Neon Boneyard – Las Vegas, NV

Ever since I saw Esther’s photos of The Neon Museum, I’ve been itching to go there. We go to Vegas a few times a year for business, so this last trip I made a reservation to make sure we didn’t miss it.

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We were not disappointed. In fact, the tour was more than I expected. Our guide did an awesome job narrating the story and history of most of the signs in the Neon Boneyard, interweaving a lot of Vegas history along the way. It was a fun, educational tour, and I left with a huge appreciation for the art of sign making and neon. Though to be truly honest, I didn’t know much about it to begin with. 😛 Just being honest. 🙂

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We booked a guided day tour mostly because we had our toddlers with us (more on that later!) and we didn’t want to deal with cranky, sleepy kids, but also because I wanted to see the actual colors of the signs. Only a few of the signs are restored and actually light themselves, so on night tours the majority of the signs are illuminated by lights along the walkway. It’s beautiful (check out the night photos on Local Adventurer to see what I mean).

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If you’re planning to visit just for the photos, know that they only allow photos for personal use unless you book a photo shoot for an additional fee. With the regular tours you must stay with the tour guide at all times, so depending on your tour group it may be hard to get all the photos you want. The guide does try to let everyone get their photos in, but remember they’re also on a schedule and have to keep the group moving. They do offer photo tours where you’re allowed to wander and take photos for an hour (no models and assistants allowed). These come at an additional cost as well.
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I mentioned that we took our kids with us, and I’d say that I’d only recommend it for families if your kids are either young enough to stay in a stroller or carrier for over an hour or old enough to stay with the group without running around or trying to touch things. The Boneyard is full of old, rusty signs and broken glass, and you definitely don’t want your kids touching things and getting hurt.

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If you’re looking for something to do in Vegas that’s a bit off the beaten path, I’d highly recommend The Neon Museum. This was one of my favorite kid-friendly(ish) Vegas experiences so far, for sure. Speaking of which, I’m thinking of sharing my favorite toddler friendly Vegas spots. Would anyone be interested in that?

And lastly, just for fun, the famous Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign, which is still neon (unlike the Boneyard Park photo up at the top, which is actually LED).
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{I’ve been playing with film lately, and these photos are from one of the first rolls I’ve shot since high school! – Fuji Superia 400 on my Nikon F3, unedited}

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4 Comments

  1. I like going to Vegas because I don’t need to deal with car rental or food. But this one sounds very interesting. Definitely save this for our next trip to Vegas.
    Linda | Brunch with Joy recently posted…Mini Cheese Tart + A GiveawayMy Profile

    • What do you do about food in Vegas? Food is one of my favorite things about the place..or any place, really. 😛

  2. aww I’m so glad you went (& thanks for linking to us!) 🙂 love the photos you got from it… i def think the day time tours are better than night time. i was a little disappointed with the night time just bc i had no idea that most of the neon lights wouldn’t be lit up.

    • Thanks for sharing this place to begin with! I loved the way your night shots turned out, but I can see how it would be pretty disappointing to find out only a few lit themselves.

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