As the "Entertainment Capital of the World," the best shows in Las Vegas are stunning, electrifying, and extraordinary. With a wide range of options to choose from, there are great shows for adults, couples, families, and children, with acts such as magicians, comedians, strippers, musicians, singers, impressionists, dancers, and more. Before choosing a specific show, guests should investigate whether reservations are required, and evening shows often have a required dress code. Prices range from free and inexpensive to very expensive seats costing up to several hundred dollars per person ($$$$). There are discount vendors available, particularly on the day of the show, but seats may be limited.
1. Bellagio Fountains
Location: Bellagio Hotel
Nearly 1,200 fountains explode with sound, light, and water effects to create this nightly showcase in the center of the Las Vegas Strip. Coordinated displays with different songs can be playful, sensual, or startlingly powerful, and with water rising as high as 240 feet in the air, this delightful show is easy for hundreds of visitors to enjoy.
2. The Folies Bergere
Location: Tropicana Hotel
As the longest running show in Las Vegas, this classic revue includes risqué costumes, elaborate sets, beautiful women, and exquisite coordination of music and motion. The early evening show is fully clothed (as fully clothed as traditional Vegas showgirls ever get), and the late show is performed topless.
Location: Bellagio Hotel
This Cirque de Soleil show is resident in their custom designed aqua-theatre in the Bellagio. This breathtaking combination of aerial and acrobatic feats, mystical staging, live music and elegant fun is simply breathtaking and worth every penny of the ticket price.
4. Danny Gans
Location: The Mirage
This incredible performer plays to sold-out houses, but he doesn't do it alone - he is joined by 75-100 "guest performers" each night through his incredible repertoire of impressions, which is only a fraction of the more than 300 famous (and infamous) people he can accurately imitate. The entire show is conducted without props or special effects, making his feat even more amazing.
5. Individual Performances
Las Vegas has consistently drawn top entertainers from around the world for decades, with dozens of shows performed each evening to sold-out audiences. Whether the featured star is a country singer, a Cirque du Soleil troupe, or a world-renowned comedian, the sheer variety of these shows makes them one of the best options available in Vegas.
6. Wayne Newton
Location: Flamingo Hotel
As one of the premier icons of Las Vegas showmanship, Wayne Newton has been performing on the Strip since he was 15 years old. His personable nature and audience interaction guarantees he never performs the same show twice. He walks through the audience to personally greet guests, making it one of the most memorable and best shows in Las Vegas.
7. Lance Burton
Location: Monte Carlo Resort
This master magician specializes in making objects - including people and animals - appear and disappear in his extraordinary act, and daring feats of levitation complete his magical performances. Children in the audience are invited to participate as Burton's assistants, making this a great show for the entire family.
8. Rita Rudner
Location: New York New York
A witty comedienne focusing on relationship issues and powerful punch lines, Rudner headlines at the New York New York Hotel and Casino. Her act uses no vulgarity or curse words, making it another excellent choice for families and children.
9. Sirens of TI
Location: Treasure Island
These sexy sirens taunt pirates on a nightly basis, with coy conversation escalating to a full-scale sea battle complete with cannon fire and a sinking ship. Techno music and scanty costumes make this appealing to many visitors, and the boardwalk viewing area can become crowded during peak performances. Centralized promenades are reserved for hotel guests.
10. An Evening at La Cage
An all-star drag queen cast led by Frank Marino delights guests by impersonating dozens of famous women, including Joan Rivers, Whoopie Goldberg, and Cher. The naughty and ribald humor is accompanied by stunning wardrobes and costumes so convincing that audience members are often fooled into believing the actual women are making guest appearances. The act's more than 20 year history easily makes it one of the most recognizable shows in Las Vegas.
11. Fremont Street Experience
Location: Downtown Las Vegas
A four block complex covered by one of the most sophisticated sound and light systems in the world, the Fremont Street Experience is a sensory assault of the highest order. More than two million bulbs are coordinated into video and abstract displays coordinated to different types of music, and the local shopping kiosks, free shows, and other attractions along the vehicle-free promenade make it one of the most bustling areas of the city.
12. Tournament of Kings
This dinner theater show offers not only great entertainment with a joust, dragons, and medieval personas, but also great food for the whole family. Dozens of horses participate in the show (rotating so no one animal is overworked), and audience members may be called upon to help the king decide the fate of his enemies.
Location: Bally's Las Vegas Hotel
Skin, sequins, and feathers are the classic features of this traditional Vegas act, with dozens of stunning showgirls performing seven unique acts in each show. Both evening shows are topless, making this less appealing for families, and ID may be required for patrons to enter the theater.