Whether you’re staying on the Las Vegas Strip for just a couple of days, or a week-long convention, you owe it to yourself to experience some old school Vegas vibe by taking a trip downtown to Fremont Street.
While the Strip is nice, and clean, and safe, it’s also becoming increasingly homogenous – where almost every resort is owned by either Caesars Entertainment or MGM Resorts and where the atmosphere in many casinos is the same.
This is not true in downtown Las Vegas, where Fremont Street offers variety, character, and has somehow been able to retain its dusty old school charm.
Las Vegas Strip to Downtown Fremont Street Distance
Depending on what part of the Strip you start from, downtown is not that far away.
From the Wynn, for example, Fremont Street is a 5k run away, or 3.2 miles. From the Bellagio however, it’s 4.4 miles, while a downtown trip from say, the MGM Grand would be nearly 5 and 1/2 miles.
The main route is simply staying on Las Vegas Boulevard as taking the street north puts you on the east end of Fremont Street. From the Stratosphere (the north end of the Strip), to downtown is 1.8 miles, and this stretch of pavement is an eclectic street of activity whose occupants range from a federal courthouse to a super Wal-Mart of adult bookstores.
Whether taking a bus, taxi, ride-share or driving, this colorful route has you passing by low-rent motels, wedding chapels, such as the Chapel of the Flowers, the Little White Wedding Chapel, Mon Bel Ami and two, (yes two), Elvis themed wedding chapels.
The street is also home to several adult bookstores, bail bonds shops, the Peppermint Hippo strip club, a United States Federal Courthouse, and the Gold and Silver Pawn Shop, made famous by the boys from “Pawn Stars.”
Map of Route from Las Vegas Strip to Downtown Fremont Street
(Below the “A” is the center of the Las Vegas Strip to “B” Fremont Street)
For simplicity’s sake, this is the direct route from the Strip to downtown. However if you’re in a hurry and don’t mind interstate traffic, driving north on Interstate 15 is often the faster route.
If you do take Las Vegas Boulevard north, another slight shortcut is to take a slight left onto Main Street just past the Stratosphere. This route takes you directly in front of both the Plaza Hotel & Casino, and the Circa Las Vegas parking garage.
Walk from the Las Vegas Strip to Fremont Street
Walking from the center of the Las Vegas Strip (think Bellagio, Caesars Palace, Flamingo), is around 4 1/2 miles per Google Maps, which says it would take you just over an hour and half. From Circus Circus it would be 2.8 miles and just about an hour walk.
Yet regardless of where you start, downtown Las Vegas isn’t really within walking distance of the Strip. Not only because of the distance involved when dealing with the Las Vegas sun, but because it’s not the safest route in Sin City.
I don’t write about something I haven’t experienced myself, but I can recommend that you do not walk the Strip-to-Downtown sidewalk route at night.
Yes, there is almost always decent traffic on Las Vegas Boulevard, and many businesses, however it just gets a little too near to some sketchy downtown areas, along with being home to too many homeless people for me to suggest it’s a safe walking path.
I have no problem with my wife walking alone from say, the Venetian to the Flamingo on the Strip, but I would never say the same about walking to or from the Strip to downtown Las Vegas.
Instead of walking, there is the Las Vegas Deuce Bus, that goes from the Strip to downtown and back constantly. It’s affordable, convenient, and safe, if not necessarily lightening fast.
Driving From the Strip to Downtown Las Vegas
The drive from your Strip hotel to Fremont Street will be between 2 to 6 miles, depending on where you start
While not the fastest route, the easiest way to remember is to stay on Las Vegas Boulevard the entire way. The Las Vegas Gateway Arches (pictured above), represent the transition from the Strip to downtown.
Las Vegas Strip to Fremont Street FAQ
Fremont Street in downtown Las Vegas is a fun little, often-forgotten gem of a good time that brings to mind the Sin City days of old. While it’s not real close to the Strip, it IS a worthwhile trip to experience the unique character of casinos and bars completely different than the mega resorts found on the Strip.
By Steve Beauregard. Photos courtesy of Kirk Johnson via Flickr and LasVegasNevada.gov)