A few weeks ago, Las Vegas beauty Kita Rice was named the new Miss Las Vegas. Her journey to the crown has been a non-stop whirlwind of local and global efforts, including a monumental trip this past summer to South Africa, where she realized her dream of volunteering with children at a school in Capricorn Park township. The next stop on her regal tour? The Miss Nevada competition later this year. Until then, she'll be doing her best to spread the love about her dazzling hometown.

While gambling and all-you-can-eat buffets might be the first things that come to mind when you think of Vegas, Rice's all-time favorite spots prove the city has way more to offer. Here are her top five not-to-miss spots. 

 

Floyd Lamb State Park

"Located near Tule Springs, this park is amazing. There are large fishing ponds, tons of trails, and wild peacocks, bunnies, and geese roaming around. I absolutely love being outdoors (hiking, fishing, etc.), so the state park is the perfect destination for that. It is within walking distance of where I live so I am always hanging out here." 

Downtown Las Vegas (Arts District)

"This is the perfect place for a night out in Las Vegas. There are so many new things to do downtown, especially in Container Park. Lots of new restaurants and hangout spots for young adults. I don’t go out much but when I do, I really enjoy going to a nice restaurant and a movie. Container Park and downtown Summerlin both have little shopping areas, bars, and cafés which I love. I am not really into the club scene of Vegas. I definitely gravitate towards more chill venues and these places both offer that. I love to eat at Ohjah Japanese Steakhouse because I absolutely love hibachi — it is just so entertaining and delish!"


 Red Rock Canyon 

 

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"Red Rock is such a beautiful place. I have been hiking there since I was about six years old. It is so hard to pick one favorite trail, but if I had to so narrow it down, I'd pick Calico Tanks Trail and Ice Box Canyon."



Mandalay Bay Beach Pool

"I love all things beach and ocean! So this pool at the Mandalay Bay is the closest thing to being on a beach because there is an area with white beach sand and there is also a large pool that creates artificial waves."



Snowboarding at Mt. Charleston 

"I've been snowboarding for about seven years now. Whenever I need a break from the Las Vegas heat, I just take a short 30-minute drive up the snow-covered mountains of Mt. Charleston for snowboarding.