Las Vegas, USA

World Capital of Weddings vs Sin City

cozy Vegas
Couple photographed in front of the famous Las Vegas welcome sign.
Thematic chapel promotes quick marriages.
A large limo passes along the Strip.
Jon Bon Jovi
Graceland Chapel promotes the fact that Jon Bon Jovi was married in it.
Venice, Nevada
Gondolas anchored in the artificial lake at The Venezian hotel-casino, one of the most popular among couples visiting Las Vegas.
Wedding Menu
"Tunnel of Love" wedding menu, another matrimonial chapel in the city
stone chapel
One of the many matrimonial chapels in Sin City.
Paris, Nevada
A replica of the Eiffel Tower reinforces the romantic character of the ever opportunistic Las Vegas.
Welcome to
Detail of the famous sign that welcomes the fabulous Las Vegas, the gambling capital of the world, conquered from the Mojave Desert.
pay me tender
Elvis look-alike earns money photographing herself with her Cadillac.
border weddings
Roadside sign announces weddings
Limousines lined up in the parking lot of a matchmaking chapel.
fable marriage
Couple celebrates marriage at the glamorous Bellagio hotel.
Little White chapel
A conveniently signposted chapel near the height of a palm tree on the side of a Vegas road
The Strip
Car traffic leaves colorful light trails along the ever-busy Las Vegas Strip.
The greed of the game, the lust of prostitution and the widespread ostentation are all part of Las Vegas. Like the chapels that have neither eyes nor ears and promote eccentric, quick and cheap marriages.

Fame does not always live up to reality. The sign at the window promises instant marriage for just over $50. Intrigued by the supposed popularity and ease of the phenomenon, we moved into that drive-thru matrimonial and we ask what it occurs to us to ask, starting with whether everything is really resolved there.

The price is confirmed for the most sober of ceremonies, but the same cannot be said for the simplicity of the process.

We are told that a certificate from the Marriage License Bureau of Clark, the Nevada county in which Las Vegas is located, is required first. When we investigate such a cabinet, we discover how easy it is for any romantic enthusiasm to be undone by the cold bureaucracy.

Beachside Weddings, Las Vegas, United States

Roadside sign announces weddings

The government building turns out to be prefabricated, too ordinary to be defined in architectural terms. There is a battalion of vagabonds in the vicinity and the line that separates us from the service approaches fifty meters, gradually increased by Mexicans and immigrants from different origins in a hurry to get married to consummate their legalization or conquer other American privileges .

It's hot and there's a lot to explore in Las Vegas and the rest of Nevada. We refuse to believe that the stars who tie the knot there will submit to such punishment and we have decided that, in those conditions, they don't count on us either. If you trust the numbers, let's be an exception.

Little White Chapel, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States

A conveniently signposted chapel near the height of a palm tree on the side of a Vegas road

Over two million marriage licenses are issued every year in the United States. More than 110K – 5% are sued by Clark and are destined for Las Vegas.

In recent times, the numbers have even dropped, but it cannot be said that due to a shortage of supply, much less due to the lack of imagination of countless promoters.

Virtually all hotels and many of the city's restaurants have small spaces that emulate chapels where they host the ceremony.


Thematic chapel promotes quick marriages

But weddings can still take place on the local golf courses, in the more or less conventional chapels of the Wedding District, such as the Chapel of the Flowers and, in gazebo chapels, for bikers, simply drive thru or the truly versatile ones that offer a multitude of thematic possibilities.

Want to get married on Treasure Island surrounded by pirates? Choose your favorite fable and become a part of it? Opt for gothic outfits over the classic white dress? Who knows, marrying off into distant galaxies from the Star Trek USS Enterprise?

Aboard a helicopter, balloon and/or broadcast online? Everything is possible. And it only costs a few dollars more than the 50 base and the phone call to set the desired date.

Elvis has become even more idolized thanks to his regular Las Vegas appearances. "Love Me Tender” was one of the themes that he sang the most and after Priscilla Anne Wagner gave in to the appeal, the couple's union also took place in the City of Sin.

Graceland Chapel, Las Vegas, United States

Graceland Chapel promotes the fact that Jon Bon Jovi was married in it.

Today, 34 years after his death, The King continues to enrich the imagination of Las Vegas and is seen, sometimes simultaneously, at different points of the long Strip or in chapels that offer weddings in its style like the Wee Kirk o' the Heather or the more luxurious addition of the Hilton hotel.

On one of so many days in Vegas, we decided to check out the official start of the Strip and stopped by the popular “Welcome I'm there Vegas".

We ended up with a professional Elvis impersonator who charges a minimum of $10 to let himself be photographed with his pink Cadillac, and a newlywed couple who insisted that their photo shoot pass by.

Elvis lookalike, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States

Elvis look-alike earns money photographing herself with her Cadillac.

At that time, they were the last of many others to give in to the less sinful temptation of Las Vegas, part of a list that has several million betrothed and countless personalities from the showbiz and sport.

In addition to Elvis and Priscilla, they married in Vegas Frank Sinatra and Mia Farrow, Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob Thornton, Cindy Crawford and Richard Gere, Carmen Electra and the exuberant Dennis Rodman.

Also Axl Rose of Guns'n'Roses and another basketball idol Michael Jordan – with their respective wives, not each other.

And, for short, André Agassi and Steffi Graff who, if they so wished, could have had their ceremony on a tennis court. They all got together in Vegas with more or less fanfare and media attention, despite the famous maxim “What Happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas".

cozy Vegas

Couple photographed in front of the famous Las Vegas welcome sign.

Some stars became incorrigible fans of the experience and repeated it without showing any boredom. Actor Mickey Rooney, for example, married Ava Gardner for the first time in Las Vegas in 1942 and returned to the city six times to marry other women.

Their persistence inspired Wikipedia to create a complex table that distributes the descendants by each union.

The Strip, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States

Car traffic leaves colorful light trails along the ever-busy Las Vegas Strip.

But Sin City is as expert at sponsoring unions as it is at breaking them up. Along the Strip, an army of destitute-looking Mexicans smack small cards together with both hands and loudly announce: “Girls, girls, girls! Cheap girls!".

The gesture, repeated over and over, produces a tech characteristic recognizable from a distance. And at his pace, the ground around him is full of these letters, rejected by passersby who are already tired of the offer or, right from the start, without any interest.

We note that girls and their services are offered not only to men of all ages but also to couples, women and even children. The few dollars earned by Mexicans for their distribution do not seem to pay for common sense or modesty, much less selectivity.

They just justify the priority mission of getting rid of the small parts as quickly as possible.

Limousine, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States

A limo passes along the Strip.

As in the old towns of the North American gold rush, here too money abounds and prostitution flourishes. And when it's not about the adultery or paid sex, gambling addiction and the ruin it leads to justify, by itself, the abrupt collapse of thousands of relationships and families.

Grooms, Bellagio, Las Vegas-Nevada, United States

Couple celebrates marriage at the glamorous Bellagio hotel.

Las Vegas doesn't matter as long as the profit doesn't stop increasing. If marriages are consummated in three stages and for symbolic values, the city's divorces are not far behind.

One to three days is enough for the judge to define the sharing of children, assets and debts. "The show must go On” and, in Las Vegas, there is always a second chance.

Key West, USA

The Tropical Wild West of the USA

We've come to the end of the Overseas Highway and the ultimate stronghold of propagandism Florida Keys. The continental United States here they surrender to a dazzling turquoise emerald marine vastness. And to a southern reverie fueled by a kind of Caribbean spell.
Las Vegas, USA

Where sin is always forgiven

Projected from the Mojave Desert like a neon mirage, the North American capital of gaming and entertainment is experienced as a gamble in the dark. Lush and addictive, Vegas neither learns nor regrets.
Death Valley, USA

The Hottest Place Resurrection

Since 1921, Al Aziziyah, in Libya, was considered the hottest place on the planet. But the controversy surrounding the 58th measured there meant that, 99 years later, the title was returned to Death Valley.
Jaffa, Israel

Where Tel Aviv Settles Always in Party

Tel Aviv is famous for the most intense night in the Middle East. But, if its youngsters are having fun until exhaustion in the clubs along the Mediterranean, it is more and more in the nearby Old Jaffa that they tie the knot.
Las Vegas, USA

The Sin City Cradle

The famous Strip has not always focused the attention of Las Vegas. Many of its hotels and casinos replicated the neon glamor of the street that once stood out, Fremont Street.
Tokyo, Japan

A Matchmaking Sanctuary

Tokyo's Meiji Temple was erected to honor the deified spirits of one of the most influential couples in Japanese history. Over time, it specialized in celebrating traditional weddings.
Serengeti, Great Savannah Migration, Tanzania, wildebeest on river
Serengeti NP, Tanzania

The Great Migration of the Endless Savanna

In these prairies that the Masai people say syringet (run forever), millions of wildebeests and other herbivores chase the rains. For predators, their arrival and that of the monsoon are the same salvation.
Yak Kharka to Thorong Phedi, Annapurna Circuit, Nepal, Yaks
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit 11th: yak karkha a Thorong Phedi, Nepal

Arrival to the Foot of the Canyon

In just over 6km, we climbed from 4018m to 4450m, at the base of Thorong La canyon. Along the way, we questioned if what we felt were the first problems of Altitude Evil. It was never more than a false alarm.
Bay Watch cabin, Miami beach, beach, Florida, United States,
Architecture & Design
Miami beach, USA

The Beach of All Vanities

Few coastlines concentrate, at the same time, so much heat and displays of fame, wealth and glory. Located in the far southeast of the USA, Miami Beach is accessed by six bridges that connect it to the rest of Florida. It is manifestly meager for the number of souls who desire it.
Tibetan heights, altitude sickness, mountain prevent to treat, travel

Altitude Sickness: the Grievances of Getting Mountain Sick

When traveling, it happens that we find ourselves confronted with the lack of time to explore a place as unmissable as it is high. Medicine and previous experiences with Altitude Evil dictate that we should not risk ascending in a hurry.
Tiredness in shades of green
Ceremonies and Festivities
Suzdal, Russia

The Suzdal Cucumber Celebrations

With summer and warm weather, the Russian city of Suzdal relaxes from its ancient religious orthodoxy. The old town is also famous for having the best cucumbers in the nation. When July arrives, it turns the newly harvested into a real festival.
San Pedro Atacama Street, Chile
San Pedro de Atacama, Chile

São Pedro de Atacama: an Adobe Life in the Most Arid of Deserts

The Spanish conquerors had departed and the convoy diverted the cattle and nitrate caravans. San Pedro regained peace but a horde of outsiders discovering South America invaded the pueblo.
World Food

Gastronomy Without Borders or Prejudice

Each people, their recipes and delicacies. In certain cases, the same ones that delight entire nations repel many others. For those who travel the world, the most important ingredient is a very open mind.
Apia, Western Samoa

Fia Fia – High Rotation Polynesian Folklore

From New Zealand to Easter Island and from here to Hawaii, there are many variations of Polynesian dances. Fia Fia's Samoan nights, in particular, are enlivened by one of the more fast-paced styles.
Reindeer Racing, Kings Cup, Inari, Finland
Inari, Finland

The Wackiest Race on the Top of the World

Finland's Lapps have been competing in the tow of their reindeer for centuries. In the final of the Kings Cup - Porokuninkuusajot - , they face each other at great speed, well above the Arctic Circle and well below zero.
Tokyo's sophisticated houses, where Couchsurfing and your hosts abound.
Couchsurfing (Part 1)

Mi Casa, Su Casa

In 2003, a new online community globalized an old landscape of hospitality, conviviality and interests. Today, Couchsurfing welcomes millions of travelers, but it shouldn't be taken lightly.
Native Americans Parade, Pow Pow, Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States
Albuquerque, USA

When the Drums Sound, the Indians Resist

With more than 500 tribes present, the pow wow "Gathering of the Nations" celebrates the sacred remnants of Native American cultures. But it also reveals the damage inflicted by colonizing civilization.
Sunset, Avenue of Baobabs, Madagascar
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio

days like so many others

Martinique island, French Antilles, Caribbean Monument Cap 110
Martinique, French Antilles

The Armpit Baguette Caribbean

We move around Martinique as freely as the Euro and the tricolor flags fly supreme. But this piece of France is volcanic and lush. Lies in the insular heart of the Americas and has a delicious taste of Africa.
The Little-Big Senglea II
Senglea, Malta

An Overcrowded Malta

At the turn of the 8.000th century, Senglea housed 0.2 inhabitants in 2 km3.000, a European record, today, it has “only” XNUMX neighborhood Christians. It is the smallest, most overcrowded and genuine of the Maltese cities.
Correspondence verification
Winter White
Rovaniemi, Finland

From the Finnish Lapland to the Arctic. A Visit to the Land of Santa

Fed up with waiting for the bearded old man to descend down the chimney, we reverse the story. We took advantage of a trip to Finnish Lapland and passed through its furtive home.
shadow vs light
Kyoto, Japan

The Kyoto Temple Reborn from the Ashes

The Golden Pavilion has been spared destruction several times throughout history, including that of US-dropped bombs, but it did not withstand the mental disturbance of Hayashi Yoken. When we admired him, he looked like never before.
Kayaking on Lake Sinclair, Cradle Mountain - Lake Sinclair National Park, Tasmania, Australia
Discovering tassie, Part 4 - Devonport to Strahan, Australia

Through the Tasmanian Wild West

If the almost antipode tazzie is already a australian world apart, what about its inhospitable western region. Between Devonport and Strahan, dense forests, elusive rivers and a rugged coastline beaten by an almost Antarctic Indian ocean generate enigma and respect.
Sheki, Autumn in the Caucasus, Azerbaijan, Autumn Homes
Sheki, Azerbaijan

autumn in the caucasus

Lost among the snowy mountains that separate Europe from Asia, Sheki is one of Azerbaijan's most iconic towns. Its largely silky history includes periods of great harshness. When we visited it, autumn pastels added color to a peculiar post-Soviet and Muslim life.
Merganser against sunset, Rio Miranda, Pantanal, Brazil
Natural Parks
Passo do Lontra, Miranda, Brazil

The Flooded Brazil of Passo do Lontra

We are on the western edge of Mato Grosso do Sul but bush, on these sides, is something else. In an extension of almost 200.000 km2, the Brazil it appears partially submerged, by rivers, streams, lakes and other waters dispersed in vast alluvial plains. Not even the panting heat of the dry season drains the life and biodiversity of Pantanal places and farms like the one that welcomed us on the banks of the Miranda River.
church, our lady, virgin, guadalupe, mexico
UNESCO World Heritage
San Cristóbal de las Casas a Campeche, Mexico

A Relay of Faith

The Catholic equivalent of Our Lady of Fátima, Our Lady of Guadalupe moves and moves Mexico. Its faithful cross the country's roads, determined to bring the proof of their faith to the patroness of the Americas.
now from above ladder, sorcerer of new zealand, Christchurch, new zealand
Christchurch, New Zealand

New Zealand's Cursed Wizard

Despite his notoriety in the antipodes, Ian Channell, the New Zealand sorcerer, failed to predict or prevent several earthquakes that struck Christchurch. At the age of 88, after 23 years of contract with the city, he made very controversial statements and ended up fired.
Magnificent Atlantic Days
Morro de São Paulo, Brazil

A Divine Seaside of Bahia

Three decades ago, it was just a remote and humble fishing village. Until some post-hippie communities revealed the Morro's retreat to the world and promoted it to a kind of bathing sanctuary.
Lhasa, Tibet

When Buddhism Tires of Meditation

It is not only with silence and spiritual retreat that one seeks Nirvana. At the Sera Monastery, the young monks perfect their Buddhist knowledge with lively dialectical confrontations and crackling clapping of hands.
Flam Railway composition below a waterfall, Norway.
On Rails
Nesbyen to Flam, Norway

Flam Railway: Sublime Norway from the First to the Last Station

By road and aboard the Flam Railway, on one of the steepest railway routes in the world, we reach Flam and the entrance to the Sognefjord, the largest, deepest and most revered of the Scandinavian fjords. From the starting point to the last station, this monumental Norway that we have unveiled is confirmed.
Erika Mother

The Philippine Road Lords

With the end of World War II, the Filipinos transformed thousands of abandoned American jeeps and created the national transportation system. Today, the exuberant jeepneys are for the curves.
Saksun, Faroe Islands, Streymoy, warning
Daily life
Saksun, StreymoyFaroe Islands

The Faroese Village That Doesn't Want to be Disneyland

Saksun is one of several stunning small villages in the Faroe Islands that more and more outsiders visit. It is distinguished by the aversion to tourists of its main rural owner, author of repeated antipathies and attacks against the invaders of his land.
hippopotami, chobe national park, botswana
Chobe NP, Botswana

Chobe: A River on the Border of Life with Death

Chobe marks the divide between Botswana and three of its neighboring countries, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Namibia. But its capricious bed has a far more crucial function than this political delimitation.
The Sounds, Fiordland National Park, New Zealand
Scenic Flights
Fiordland, New Zealand

The Fjords of the Antipodes

A geological quirk made the Fiordland region the rawest and most imposing in New Zealand. Year after year, many thousands of visitors worship the sub-domain slashed between Te Anau and Milford Sound.