North Las Vegas
North Las Vegas is a city in Nevada.
North Las Vegas is primarily a residential and a somewhat industrialized city in the Las Vegas metropolitan area, lying in the Mojave Desert.
Air travel to the city of North Las Vegas is handled by McCarran International Airport, which sits just south of the Las Vegas Strip, and about 15 miles south of North Las Vegas. There is a small airport in North Las Vegas, but that is used mainly for general aviation, private planes, and scenic tours.
Although the Union Pacific Railroad (UPR) provides freight train service to the Las Vegas metropolitan area, that doesn't help those in need of passenger train service. Until 1997, Amtrak's Desert Wind train used to provide service into Las Vegas using UPR tracks. Currently, Amtrak trains will provide motorcoach bus service into Las Vegas; generally after a train ride getting you somewhat close, such as to Kingman, AZ or Bakersfield, CA. From there, and as part of your Amtrak ticket, a motorcoach will then provide bus service into Las Vegas. Needless to say, for a rapidly growing metro area like Las Vegas, this isn't sustainable. There are studies and plans in the works to provide rail service once again on (UPR) tracks, as well as high-speed rail to Southern California.
A car will provide the best option for getting around North Las Vegas, as well as the Las Vegas metro area itself. Cars also tend to be relatively inexpensive to rent in the metro area. Although you may hit the occassional traffic jam, freeways are usually not severely clogged. Because the region is laid out on a grid pattern, navigating is not too difficult in the area.
If you must get around by bus, it's not totally horrific in the Las Vegas area as it could be in many western U.S. cities. Bus service in North Las Vegas, as well as Las Vegas and Henderson, is provided by the Regional Transportation Commission (RTC). Fares are $2 per bus ride. However, it may be more useful to purchase a 24-hour pass for $5 when boarding the bus. If you plan to be in the area for a while, RTC also sells a 5-day pass for $20 at many supermarkets and check cashing institutions, but this pass is not available on the bus itself.
Taxi service in North Las Vegas is handled by calling for a taxi and then waiting for it to come and pick you up. Do not expect to hail a cab off the street as though you were in New York or Chicago. Taxis are only plentiful and easily accessable at McCarran Airport, hotels on the Las Vegas Strip, or Downtown Las Vegas where they are queued up waiting for passengers. Outside of these areas, expect to call a cab and generally wait 20-40 minutes for it to come to you.
If time permits, and you don't mind watching a movie on your vacation, consider a visit to West Wind Drive-in; especially if visiting from out of the country where drive-ins are infrequent. And for an added bonus; it's normally a double-feature, so you get two movies for the price of one.
If golf is your thing, there is plenty of that to do in North Las Vegas. Some options include Aliante Golf Club as well as North Las Vegas Golf Course.
It's not on par with L.A.'s Griffith Observatory or Chicago's Adler Planetarium, but the Community College of Southern Nevada's Planetarium and Observatory can still help give an understanding to the skies and open space beyond. Show times are on Friday and Saturday only, and there's also an adjacent astronomy store that's open during the show times. Be aware, however, that chairs do not lean back, so there is a lot of looking up on your part.
Although it is not in North Las Vegas, the very near Las Vegas Motor Speedway is a 1200-acre complex of multiple tracks for automobile racing. The speedway also consists of a fan zone called The Neon Garage which has live entertainment, areas for fans to watch their favorite driver's car get worked on, and is home to the Winner's Circle.