the little tin huts sprawled across the vast emptiness. Are there people living there? Surely not.

We drove on the old route 66 for a part of the journey, as we got closer to the Grand Canyon National Park, The sky went from blue to black in a matter of minutes and we were caught in a desert storm. We saw lightning bolts and rain bucketed down for 5 minutes and then cleared as fast as it had arrived. Very weird.

That night we bunked down at the Grand Canyon Plaza Hotel that night. It was a nice spot close to the South Rim that cost $105 for a room. $21 each for us.


Day 4

Grand Canyon

8 Hours Driving to LA

The motel had a restaurant so we got up early and treated ourselves to omelets before heading to the Grand Canyon.

We drove for about 20 minutes and then arrived at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

Words can't really do the Grand Canyon justice. It is insane. It's so big that your stomach twists in knots looking out over the edge. It's humbling, terrifying and awe-inspiring.

As Mary E Hart said in 1895:

Stand upon the brink of the Grand Canyon, gaze down, and still further down, into its awful depths, and realize for the first time your own utter insignificance.

Being able to see different layers of the earth carved out by the river below was incredible. It gives you a perspective of the formation of the earth.

The Grand Canyon is a place that needs to be seen to truly understand just how incredible it is. Alas, the words I use cannot describe this place or help you understand it. They can merely convince you to visit yourself and revel in the truly humbling experience that is the Grand Canyon.

We were in disbelief of the view for most of our hike. We walked along the South Rim to the Grand Canyon Museum. This is a great place to get an understanding of the history, formation, culture, and science of the Grand Canyon.

After spending a few hours taking in the incredible view, we, unfortunately, had to get back on the road. The rental car was due back in LA that evening and we still had 8 hours of driving across the desert in front of us.

The scenery of the road trip back made it seem like we were driving across terrain on a foreign planet. Vast barren deserts stretched for miles to the base of jagged Rocky Mountains.

After a long 8 hour drive and one speeding ticket later, we finished our road trip to Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon.

Read our 6-Week West Coast USA Road Trip Itinerary here. For Travel Budgeting, check out our post on How much a Road Trip in the USA costs.

If you want to try some Las Vegas attractions, check this post.

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