You Can Go Kayaking... on Your Las Vegas Trip
Or, if you'd rather, experience arts and culture downtown
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 2, 2013 12:31 PM CDT
This April 13, 2013 photo shows the Colorado River snaking through the Black Canyon near Boulder City, Nev.   (AP Photo/Karen Schwartz)

(Newser) – If your weekend in Las Vegas left you a bit hungover and in need of healthier pursuits, good news: You can get picked up at your hotel and whisked 30 miles away to kayak the Colorado River on an overnight Black Canyon "float trip" near the Hoover Dam, the AP reports. Just 30 boats are allowed on that stretch of the river per day, and you'll want to hook up with a government-approved boating outfitter, because a launch permit is needed. The area around the 700-foot-high dam—of which you'll have a good view during the trip—is a security zone, monitored by federal police.

A standard two-day trip covers 12 miles, and writer Karen Schwartz describes "spectacular" scenery including high canyon walls, waterfalls, historic ruins, caves to explore, hidden hot springs, and of course wildlife. If the great outdoors isn't really your thing, consider downtown Vegas. Donors are putting hundreds of millions toward glamming up the previously seedy part of town, with a particular focus on arts and culture, Variety reports. Symphony Park, once a run-down railroad yard, is now home to the Smith Center for the Performing Arts. A monthly First Friday street fair celebrates art. And on East Fremont, galleries and antique shops sit next to restaurants and bars. (Or you could just stay on the Strip and catch a Britney Spears' show.)