If you live close enough, by far the most popular way to make the trip between Las Vegas and LA is by driving.
Driving from Los Angeles to Las VegasDistance: 270 miles
Driving Time: 4 hours
If you're driving, the exact route you take from LA to Las Vegas will depend on where you start from in the Los Angeles area. Pick the most direct route going east to connect with I-15 (the most commons ones are I-215, I-10 or I-605). Once you get on it, I-15 will take you straight to Las Vegas.
The map above shows the route in general. The red line is an alternative if roads going east are jammed or if you start from the west side of the metro area. However, because you'll be traveling on some two-lane highways, it takes about an hour longer when traffic isn't a factor.
Click on the map and you'll get a slightly larger version. If you'd like to see it even bigger, zoom in and out or get detailed driving directions for your road trip and explore what you might see along the way, go to the interactive version.
You might not believe that it snows in the desert, but as recently as 2010, I-15 was closed near the California-Nevada state line because of snow and ice in the mountain pass. Check road status on California highways between Los Angeles and Las Vegas at the Department of Transportation website or call 800-427-7623. Enter each highway number separately to get information about road repairs and closures. For conditions in Nevada, go here.
If your automobile contains restless children or if you're a fan of old-fashioned ghost towns, you may want to stop at Calico Ghost Town just east of Barstow for a quick stretch of the legs.
Part of your journey will follow the path of historic Route 66. You may be in a hurry to get from city to city, but if you've got a bit more time, check out what there is to see on or near I-15 between San Bernardino and Barstow.