Las Vegas is home to a large assortment of museums, from typical museums of art, history, and science to the truly bizarre, such as museums that feature real bodies or the history of burlesque.
The following museums capture the unique character of Las Vegas, while still remaining family-friendly.
The Mob Museum
This museum is one that even surly teenagers might actually enjoy. The museum focuses on the impact that organized crime had on the history and evolution on Las Vegas, as well as the entire country and the world.
Learn about the ongoing battle that was waged for years between law enforcement and organized crime and discover real stories of Mob events through interactive exhibits, artifacts, and multi-sensory displays that bring Mob members to life.
The Neon Museum
Neon signs from the early days of Las Vegas were removed from the cityscape as historic casinos have been razed, making way for new mega-casino complexes that are so popular today. But there are many who miss those icons of bygone Vegas, and seek to salvage a piece of history by preserving these old neon signs.
Started in 1996, the Neon Museum is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving, collecting and displaying these iconic Las Vegas signs for posterity. The museum is comprised of an outdoor space referred to as the Neon Boneyard, the Neon Boneyard North Gallery where rescued signs serve as a backdrop for special events like weddings and photo shoots, and a visitor’s center inside the lobby of what was once the La Concha Motel.
To protect the collection, the public may only view the exhibits on a one-hour guided tour, which is available 7days a week, with tour times that vary upon the season.
The National Atomic Testing Museum
This national history, science and educational museum teaches the story of the United States’ nuclear weapons testing program held at the Nevada Test Site. The National Atomic Testing Museum (NATM) houses exhibits and interactive activities and offers tours of a large nuclear reactor, a Backpack Nuke, the Davy Crocket Weapon System, and a replica of the Control Point.
Visitors can also experience a simulation of an above-ground nuclear test in the Ground Zero Theater.
These three museums are a perfect example of the unique and unusual character of the city of Las Vegas and its history, and are an absolute must-see on your next visit to Nevada.