Only in Las Vegas can you walk the Strip, people watch, see the trillions of lights and “feel” like you’ve spent your life savings. That’s the experience of our city, the illusion of money. Though it costs money for dining, shows and entertainment, there are also hundreds of free things to do in Las Vegas that many don’t know about. Here are five of the best.
Lucky Cat
Cosmopolitan
3708 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 698-7000
www.cosmopolitanlasvegas.com

The Lucky Cat, or Maneki-Neko, is a Japanese symbol that dates back hundreds of years. Said to bring good fortune, it is a perfect fit for Las Vegas.The nine-foot chrome Lucky Cat sits in a 2,500-square-foot space in front of the Cosmopolitan as part of their ongoing art exhibit. The enormous cat beckons tourists to try their luck by touching its paw to receive a free fortune and/or a Cosmopolitan freebie and take a photo with the feline. Freebies range anywhere from free slot play, tickets to an in-house concert, a two-for-one buffet at the Wicked Spoon and dozens of other impressive giveaways from the Cosmo. Good fortune awaits you. It is free and open to the public daily from 2:00-10:00 p.m.

Emergency Arts
520 Fremont St.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89101
(702) 686-3164
www.emergencyartslv.com

Located in the heart of downtown in the old Fremont Medical building, Emergency Arts is an off-the-strip free experience you must put on your list. Now home to a creative community of artists, it’s a great place to explore paintings, photography or just hang out with friends. Enjoy local bands, get a facial or even kick-back and rediscover vinyl records with a cup of coffee or a snack from The Beat Coffeehouse, located right inside Emergency Arts.

CityCenter
3780 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(866) 722-7171
www2.citycenter.com

It’s a city within a city, connecting MGM properties Aria, Vdara, Crystals and Mandarin Oriental with the best of the best in entertainment, restaurants, retail, condos and fine arts. It’s a unique urban destination with world-class architecture and a $40 million Fine Art Collection. Spend a day or evening walking through CityCenter and marvel at the sculptures, paintings and architectural designs from world-renowned artists. This is a free enlightening experience unlike any other in Las Vegas or the world.

Related: Top Roadside Attractions Near Las Vegas

Circus Circus Hotel & Casino
2880 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 734-0410
www.circuscircus.com

Starting at 11:00 a.m. daily, Circus Circus showcases world class circus acts from daring artists around the world. High flying trapeze artists, speed jugglers, skill and balance performers on unicycles, clowns, flying angels and many other wild eye-opening performances are free and open to the public. The circus stage is surrounded by the Midway, an arcade with over 200 games from today and years gone by, yet another place to check out while you’re there.

Hershey’s Chocolate World
3790 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 437-7439
www.hersheyschocolateworldlasvegas.com

Boasting it’s the sweetest store on the Las Vegas Strip, Hershey’s Chocolate World is in fact, something sweet. Located inside the New York-New York, the two- story,13,000-square-foot store is a tourist favorite. Browse over 800 Hershey’s chocolates, unique products, gifts and interactive experiences. Take a photo in front of the Statue of Liberty, made out of 800 pounds of Hershey’s milk chocolate. All free, though we’ll bet a Hershey’s kiss you won’t make it out the door without splurging on some chocolate.

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A freelance writer for many years, Sheree Ciao is also the author of the book, ‘Blue, Purple and Scarlet.’ Open to all story ideas, you may contact her at s.ciao@yahoo.com. Read more on Examiner.com.