For a truly #nofilter experience, there’s nowhere on earth like Las Vegas. From the buskers on Fremont Street to the opulent nightclubs on the Strip, Las Vegas is a sensory overload in the best possible way. So how does one go about distilling all that glitz and extravagance into a tiny Instagram feed? By zooming in on these ultimate Vegas photo ops:
Whether it’s your first or your hundredth trip to Las Vegas, no visit is complete without a photo in front of the Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas Sign. Located at the far south end of Las Vegas Boulevard, the 25-foot sign was designed by the late Betty Willis, who intended it as public domain (that’s why you see the image repurposed everywhere). Park in the small lot, wait your turn in line, and get ready to pose in front of this piece of Las Vegas history.
You don’t have to leave the desert to see a volcano—you just have to head to the Mirage. Every Thursday through Sunday on the hour from 7-10 p.m., the fiery volcano in front of the resort puts on a thunderous show complete with flames and music. Get there a few minutes before the hour to secure a front row spot from the sidewalk.
If you’ve already snapped a million photos of the Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas Sign, it’s time to fill your feed with the Downtown Las Vegas version. We’re talking about the City of Las Vegas Gateway Arch, which debuted in 2020. Located on Las Vegas Boulevard by The Strat, these dual arches are 80 feet tall and illuminated by color-changing LED lights.
The centerpiece of Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas is The Chandelier, a three-level lounge draped in glimmering beads and a euphoric purple glow. In other words, it’s basically a giant chandelier with a bar inside. Slip into something sparkly and pose at this craft cocktail haven at the beginning of your night out.
At the center of Fergusons Downtown, you might notice something curious—actually, you really can’t miss it. It’s a pair of 18-wheeler trucks poised precariously. This is the Big Rig Jig, a 50-foot-tall sculpture by artist Mike Ross that originally appeared at Burning Man. If you like weird art, Nevada style, this is definitely your kind of photo op.
It doesn’t get more classic Las Vegas than The Fountains of Bellagio. Part of the fun of photographing the dancing streams of water is capturing the show from various angles. Take them in from a restaurant at the Bellagio (such as LAGO by Julian Serrano, The Mayfair Supper Club, or Spago), see them from across the street at Beer Park at Paris, look down on them from a terrace room at the Cosmopolitan, or simply observe from the sidewalk. There’s no wrong way to photograph this Las Vegas wonder.
On the long, dusty journey from LA to Las Vegas, Ugo Rondinone’s Seven Magic Mountains serves as a colorful landmark indicating that yes, you really are almost there. Located about a half-hour from the Las Vegas Strip, this middle-of-nowhere art installation is made up of seven brightly-painted towers of boulders framed by mountains and desert sky. It’s trippy, and it’s also very much worth the trip.
Get your photo taken with a pair of 26-foot-tall neon showgirls on your way Downtown. The DTLV Showgirls Gateway sign, which was brought to life in 2018, is located near The Strat. You can get a photo with real showgirls while you’re in town as well, but why not get a selfie with a giant, lit-up version too?
Stroll through a world of flowers—and get some beautiful photos along the way—at the Bellagio Conservatory. This free attraction rotates seasonally and features themed floral displays beneath a domed glass ceiling. The annual Lunar New Year display from mid-January through early March is an especially breathtaking sight to see, as it always features the year’s animal among the flowers and trees.
One of the most romantic photo ops on the Las Vegas Strip has got to be the Venetian Canals at The Venetian. Walk beside the canals and see singing gondoliers pass by, or hop on board your own gondola ride (indoor and outdoor options are available). If you opt for the latter, you can even purchase a souvenir photo to take home.