Adventuredome at Circus Circus

rollercoasterThe Adventuredome inside of the Circus Circus complex is a great Saturday escape for the Ken Watrous family in Las Vegas when we’re not out camping. It has all of the usual features of a theme park, with food, big rides, small rides, amusements, and games, but it is small enough that you don’t spend half the day walking between the three things everyone wants to do. It can get crowded, but doesn’t get anxiety-level crowded. For the most part the lines are under the 10 minute wait and really, a wait between rides is good to keep the kids from getting totally overstimulated. In general the whole Adventuredome experience is a lot of fun with only mild annoyances and the fun levels are high without anyone shrieking (too much).

Rides come in three major varieties. There are the smallest children rides, which are pretty slow and involve some movement, but nothing death-defying like loops or going upside down. These are usually limited to children under a specific height, unlike most of the others that are limited to over a height. There are a few of these that are limited in a range. These are seen as transitional rides between growing ages, but they offer the largest set of problems. The low-end size puts a 7 year old in a space where they can go, but the high end side means it takes a short parent to go with. This can be tough for a kid that wants to be brave enough for a more exciting ride, but maybe doesn’t want to go on it without some hand holding.

The second major category of rides is the larger roller coasters. These are the typical affairs with an over 48 inch requirement and they can be rough on the stomach, if not the psyche. These are more for the teens and adult set and outside of the range of what my smaller children are ready for. Still, they are there and they can be fun. They put a lot of novelty and themes into these attractions and they keep getting better with speeds, turns, sound effects, and other bits making them more thrilling and safer all the time.

The third kind of ride are these enhanced movement rides. The best example is the original Star Tours at Disneyland, but you might have seen them crop up in mall kiosks in the last 20 years. Now they are their own subset of thing and The Adventuredome has a whole set of them. These usually involve a screen playing a partially interactive video and then the seats move in time with the action. These are great gateway rides because they have a lot of motion, but they are also built inside a single room, so the kids and adults can sit together without some of the risks that the outdoor rides have (as far as height and weight restrictions go). These are also good for getting a kid excited about the movement of rides but in a comfortable way.

They also have an arcade and a laser tag arena. My kids are a little small for this, but laser tag has always been a fun thing to do. It is exciting but also more free-form, you can run around and don’t have to be locked into a seat. Though it can be discouraging if going up against a team that keeps you down too much. Mostly they do a good job of separating out sizes so that there is a blend of older and younger kids on teams, to keep it even, but that doesn’t always happen. Recently they have added a few more laser-themed attractions. These Batman branded events involve moving through areas and either hitting or avoiding lasers. These are fun for acting out spy movie things and can be done at any age, so they are a good set of fun.

Finally, there is a mini-golf course which is a pretty light day. I suggest this as a weekend activity because the day passes are pretty reasonable for the price over individual rides, but you need to do 3 or 4 things to make it worth while, which means you need a few hours and an evening is probably not enough. Oh, because this is part of Circus Circus they also have a some clown shows. Which, depending on your kids is either a great time or a terrible time.

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