Summertime means summer vacations! When it comes to traveling, one of the most stressful but exciting parts is deciding what to see or do in your vacation spot! If you are planning on taking a road trip around the states or even get to your location by plane, TUC has the best roadside attractions for all U.S. states!
Remember being a kid and being asked, “ What do you want to be when you grow up?” Most people said careers like Astronauts. Huntsville, Alabama allows those childhood dreams to come true! Home to the U.S space and rocket center, Alabama offers the opportunity to sleep in bunks and live the lifestyle of an astronaut for a day!
Watching polar bears is not a common leisure activity for the average American, but take a trip to Alaska and you can spend an entire day with polar bears! The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge allows visitors to meet a guide and learn about polar bears and watch them in their natural habitat! How cool is that?
SURPISE… THE GRAND CANYON. Are you really surprised though? There’s a reason that on average FIVE MILLION PEOPLE visit the Grand Canyon yearly. It’s a perfect photo op and a beautiful sight.
Diamonds are forever. Arkansas is home to Crater of Diamonds State Park! It’s a diamond mine open to the public, and the lavish part about it is, whatever you find, YOU GET TO KEEP! Bling Bling.
So many options to pick from, that this was tough. First here are some honorable mentions: Disneyland, Yosemite National Park, Golden Gate Bridge, and the Santa Monica Pier! However, The Hollywood Walk of Fame won the spot for MUST SEE attraction in California. Some celebrities dedicate their entire careers to get their names engraved on a star and that alone makes the Hollywood Walk of Fame an inspirational spot to visit.
Colorado is home to the Garden of the Gods. It is a beautiful sight of weird and obscure rock formations. It is a popular spot for hikers and mountain climbers and a well-respected spot for the local Native Americans.
FUN FACT: Connecticut is the home of the first hamburger. So if you make a stop by New Haven, make sure to make a pit stop at Louis’ Lunch, and try a bite of what is claimed to be the first burger recipe in the states.
Rollercoasters, Ferris wheel, and cotton candy; Oh, I’m there. Funland is an amusement park on Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. Founded in 1962 and continuously a successful hangout spot, this amusement park needs to be on your list!
If you are balling on a budget, then we recommend stopping by Universal Studio’s City Walk. The entrance is free and there are plenty of activities and restaurants. The Hard Rock Café and Bubba Gump Shrimp Company are only some of the many yummy options there. Extra tip: Go at night! The City Walk is a light show during the night and a great photo op!
There’s nothing better than a nice sip of an iced cold Coca-Cola; so while you are in Georgia celebrate the hometown of Coca-Cola by visiting the factory in downtown Atlanta. There’s a super awesome 4-D show, a giant polar bear and you can try 60 international coke products!
There’s nothing like the white sand of the beach, but how about black sand? Interesting right?!?! Punalu’u Black Sand Beach has a shoreline made up of exploded lava particles. This type of beach is found almost nowhere else in the world so take advantage!!
Shoshone Falls is a beautiful waterfall in Twin Falls, Idaho. Whether you plan a picnic, hiking or a boat ride; this waterfall is the perfect relaxation spot in Idaho.
If you have claustrophobia, this may not be your cup of tea; but Marengo Cave is a vast underground cave with incredible rock formations!
600-pound butter cow. That probably needs some context. Iowa’s state fair is home to a legit statue of a cow made of strictly butter. Apparent it is enough butter to cover 19,200 slices of toast.
“We’re not in Kansas anymore” Well Dorothy, what if you are in Kansas and need something to do? How about the World’s largest collection of smallest versions of largest things? Erika Nelson is an artist who recreated large objects into very tiny versions. For example, everyone has heard the largest rubber band ball, Nelson created a super tiny version of it; and multiple other tiny versions of things.
THE WORLD’S LARGEST CAVE: MAMMOTH CAVE IN KENTUCKY. Enough said.
Pet Sematary is an absolute classic horror film and if you are in Hancock, Maine, you can actually visit the filming site!
Edgar Allen Poe is one of the world’s most famous poets. And now you can visit his grave in Baltimore, Maryland!
Remember the spooky Salem witch trials? Massachusetts is home to one of the only buildings left with exact ties to the trials of 1962. This is a Halloween lovers dream, and it’s open to the public all year, including summer time!
TAKE A TRIP TO HELL! Sounds crazy right? Well, there is a small town in Michigan called Hell and for $100 you can be the Mayor of the town for a day! Who would pass on an opportunity like that?
With over 520 stores and 50 restaurants, Mall of America is a MUST SEE attraction! This mall is like no other, and an entire day isn’t enough to fully grasp what’s inside. There are rides and slides, and all types of stores to see. It is a must!
“Thank you…Thank you very much.” Do you have an idea of what spot, we might be talking about? How about The King of Rock & Roll? YES! Elvis Presley!!! His birthplace is located in Tupelo, Mississippi and is open to the public as a small museum!
Here is something you don’t see every single day. A museum of Hair. Yep. That’s what I said. Missouri is home to Leila’s Hair Museum, where you can find 2,000 pieces of jewelry made of human hair and 400 wreaths made out of hair too! Creepy sort of, but definitely something you don’t see every day.
Vintage Motorcycles, Vietnam –Era helicopters, UFO’s coin-operated games are only some of the 340,000 artifacts that make up the Miracle of America Museum located in Montana. This is a quirky spot that is guaranteed to have something to interest everyone.
THE WORLD’S LARGEST BALL OF STAMPS. Let’s be honest, when we hear “world’s largest” anything, we automatically get excited and think ROADSIDE STOP! The ball is said to be 600 pounds and 32 inches in diameter! Pretty neat if I say so myself.
Home to the mysterious Area 51, Nevada brings in dozens of curious tourists. Now although, you can’t close to the actual “Area”, there’s a highway on the way called “The Extraterrestrial Highway.” Here you can find alien key chains, t-shirts and more gimmicky gifts to live up to the alien theme that Area 51 has become famous for.
Who doesn’t love arcade games? How does the Guinness World Record for largest arcade sound? Awesome, right? Well, New Hampshire is home to the American Classic Arcade Museum and it holds 200 vintage arcade machines!
GYM, TAN, AND LAUNDRY! Thanks to MTV’S Jersey Shore, New Jersey is a popular tourist spot, especially in the summer. The Jersey Shore house is open to the public as a museum! You’ll get to use the duck phone just like Snooki!
Another alien hotspot! New Mexico is home to the International UFO Museum and Research center. The museum is an interesting site to both believers and non-believers. There’s UFOs, models of aliens, autopsy reports and “hidden truths.” And across the street, there is a UFO-themed restaurant!
Obscura Antiques and Oddities is one of the coolest and strangest stores/museums in the country. According to the owners you can find, “memorial photographs, medical art prints, taxidermied pets, shadow boxes, fraternal organization memorabilia, prosthetic limbs, Victorian mourning jewelry, magic lantern slides, collections of pinned insects, funereal ephemera, stereoscopic cards, carnival castoffs, two-headed fetal pigs, a jar of worms, corsets, top hats, glass-fronted cabinets, Victorian vitrine.”
There’s an entire museum dedicated to paranormal phenomena in North Carolina. It’s called the Cryptozoology and Paranormal Museum. It is home to a Bigfoot statue, and “Bigfoot prints”, haunted dolls, UFO sighting testimonials and more!
North Dakota is known for their love of Bison, and it’s home to the world’s largest buffalo statue but the greatest part is that you have the opportunity to take photos of three rare albino bison that reside on the land owned by North Dakota Buffalo Foundation. These cute fluffy animals roam freely and tourists love them!
Buzz, Buzz. That’s the noise of 500 neon signs that are a part of the American Sign Museum in Ohio. The collection of signs started in the 70s, and collectibles go as far as from the 1800s!
Oklahoma is home to the Toy and Action Figure Museum, which is the world’s ONLY museum, devoted only to the art of action figures. The museum holds over 13,000 separate action figures and has never been taken out of their original packaging. There is also a gift shop for those who want to buy toys for themselves!
Have you ever had a close encounter with a sloth? Well, now you can! Oregon is home to the Sloth Center, which is the largest captive population of adult sloths in the world! Daily, the center runs educational programs, where guests can meet the sloths!
Want to see Einstein’s brain? The Mütter Museum, located in Philadelphia is America’s most famous museum of medical oddities. And yes, it is home to the remains of Einstein’s brain! This museum is highly educational and educates its guest on the medical diseases and disorders that not many know about.
3.5 miles of history and beauty can be found at the Newport Cliff Walk in Rhode Island. Alongside the Newport mansions, there is the 3.5-mile trail and on the other side a beautiful view of the Newport shoreline.
Take a stop by Myrtle Beach and relax. There’s a boardwalk with fun amusement parks and restaurants and multiple attractions near the beach!
South Dakota is home to the world’s largest mountain carving. It’s said to be able to fit Mount Rushmore inside it multiple times! Korczak Ziolkowski started his carving in 1948. He passed away in 1982 but work continues on the Crazy Horse Memorial that he began. Once it is all done, it will be 641 feet long and 563 feet tall!
Have you ever ridden a boat under a cave? Now you can at the Lost Sea in Tennessee! It’s known as America’s largest underground lake and covers more than 4 acres. They run daily tours underground with amazing sights!
Barney Smith’s Toilet Seat Art Museum is in San Antonio and not your ordinary art museum. Smith was a plumber and combined his career with his love for art and thus the museum was born! Every inch of the wall is covered with a uniquely designed toilet seat! Sounds weird but again art can be perceived in different ways!
Arches, arches, arches. Get your hiking shoes on and hike the Arches National Park! And make sure to bring your camera, because the views are the best photo-ops.
Another crazy roadside attraction! How exciting. Bren Alvarez constructed the world’s tallest filing cabinet and it’s located in Vermont! Made up of 38 drawers, tourists love to come by and take photos!
I saved the best dinosaur roadside attraction for the end! Although these can be found all over the country, Virginia’s Dinosaurland owns the title for best roadside reptile attraction! The sign resembles Disney’s logo and the park is covered in 50 impressive dinosaur replicas!
A 75-cent soda? Well sure I’d love one. And in Seattle, there is a Mystery Soda Machine that tourists absolutely love because when you hit any button you don’t know what you’ll get!
West Virginia is home to the urban legend of the Mothman! While many locals have claimed to spot him roaming around, others are skeptical. Needless to say, it did not stop the city of Point Pleasant to dedicate an entire museum to the mythical creature.
Creepy statues are either a hit or a miss but if you visit Sparta, Wisconsin, you can visit the FAST fiberglass Mold Graveyard. It is home to a giant array of eye-grabbing figures and items!
Yellowstone Park is home to the Grand Prismatic Spring and seeing it is a reminder of just how beautiful our earth is. The natural wonder forms rings of colors in the huge hot spring. If you get the chance to see it, make sure to bring your camera!
There you have it! 50 States and 50 interesting must-see attractions for each and every one! If you visit one of these spots make sure to tag us on Instagram @tucmag. Enjoy your summer and be safe!