Thursday, June 29, 2006
A Grand Experience- Las Vegas & Grand Canyon
Last weekend was the final tour to Las Vegas and The Grand Canyon with my parents before they head out to the east coast next week. We managed to make the quickest 2 day trip to Vegas and GC. We took a 1 hour and 30 minute flight from San Jose to Vegas on Friday morning and checked into The Imperial Palace hotel on the casino strip area in Vegas. Afterwards, we walked to most of the nearby casions such as Cesar's Palace, Parisian, Aladin's place, Bellagio, The Mirage and the Flamingo. My parents who had already been exposed to the slot machine in Reno, tried their luck on the Vegas arena and won $5. But, we did lose a lot more than we had planned to play with.
Every time i visit Vegas, its a reveletion to me, the newness of the casinos, the interiors of the shopping malls and forum shops and the crazy crowd around you which makes you feel how far away from reality you are. Although i had warned my folks that the people in Vegas were a lot different from the cultured, quiet lot in the Silicon Valley, nevertheless, they were in for a shock. But, overall doing a Vegas trip once in a way, especially for those who come from another country shows them a very different side of US. Lastly, a piece of advice to all those planning a Vegas trip in June- the heat was indeed untolerable, going upto a 110, even if Chennaites are used to that sort of temperature, the blind direct heat of the desert in Vegas makes you think twice about travelling at this time of the year.
Our second day started with a day trip to the Grand Canyon in Arizona with stops at the Hoover dam, Kingman canyon and a few native Indian stores on the way. This was a tiring 5 hours up and down day trip to the GC from Vegas, but ended up being a worthwhile one. I loved the native indian jewellery, esp, the colored stones and sterling silver sets.
We spent about 2-3 hours at the South rim of the Grand Canyon and absolutely loved the beauty and color of the canyon. We walked for a while from the Mather point to the conservatory and rode the canyon shuttle bus to the canyon village shops and Bright Angel lodge.
Our bus tour to the Canyon was through a Chinese owned tour company that we've used for all the tours and trips to take my folks around and for a reasonable fee of $89 per person we were provided breakfast and lunch along with a great tour guide who knew the right places to stop.
A wonderful experience and a trip that i will remember for a long time inspite of the tedious journey.