Less than an hour from Las Vegas, Boulder City was born from one of the most impressive feats of human engineering in the history of mankind. Its tapestry weaves historical relevance with new-age hipness. Begging to be visited, here are eight great things to do in (and around) Boulder City.
- THE DAM HOTEL
As the town began to thrive in the early 1930s, the need for an element of luxury became apparent. Cue the Boulder Dam Hotel—a grand building with private baths, air conditioning and an elegant wood-paneled lobby. Over the years, the hotel would welcome celebrities, royalty and tycoons.
- ENTICING BITES
Burgers? Got it. Beer? Yep. Barbecue? Of course. The Coffee Cup and the Southwest Diner both serve traditional breakfast food in imaginative ways. Jack’s Place offers a great stop for a lunchtime beer and tacos, or baby back ribs, or all three. For dinner, try The Dillinger for satiating cocktails and hearty burgers.
- STORIED STATUES
Take some time to visit the statues that line the historical district. Some are a tribute to the town’s past and some are just for fun. A notable one pays tribute to Alabam, the Toilet Paper Man. This statue remembers the smellier jobs assigned during Hoover Dam construction, such as those who were charged with cleaning and supplying the latrines with fresh paper.
- A RAIL-Y GREAT TRAIL
A mere 10 minutes outside Boulder City sits a scenic hike worthy of a trek. The Historic Railroad Trail follows the old railroad tracks that connected Boulder City to Hoover Dam, punctuated by five photo-worthy railroad tunnels. The trail, which begins at the Lake Mead Visitor Center, is approximately 3.7 miles long (each way) and leads hikers and bikers to the Hoover Dam.
- ENCORE, ENCORE!
Celebrate the art of short film at the Dam Short Film Festival, taking place February 14-29. This four-day festival screens more than 140 films of all genres—everything from documentary and drama to animation and horror. Round out your extended weekend with mixers, an awards show and more special events.
- ENOUGH OF THE DAM JOKES ALREADY
It would be blasphemous to visit Boulder City and not see Hoover. See the dam from great heights by taking a helicopter tour out of Boulder City. The sights are incredible, and the feeling of hovering several thousand feet above Hoover Dam is unforgettable.
7. OLD BUT GOLD
Window shoppers, history buffs and collectors will love the historic district, home to six antique stores within walking distance of one another and a seventh just moments away. Other small shops dot the street, so you’ll find the perfect souvenir no matter what vintage you’re after.
Bootleg Canyon—located just five minutes west—is worth checking out. Thrill seekers indulge in the area’s many offerings, including miles of world-class mountain bike trails. Hop a shuttle or drive yourself to enjoy a network of downhill and cross-country trails with incredible views of Lake Mead.
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