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Laughlin, Nevada

The Oasis on the River


Photo of Teri Laursen
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Just ninety minutes south of Las Vegas, sits the riverside oasis of Laughlin, Nevada, known to many as a place to relax and others as a place to let your hair down! It is the perfect balance of exciting activities nestled in a beautiful natural setting.

The famous Colorado River, which runs over 1,000 miles from the Rocky Mountains to the Sea of Cortez, provides the true “center” of Laughlin. This beautiful natural heart of the valley offers a wide variety of recreational activities including boating, water skiing, jet skiing and fishing. There are several launch ramp facilities along the river, and a number of places to rent water crafts. You may also enjoy the river aboard the Celebration for an evening dinner cruise on a paddlewheel boat. Another option is simply strolling along the River Walk from the River Palms to the Riverside Resort where you can catch glimpses of fish and birds along the way. The River Passage Water Taxi is still a very convenient way to enjoy the Colorado River and navigate your way down the Casino Strip since they do stop at all the docks along the River Walk.

Laughlin, Nevada at night

Lake Mohave was created by the building of Davis Dam on the mighty Colorado River. Just a few miles up from Casino Row, over 200 miles of shoreline surround a peaceful lake which offers visitors the chance to enjoy wildlife, fishing, boating, waterskiing, swimming, hiking and camping. This is a remarkable place to visit in the early morning and at sunset.

Visiting the authentic Wild West in nearby Oatman is certainly something history buffs would enjoy. This town is over 100 years old, and the locals keep it authentic. It has great shops, restaurants and gunfights. The wild burros roam through the town and wait for you to feed them. It is a fun place to visit the past, and is located along famous Route 66. Several movies were filmed here. Clark Gable and Carol Lombard stayed there during their elopement in the 1930’s.


Grapevine Canyon will surprise you with beautiful desert landscapes and rock formations. This short hike is slightly challenging due to loose rocks and debris, but will prove worthwhile since it is known to have over 1,000-year-old Native American petroglyphs that seem to climb up the rock walls of the canyon.

One attraction that should be included on everyone’s itinerary is Don Laughlin’s Classic Car Collection, located at the Riverside Resort. An avid car enthusiast, Don has over 85 spectacular automobiles from his personal collection on display, including muscle cars, movie cars, and famous motorcycles. Also on display are antique slot machines and vintage gaming tables. The museum is a treat for visitors of all ages and admission is absolutely free.

There are 10 major Casino Hotels along the River in Laughlin, which offer surprisingly good room rates for beautiful rooms and amenities. It is often possible to get nice rooms for under $50 per night. You can enjoy great entertainment, eateries, casinos, and many of the properties have additional amenities such as spas, theaters and bowling. One thing is certain about this Oasis on the River—there’s always something to do! Laughlin also happens to be home to some pretty exciting festivals and events. From gem shows to motorcycles and everything in between, there’s plenty of reason to take a long weekend in Laughlin, Nevada.

You can find more information on lodging, parks and attractions at and

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