GAMING, ENTERTAINMENT, VACATION DESTINATION, WATER RECREATION AND TOP FIVE RV DESTINATION
Laughlin, Nevada is an unincorporated town in Clark County, Nevada on the Colorado River approximately 94 miles south of Las Vegas, Nevada at the southernmost tip of the state of Nevada. Laughlin was founded by Don Laughlin, a club owner in Las Vegas, who, in 1964 bought the southern tip of Nevada, at that time known as South Pointe. The states of California, Arizona and Nevada meet at this location.
The 2010 United States Census lists the population of Laughlin as 7,323. The cities of Bullhead City, Arizona (across the Colorado River from Laughlin), Needles, California, Fort Mojave, Arizona and Mojave Valley, Arizona bring the Laughlin metro population to about 100,000.
In the state of Nevada, Laughlin is the third most visited resort and casino destination (Las Vegas and Reno being the first and second most visited resort and casino destinations in Nevada). Laughlin is also one of the top five destinations for American RV enthusiasts.
Laughlin bills itself as a "family friendly" vacation and entertainment destination. Since Laughlin sits on the banks of the mighty Colorado River, water recreation activities are prevalent. Today, almost three million visitors visit Laughlin every year to enjoy gaming, water sports and special events sponsored by the Laughlin community.
LAUGHLIN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
Laughlinchamber.org. 702-298-2214. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. 1585 Casino Drive.
LAUGHLIN CLIMATE AND WEATHER
The climate of Laughlin is considered a "desert" climate as it receives less than six inches of annual rainfall. (Deserts are regions that receive less than 10 inches of annual rain fall. Examples of deserts are: the Great Victoria Desert in Australia, the Negev Desert in Israel, the Sahara Desert in northern Africa and the Gobi Desert in Asia.)
Laughlin winters are "mild" with day time temperatures in the 70's degrees Fahrenheit and night time low temperatures ranging from 45-60 Fahrenheit.
Summer day time temperatures in July and August can exceed 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Summer night time lows range from 78 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Laughlin is one of the hottest cities in the United States during the summer months with "heat wave" temperatures over 120 degrees Fahrenheit not uncommon.
FLIGHTS TO LAUGHLIN
The nearest airport to Laughlin is located across the Colorado River in Bullhead City, Arizona. Laughlin/Bullhead International Airport is considered a full service regional airport with flights from every part of the United States. The airport is operated by the Mojave County Airport Authority. Airlines offering services to Laughlin/Bullhead International Airport include the following:
- Sun Country Airlines (800-359-6786; suncountry.com).
- Allegiant Air (allegiantair.com)
- Several private charter services
- Charter flights to the Laughlin/Bullhead International Airport are available by booking package deals through the Riverside Resort and Harrah's Laughlin.
- Many of the hotels and casinos in Laughlin have affiliations with transportation companies. When you book a package through a resort or casino, ask them about transportation services.
- A viable alternative to flying into Laughlin/Bullhead International Airport is to fly to Las Vegas McCarren Airport. Southwest Airlines (southwest.com--1-800-I-FLY-SWA) has had good deals for people with access to Southwest Airlines service). Rent a car and drive to Laughlin (approximately 94 miles south of Las Vegas) or take a shuttle bus to Laughlin.
- The Laughlin Nevada Times. Laughlintimes.com. 888-274-4047 or 702-298-6090. Robin Richards-editor.
- The Laughlin Nevada Entertainer. Laughlinentertainer.com. 877-704-6245 or 928-763-2505. Alan Marciocchi-editor.
LAUGHLIN HOTELS AND CASINOS
- Don Laughlin's Riveside Resort, Hotel and Casino. Riversideresort.com. 1-800-227-3849. Established in 1966. Laughlin's first hotel and casino. Located on the banks of the Colorado River. Owned and operated by Don Laughlin and his family. Known as a family friendly resort. Includes Don's Kid Kastle--a supervised children's play center. Also has an RV park.
- Harrah's Laughlin Hotel and Casino. Harrahslaughlin.com. 702-298-4600. Caesars.com. 1-800-223-7277. Harrah's Laughlin is a Mexican themed hotel and casino and is the second largest casino property in Laughlin with more than 1,500 rooms, four restaurants, a hotel guest beach and other accomodations.
- Tropicana Express. Tropicanax.com. 1-800-243-6846. The Steakhouse has been voted "Best Steakhouse" for 12 consecutive years. The Tropicana offers 1,500 rooms that cater to the "mature" traveller with an all-adult tower.
- Avi Resort and Casino, Laughlin. Avicasino.com. 1-800-284-2946. Includes a KOA RV park. Features a beach on the banks of the Colorado River.
- Golden Nugget Laughlin. Goldennugget.com/laughlin. 800-950-7700. Located on the banks of the Colorado River, the Golden Nugget offers 300 hotel rooms with a tropical rainforest decor. Restaurant fare includes Joe's Crab Shack, Harlow's, and the Salt Grass Steakhouse. Nightlife is accentuated at Tarzan's Nightclub with live bands, DJ's and dancing.
- River Palms Resort Casino. River-palms.com. 800-835-7903 or 702-298-2242. The River Palms offers more than 1,000 guest rooms, four restaurants, fast food outlets, live entertainment and a full service salon and spa.
- Edgewater Casino Resort. Edgewater-casino.com. 866-352-3553 or 702-298-2453. The Edgewater is located on the west bank of the Colorado River and offers more than 1,000 guest rooms. Dining options include seven restaurants featuring an award winning buffet. Fast food outlets are also available. A full service beauty salon, fitness room and RV parking enhance your vacation experience.
- Colorado Belle Casino Resort. Coloradobelle.com. 866-352-3553. The Colorado Belle Casino is a 600 foot long replica of a 19th century Mississippi River paddlewheel riverboat. It offers three great restaurants, the Boiler Room, an award winning Micro Brewery and restaurant, free live entertainment, a spa, salon and fitness room.
- Bay Shore Inn. 702-299-2010. The Bay Shore Inn offers a family picnic and barbeque area. Lounge entertainment and video poker are also available.
- Aquarius Casino Resort. Aquariuscasinoresort.com. 888-662-5825 or 702-298-5111. The Aquarius Casino offers 1,900 rooms, fitness center, swimming pool, fine dining, casual and fast food establishments. The Aquarius Casino is the recipient of eight 2011 "Best Of" awards from the Mojave Valley Dailey News which included "Best Accomodations", "Best Fine Dining-The Vineyard", and "Best Video Poker".
- JANUARY--the SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge race is the start of the SCORE International season. Pick-up trucks, dune buggies, Baja Bugs, and off road race cars compete in a desert race on a course beside the Colorado River.
- MARCH--the Laughlin Town-Wide concert has featured recording artists such as John Fogerty and the "Queen of Country Music" Reba McEntire.
- APRIL--Legends over the Colorado Fly-In. Historic aircraft that helped America win WWII include a vintage B-29 Super Fortress. The public can meet pilots, tour the airplanes and take rides (for a fee).
- The Laughlin River Run. Laughlinriverrun.com. 949-502- 3434. The Laughlin River Run is an annual gathering of motorcycle riders and is the largest event of this type in the western United States. It was started in 1983 by Harley Davidson dealer Dale Marschke who wanted to bring his customers and other bikers to Laughlin for a fun weekend. The River Run was given its name because the bikers ride to the Colorado River. The River Run takes place annually during the last weekend in April, starting on Wednesday and finishing on a Sunday. The event features live concerts, motorcycle vendors, a poker run, drag races, a bike show and a Ms. Laughlin competition. The 2002 River Run has become famous because two rival motorcycle gangs, the Mongols and the Hell's Angels brawled on the floor of Harrah's Laughlin Casino.
- JUNE--the Annual Chefs Food Fest Charity Dinner features the best chefs from Laughlin casinos. Liquor vendors offer free samples of their products. The Dinner is an "all you can eat" affair with proceeds going to the River Fund, Inc. to help citizens who need help.
- JULY--Rockets Over the River. Celebrating the Fourth of July, fireworks are shot over the Colorado River choreographed to patriotic music. The event is free to the public. Viewing is best from the Riverwalk.
- AUGUST--Bullhead City River Regatta. Bullheadregatta.com. Float down the Colorado River with more than ten thousand of your closest friends for about 9 miles. Perhaps the largest tube float in the world.
- NOVEMBER--celebrate the begining of the Holiday Season by attending the Annual River of Lights Holiday Boat Parade on the Colorado River. Enter your boat and compete to have the brightest, loudest and most festive boat in the parade. The Parade is sponsored by the Aquarius Casino Resort and the Riverside Resort.
- DECEMBER--SNORE Rage at the River Off Road Race. SNORE (Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts) features desert racing at its finest.
LAUGHLIN PARKS, RECREATION AREAS AND HISTORIC SITES
- Death Valley National Park. Nps.gov/deva. 760-786-3200. 172 miles west of Laughlin. Death Valley encompasses more than 3.3 million acres of desert. Death Valley is the lowest (Badwater Basin-282 feet below sea level-in contrast, the snow capped Panamint mountains rise more than 11,000 feet above the Badwater Basin.), hottest, driest and "baddest" location in North America.
- Mojave National Preserve. Nps.gov/moja. 760-928-2572. 63 miles west of Laughlin. 1.6 million acres of desert habitat. The largest and thickest Joshua tree forest is found here.
- Lake Mead National Recreation Area. Nps.gov/lake. 702-293-8990. The reservoir was created by building Hoover Dam on the Colorado River. Lake Mead was named after Elwood Mead, the Bureau of Reclamation commissioner at that time (1924-1936).
- Grapevine Canyon. Nps.gov/lake. 702-293-8990. Native American tribal cultures lived in this area 8,000 to 10,000 years ago. Archeological evidence suggests that some groups were hunter/gatherers and other groups tended to have more of a farming lifestyle. Some groups lived in caves and left drawings (petroglyphys) inside their cave dwellings and on rocks outside their dwelling places. Other groups lived in pit houses or Pueblo type structures. The farming groups planted corn, beans, squash, and cotton.
THE COLORADO RIVER
- Captain Doyle's Fun Fishing Guide Service. 866-284-3262. Funfishing.net. A family owned and operated business. Fish for striped bass, large mouth bass, trout, crappie and catfish or tour the beautiful Topock Gorge that can only be reached by boat.
- Jerkwater Canoe and Kayak. 800-421-7803. Jerkwatercanoe.com. Jerkwater Canoe provides canoeing equipment and scenic paddling trips on the Colorado River in the Arizona, California and Nevada regions. Jerkwater Canoe and Kayak has been in business for over forty years.
- Laughlin River Tours. 800-228-9825. Laughlinrivertours.com. Cruise the Colorado River on replica steamboats. Wedding cruises, dinner cruises, and sightseeing cruises are available on the "Celebration" and "Fiesta Queen". Both ships offer full climate control.
- Desert River Outfitters. 888-529-2523. Desertriveroutfitters.com. Provide canoe, and kayak sales and rentals. Also offer guided river trips in California, Arizona and Nevada.
- El Rio Golf and Country Club. 888-883-5746. Elriocountryclub.com. Located in Mohave Valley, a 30 minute drive from Laughlin. The course is a daily fee, 18-hole championship course with a par 72 and 4 sets of tees ranging from 5,300 to 7,100 yards in length.
- Laughlin Ranch Golf Club. 866-684-4653. Laughlinranch.com. Designed by David Druzisky, the Laughlin Ranch Golf Club is a par 72 championship course. The Colorado River, Casino Row and various mountains provide a majestic and scenic background.
- Mojave Resort Golf Club. 702-535-4653. Mojaveresortgolfclub.com. This par 72, 18 hole championship golf course offers a challenging and enjoyable golf outing.
LAUGHLIN RV PARKS
- Avi Resort. 10000 Aha Macav Parkway, Laughlin. 702-535-5555.
- Bullhead RV Park. 1610 Highway 95, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-763-8353.
- Carefree Resort RV Park. 350 Lee Avenue, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-754-3438.
- Davis Camp. 2251 Highway 68, Laughlin, Nevada. 928-754-7250.
- Don Laughlin's Riverside Resort RV Park. 1650 South Casino Dr. Laughlin, Nevada. 702-298-2535.
- El Rio Waterfront Resort and RV Park. 1614 Highway 95, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-763-4385.
- Fiesta RV Resort. 3190 Highway 95, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-758-7671.
- The Mirage RV Resort. 2196 Merrill Avenue, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-754-1177.
- Ridgeview Resort, LLC. 775 Bullhead Parkway, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-754-2595.
- River City RV Park, Inc. 2225 Merrill Avenue, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-754-2121.
- Rivershore Anchor RV Park. 475 Moser Avenue, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-754-3836.
- Riverview RV Park. 2020 Ramar Road, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-763-5800.
- Riviera RV Park. 2193 Riviera Loop, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-758-7476.
- Silver Creek RV Park. 1515 Goldrush Road, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-763-2444.
- Silverview RV Resort. 1501 Goldrush Road, Bullhead City, Arizona. 928-763-5500.
- Snowbird RV Resort. 1600 Jay Lane, Fort Mohave, Arizona. 928-768-7141.
If you are looking for a great vacation destination that is fun and affordable for the entire family, Laughlin, Nevada may be a great place for you and your family to visit. Laughlin is much more affordable than Las Vegas and it offers a greater return on your vacation dollars than Las Vegas. You can get away from the crowds in Las Vegas and you and your family can enjoy the beautiful Colorado River.