Now that the pandemic is subsiding, Americans can get back to travel plans put on hold by COVID-19.
For many of us, that might mean a long road trip. These excursions give us clues as to how the nation has grown along highways and byways. Road trips are among the best ways to experience the diversity of the American landscape and cultures, whether you’re traveling thousands of miles cross country or down miles of coastline. Sure, flying down the interstate gets you from point A to point B faster, but taking the more scenic route yields its own delights. (These are the longest roads in America.)
To find the strangest tourist attraction in every state, 24/7 Tempo used material consulted sources including Roadside America and Atlas Obscura, as well as numerous local and regional tourism websites.
Along the local roads, enterprising Americans have devised ways to divert motorists slogging to their destination. Many of these attractions have kids in mind, whether there are faux dinosaurs, quirky museums, diversions that question basic scientific assumptions, or items that claim to be the world’s biggest…well, fill in the blank. If nothing else, these attractions break up what can be a monotonous drive through desolate landscapes. (These are the most popular U.S. attractions on Instagram.)
Some towns such as Roswell, New Mexico, famed for an alleged UFO crash there in 1947, can capitalize on notoriety with more than a dollop of kitsch thrown in. Some displays, such as the bowling ball art yard in Oklahoma, have been created to honor a loved one who has passed. One gives people a chance to discover treasures abandoned by other travelers. There’s even one dedicated to Spam – the canned meat, not the online nuisance.