America’s Weirdest Roadside Attractions
By: Good2GoPublished: June 22, 2016
From the mountains, to the prairies, to the six- story elephants and alien landing ports, America has plenty of unique roadside attractions. Maybe you’re seeking out some distractions during your next road trip, or you just have a genuine interest in visiting some bizarre landmarks. Either way, stopping to see any of the places on this list will leave you far from disappointed.
The Thing- Dragoon, Arizona
Other than tumbleweeds and the occasional cactus, there are few things distractions available while driving hundreds of miles through the desert. That’s partly the reason why the flashy billboards advertising “The Thing” are so appealing. The unnatural color and morbid lettering taunts drivers as they pass, never revealing exactly what “The Thing” might be — only that it might be shocking. If you are ever driving along Interstate 10 with a dollar (the price of admission) and some curiosity, don’t hesitate to take exit 322 and find out for yourself.
Salvation Mountain- Calipatria, California
Located in Imperial County about 90 minutes southeast from Palm Springs is Salvation Mountain, the creative work of local artist Leonard Knight. In 2002, California Senator Barbara Boxer described the work as “a unique and visionary sculpture…a national treasure…profoundly strange and beautifully accessible, and worthy of the international acclaim it receives.” Sculpted entirely from adobe clay found in the local environment, Salvation Mountain was built by Knight to promote intertwining messages of God, love, and nature.
Lucy the Elephant- Margate, New Jersey
Elephants never forget, and tourists who visit “Lucy the Elephant” never forget this National Historic Landmark. Lucy, who resides in a small coastal town near Atlantic City, will celebrate her 135th birthday in July. She is a six-story tourist attraction where families can climb a staircase to get a breathtaking panoramic view of the surrounding shore.
Foamhenge- Natural Bridge, Virginia
For those who might not get the chance to visit its English counterpart, Foamhenge might just compete with the authentic version across the pond. Foamhenge, modeled entirely out of Styrofoam, is a full-sized replica of Stonehenge and was erected by Mark Cline in 2004 on April Fools’ Day. Primarily famed as a popular tourist attraction, Foamhenge has drawn the attention of national media outlets like MSNBC, Fox, and the Discovery Channel.
World’s Largest Buffalo- Jamestown, North Dakota
If it weren’t for the Coen Brothers putting Fargo on the map years ago, many of us probably wouldn’t know much about North Dakota apart from its harsh winters and seemingly endless farmland. However, North Dakota actually has one of the fastest growing economies in the nation. It’s also home to the World’s Largest Buffalo, which is visible from Interstate 94 at the Frontier Village. The sculpture, standing at 26 ft. tall, gives Jamestown its nickname of “The Buffalo City.”
Cadillac Ranch- Amarillo, Texas
The allure of Route 66 draws travelers from around the world, with Cadillac Ranch as one of its best attractions. When local billionaire Stanley Marsh said he wanted something that would “baffle the locals,” he got 10 Cadillacs partially submerged in the dirt, all facing West in the same angle as the Great Pyramids of Giza. Tourists travel near and far to add their own flair to the monument and take a piece home with them.
UFO Landing Port- Green Bay, Wisconsin
Do aliens exist? If they do, would there ever be an alien invasion of Earth? This is something that Green Bay resident Bob Tohak has considered. In fact, Tohak wants to be the first stop on any extraterrestrial itineraries. A sign that sits atop a 42’ fuel tank reads “If the Government has no knowledge of aliens, why did they make it illegal for U.S. citizens to have any contact with extraterrestrials or their vehicles?” The structure is currently equipped with blue flashing lights, but Tohak plans on adding music and larger light boards he can shoot into space. Close encounters, anyone?
With summer around the corner, you’ll want to start planning your adventures soon. Before you begin, make sure you’re getting the best auto insurance rates available. At Good2Go, we can help you decide what coverage best suits your lifestyle. Receive your free online quote in less than 60 seconds!