The weirdest roadside attractions in all 50 states

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Susan Meyer

Senior Editorial Manager

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Susan is a licensed insurance agent and has worked as a writer and editor for over 10 years across a number of industries. She has worked at The Zebr…

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Ross Martin

Insurance Writer

  • 4+ years in the Insurance Industry

Ross joined The Zebra as a writer and researcher in 2019. He specializes in writing insurance content to help shoppers make informed decisions.

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These roadside stops are anything but ordinary

If you’re planning a road trip this summer, there are plenty of majestic natural wonders, museums, exciting cities and more throughout the United States. But what about the little off the beaten track oddities that make this country special?

From sea to sea to shining sea, we’ve compiled a list of the weirdest roadside attractions in each state.

World’s largest purple octopus


Unlike the “world’s largest office chair” in Anniston, Alabama, which is under hot debate among other large chairs for the title, the world’s largest octopus in Gulf Shores, Alabama may legitimately hold the title. The purple, polka-dotted behemoth welcomes guests to a souvenir shop. If you make the stop, it’s also quite close to a giant walk-in shark. 

Location: 217 Gulf Shores Pkwy, Gulf Shores, AL 36542

Mukluk Land


Mukluk Land is essentially a junkyard made into a theme park. Founded in 1985, the attraction outside of the tiny town of Tok includes such oddities as a rocketship on wheels, an outhouse collection and the world’s largest mukluk (a type of shoe). The attraction is only open in the summer from 2 - 7 pm.

Location: Milepost 1317 Alaska Highway Tok, Alaska, 99780

The Thing


What is The Thing? Only those who have seen it can truly know. However, The Thing, located in Dragoon, Arizona, outside of Tucson, has all the fanfare of any truly weird roadside attraction. Drawing in crowds with hundreds of billboards, The Thing also has its own museum explaining its origin story. There’s also a gas station.

Location: 2631 N Johnson Rd, Benson, AZ 85602

The Merman


The Arkansas Alligator Farm (now also a petting zoo) was founded in 1902, making it one of the oldest attractions in Hot Springs. While visitors today can hold baby alligators, the weirder draw is the museum's supposed petrified merman. The Alligator Farm is open seven days a week in the spring and summer.

Location: 847 Whittington Avenue, Hot Springs, Arkansas 71901, United States

The Center of the World


Did you know that the center of the world is in Felicity, California? It’s a plaque accompanied by a pink granite pyramid. There’s also a chapel and decorative stairs that lead to nowhere. The location is based on a children’s book Coe: The Good Dragon at the Center of the World, but otherwise has no scientific basis.

Location: Center of the World Plaza, Felicity, CA 92283

World’s longest fork


In Creede, Colorado you can find a very large fork. Possibly the longest, but it might also be bested by a newcomer large fork in Fairfield, Oregon. It is also in contention with Springfield, MO which has the largest fork by mass. The Creede Fork is 39 feet tall and it stands in front of a Mexican restaurant that commissioned it from a local artist. It weighs over 600 pounds and is made of hand-welded aluminum.

Location: 981 La Garita St, Creede, CO 81130

The Facade House


When is a mansion not really a mansion? Built in 1930 by Arthur Everett Austin, the Facade House in Hartford appears to be a huge and impressive mansion, but it’s an optical illusion.  When viewed from the side, you see that it is only 18 feet wide. Also, instead of being constructed of brick and stone, it’s made of pine board painted to look much more expensive. It’s now recognized as a National Historic Landmark.

Location: 130 Scarborough Street, Hartford, Connecticut 06105

World’s largest frying pan


At the time it was forged, this 10-foot across and 18-foot-long pan was the largest in the world. It was used as part of the Delmarva Chicken Festival. It fried an estimated 100 tons of chicken before being retired in 1987. It is now on display in the Nutter D. Marvel Carriage Museum in Georgetown.

Location: 510 S. Bedford Street Georgetown, DE 19947

The Skunk Ape Research Headquarters


What is a skunk ape? It’s essentially the Florida equivalent of bigfoot, but for the true believers, they can learn more about the phenomenon at the Skunk Ape Research Headquarters. Learn about the legend, tour the Everglades and visit the gift shop for all the skunk ape paraphernalia.

Location: 40904 Tamiami Trail, Orchopee, Florida

Elvis’s wart


The Loudermilk Boarding House hosts Joni Mabe's Panoramic Encyclopedia of Everything Elvis on its third floor. Visitors can marvel at curiosities like Elvis' wart and the "Maybe Elvis Toenail." Listed in the Guinness World Records, this museum boasts over 30,000 Elvis items, making it the largest and most distinctive collection globally. 

Location: 271 Foreacre St. Cornelia GA 30531

Largest hedge maze


The Dole Plantation grounds on Oahu are free to visit, but certain activities cost money. One is their Pineapple Garden Hedge maze which — in 2008, at least — was declared the world’s largest. It includes 2.5 miles of paths created from 14,000 Hawaiian plants.


Location: 64-1550 Kamehameha Hwy. Wahiawa, Hawaii 96786

Beagle B&B


The Dog Bark Park Inn is the largest and quite possibly the only beagle-shaped accommodation in the world. It’s colloquially known as “Sweet Willy” by locals. You can stay inside the pooch, or just stop by for a photo and to visit the gift shop. There’s also an outdoor gallery of oversized dogs. 

Location: 2421 Business Loop 95, Cottonwood, ID 83522

Kaskaskia Dragon


The Kaskaskia Dragon is the most majestic, and strangest, thing off Highway 70. You pull off the highway and insert a dragon coin into a slot labeled "Insert Token Dragon Breathes Fire.” Then, as expected, the 35-foot-long metal beast spews flames and its red eyes glow. For just one dollar, you can enjoy ten seconds of this fiery display.

Location: 2024 Progress West, Vandalia, IL 62471

World’s largest steer


Affectionately known as Old Ben, the world’s largest steer is in fact 2.5 tons. He is 6.5 feet tall and 16.25 feet long from nose to tail. Although he has been dead for more than a century, his body is preserved behind glass for fans of the large and bovine.

Location: 1402 West Defenbaugh Street, Kokomo, IN, USA

World’s largest popcorn ball


Have you ever wondered where the world’s largest popcorn ball is? Well wonder no longer, because it’s in Sac City, Iowa. And believe it or not, it’s over 9,000 pounds and 12 feet in diameter. Concocted in 2016, the ball is available for viewing in the Sac City Museum Complex.

Location: 1300 W Main St, Sac City, IA 50583

Largest easel


This easel is so large it can be seen from I-70. It also holds a 32'x24' reproduction of Vincent Van Gogh’s “Sunflower.” The easel itself is 80 feet tall and weighs around 45,000 pounds. Erected in 2001, the painting and easel are part of a project to reproduce all seven of Van Gogh’s sunflower paintings in different countries around the world.

Location: 1901-1917 Cherry Ave, Goodland, KS 67735

World’s largest baseball bat


Louisville is famous for baseball bats, so it makes sense that the world’s largest one would be in front of the Louisville Slugger Museum. It weighs 68,000 pounds and towers 120 feet into the sky. It’s an exact replica of one used by Babe Ruth (although obviously a bit larger in scale). 

Location: 800 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202

Nicolas Cage's pyramid tomb


Purchased by the actor Nicolas Cage, this empty grave is a striking, nine-foot-tall stone pyramid that sharply contrasts with the crumbling, blocky above-ground burial sites surrounding it a New Orleans cemetery. Though the pyramid bears no name, it is inscribed with the Latin maxim “Omnia Ab Uno,” meaning “Everything From One.”

Location: 425 Basin St, New Orleans, LA 70112

The Desert of Maine


This 20-acre expanse of sand outside Freeport, Maine, isn’t really a desert. Due to poor farming practices in the 19th century, erosion led to exposing the deposit of sand. A smart investor bought it for very little in 1925 and created an iconic tourist attraction with rolling sand dunes surrounded by lush forests.

Location: 95 Desert Rd, Freeport, ME 04032

Starry Night in door knobs


While not as large an homage to Van Gogh as Kansas’s painting, in Bethesda, Maryland there is a recreation of one of the artist’s most famous works: Starry Night. It is built out of salvaged plumbing parts and over 1,250 brass door knobs and is located on the side of a hardware store.

Location: 7800 Wisconsin Ave., Bethesda, MD

Newspaper house


In Rockport, Massachusetts, you can find a house made almost entirely out of old newspapers. Its creator, Elis F. Stenman was a mechanical engineer and began working on the house in 1922, intending it to be a summer house. It has been revarnished over the years to protect the paper walls from the weather.

Location: 52 Pigeon Hill St, Rockport, MA 01966

Giant carrots


In front of Food Gatherers’ a food rescue program in Ann Arbor, there are eight carrots, some as tall as 10 feet. They are designed by an artist who creates miniature golf courses. 

Location: 1 Carrot Way, Ann Arbor, MI 48105

Largest Paul Bunyan statue


In researching this article, it became clear just how many Paul Bunyan statues there are, particularly in the Great Lakes region. But none of these lumberjacks are kneeling down so that people can take photos right in his giant hand like this one in Akeley. There’s also a small museum known as the Akeley Paul Bunyan Historical Museum.


Location: Hwy. 34 NW, Akeley, MN 56433

Frog art farm


Are you an aficionado of frog art? If so, get thee to the Fayette Frog Farm for the ultimate sculpture garden filled with anthropomorphic folk art frogs. The artist, Lousie Cadney Colemen, places the frogs in fun settings such as playing banjos or fishing on a dock. 

Location: 186 Old Highway 61 Road in Fayetteville

Leila's Hair Museum


Hairwork flourished in the Victorian era. People would collect hair from family and friends and make it into a wreath for a wedding, or sometimes for a funeral a wreath was made from the hair of the deceased and kept as a memorial. Necklaces, bracelets, rings and paintings were also made with hair. You can see a collection of this lost art started by a cosmetology teacher, Leila Cohoon, in Independence. 

Location: 1333 S Noland Rd, Independence, MO 64055

Ringing rocks


This large boulder outcrop at the side of Dry Mountain is known because its rocks make unusual sounds when struck. The rocks are composed of extrusive basalt and granite magma. The different-sized rocks all make different sounds, so they can be fun to try out all the different options for a day of drumming.

Location: Whitehall, MT 59759, USA



There is no shortage of Stonehenge replicas in the U.S. (see entry: Virginia), but this one is made entirely out of cars. Thirty nine automobiles make up the dramatic sculpture, placed to assume the same proportions as Stonehenge with the circle measuring approximately 96 feet in diameter. 

Location: 2151 Co Rd 59, Alliance, NE 69301

Alien mailbox


Most are familiar with Area 51, a highly classified United States Air Force facility within the Nevada Test and Training Range. Many people also visit the area believing to see UFOs or have supernatural experiences. One rancher in the area got sick of receiving mail addressed to aliens, so he installed a large black mailbox on his property along The Extraterrestrial Highway especially for alien correspondence.

Location: Intersection of Mail Box Road and State Route 375, between Rachel and Alamo, Nevada

Redstone rocket

New Hampshire

Redstone rockets were early ballisitic missiles used by NASA to launch some of the first astronauts into space. Why is there a ballisitic missile on display at a small town in New Hampshire? Supposedly a former resident of the town lobbied NASA until they donated the outdated equipment. 

Location: Water St, Warren, NH 03279

Lucy the Elephant

New Jersey

Just under six miles from Atlantic City sits the world’s largest elephant. Lucy the Elephant is a historic, 65-foot-tall building shaped like an elephant, constructed in 1881 and now recognized as a National Historic Landmark. Inside Lucy, you'll find a gift shop, and atop her, a covered balcony provides views of the nearby beach.

Location: 9200 Atlantic Ave, Margate City, NJ 08402

World’s largest pistachio

New Mexico

The World’s largest pistachio was erected in 2007 at PistachioLand at McGinn’s Pistachio Tree Ranch. The giant pistachio stands 30-feet tall and was constructed using over five yards of concrete and 35 gallons of green paint. Other attractions at PistachioLand include farm tours and getting treats at the ice cream parlor. 

Location: 7320 Hwy 54 70, Alamogordo, NM 88310

Big Duck

New York

The Big Duck in Flanders on Long Island was built in 1931 by a duck farmer and used to sell eggs. The duck-shaped building measures 18 feet wide, 30 feet long and 20 feet to the top of its head. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1997 and is now a gift shop. 

Location: 1012 NY-24, Flanders, New York

Shangri-La Stone Village

North Carolina

Retiree Henry Warren hobby of creating a miniature village out of concrete, stone and hundreds of arrowheads turned into an impressive tiny town. In the nine years he worked on it, he completed 27 buildings, including a theater, gym hotel and a water tower. 

Location: 11535 NC-86 Prospect Hill, North Carolina, 27314

North Dakota Pyramid

North Dakota

Did you think this would be the world’s largest buffalo? While that does exist in North Dakota, the pyramid wins out because of its interesting history. Outside of the town of Nekoma, there is a large pyramid that was part of a 6-billion dollar 1960s mission to shoot down Russian missiles. You can’t visit the pyramid, but photos can be taken from outside the gate. 

Location: HJQV+Q7, Nekoma, ND 58355

Field of Corn


Not to be confused with an actual cornfield, Field of Corn is a publicly-funded art installation in Dublin. It consists of 109 six-foot-tall, concrete ears of corn standing upright in a grassy field. Each ear of corn weighs 1500 lbs. The foundation for each ear is a 3-foot deep concrete-filled hole.


Location: 4995 Rings Rd, Dublin, OH 43017

Center of the Universe


The Center of the World may be in California, but the Center of the Universe? With equally little scientific reasoning behind it, that’s apparently in Tulsa. On this mysterious spot there’s a brick circle. When visitors stand in this circle, the noises they make are echoed back much louder.

Location: 1 S Boston Ave, Tulsa, OK 74103

Humongous Fungus


The largest living organism on Earth is actually a fungus, and it occupies 2,385 acres of Eastern Oregon. It's estimated to be over 8,000 years old, making it one of the oldest living organisms as well. It can be found in the Malheur National Forest. The large fungus blooms once a year.

Location: 431 Patterson Bridge Rd, John Day, OR 97845



Shoe House


The Haines Shoe House was constructed by Mahlon Haines, known as the 'Shoe Wizard,' in 1948. Each window in the home features a stained glass shoe design. In February 2015, Melanie and Jeff Schmuck purchased the property and started selling ice cream from a shop situated in the house's back heel. Today, you can opt to stay inside the shoe if you want. 

Location: 197 Shoe House Rd Yorkana, PA 17406

Big Blue Bug

Rhode Island

Advertising a pest control company on 1-95, the Big Blue Bug is a giant termite, claimed to be the largest artificial bug. It’s 928 times the size of an actual termite at 58 feet long and weighs 4,000 pounds. The Big Blue Bug also goes by the nickname Nibbles Woodaway. It’s dressed up seasonally for holidays including Halloween, Christmas and the 4th of July.

Location: 161 O'Connell St, Providence, RI 02905

South of the Border

South Carolina

Drivers from North Carolina to South can spot a familiar landmark that’s been around for 70 years: Pedro’s Hat. It marks they’ve reached South Carolina, and also a popular highway oasis. South of the Border offers several attractions including the 200-foot-high Sombrero Observation Tower, Pedroland Park and a reptile lagoon.

Location: 3346 US-301, Hamer, SC 29547

World’s largest pheasant

South Dakota

The ring-necked pheasant is the state bird of South Dakota, and you can see the largest statue of one right off Highway 14 in Huron. The pheasant is 28 feet long, spans 40 feet and weighs 22 tons. It’s made of fiberglass and steel. 


Location: 944 Jersey Ave NE, Huron, SD 57350

Titanic replica


With the Great Smoky Mountains and Graceland, Tennessee has no shortage of tourist attractions. But did you know they also have a half-scale model of the Titanic? Stop by Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, and when you’re done, you can take a self-guided tour of this museum that contains over 400 artifacts from the real ship. 

Location: 2134 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863

Toilet Seat Museum


This unusual museum in San Antonio is exactly what it sounds like: a collection of art created on toilet seats. Barney Smith, a retired master plumber, created this collection of more than 1,000 toilet seats adorned with various materials from shells to magnets and even cassette tapes. Admission is free, but you need an appointment to visit. 

Location: 5959 Grove Ln, The Colony, TX 75056

Tree of Utah


An abstract sculpture stands on the edge of I-80 on the barren Bonneville Salt Flats about 95 miles west of Salt Lake City. Swedish artist Karl Momen crafted the 87-foot-high tree between 1982 and 1986. The sculpture consists of 225 tons of cement, nearly 2,000 ceramic tiles, five tons of welding rods and various minerals and rocks native to Utah.

Location: PCMX+CF, GREENHAVEN, UT 84083

Queen Connie


Queen Connie is a steel-reinforced concrete gorilla in front of Pioneer Auto Sales in Leicester. In the gorilla’s raised left arm is a real Volkswagen Beetle. The statue was built by artist T.J. Neil in 1987. According to the auto store's owner, Neil "did some statue stuff around our pool. So we asked him if he wanted to do something for this place. He said, 'How about a giant gorilla?''



Location: ​​2829 US Hwy 7, Leicester, VT



Much like Paul Bunyan statues, you would be surprised to discover just how many scale models there are of Stonehenge. However, Foamhenge is the only full-scale model of the monument made entirely out of modeling foam. It was originally built as an attraction in Natural Bridge but was moved to Centerville in 2017.

Location: 15621 Braddock Rd Centreville, VA 20120

Bacon and egg skate park


Have you ever wanted to skate on a pan of breakfast food? You can get your wish in Wilkeson. The fully skateable art piece was created by artist John Hillding and includes two round sunny-side-up eggs and a wave ramp bacon.

Location: Wilkeson Skatepark, Washington 398, Carbonado South Prairie Rd, Buckley, WA 98321


West Virginia

The Mothman Statue, created by artist Bob Roach, has made its home in Point Pleasant since the 1960s. The statue is an homage to a mysterious presence that people believe to have seen in the Point Pleasant area in the 60s. In addition to the statue, there is a museum with artwork and newspaper clippings related to the Mothman phenomenon.


Location: 201 4th St, Point Pleasant, WV 25550

Dr. Evermor’s Forevertron


Built in the 1980s, Dr. Evermor’s Forevertron is the largest scrap metal sculpture in the world, standing 50 ft high and 120 ft wide and weighing 300 tons. The sculpture incorporates two Thomas Edison dynamos dating from the 1880s, components from 1920s power plants and many more interesting artifacts. It can be visited in Dr. Evermor’s Art Park on Highway 12.

Location: S7703 US-12, North Freedom, WI 53951

The lost Big Boy


The iconic mascot of the Big Boy burger restaurant chains inexplicably sits in a field outside of the East Entrance to Yellowstone National Park, despite no Big Boy restaurants existing in the state. It’s actually an authentic Big Boy salvaged from a California restaurant and refurbished by artist James Geier who placed it there in 2013. 

Location: South side of US Hwy 20/16/14, between mileposts 34 and 35, east of Wapiti

Planning your road trip

If you’re planning a road trip to visit any of these or other iconic oddities across the U.S., we have a few resources to help. 

  • You can calculate your gas to help budget (and thus have more money to spend at the kitschy gift shops accompanying so many roadside attractions).
  • Get your packing list in order so nothing is forgotten.
  • And of course, don’t forget to make sure your car insurance has the coverage you need in case some peril befalls you while you’re out on the open road.