By Natalee Haldeman, Uniquely Northwest Program Manager
Las Vegas is all about the bright lights, late nights, and an unbelievable desert oasis. But what many travelers fail to notice while in Sin City is the natural beauty that sits just outside the Strip. Last month I had the pleasure of exposing a few of these hidden beauties to an adventurous incentive group.
On the group’s last day in Vegas we started a fantastic self-drive right from our hotel, equipped with Ford Mustang convertibles and a variety of Harley Davidson motorcycles. The first part of the drive is what I consider a “build up” to the main attraction; the further we drove from the city, the more the desert mountains and natural beauty came to life.
As soon as we exited the highway it was an endless series of scenic desert views as we wound our way into to the Valley of Fire. There is one epic turn in the road that is my favorite part of the drive; just before reaching the Park Ranger booth the road passes between two cliff sides and straight ahead is the first series of red rock for which the Valley of Fire is named for. This first sight of red rocks is stunning in bright orange and so unexpected for first time visitors.
Once we passed through the Valley we continued on through the desert to drive the scenic route along Lake Mead to the Hoover Dam. For a more casual and brief visit to the Dam the incentive group and I hiked up to the Mike O’Callaghan-Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge for the best unobstructed views of the Dam. It is truly impressive to see the Dam in its entirety, regardless of how many times I have seen it.
To end our day’s drive in the desert we enjoyed a pub lunch on the patio of the Boulder Dam Brewing Company. After a few burgers and a taste of the brewery’s fantastic beer, we all felt refreshed and completed our last leg of the journey, back to Sin City. It was a very unique and memorable day for an incentive travel program based in bustling Las Vegas!“We are proud members of the Association of Destination Management Executives International”