Whenever I book a trip to a new place, the first thing I do is make my list of must-sees, logging hours on Instagram and Pinterest to find the best local spots. Even before Tyler and I decided to spend my birthday weekend in Vegas, I was admiring the colorful photos of the Neon Museum that filled my feed.
Sometimes when it actually comes time to visit one of the places on my list, I end up disappointed. Everyone knows that social media can distort reality, and destinations/attractions aren't an exception to the "highlight reel" effect. Just because the restaurant is cute, doesn't necessarily mean the food is good, and having perfect lighting for photos doesn't necessarily mean the place will be fun! Luckily, this was not the case for the Neon Museum at all. Everything about it exceeded my expectations and I cannot recommend it enough.
Tyler and I are not the typical Vegas tourists. We don't really enjoy gambling or drinking, and typically opt for more unique experiences away from the strip. In this regard, the Neon Museum is perfect. We were able to walk over to the museum after exploring Fremont Street and the Container Park, so even before getting there we were having a blast without spending (or losing) any money. Once we arrived, we checked in for our time slot and checked out the gift shop until the tour began.
The tour was so fun, and the guide was really well-versed in the history of the signs, and of Las Vegas as a whole. She was born and raised in the city, which allowed her to incorporate personal anecdotes into the tour as well. I loved hearing about the designs and concepts behind each of the signs - which are waaaaaaay bigger than I ever could have imagined. Seeing photos of the signs in use really helped put into perspective what they looked like back in the day, but I was still blown away by the overwhelming scale of them.
I was really glad that the tour never felt rushed, and the guide gave us plenty of time to stop and take photos with the signs before moving to the next sections. I've done plenty of tours where I felt panicked when it came to having the time to truly appreciate what I was seeing, but I never had to worry with this one. The tour group was also a really reasonable size, so it never felt packed or like you were fighting for a better view.
If you're interested in the Neon Museum, or are planning a trip to Las Vegas, I would encourage you to go for it! You will need to book your tour a head of time because it is a pretty popular attraction, and there aren't a ton of time slots, but it is totally worth the commitment. When you book your tickets, they offer a packaged deal with the Mob Museum over by Fremont. We didn't visit the Mob Museum, but after our great experience with our tour I wish we had! I would also recommend a day tour rather than night. The vintage signs are out of commission (with the exception of a couple that have been restored), so you can really get a better view in daylight. It's also slightly cheaper during the day, and if you time it just right you can get golden hour lighting for photos and finish up in time to enjoy the night life of Fremont!
24 | Seattle, Wa