Summer’s almost here and that means Road Trip! Wherever you’re headed this year don’t forget to include a stop at some of America’s Roadside Attractions. Some are really pretty cool!
When my kids were young we spent countless hours on the road on one of my husband’s annual coast to coast road trips. I don’t remember how many times we packed the kids up as soon as school let out, flew to the East Coast, rented a mini-van, and spent the month of June driving America’s highways and byways from Maine to California.
My husband insisted that was the only way to see the country. Looking back I have to admit he was right! Those road trips were definitely memorable, we still talk about them.
We’d spend hours planning the route, we took a different one each year. We always planned a route that would take us to new and interesting places. The roads we took at times had some unexpected, sometimes amusing, and sometimes bizarre road side attractions.
There’s lots of attractions out there from giant dinosaurs and elephants, to replicas of iconic buildings, to the world’s largest ball of twine. They help break the monotony of the seemingly endless road and provide interesting conversation along the way.
Here are a few road side attractions around the country. If you’re planning a road trip this summer there might be one along your way. If you have time they’re definitely worth a short stop, if only to let the kids out of the car to work off some stored energy. They’ll definitely be worth a good story or two once you reach your destination.
We’ve passed this many times and even stopped a few. The last time was when we took the grand kids to Disneyland. The boys loved it!
You can climb to the top of T-Rex and buy souvenirs in the gift shop located in the belly of Ms. Dinny supposedly the largest concrete Dino in the world.
Located on a patch of prairie in Alliance, Nebraska is a replica of England’s Stonehenge made from gray painted cars.
The Corn Palace
Located in Mitchell, Nebraska the Corn Palace is decorated with corn husks and other grains.
Prada Marfa Store
Located on a lonely desert road 150 miles south east of El Paso is the Prada Marfa Store in Marfa, Texas. If you want to shop for designer duds, don’t stop here, it’s just a facade, the doors are permanently locked!
Lucy the Elephant, Margate, New Jersey
You can climb up the gigantic pachyderm for views of the ocean.
Randy’s Donuts in Inglewood, California
This donut shop has appeared in films and videos.
Giant sized Paul Bunyan statues are in many places. Akeley, Minnesota; Bangor, Maine; and Portland, Oregon. Babe the Blue Ox, joins him in Klamath, California, and Bemidji, Minnesota (pictured here).
Foamhenge in Natural Bridge, Virginia.
Another Stonehenge replica is Foamhenge. It’s made of, you guessed it, foam blocks.
The Enchanted Highway
Located on a 32-mile stretch of desolate road between Gladstone and Regent North Dakota is the Enchanted Highway, home to a series of whimsical scrap metal sculptures some of which are the largest in the world.
Lenny the Moose
Life-Sized Chocolate Moose, Lenny, in Scarborough, Maine is made from 1,700 pounds of chocolate.
Leaning Tower of Niles
This half-sized replica of the Leaning Tower of Pisa is the Leaning Tower of Niles in Niles Illinois.
I think the name says it all!
Located not far from Miami on the South Dixie Highway this “castle” is made of over 1000 tons of oolite limestone.
International UFO Museum and Research Center, Roswell, New Mexico
A definite must see for all UFO buffs.