Hoover Dam. A testament to human strength and spirit, this landmark is one attraction every traveler to Las Vegas should visit. Adults and kids alike will be in awe of the sheer magnitude; and that the turbine room played an integral role in the first "Transformers" movie! Make a day of it and get there early before the temps are too hot; have lunch in Boulder City on the way back.
Red Rock Canyon. Spend a morning hiking through these rock formations that were created millions of years ago, then take a horseback ride through the area. Don't miss the daily presentations by the Red Rock staff for an even greater understanding of this natural wonder's geography highlights, and be on the lookout for Jackson, Red Rock Canyon's burro, and "spokestortoise" Mojave Max.
Valley of Fire. Nevada's oldest and largest state park is just a short drive from Vegas, and here visitors can discover 3,000-year-old Indian petroglyphs, as well as petrified wood and red sandstone formations. It's the best spot in the area to go camping and to learn about Nevada's indigenous peoples, animals and plants. Pack a lunch—there are four shaded picnic areas— and spend the day.