If you plan a trip to Las Vegas, here you’ll find a list of the best places to take pictures.
Las Vegas offers a great combination of eye-catching sites and lively light shows, as well as stunning natural conservation parks.
Thanks to this, it’s a wonderful destination for photography lovers of all kinds.
Whether you’re drawn to the neon glow of The Strip at twilight, the historic charm of Downtown, or the stunning landscapes just a short drive away, you’ll find that Las Vegas is a city with as many photo opportunities as it has slot machines.
Las Vegas has many iconic landmarks, but it’s also changing rapidly.
That’s why I included some of the must-visit Vegas photo spots and a few hidden gems in this guide.
Here’s a list of my favourite places to photograph to get you started, but it’s just a small taste of what the city offers.
So, get your camera ready as I unveil the top photo-worthy locations in Sin City, along with tips to capture the vibrant essence of Vegas.
More photo location guides:
Table of Contents
The Well-Known (But Unmissable) Places to Take Pictures in Las Vegas
Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign
If you think of Las Vegas, you picture this sign. Yes, it’s one of the most photographed landmarks in the see, but it’s also a must-have in your bag of memories.
Betty Willis designed the sign, and it was erected in 1959. You’ll find the original sign at 5100 Las Vegas Boulevard, and it’s the unofficial end of the south side of the city.
However, you’ll find replicas of the sign throughout the city and many variations as souvenirs. You can make the sign a recurrent theme in your Las Vegas photo collection.
In any case, as it welcomes visitors arriving in the city, it also sends them off with farewell wishes. The Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign has another message in the back for people leaving the city – Drive Carefully Come Back Soon.
Willis never copyrighted the sign’s design as she considered it a gift to the city. So, this is one of those rare occasions where you can use your photographs for commercial purposes.
Make sure you put your own twist on it, though – as it’s been photographed many times.
There is a designated area where you can safely park and walk to the sign to take your photos. This project started in 2008, and it’s been expanded twice to accommodate the ever-growing number of photo seekers.
Best time to visit
Try to visit mid-week to find fewer tourists. Also, get there very early – around 6 am or 7 am.
Consider that you’ll be facing north as the sign is facing south. You’ll probably need a fill flash to avoid unflattering hard shadows on your subject – especially in the summer.
Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area
Red Rock Canyon is a National Conservation Area about 30 minutes away from the city. Red-coloured rock formations, fossilised dunes, and sandstone peaks within the Mojave Desert characterise it.
It has a 21 km long scenic route and 26 hiking trails. The road is suitable for going by bike, and you can also go rock climbing if you prefer to get a view from above.
Another way to get a view from above is by doing drone photography. You have to be aware of the no-fly zones in the wilderness area. You should also be mindful and not disturb either the visitors or the wildlife.
If you prefer to focus on flora and fauna, you should know that there are about 600 species of plants here. As for the wildlife, you can find donkeys, rabbits, squirrels, sheep, toads, and tortoises.
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From the Red Rock Canyon, you can capture beautiful photos of the city skyline. As for the park,
Best time to visit
If you’re shooting during the day – sunrise and sunset are the best times. However, nighttime also offers wonderful photo opportunities.
It’s allowed to camp in the Red Rock Canyon. So, you can spend the night and practice your astrophotography. It’s also the perfect opportunity to capture wonderful landscapes at the break of dawn. Don’t forget your tripod!
Valley of Fire State Park
Valley of Fire is a national preservation area open to the public with hiking, picnicking, and camping facilities. From Las Vegas, it’s easy to reach by car in less than an hour.
One of the main attractions is the Aztec Sandstone, which was formed by shifting dunes 150 million years ago. Another highlight of your visit is the Petroglyphs, which you can see throughout the park.
There are different hiking trails you can use on your visit to capture different views. If you arrive early, you can visit the park in a day.
However, it’s also possible to camp – which is great for capturing night landscapes and astrophotography. Make sure you visit the White Domes, Rainbow Vista, Atlatl Rock, and Arch Rock.
The Fire Wave is one of the most impressive views of the park, in my opinion. However, Rainbow Vista is also stunning. Look for the shapes in the rock formations, such as the Beehive and the Elephant Rock.
Best time to visit
The name Valley of Fire comes from the visual effect of the Aztec Sandstone that appears to be on fire at sunset. That’s why this is the best time to visit. If possible, avoid the summer months as the weather is too hot.
Unlike other natural reserves, you can’t fly a drone in Valley of Fire without a permit because it poses a risk to helicopter landings.
Las Vegas Strip
This part of Las Vegas Boulevard has the highest concentration of hotels and casinos. You might know it as Vegas Strip or The Strip – but actually, most people call it Las Vegas.
Yes, this is because it’s the brightest, liveliest part of the city that’s mostly associated with the city in movies and TV series. As such, it’s full of landmarks you’ll want to photograph.
However, it’s not so easy to find unobstructed views. At street level, there are so many crowds, trees, and other buildings that it’s difficult to get a good view.
Instead, many of the good vantage points are covered in glass – which makes it a challenge due to all the reflections. Nonetheless, there are some good photo spots.
From the Bellagio Parking Garage, you get a great view of the Bellagio fountains, the Eiffel Tower, the Paris Balloon, and a few iconic buildings.
You won’t be able to see the still pool of water of the fountain – just the water shooting up. So, make sure you catch the water show, which happens every half an hour.
Other garage rooftops also work, for example, the one from the Virgin Hotel. If you have the budget, another great view is from the higher levels of the Cosmopolitan Hotel.
Best time to visit
After sunset is the best time because you’ll still have some natural light giving colour to the sky, and all the hotels and landmarks will already be lit.
Shoot in raw format or do multiple shots bracketing the exposure to assemble an HDR image later to handle the strong contrast and make the best colour adjustments.
Paris Las Vegas
Since we’re already talking about the Las Vegas Strip, let’s talk about one of its most famous landmarks – the replica of the Eiffel Tower.
This is the tallest replica in the world as it’s half scale of the original. It’s the main feature of the Paris-themed hotel, and it has an observation deck 140m high.
The Eiffel Tower of Las Vegas has been featured in many Hollywood films – such as Resident Evil Extinction.
However, it’s not the only one – you’ll also find the Louvre, the Opera House, and the Arch of Triumph. All of them are scaled to fit the design.
The resort opened in 1999, featuring a casino, a hotel, a theatre, and various restaurants. By the end of 2023, a sky bridge with a Parisian-style roof will connect the Versailles Tower, which used to belong to the Horseshoe Las Vegas.
The main sign of the Paris resort is a neon hot air balloon with the word Paris. This is another popular photo spot.
Head over to the Bellagio Valet and go behind the water fountain. Head upstairs to the lookout – here, you’ll have a beautiful view of the Eiffel Tower to photograph or use as the background of your portraits.
Best time to visit
As stunning as it is during the day, you’ll get more vibrant pictures at night. The tower is lit with over 300 colour lights and 800 white ones to create the show that happens every half hour until midnight.
Even if the Eiffel Tower in Las Vegas is only half as tall as the original, it’s still 160m high so if you want to take a portrait at the bottom, use a wide-angle lens and a worm’s eye view.
Seven Magic Mountains
Seven Magic Mountains is an art installation by Ugo Rondinone. It’s quite far from the city, between three and four hours. It’s in the Mojave Desert and close to the Jean Dry Lake, so it’s a wonderful setting.
There’s a walking trail you can use to reach the installation. However, there aren’t any facilities close by. So, you’d be wise to plan accordingly.
Many tours will get you there, but they won’t stop for long, and you might not get there when there’s good light or have the time to find the best vantage point. If you can, rent a car and go on your own.
No professional photography is allowed, but you can fly your drone. As it is an artwork, it’s protected by copyright. This means that any photograph you take can’t be sold or used for commercial purposes.
When you visit, please observe the “leave nothing but your footprints – take nothing but pictures” rule.
Best time to visit
Sunset and sunrise offer the best view, but at sunrise, you’ll have fewer people around – so it will be easier to get a clean shot of the installation.
As you know, you can’t fly a drone over crowds. So, it’s better to get there early – before the crowd forms. It will also be a better picture without so many people in it.
The Caesars Palace is one of the biggest and most iconic hotels and casinos in the Las Vegas Strip. It was built in 1966, and it aimed to recreate life during the Roman Empire.
The many statues and columns make every corner of the place a sumptuous background for your portraits. There are eighteen fountains throughout the resort, which are also wonderful photo spots.
Many of the fountains also feature reproductions of classic statues such as the Rape of the Sabine Women, the David, Venus, and others.
Stepping out of the Roman influence, you’ll also find an eight-handed Brahma shrine.
The Caesars Palace – especially the lobby is featured in multiple films and TV shows. So, there are also plenty of TV and movie fans taking pictures here too.
Photographs for personal use are usually allowed. However, inside the casino, you need to be more careful. According to Las Vegas Review Journal, Caesars Entertainment Corp states that photos are allowed “under certain circumstances”. So, it’s better to ask permission before you snap a picture.
Regarding shows at the Colosseum, you won’t be able to bring inside any sort of camera – not even a consumer type. They don’t have a holding service, so you can’t just leave it at the door. It’s better not to bring one at all.
As far as photography with your smartphone – it may or may not be allowed. This changes according to the artist. In any case, flash is always forbidden.
– lobby, the gazebo in the corner of the Flamingo and Las Vegas Blvd, Trevi Fountain,. Pro tip – shoot in raw to bring out the shadows as there’s a lot of contrast with the background, or shoot HDR
- The lobby.
- The gazebo is on the corner of Flamingo and Las Vegas Blvd.
- The Trevi Fountain.
Best time to visit
If you want quiet scenes, it’s better to shoot at sunrise. Instead, if you want to capture the busy life of a Las Vegas casino – it’s best to come at night.
To photograph the fountains, it is better to shoot just after sunset. This way, there’s still some daylight to give you some colours in the sky, but the lights shows are already running.
Speaking of iconic resorts, Bellagio is another landmark you can’t miss on your Vegas photo tour.
I already told you how and when it’s best to photograph the Bellagio fountain when I talked about the Las Vegas Strip. You can also capture great pics of it from the pathway leading to the resort’s entrance.
However, that’s not the only photo opportunity you’ll find at this popular hotel and casino.
Among the many amenities of the resort, there’s a wide variety of bars and restaurants. At the Jean Philippe Maury patisserie, you’ll find the world’s biggest chocolate fountain.
The Bellagio Conservatory lobby. It’s decorated with many flowers that change every season and gets a special decoration for each Holiday, such as Christmas, Mother’s Day, Chinese New Year, etc.
The lobby’s ceiling is decorated by the glass artwork ‘Fiori di Como’ by Dale Chihuly. This is another highlight that’s worth many photographs.
Across the street on Las Vegas Boulevard and Audrie Street, you’ll get a frontal view of the Bellagio. If you can get on higher ground in one of the hotels, you’ll get an even better vantage point.
Best time to visit
Just after sunset – when there’s a fountain show. After 7 p.m., this happens every 15 minutes.
The Bellagio usually allows the use of a tripod on their property to let you capture a better picture of the fountains. Just be careful not to block the way – it can get very crowded.
This is the oldest resort still running, and it was the third one to open back in 1946. This makes it one of the most famous photo spots in the Las Vegas Strip.
The architecture is in Art Deco, and it’s reminiscent of the Miami and South Beach style. In the back of the property, you’ll find a station of the Las Vegas Monorail, which is also an interesting photo subject.
Films like Viva Las Vegas and Ocean’s 11 were filmed at the Flaming, as well as the TV series Vega$. It’s also been featured in multiple shows and books.
Not many people know that there are real flamingos in the garden. This is a great spot to take your photographs.
Best time to visit
To photograph the iconic neon sign at the entrance and the architecture, it’s best to come when it’s dark. However, for pictures in the garden with the flamingos, it is best to come during the day.
To photograph the flamingos, bring a zoom lens so you can get close-ups and wide shots.
The Neon Museum
The neon signs from the Las Vegas Strip are considered historical landmarks – even the ones that are no longer there. That’s why the Neon Museum was founded – so it could preserve and showcase them.
The need for this museum became clear after the famous sign The Sands had to be destroyed after being discontinued. But it wasn’t until the lobby of La Concha was donated that the plans became more concrete.
The building itself is a landmark that’s worth photographing. However, the bigger treasures are the signs it holds, which are distributed in three areas.
Along Las Vegas Boulevard – between Fremont St. and Washington Ave., you’ll find the restored sign being displayed. Most of the other signs are in the Main Boneyard and the Boneyard Park.
In the North Gallery, there’s a Craig Winslow art installation called Brilliant. It uses vintage signs and projectors set to the rhythm of contemporary music.
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Best time to visit
Shooting when it’s dark will make the neon lights look more vibrant.
The museum offers photo walks, portrait hours, and private photo shoots. Make sure you book one of these to make some amazing photos.
The Lesser-Known Las Vegas Photo Spots (Local Secrets)
Any of the carnival rides of Adventure Dome are great for filling your Instagram feed with fun and dynamic photos. It’s also perfect for practising your long-exposure photography.
The Symphony Park at The Smith Center makes a very colourful location for your photographs.
If you’re a fan of The Beatles, you can pay tribute to them by taking a photo at the Abbey Road Crossing in Downtown Las Vegas.
For nature photography, try Gold Strike Hot Springs. If you can handle the hiking trail to get there, this is also one of the best spots for drone photography.
Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health is another hidden gem. This is an outpatient and research facility, so you can’t go inside. However, its architecture is worth a visit.
FAQs about Taking Photos in Las Vegas
Is it legal to fly a drone in Las Vegas?
It is legal to fly a drone recreationally in most of Las Vegas Valley. Of course, you’ll need to follow the local and federal regulations. You need to avoid controlled airspaces and stay below 400 feet.
Instead, the Las Vegas Strip is considered a no-fly zone.
Is it legal to take street photos in Las Vegas without permission?
Street photography isn’t banned in Las Vegas. However, you need to be aware of people’s reasonable expectations of privacy. You should also be careful with copyright infringement – which can be the case with the architectural design of some casinos and hotels.
Are there any places in Las Vegas where photography is strictly prohibited?
Many casinos in Las Vegas forbid you to take photos inside. This is to protect the privacy and safety of their clients and the security of the casino itself. If you’re not sure about the policy of a specific casino, it’s better to err on the side of caution and ask before taking any shots.
Is flash photography allowed in museums and indoor attractions?
Museums usually forbid the use of flash – this is partly to protect the artwork and partly to prevent other visitors from being disrupted during the visit.
Other indoor attractions, such as the Cirque du Soleil, also forbid flash photography for the safety of the performers who may get distracted and get injured. Las Vegas casinos usually forbid photography – the ones that allow it don’t let you use flash.