In a final goodbye to summer, I spent Labour Day weekend with my family in Las Vegas. Although Vegas may seem like an odd destination for a family vacation, it was a great opportunity to avoid the notorious "vices" of Sin City, and instead focus on sight-seeing and exploring the city's thriving restaurant scene - my favourite part of traveling.
We stayed at the Palazzo, which is the tallest building in Nevada and one of the world's largest hotels (there are over 7,000 suites). Situated between the Wynn and the Venetian, the Palazzo is a short walk from Fashion Show Mall, a must-visit shopping centre for anyone interested in retail. On our first evening in Vegas we went to Nobu, the famous Peruvian-Japanese restaurant in Caesars Palace. Nobu was a phenomenal experience of impeccable service and extremely flavourful food: the Wagyu beef, black cod miso, and yellowtail sashimi with jalapeño were mind-blowing. Mario Batali's Otto Pizzeria in the Venetian was another stop on our list. The stunning locale of the pseudo-outdoor restaurant felt as if we were in Italy, and the authentic pizza, arancini, and vegetable fritters truly enhanced the Italian atmosphere. On our last night, we enjoyed dinner at Joe Bastianich's restaurant Carnevino where I ate by far the best steak of my entire life.
The highlight of the trip, however, was visiting the Grand Canyon in a helicopter. Witnessing one of the Seven Wonders of the Natural World was a once in a lifetime experience, and it was astonishing to view the Las Vegas Strip, Lake Las Vegas, the Hoover Dam, and Lake Powell from an aerial perspective. Unfortunately, my photos of the Grand Canyon do it little justice, but I know I will never forget the overwhelming feeling of being surrounded by Earth's natural beauty.