Top 12 Weirdest Tourist Attractions in America
From coast to coast, America is filled with tourist attractions that are interesting, to say the least. Some have intriguing backstories, while others are a mystery, but they all make for a great travel story. From ice cream graveyards to museums dedicated to hot dog condiments, the country has plenty of quirky pit stops that make for quite the adventure.
Here are the top 12 weirdest tourist attractions in America:
The Fremont Troll - Seattle, Washington
We’ve all heard some variation of a story involving a troll living under a bridge. Well, in Seattle it’s more than just a legend. Built on Halloween in 1990, this eighteen-foot troll has been a tourist attraction ever since.
Weird things have supposedly been happening in the area since it was built, making the Fremont Troll the center of folklore for locals and a unique photo op for the many tourists who come to see it.
World’s Largest Ball of Twine - Cawker City, Kansas
Started by Frank Stoeber in 1953, this massive ball of twine made it up to 1.6 million feet of twine by the time of Stoeber’s death in 1974. Each year during the town’s annual “twine-a-thon,” the ball is expanded upon.
The last time it was recorded, the ball was at over 20,000 pounds and over 8 million feet of twine, but it continues to grow every year.
Visitors stop by regularly to have their photo taken with the largest ball of twine in the world.
Vent Haven Museum - Fort Mitchell, Kentucky
If ventriloquist dummies creep you out, then you’re going to want to steer clear of this one.
As the world’s only ventriloquist museum, the Vent Haven Museum features over 900 dummies with hundreds of years of history.
Founded in 1973 by W.S. Berger who spent a lifetime developing his personal collection, the museum now holds ventriloquism artifacts from all over the world including dolls, recordings, scripts, and memorabilia.
Dog Bark Park Inn - Cottonwood, Ohio
If you’ve ever wanted to spend the night in the stomach of a giant beagle, look no further than the Dog Bark Park Inn.
This bed and breakfast is owned by dog lovers and was constructed to look like a thirty-foot beagle. Due to the uniqueness of this B&B it’s a bit pricey, but definitely worth a trip for the experience.
By Alan Levine from Strawberry, United States – Big BeaglesUploaded by PDTillman, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15834945
Ben & Jerry’s Flavor Graveyard - Waterbury, Vermont
Complete with funerals for the “dearly de-pinted,” the Ben & Jerry’s factory features a graveyard for discontinued flavors that can be visited by tourists. There are currently 34 flavors buried in the cemetery with headstones and epitaphs for full dramatic effect.
Fans can request a resurrection if one of their favorite flavors has been discontinued by filling out a form on the Ben & Jerry’s website.
Market Theater Gum Wall - Seattle, Washington
Arguably one of the country’s least COVID-friendly tourist attractions is the Market Theater Gum Wall, which is a brick alleyway completely covered in chewed gum.
Located under the Pike Place Market in Seattle, the wall of gum covers a space of 50 feet long and 15 feet high. Bringing in visitors since 1999, the Gum Wall has even been featured as one of CNN’s “germiest” tourist attractions.
Ronald McDonald Statue - Sunbury, Ohio
Nobody seems to know why there’s a giant statue of Ronald McDonald posing with the components of a happy meal in the middle of a field in Sunbury, Ohio.
While its purpose is still a mystery, the statue has become a favorite photo op for tourists passing through the town.
Whether you’re a lover of fast food or just looking for a fun travel photo to share with your friends, this interesting tourist attraction is worth a stop. Lovin’ it ?
South of the Border - Dillon, South Carolina
While it isn’t actually south of the border, this well-known rest stop was constructed into a kitschy Mexican-themed amusement park and hotel.
With Mexican-inspired dining, fireworks, shopping, and attractions, South of the Border is a national landmark known as the “gateway to the southeast.” Some stay the night, some stay for a bite, and some stay just long enough to snap a photo of the giant sombrero.
The site is a little run down but the stop is worth it for the, WTF factor alone.
National Mustard Museum - Middleton, Wisconsin
Hot dog lovers and condiment connoisseurs, this is the ideal museum for you. The National Mustard Museum features an exhibit about the history of mustard and a collection of thousands of mustards from all over the world.
Visitors can learn all about the condiment and even try samples of hundreds of mustards from over 60 countries.
Dakota Thunder, The Giant Buffalo - Jamestown, North Dakota
Built in 1959, a 26-foot tall buffalo serves as a town welcome that is hard to miss.
The giant concrete buffalo was named Dakota Thunder on its fiftieth birthday and weighs 60 tons. Elmer P. Peterson, a local art teacher, was hired to construct the massive sculpture as a way to draw passersby into the town.
People come from all over to get their photo taken with Dakota Thunder, so it looks like the mission was successful.
Lucy the Elephant - Margate City, New Jersey
This New Jersey staple was built in 1881 and weighs in at approximately 90 tons. First used as a real estate office, this giant elephant is now simply a beloved tourist attraction.
Tourists can climb up to the sixth story for stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. Lucy the Elephant is designated as a National Historical Landmark, meaning that she will continue to greet visitors for years to come.
The World’s Largest Toilet - Columbus, Indiana
Intended for children, this oversized toilet is set in a massive playhouse and serves as the opening to a slide that travels through the exhibit. Visitors can go down the slide and explore the plumbing system of the playhouse.
This interesting exhibit in the Kids Commons Children’s Museum is meant to serve as an educational and fun way of teaching children about how things function.
We hope you’re now feeling inspired and ready to step into history by exploring one of the Top 12 Weirdest Tourist Attractions in America.
If you have any comments or questions to make, write them below.
Dan has been working in the photography industry for over 20 years mostly in the commercial space. He re-focused in travel and travel content 5 years ago after a long career in commercial studio, interior and advertising content for industry leaders in many genres.
Published many times in print with Professional Photographer, Sony, Culture Trip, Countryside Magazine, NY Tourism Guide, New York Times, many real estate marketing magazines throughout the USA and many online publications. Dan has also co-authored “Creative Photography : The Professional Edge”.
Dan also runs yearly photography tours in Alaska at alaskabearcruise.com where he is the guide and company co-owner. He also runs a successful nationwide photography business.
Current principal sponsors include Think Tank Photo and Lumix, also a previous British Photography Awards Ambassador.