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Find Quick Facts for all States. Plus find off-the-beaten-path and fun & funky things to do in every state
Find Quick Facts for all States. Plus find off-the-beaten-path and fun & funky things to do in every state
Alabama is a state filled history and natural beauty. From the beaches of Gulf Shores and Mobile Bay and off shore Islands to the Mountains of Cheaha State Park - Alabama has something for everyone. Camper and RVers in Alabama will be treated to a dose of southern hospitality and history at every turn and fork in the road. Deep in the heart of Old Dixie, Alabama played a role in the Civil War and is the birthplace of the civil rights movement of the 60's. History buffs will find plenty of historical site to keep them busy.
Uniquely Alabama: Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail, which commemorates the events and route of the Voting Rights March in 1965
Must-See: Moundville Archeological Park in Tuscaloosa
Most Unusual: Boll Weevil Monument in Enterprise
Highest Point: Cheaha Mountain, 2,407 feet
Food to Try: Fried catfish and tomato pie
1 Visit the sixth largest Shakespeare Festival in the world in Montgomery
2 Enjoy the flora at the Huntsville Botanical Gardens
3 Hike the Little River Canyon
4 Explore the Estuarium at Dauphin Island Sea Lab
5 Visit some of the most important sites of the Civil Rights Movement on the Alabama Civil Rights Museum Trail
6 Go bass fishing
Visitors to the state of Alabama will find all sorts excellent destinations to explore during a trip. Alabama is filled with amazing natural features, museums, beautiful gardens and much more. Here are a few of the excellent places that you can visit during a trip to Alabama.
Russell Cave National Monument, Bridgeport
Russell Cave is a fantastic destination for those interested in the prehistory of Alabama. The cave was inhabited for more than 10,000 years, and visitors can gain insight into the lives of the prehistoric peoples that once lived in the region. Visitors to Russell Cave National Monument can explore the museum, take nature hikes, and much more.
Little River Canyon National Monument, Fort Payne
This National Monument is particularly unique, especially because most of the length of the river flows on top of Lookout Mountain. Visitors to the monument can enjoy all sorts of amazing natural features, including forests, waterfalls, canyons, cliffs and more. In addition, there are a variety of recreational activities that visitors can enjoy during a trip to Little River Canyon National Monument, including biking, hiking, rock climbing and more.
Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame, Birmingham
Visitors to Alabama can learn all about the history of jazz. This museum allows visitors to travel through jazz history. Visitors can learn about jazz greats like Nat King Cole, Duke Ellington and more.
Bellingrath Gardens and Home, Theodore
The Bellingrath Gardens and Home are much more than just a botanical garden. Visitors can enjoy the stunning beauty of the gardens. Bellingrath Gardens and Home also have the Museum Home, enjoy the Southern Belle River Cruise. Throughout the garden there are a variety of different plants and flowers for all visitors to enjoy.
Cathedral Caverns State Park, Grant
Visitors to Cathedral Caverns can enjoy exploring the amazing natural features that the park has to offer. Cathedral Caverns has an astonishingly large entrance, and inside the caverns there are even more interesting features. Inside there is the Mystery River, and many amazing stalagmite formations.
US Space & Rocket Center, Huntsville
Huntsville, Alabama is home to an amazing space museum. The museum has a stunning collection of U.S. manned space flight hardware. In addition to the amazing exhibits about space travel, the US Space and Rocket Center is also the home of Space Camp and other fun space adventures.
Natchez Trace Parkway
One great way to enjoy all that Alabama has to offer is on a scenic drive. The parkway stretches over 400 miles, and crosses multiple states. This same path has been used over time by many different groups of Americans. Now, visitors can drive along this historic roadway, and there are plenty of recreational opportunities to enjoy along the way.
Alabama is a truly unique state, filled with many amazing destinations. Here are a few of the states most fun and funkiest attractions. For those visitors to Alabama that are looking to fill their trips with these unique attractions, these few just crack the surface of the fun and funky destinations within this state.
World's Largest Chair
Although no longer the World's Largest Chair, visitors to Alabama can still see the one time World's Largest Chair in Anniston, Alabama. The office chair stands over 31 feet in a vacant lot for visitors to gaze at its vastness.
Boll Weevil Monument
This monument is located in the town of Enterprise, this monument was erected in honor of the boll weevil, and its impact on the town. The Boll Weevil monument is a truly funky attraction in Alabama, unique in its distinction as being a monument erected to honor an agricultural pest.
Vulcan The Iron Man
Located on the top of Red Mountain, looking over downtown Birmingham, is the statue of Vulcan, the blacksmith of the Roman Gods. The statue of Vulcan was built for the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair, the statue was brought back to Birmingham after the fair was over. In 1999 the statue had to be repaired, and returned to Birmingham in 2004. Today visitors can stop at the museum, and go to the top of tower.
Cross Gardens are unlike any other gardens in the world. This unique destination is filled with crosses, posters and more all. Visitors can explore the crosses and damnation alerts spread around the gardens. With the myriad of interesting phrases and crosses throughout the gardens, this is one of Alabama's truly unique destinations.
Ave Maria Grotto
This little park is home to 125 miniature reproductions of historic buildings throughout the world. During a visit to this spot visitors will learn that these works of art were created by a Benedictine monk of St. Bernard Abbey, Brother Joseph Zoettl. Visitors have the chance to walk through this park and see, in miniature, some of the most important historical buildings from around the world.
Uniquely Alaska: The Iditarod
Must-See: Denali National Park
Most Unusual: Mushers Hall of Fame
Highest Point: Mount McKinley, 20,320 feet (highest point in North America)
Food to Try: fresh seafood, especially Wild Salmon
1 Explore all of the amazing wilderness in Denali National Park
2 Go fishing on the Kenai Peninsula
3 Visit the different museums and other attractions in Juneau
4 Train to climb Mount McKinley, only appropriate for the most experienced mountaineers
5 Take a day cruise in several different areas of Alaska
Alaska, know as the "Last Frontier" is the largest state in the United States. Visitors to the state will be stunned by its amazing wild beauty. Throughout the state there are plenty of outdoor adventures to be found. Here are a few of the adventures you could have during a visit to great state of Alaska.
Denali National Park
This National Park is a stunning place to enjoy Alaska's Wilderness. Denali National Park is located about 240 miles north of Anchorage and 120 miles south of Fairbanks. Visitors can reach the park by the Alaska Railroad, by bus or on the single road entrance to the park. Once in the park visitors should stop at the various Visitor Centers. Denali Visitor Center is the main source of information for the park and is the starting point for most ranger-led programs. The park has 6 million acres of wild land and is open year round, but only in the summer months do the snow and ice loosen their hold on the park. Visitors to Denali National Park can visit the Savage Day-use Area, enjoy backpacking, mountaineering, wildlife viewing and much, much more.
The Kenai Peninsula is one of Alaska's beautiful vacation destinations. The peninsula is separated from the mainland by the Prince William Sound on the east and by Cook Inlet on the west. Visitors to the Kenai Peninsula can visit the Kenai Mountains in the Kenai Fjords National Park, where visitors can find glaciers, fjords and especially Harding Icefield. The Kenai River has an amazing salmon population. The Kenai Peninsula has a relatively mild climate, and is a great destination for fishing and much more. Another great Kenai Peninsula destination is the Pratt Museum in Homer. This museum has stunning exhibits on native cultures and the early settlers.
Mount McKinley, located in Denali National Park is the highest mountain in North America, with an elevation of 20,320 feet. The mountain, also known as Denali, has five glaciers. In addition, the mountain has some of the most extreme weather in the world. The climbing season lasts between April and July, when the weather is less extreme. Only the most experienced mountaineers attempt to summit Mount McKinley, the climb is extremely challenging, mostly because of the extreme weather conditions.
Alaska State Museum, Juneau
Visitors to Juneau should set aside some time to explore the Alaska State Museum. The museum is the official repository of Alaska's history. The museum collects and interprets the ethnographic and historical artifacts from the state. Visitors can participate in a guided tour or can explore the many galleries for themselves. There are exhibits that highlight the Aleut culture, the Eskimo culture, Alaska's natural history, the early Russian Settlers and much more.
Alaska SeaLife Center, Seward
Wildlife enthusiasts should visit the Alaska SeaLife Center, the only public aquarium in Alaska. The Center also serves as an Ocean Wildlife rescue center and a research facility. Visitors to the aquarium can observe Puffins, Giant Pacific Octopus, Alaska King Crab, Sea Lions, Harbor Seals and many other species. Part of the Alaska SeaLife Center is its rescue and rehabilitation work. The Center rescues stranded animals and tries to treat, rehabilitate and release as many animals as possible.
White Pass and Yukon Route Railway
This narrow gauge railroad was built in 1898 during the Klondike Goldrush. This railroad is an International Historic Civil Engineering Landmark. A trip on the railway gives visitors the chance to see stunning views of Alaska's scenery. The Railway has two tunnels, bridge and trestles.The White Pass Summit Excursion travels from Skagway to the summit of White Pass. Another excursion is the Yukon Adventure which travels from Skagway into British Columbia. There are more adventure options on the White Pass and Yukon Route Railway.
Alaska is known partly for its winter weather, one way to enjoy this is to try out some dog sledding. One of the most famous and well known dog sledding events is the Iditarod. The Iditarod brings together the most experienced and talented dog sledding teams in the world. They race across the Iditarod trail which covers over 1,150 miles of some of the worlds most extreme terrain. The people who choose to participate in this event have to be truly courageous and tough, and they can complete the entire trip anywhere between 10 and 17 days, a truly amazing feat.
Alaska is a state full of amazing wilderness, wild life and great opportunities for recreation. If you are looking for a few quirky destinations to take a break from all of the exciting recreation, here are a few of Alaska's unique destinations and attractions.
Santa Claus House and Statue, North Pole
This is the most northern Santa themed destination in the United States. Of all of the different Santa themed destinations this one has the most similar weather to what the real North Pole has. Each year the town gets a large quantity of mail from around the world. Visitors will enjoy the Santa and Christmas items and statues throughout the town.
Mushers Hall of Fame, Knik
This museum is dedicated to mushers, the people who drive sleds, and the dogs. The Mushers Hall of Fame is located on the second floor of the Knik Museum. This is a great way to learn all about sled dog racing and some of the exceptional mushers throughout history.
Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race Headquarters, Wasilla
Sled dog enthusiasts will also enjoy this destination in Wasilla. The Headquarters has a museum dedicated to the Iditarod. This museum is filled with trophies, displays and photos all about the Iditarod. Visitors can even enjoy dog sled rides during the summer.
Glacier Gardens, Juneau
Visitors to Juneau should stop by these amazing botanical gardens. Glacier Gardens covers 50 acres of southeast Alaska's rainforest, and visitors will enjoy tours of the gardens. One especially interesting feature of these gardens are the Upside Down trees. These great trees are upside down tree trunks with flowers planted on top of the roots of the upside down tree.
Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum, Fairbanks
This museum is located on the grounds of the Wedgewood Resort. Visitors will find dozens of pre-World War II autos. In addition, visitors can enjoy the collection of vintage clothing. Visitors to Fairbanks will enjoy the great exhibits at the Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum.
Uniquely Arizona: Canyon de Chelly National Monument
Must-See: The Grand Canyon
Most Unusual: Grand Canyon Skywalk
Highest Point: Humphreys Peak, 12,633 feet
Food to Try: Homemade Tortillas and Salsa
1 Go skiing in Flagstaff during the winter
2 See some of the amazing species of desert plants and animals at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument and Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge
3 Explore one of Arizona's Ghost Towns
4 Enjoy a relaxing vacation in beautiful Sedona
5 Learn about Arizona's many different Native Cultures
6 Hike through the Grand Canyon and many other National Parks in Arizona
Arizona is a state with amazing natural wonders, the Grand Canyon, deserts and much more. The weather is good throughout the year, and is an excellent winter destination. If you are spending some time in Arizona and want to see a few funky, fun attractions here are a few you may or may not have heard about.
Bedrock City, Valle
For Flintstones fans a visit to Bedrock City will be a lot of fun. This recreation of the Flintstones home city is a lot of fun, and its open year-round. Within Bedrock City there are plenty of sights to see and even things to do. Visitors can watch Flintstones cartoons at the Bedrock Theater, or take the Fredmobile tram and much more.
O.K. Corral, Tombstone
The town of Tombstone is filled with great western adventures for visitors. Visitors can see reenactments of the gunfight between Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday, Virgil and Morgan Earp. There are life-size figures of the gunfighters on the same spot that the fight actually took place. Visitors can also learn all about the history of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral.
The London Bridge, Lake Havasu City
Visitors to Lake Havasu City should make sure to cross the London Bridge. The London Bridge in Arizona is the real London Bridge from London, England. The bridge was purchased by an American businessman, Robert P. McCulloch. After he purchased the bridge it was taken apart and then reassembled in Lake Havasu City. Visitors should take a stroll across the bridge and enjoy the little bit of London in Arizona.
Petrified Forest National Park
Arizona has excellent examples of some of the ancient history the Americas. One place to learn about this and see it in person is at Petrified Forest National Park. This park has an amazing concentration of petrified wood, giving visitors the chance to envision the forests that once covered the land. The park also has beautiful scenery, archeological sites and a collection of fossils.
Grand Canyon Skywalk
On the west rim of the Grand Canyon visitors to Arizona can actually walk out over the rim of the canyon and look down into the canyon. The Grand Canyon Skywalk is a huge U shaped structure that extends out over the Canyon. The entire bottom is glass, so visitors can literally stand out over the canyon and see down to the bottom. The Grand Canyon Skywalk is a great place to experience the splendor of the Grand Canyon in a truly unique way.
Arizona is an amazing destination. There are places throughout the state for visitors to explore. There are beautiful state and national parks, as well as gardens, historic towns and more. Here are just a few of the amazing attractions the state has to offer.
Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Chinle
The Canyon de Chelly National Monument is one of Arizona's true gems.Visitors will discover a vast amount of information about the landscape that has been one of the longest continually inhabited in North America. The monument preserves rock art, artifacts, architecture and much more. Canyon de Chelly also has a living community of Navajo people.
Saguaro National Park, Tucson
Saguaro National Park is dedicated to the preservation of the stunning Saguaro cactus. The amazing, towering cactus only grows in a select part of the world. Visitors to the Saguaro National Park will have the opportunity to see much more than just the Saguaro. There are guided programs and many opportunities for recreation within the park. Saguaro National Park is an especially good location for wilderness hiking.
Apache Trail Historic Road
For those adventurous visitors to Arizona, the Apache Trail Historic Road is a great expedition. This byway passes through some of Arizona's amazing and rugged landscape. Travelers will pass through the Four Peaks Wilderness Area, and the Superstition Wilderness Area. Within these wilderness areas, visitors will find all sorts of stunning natural features, including rock outcroppings and formations.
Taliesin West, Scottsdale
This masterpiece was built as the personal winter home of Frank Lloyd Wright. Located outside of Scottsdale, Taliesin West is a destination not to be missed. Visitors can take a variety of tours around the home. The home truly exhibits the amazing architectural skill of Frank Lloyd Wright, the home does a spectacular job at integrating the home with the surrounding Sonoran desert, and integrating the indoor and outdoor spaces.
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Tucson
Visitors to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum will find that it is much more than a museum, it is also a zoo, a botanical garden and a natural history museum. The entire attraction is dedicated to desert wildlife. Exhibits that visitors will enjoy include the desert garden, ancient Arizona exhibit, cactus gardens, lizards, javalinas, bighorn sheep, tortoises and much more. The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum provides an amazing opportunity to learn about the natural flora and fauna of the region.
Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix
For all those Arizona travelers interested in the plants of the desert, the Desert Botanical Garden is a must see destination. This garden showcases all of the different plants of the desert. Visitors to the botanical garden have a variety of options for exploring the exhibits, including individual and group tours, visitors can even enjoy a flashlight tour of the gardens at night.
Pima Air & Space Museum, Tucson
This museum is one of the largest air and space museums in the world. Visitors to the museum have the opportunity to see over 300 aircraft and spacecraft too. Some of the aircraft are significant, and the museum also has some of the most technically advanced aircraft. Visitors to this museum will enjoy an amazing experience learning about all of the different air and spacecraft at the museum.
Uniquely Arkansas: Crater of Diamonds State Park, the only diamond producing site open to the public
Must-See: Ozark Mountains
Most Unusual: World Champion Duck Calling contest
Highest Point: Mount Magazine, 2,753 feet
Food to Try: Arkansas ham, and persimmon pudding
1 Explore the Ozark Capital of America in Mountain View
2 See Arkansas on the Talimena National Scenic Drive
3 Visit the Mystic Caverns
4 Enjoy a spa day at Hot Springs National Park
5 Stop at the Clinton Presidential Library
Arkansas is a state filled with beautiful and fascinating natural features, as well as important history. From hot springs to diamond mines, visitors to Arkansas will find plenty of amazing places to learn all about the state, it's history and enjoy its natural wonders. Here are only a few of Arkansas amazing attractions and destinations.
Hot Springs National Park and Hot Springs
Hot Springs National Park is an urban area that surrounds the northern end of Hot Springs, Arkansas. The city of Hot Springs was originally built to accommodate all of the visitors that came to the hot springs, which have been used by people for medicinal and relaxation purposes for over 200 years. Throughout the town and the park there are many things for visitors to explore. One must-see stop is the Fordyce Bathhouse, now restored, which was during its time one of the most amazing bathhouses. Today the Fordyce Bathhouse is the park's visitor center and museum as well. Visitors to Hot Springs can also enjoy exploring the park's many trails. Of course, no trip to Hot Springs would be complete without a bath, within the park, visitors can stop for a traditional experience at the Buckstaff Baths, or try a more modern experience at the Quapaw Baths and Spa.
This region of Arkansas is an amazingly beautiful and historic region of the United States. Visitors to the Ozarks have the opportunity to explore the stunning beauty of the region, while also enjoying the towns and historic sites within the region. Throughout the Ozarks there are many attractions that visitors wouldn't want to miss, including the Ozark Folk Center where visitors can create their own little piece of Ozarks heritage, and Twin Fall, one of the beautiful waterfalls located in the Ozarks.
Central High School National Historic Site, Little Rock
This site in Arkansas commemorates the important events that took place on September 23, 1957. On this day in history, nine African-American teens took a stand against a crowd protesting integration, as they entered Central High for the first time. This important event put the US Supreme Court's Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka decision to its first test. Today visitors can stop at the Visitor Center across the intersection from the High School to see the interactive exhibits and learn about the role this event played in history. Central High School is an operating high school, so visitors cannot tour the school without scheduling a ranger guided tour.
Crater of Diamonds State Park
Arkansas has an abundance of diamond mines among other natural features. Crater of Diamonds State Park is the only site producing diamonds open to the public. Visitors to the park can prospect for diamonds in the search field. While prospecting visitors can find many different colors of diamonds, as well as a variety of other rocks and minerals. Crater of Diamonds State Park has had a long history of diamond mining, and visitors can see the evidence in the remnants of the Mine Shaft Building and the Guard House. Visitors can enjoy outdoor recreation beyond prospecting for diamonds if they choose within the natural forest within the park.
Blanchard Springs Caverns
This is one of the most beautiful spots in Arkansas, and within the Ozarks National Forest. Blanchard Springs Cavern is named for Blanchard Spring, which flows out of the mountainside and into Mirror Lake. Above ground visitors can enjoy fishing, hiking and more. Within the Cavern visitors will see a whole new world. As visitors walk on the paths into the caverns they will see how the cavern is constantly changing. Blanchard Springs Caverns has an underground river, the world's largest flowstone and much more. For the adventurous there are Wild Cave Tours, which explore those parts of the caverns that are inaccessible on the regular tour.
Buffalo National River
The Buffalo National River travels for 135 miles through beautiful terrain, and it flows uninhibited, as it is one of the few rivers in the lower 48 states that does not have dams. This river travels east through the Ozarks and flows into the White River. Visitors to this park will find a myriad of activities to enjoy. Floating the river, is of course, one of the most popular activities, visitors can enjoy the river's waters by canoe, kayak or tube. Those visitors that want to try other activities can enjoy horseback riding, fishing, wildlife viewing, and stopping to explore historic sites.
Pea Ridge National Military Park
The Battle of Pea Ridge was fought on March 7-8, 1862, over 26,000 soldiers fought at Pea Ridge during this Civil War Battle. This battle was pivotal during the Civil War, and today visitors can experience one of the most intact Civil War battlefields. Visitors to Pea Ridge have a variety of options for exploring the park, for those that prefer to drive there is a 7 mile tour road. Hikers will enjoy the 7 mile hiking trail, and there is even a horse trail. Along all of these trails there are exhibits, and visitors can also learn more about the Battle of Pea Ridge at the Visitor Center, which features a film, exhibits and a museum.
Visitors to Arkansas will find a state filled with amazing attractions. The state has a wide variety of fascinating natural features. Here are a few of the fun and funky destinations visitors to Arkansas can explore.
Arkansas Alligator Farm
This fun attraction in Hot Springs is excellent for families is home to many of Arkansas' native alligators. Children will also love the petting zoo, the many different species of animals that call the Arkansas Alligator Farm home, including a variety of primates and Arkansas Mountain Lions. Visitors can also explore the museum and the gift shop.
Located in Berryville, is a fascinating natural attraction in Arkansas. Visitors can take an hour plus tour of the cave. On this tour, people are guided to amazing natural features, including soda straw formations, underground bottomless lakes, and unique animals like the fish living in the bottomless lake and even the Ozark Blind Cave Salamander.
This folk capital of America is a great spot to experience the pioneer lifestyle. Mountain View preserves some of the essential pioneer crafts and industries, including pottery, blacksmithing, basketry, quilting and more. Visitors can see a wide range of tradition pioneer era crafts, music and more at the Ozark Folk Center State Park during the summer.
Travelers to Alma Arkansas can see and enjoy all that the "Spinach Capital of the World" has to offer. In addition to a large bronze statue of Popeye in downtown Alma, visitors can also see the water tower in the shape of a spinach can. Alma also has an annual spinach festival.
World Championship Duck Calling Contest
The town of Stuttgart has an annual Duck Festival in late November. During this festival visitors and residents can observe and compete in the World Championship Duck Calling Contest. In addition to having duck calling contests for all ages and experience levels, the Duck Festival also has exhibits, a party and more.
Uniquely California: the Golden Gate bridge
Must-See: the world’s largest tree in Sequoia National Park
Most Unusual: Winchester Mystery House
Highest Point: Mt. Whitney, 14,494 feet
Food to Try: Locally-grown artichokes and avacados
1 Visit Point Reyes
2 Play the slots or take a hike at Lake Tahoe
3 See a Joshua tree
4 See the sea lions in San Francisco
5 Take a star tour of Hollywood
6 Play golf in Palm Springs
7 Drive across the Sundial Bridge
California is a beautiful state that has a little bit of everything -- mountains, beaches, deserts, and forests. Travelers will find big cities, stunning state and national parks, beautiful coastlines and much more. And of course you won't want to miss Los Angeles, Disneyland and the Golden Gate Bridge! Here are a few fun destinations that are well worth visiting, but that you may not have heard about already.
Point Reyes National Seashore and Point Reyes National Park are great options for enjoying California's natural environment and outdoor recreation. At Point Reyes you will find trails, historic structures and visitor centers. You can enjoy camping, hiking, biking and kayaking. Point Reyes National Park also features the Point Reyes Lighthouse and visitor center where you can learn all about the lighthouse. For the very adventurous, a trip down the 308 stairs to the Lighthouse is a great option.
Half Moon Bay
This beautiful coastal town is a fabulous destination for a quiet California getaway. You can enjoy the many beaches on the coast, play golf at the championship golf course or stop at the historic Point Montara Lighthouse. While enjoying the coast, you can walk on the trails and keep your eyes open for the California wildlife, especially during a visit to the nearby Pescadero Marsh Bird Refuge. Another popular destination in the Half Moon Bay area is the Moss Beach Distillery. The Distillery was a popular spot during the years of prohibition, and it is still said to have a resident ghost.
At an elevation of over 10,000 feet, Mount Shasta is the fifth highest peak in California and a part of the Shasta-Trinity National Forest. This mountain, which has inspired so many, stands on its own, unconnected to any nearby mountains. Many people visit Mount Shasta to make an attempt at the summit -- the climbing season lasts from April to October, but some adventurous people try to summit during the winter. Mount Shasta is also a great destination for backcountry skiing -- the most experienced climbers and skiers can climb to the summit and then ski back down. Inexperienced climbers should be aware that making a summit attempt is not easy, but there are other hiking options on trails around the base of the mountain.
Located off the coast of Southern California, Catalina is one of the eight islands that make up the Channel Islands archipelago. Catalina is part of the Southern Channel Islands, and is the only island with a significant permanent population. Visitors to California hoping to visit Catalina should either take a boat service from one of five coastal communities or, for an even more exciting adventure, take a helicopter flight from one of two costal locations. While on the island, visitors can enjoy all types of recreation including biking, hiking, golfing, swimming, kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving and even a zip line tour.
San Francisco's Chinese New Year
This is one of the best and largest celebrations of Chinese New Year outside of China. During the Chinese New Year celebrations, you can enjoy the Chinese New Year Flower Fair and of course the Chinese New Year Community Fair. Throughout the celebrations you can learn about all of the important symbols and cultural celebrations. If you need a break from the festivities, spend some time at Golden Gate Park or exploring the beauty of San Francisco.
The Winchester Mystery House
The Winchester Mystery House has to be one of California's most unique destinations. This house was built by Sarah Winchester with the legacy from the Winchester rifle. After the deaths of her child and husband, Sarah Winchester started adding all manner of unique architectural features to her home. Some speculate that she created the house to ward of ghosts. During a visit and tour of the house you will see twisting hallways, secret passageways, wandering staircases and doors that lead to nowhere.
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
If you are looking for a wide range of California's amazing natural sights all in one area, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park is a great destination. The Park ranges from deep canyons to tall mountains. In fact, within the park, you will find the highest peak in the lower 48, Mount Whitney. The park also has some amazing specimens of the giant sequoia tees. Be sure to stop and see the General Grant Tree in Grant Grove and the General Sherman Tree in Giant Forest. At Redwood Canyon you can visit the largest grove of sequoias in the world.
The great state of California is not only full of beautiful sights, but it is also full of fun and quirky places to stop during your journey. Here are a few spots you may want to stop and see during your visit to California.
Great Statues, Auburn
Within the town of Auburn there are a few amazing giant statues. The largest of these is over 40 feet tall and weighs over 120 tons. These statues include Amazon archers, a nude man wrestling with chains, and a coolie pushing a wheelbarrow. The statues in Auburn were created by Ken Fox, a dentist in the town. Some of the statues are placed in the parking lot for his dentists office. The more minimally clad statues are located closer to Ken Foxes home, rather than right in town.
Calistoga's Old Faithful Geyser
One of Calistoga's attractions is California's Old Faithful Geyser. This geyser is one of the few in the world that erupts with regularity. Old Faithful of California erupts approximately every half hour. The geyser erupts steam and scalding water, which sprays 60 to 100 feet in the air. Visitors can learn all about the unique geological circumstances that create geysers, while watching Old Faithful erupt.
Winchester Mystery House, San Jose
The Winchester Mystery House has to be one of California's most unique destinations, probably one of the most unique location in the country. This house was built by Sarah Winchester with the legacy of the Winchester rifle. After the deaths of her child and husband Sarah Winchester started adding all manner of unique architectural features to her home. Some speculate that she created the house to ward of ghosts. Visitors will see twisting hallways, secret passageways, and even doors that lead to nowhere.
Museum of Pez Memorabilia, Burlingame
This fun and unique little museum is located in a small storefront that only has two rooms open to the public. These rooms are filled with Pez dispensers. The museum's collection includes all 550 characters that Pez ever made. Visitors to the museum can be treated to a tour of the collection, the owners show visitors their favorite Pez characters as well as learn all about the history of Pez. The Museum of Pez Memorabilia is certainly a Pez lovers dream, and it is a lot of fun for those who don't know much about Pez.
Route 66 Museum, Barstow
Travelers in California should stop at the Route 66 Museum in Barstow, California. The museum is located in a former Harvey House, Casa Del Desierto. The Harvey Houses were run by the Fred Harvey Company and built by the Atchinson, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad Company. The museum has lots of information about Route 66, including photos and artifacts. As well as learning about the interesting history of the Harvey Houses.
Uniquely Colorado: Climbing a “14-er” (mountain that’s 14,000 feet or higher)
Must-See: Rocky Mountain National Park
Most Unusual: Black Canyon of the Gunnison
Highest Point: Mt. Elbert, 14,433
Food to Try: Denver Omelettes
2 Look for columbines (the state flower)
3 See a sheep-dog herding trial
4 Go mountain biking
5 Get to know Boulder and the mile high city
6 See the quaking aspen trees
7 Take a ski lift ride in Telluride or Vail
With its phenomenal natural splendor and historical sites, Colorado is an amazing state. If you are looking for a state where you can enjoy some of the country's lesser known, amazing natural wonders, then Colorado is a great choice. This edition of Off The Beaten Path features a combination of some of Colorado's great (and more unusual) attractions.
Sheep Dog Trails
Every year the town of Meeker holds the Meeker Classic Sheepdog Trials. This is a great way to learn all about the really interesting sport of sheepherding. At the annual international competition, sheepdogs and their handlers compete on a closed course, performing complex sheepherding maneuvers. The sheepdogs and handlers are competing for a $20,000 purse. If you should decide to visit these Trials, you should know that they are held each year in September over Labor Day weekend. Visitors will also have the opportunity to enjoy the art contest, food booths and dog exhibitions.
Black Canyon of the Gunnison
The magnificent canyon at Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park was formed by the waters of the Gunnison River. This amazing canyon is deep, with a narrow opening and almost vertical canyon walls, making the canyon a very unique landscape. Experienced rock climbers may want to try climbing the difficult vertical walls of the canyon. The rock is known for being crumbly, which makes it appropriate for only the most experienced rock climbers. If you visit this park and are not an experienced rock climber, you can also hike, fish, kayak, raft and even take a scenic drive.
This picturesque town of Pagosa Springs averages 300 days of sunshine every year, making it a great recreational destination year round. Pagosa Springs is surrounded by wilderness areas and has great recreational opportunities. Colorado is known as a fabulous ski destination, with its sunshine and amazing powder. Visitors can also enjoy winter camping, sledding, snowshoeing, ice climbing and even hot air ballooning. Pagosa Springs is also a gateway to the area's rich Native American history, including the nearby Chimney Rock Archeological Area. Pagosa Springs is known for its amazing hot springs, and throughout the town there are many places where visitors can enjoy the water's high mineral content.
During the winter you can enjoy great skiing, snowboarding and many other winter sports. In the summer you can hike, bike, horseback ride, fish and camp. Steamboat Springs also has an alpine slide, gondola rides and even hot air ballooning. Like Pagosa Springs, Steamboat Springs also has many natural hot springs. These hot springs are relaxing and many believe the minerals in the warm waters of the hot springs have medicinal properties. Steamboat Sprigs is the ultimate year-round alpine destination.
Dinosaur National Monument
Dinosaur National Monument is an amazing place to learn about the natural history of this region of Colorado. In fact, this area has many significant fossils. Combine the natural history of the National Monument with the incredible recreational opportunities of Colorado, and you have a truly memorable destination. You can see fossils, hike, and river raft through the river canyons. One great option during a visit to the National Monument is the Tour of the Tilted Rocks. Another great option is the Fossil Discovery Trail.
Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad
Colorado has lots of great railroad trips and options -- one of these is the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and Museum. The historic train runs along the Animas River. During the winter the steam locomotive doesn't travel the entire route to Silverton and back; instead the trip stops at the Cascade Station, which is about half of the regular route. Even in the winter the trip is beautiful and you can still learn all about the historic steam locomotives and the narrow gauge track at the museum. During the winter this train also provides a Polar Express ride, during which you and your family can drink hot chocolate and listen to the classic story.
Mesa Verde National Park
This park celebrates the history of the Pueblo people in the southwestern United States. You will find over 4000 archeological sites at Mesa Verde, including the 600 cliff dwellings. Some of the best cliff dwellings, including Cliff Palace, Balcony House, and Long House, require the purchase of tickets for guided tours. The Mesa Top Loop Road is a great scenic drive in the park. You can also enjoy a wide range of amazing hikes, some of which culminate in cliff dwelling overlooks.
The state of Colorado is full of beautiful sights and opportunities for adventure. For those visitors looking for a quirky adventure, different than the usual tourist destinations, you will find many places that fit the bill. Here are just a few of Colorado's fun and funky destinations.
Located in southwest Colorado, Four Corners Monument is the only spot where you can stand in four states at one time. At the Four Corners marker you can stand in Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Arizona at one time. This is a great spot to take quirky pictures that you will always remember.
Manitou Cliff Dwellings
These beautiful cliff dwellings can be found right off Route 24. The dwellings were built over 700 years ago, into the red rock at the foot of Pikes Peak. Visitors can explore these ancient dwellings built by the Anasazi people. After exploring the cliff dwellings visitors can stop at the Anasazi Museum and the gift shop.
Ghost Town Museum
Visitors to Colorado Springs should stop at the Ghost Town Museum to learn about a very interesting aspect of Colorado's history. The Ghost Town Museum was created to preserve a piece of the old west. During the Old West, and the Gold Rush era, many small towns were built up and died again because of gold. Visitors can see many artifacts from this period of Colorado's history and in the summer visitors can even pan for gold.
This castle can be found in the Wet Mountains, on State Highway 165, and on the Frontier Pathways Scenic and Historic Byway. Bishop Castle is named after the one man who built the castle. Jim Bishop started building the castle in 1969. Visitors can come to the castle throughout the week and after a tour of the unique stone castle, visitors can stop in at the gift shop.
Royal Gorge Bridge and Park
Visitors to Colorado looking for a bit of fun and adventure should stop at the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park. The Royal Gorge is one of the largest gorges in the world, formed by the Arkansas River, which still flows through the gorge. Visitors to the park can walk across the country's highest suspension bridge. Or visitors can ride on the Aerial Tram, which is the world's longest single span aerial tram, which runs over 1000 feet above the floor of the Royal Gorge. There are many more exciting and fun things to do.
Mount Evans Scenic Byway & Wilderness
Mount Evans is the road into the sky. Drive from 8,700 feet at Idaho Spring where you turn off Interstate 70 to 14,240 feet to the summit, and you will pass through 3 life zones, passing ancient trees, lakes and forest to the land above timberline. It can be 90 degrees in Denver and 40 degrees at the top of Mount Evans. Mountain Goats and Bighorn Sheep will greet you as you climb to the top of the world.
Uniquely Connecticut: Submarine Force Museum, the Official Submarine Museum of the US Navy in Groton
Must See: Stonington Harbor Light
Most Unusual: Barnum Museum, Bridgeport
Highest Point: Mount Frissell, 2,380 feet
Food to Try: Hasty Pudding
1 Visit a sugar house to see how maple syrup is created
2 Explore Gillette Castle State Park
3 Learn about the life of P.T. Barnum at the Barnum Museum
4 Hike the Appalachian Trail in Connecticut
5 Explore the 19th Century maritime village of Mystic Seaport
6 Enjoy some tubing and snow sports at Woodbury Ski Area
Connecticut is a state filled with historic and exciting sights. Throughout the Constitution State, visitors will be able to find plenty of outdoor adventure, not to mention the historical sights and activities.
Gillette Castle State Park, East Haddam
Located on 184 acres in the southern region of the state. The estate is located along the Connecticut River and visitors will be delighted with the amazing medieval castle on the estate. The castle was built by the notable actor William Hooker Gillette, best known for his performance as the original Sherlock Holmes. The mansion, which on the outside resembles a medieval castle, was built from the local stone. The interior is filled with unique and amazing woodwork created by the local craftsmen. Visitors will find that none of the many doors throughout the mansion are exactly alike, and there are even built in couches, a movable table on tracks and more.
Mystic is a delightful town with many attractions to delight. The Aquarium and Institute for Exploration is a great spot to enjoy a close look at aquatic life, including rays, sea lions and even penguins. Another of Mystic's real treasures is the Mystic Seaport -- The Museum of America and the Sea. This is one of the nation's leading maritime museums. Visitors to the museum can explore historic ships, view stars in the planetarium, watch demonstrations of maritime trades and even see the working preservation shipyard.
Dinosaur State Park, Rocky Hill
The largest dinosaur track site in North America was discovered at this location. Visitors can see the displays of early Jurassic fossil tracks made 200 million years ago within the geodesic dome. After viewing the dinosaur tracks, visitors can enjoy over 200 miles of trails as well as a fantastic arboretum. The Dinosaur State Arboretum has more than 250 species of plants, including some living representatives of plant families that existed during the time of the dinosaurs.
The Hartford region of Connecticut has beautiful art and architecture. You can view windows created by Louis Tiffany at the Center Church. For a little more history combined with architecture you can take a tour of Mark Twain's home in Hartford. Samuel Clemens, also known as Mark Twain lived in Hartford from 1874 to 1891, and the Mark Twain House is the location where Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer were created. For a little more excitement, or if you're just a car lover visit the Stafford Motor Speedway in Stafford Springs and watch the NASCAR auto racing on Fridays.
Visitors to the Litchfield region of Connecticut will find plenty of history and activities. For visitors in search of some outdoor recreation should be sure not to miss the Connecticut section of the Appalachian trail. There are over 51 miles of the trail that pass through the state. Hikers can also climb up Bear Mountain, near Salisbury, which is the tallest peak in Connecticut, where there are amazing panoramic views of the area.
Fans of Chamber music should be sure to visit the Music Mountain festival during the summer. This is the oldest continuing summer chamber music festival in the country. Music Mountain was founded in 1930 and is now in its 8th decade. Notable musicians come from around the world to participate in the festival. Music Mountain brings together professionals and amateurs to enjoy and educate on chamber music. Each season, the festival has a series of 16 concerts for everyone to enjoy. Visitors will also find that the property and buildings at Music Mountain are listed on the National Register of HIstoric Places. The centerpiece of Music Mountain is Gordon Hall, which is one of the best chamber music facilities in the country.
Essex Steam Train and Riverboat
For the visitors to Connecticut that want to enjoy the scenery, the Essex Steam Train and Riverboat is a great way to see the country in Connecticut. It is the only steam train and riverboat connection in the country. Passengers start their journey at the Essex Station, and board the vintage cars and authentic steam locomotive and enjoy a narrated trip to the Connecticut River. At Deep River Landing, passengers are taken to the Becky Thatcher Riverboat. Passengers on the riverboat enjoy a cruise along the Connecticut River, where they can see Gillette Castle and the Goodspeed Opera House. The riverboat then returns to Deep River Landing where passengers return to the train for their trip back to Essex Station.
Connecticut is a beautiful state, filled with amazing sights and attractions. For those travelers looking to visit some fascinating, fun and some funky attractions, should check out some of the attractions below.
The Barnum Museum
This Museum in Bridgeport, Connecticut has some fascinating exhibits, preserving the history of the area. Bridgeport was the home of P.T. Barnum and many of the artifacts and exhibits in the museum are dedicated to telling the story of his life and career. Unfortunately the museum's webpage says that the museum is closed for renovation at present (May 2011), but it is certainly worth stopping and exploring when the museum reopens.
CRRA Trash Museum
For all of those travelers that like museums that are a little different, and for all those travelers interested in how our trash is dealt with after if get picked up, the CRRA Trash Museum is a perfect destination. This museum shows visitors how trash disposal has evolved over time and what types of solutions were devised for certain problems confronting the industry. Visitors have the opportunity to view a working recycling facility, as well as learning about recycling and other issues of importance for the waste disposal industry.
Nathan Lester House & Farm Tool Museum
Visitors to this museum will have a wonderful time exploring both the historic house and grounds for an afternoon. The house and barns both feature tools and items from the Colonial period through the Victorian era. In addition to exploring the fascinating Farm Toll Museum, visitors can enjoy the beauty of the Great Oak Garden on the gourds.
The Submarine Force Library & Museum
This museum located in Groton, on the Thames River is an excellent destination to learn about Submarines and especially the U.S. Submarine Force. As the only museum dedicated to submarines operated by the U.s. Navy, this museum has an amazing collection and variety of artifacts and items relating to Submarine history. Visitors will also find that Groton is also the home of the USS Nautilus.
Wild Bill's Nostalgia Store
Wild Bill's Nostalgia Store is an excellent destination if you want to have an adventure while shopping for countless pop culture and and other fascinating items. Located in Middletown, this store is immediately recognizable from the exterior decorations which include a VW Beetle and a giant Jack-In-The-Box head. Within visitors will find all sorts of objects, including a figure of a man made entirely from bear traps. This funky and certainly fun destination has something to interest any visitor.
Uniquely Delaware: Horseshoe crabs on the Chesapeake Bay in May
Must-See: Odessa a historic town
Most Unusual: Delmarva Chicken Festival and the world's largest frying pan
Highest Point: Elbright Azimuth , 447 feet
Food to Try: Scrapple and crab puffs
1 Drive the Brandywine Scenic Byway
2 Explore the Nanticoke Indian Museum
3 Learn at the DiscoverSea Shipwreck Museum
4 Visit historic Lewes
5 Walk along the mile-long boardwalk at Bethany Beach
6 See the coastal wetlands at the Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge
Delaware is a a fun East Coast to visit for any vacation. Throughout the state there are many points of historic importance, and many places to just enjoy the present lifestyle of the state. Here are a few of Delaware's fun, funky and overall excellent attractions.
Air Mobility Command Museum
This museum located at Dover Air Force Base tells a story not often found at other Air Force museums. Visitors to this unique attraction have the opportunity to learn about how all of the items necessary for military operations have been transported historically. The Air Mobility Command Museum is filled with fun exhibits, including plenty of aircraft.
Nemours Mansion & Gardens
Those travelers that like visiting spectacular homes and the accompanying gardens will love the Nemours Mansion & Gardens. This was once the estate of Alfred I. du Pont, and today visitors have the opportunity to see the stunning architecture and furnishings within the mansion. The gardens are equally magnificent with formal French gardens and more.
World Champion Punkin Chunkin
Held each year in November, this contest is a great chance to watch people destroy pumpkins. Competitors chuck pumpkins using homemade pumpkin launchers. Visitors have the opportunity to see pumpkins hurled amazing distances. Those interested in creating their own launcher and participating can fill out an application to participate in this fantastic competition.
World's Largest Frying Pan
Wilmington, Delaware is home to the "World's Largest Frying Pan," and is an ideal destination for those exploring the world's largest things throughout the country and world. This particular giant frying pan was made for the DelMarVa Peninsula Annual Chicken Show and Feed. Today it is locate in the city of Wilmington for visitors to admire.
This museum, in Lewes, is a great place to learn about Lewes area history, including military history. But the museum exhibits aren't the only fun aspect to this destination. The inspiration for the building came from the Hoorn, Netherlands town hall. Visitors to this building can enjoy the unique architecture and features of the museum building itself, while also exploring the interesting exhibits.
Beautiful Delaware, the First State, is a fantastic camping destination. With beautiful scenery combined with delightful towns and attractions. Delaware is filled with excellent off the beaten path destinations for all visitors.
Bethany Beach is a beautiful resort destination in Delaware. Throughout the summer the town and its resorts are filled with fun summer activities, including, beautiful resorts, sandy beaches and more. In addition, the nearby state park, Delaware Seashore State Park, on a barrier island is an excellent beach and park attraction. Bethany Beach also has a fun beach boardwalk, which is a great way to enjoy the sandy beaches and beautiful waters off the coast.
Brandywine Valley Scenic Byway
The twelve miles of the Brandywine Valley Scenic Byway pass through some of the most beautiful and historic parts of Delaware. Starting in Wilmington, the byway passes through some of Delaware's historic sites. The Byway takes visitors to many of the important sites of the Du Pont Legacy, and more.
Cape Henlopen State Park
This Delaware park's beaches are a fabulous destination for all travelers. During the summer the beaches are great for swimming and enjoying the water. Cape Henlopen State Park also has excellent biking, hiking and more to entertain visitors. Trails in this park travel through the pinelands and the seaside.
Delaware Agricultural Museum & Village
Visitors to Dover will have a great time exploring the exhibits at this museum. The museum recreates a rural village in 1800's Delaware. Visitors to the museum will have the opportunity to learn about rural life in Delaware, as well as the technological advances made in agriculture during that time period.
Delaware History Museum
Located in Wilmington, this museum is a great destination to learn more about the history of the First State. The Delaware History Museum has three galleries with fascinating interactive exhibits. With changing exhibits and many different artifacts showing what historic Delaware life was like.
Right on the Pennsylvania border, the Longwood Gardens is one part of the Du Pont legacy. The land was purchased to save the trees. Today the gardens cover over 1000 acres and have thousands of species of plants. Within the indoor and outdoor gardens there are flowers, trees, beautiful architecture, fountains and more.
Visitors to Wilmington will have a great time exploring the boutiques and shops within the city. In addition to the shopping and dining found in Wilmington, there is also plenty of live entertainment to enjoy as well. Wilmington offers year round entertainment, shopping, dining and more along the beautiful riverfront.
Uniquely Georgia: Blackbeard Island Wilderness Area, historic home of the Pirate Blackbeard
Must-See: Okefenokee Swamp Park
Most Unusual: The world's largest sculpture on the face of Stone Mountain, with the figures of Stonewall Jackson, Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee
Highest Point: Brasstown Bald, 4,684 feet
Food to Try: Grits and Vidalia Onions
1 See the azaleas at Callaway Gardens
2 Explore the vast Okefenokee Swamp at Okefenokee Swamp Park
3 Watch the Masters Golf Tournament in Augusta
4 Learn about the origins of Coca-Cola in Atlanta
5 Visit the archeological site at Ocmulgee National Monument in Macon
Georgia is a state full of unforgettable attractions and destinations. Visitors to the state will find beautiful cities, history, parks and much more. Here are a few destinations throughout the state of Georgia that visitors should plan to visit.
Calloway Gardens, Columbus
These gardens are a combination of vacation resort and nature preserve. The complex is located on the countryside in the Appalachian Mountains. The Calloway Gardens has an amazing collection of Azalea's, the Azalea Bowl has over 3,400 hybrid azaleas which are especially stunning during the spring. Visitors can also enjoy the butterfly conservatory, the vegetable garden and the beautiful nature trails. Calloway Gardens also has a wide range of resort facilities, a spa resort and golf resort.
Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park
This park was dedicated in 1895, and it has over 1,400 markers and monuments. Cickamauga and Chattanooga was created to preserve the cultural, historical and natural features of this important battlefield site. The Chickamauga Battlefield was the site of the last major Confederate victory during the Civil War. Later the Union achieved victory in the renewed fighting in Chattanooga. Visitors to the park can visit the Visitor Centers, enjoy the hiking trails, take the self-guided auto tour and much more.
The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, Savannah
Visitors to Savannah can stop and see the amazing history, architecture and art of the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist. The original parish was established in the late 1700s by immigrants from Haiti and France. The French Gothic style Cathedral was completely devastated by a fire in 1898, only two years after it was completed. Everything but the outside walls were destroyed. Reconstruction began immediately, and the rebuilt Cathedral was dedicated in 1900. The Cathedral's artwork, murals and stained glass windows were completed by 1912. In more recent years the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist has been restored, and it is well worth a visit to see many of its beautiful features.
Cumberland Island National Seashore
Cumberland Island is the southernmost and the largest barrier island in Georgia. Visitors can see the maritime forests, beaches, marshes and more located in the designated wilderness areas. The island also has historic sites, ruins and much more. Cumberland Island also has the Dungeness ruins, which was originally built by General Nathanial Greene, and later built again by Thomas Carnegie. Plum Orchard Mansion is another place to visit on Cumberland Island. Plum Orchard Mansion was built by Lucy Carnegie for her son. In addition, visitors will the the First African Baptist Church in the Settlement and a Museum. Visitors can also enjoy a variety of outdoor activities including, hiking ,camping, wildlife viewing and bicycling to name only a few.
Atlanta Botanical Gardens
For visitors to Atlanta looking for some spectacular indoor and outdoor botanical collections. The Lobby of the Fuqua Conservatory has a display with poison arrow frogs. Visitors can see hundreds of tropical species in the Tropical Rotunda. There is also a desert collection with species from Madagascar and Southern Africa. In addition, the indoor collections also include a special exhibit with Asian pitcher plants, and the Fuqua Orchid Center with a wide variety of orchids. The outdoor collection has an equally diverse collection of species, including water plants, a Dwarf and Rare Conifer Garden, Hardy Palms and even a Hydrangea Collection.
Saint Simon Island
Saint Simon Island is on of the Golden Isles. The island has beautiful beaches, with the sandy seashore, and the islands salt marshes. Visitors can also stop and the St. Simons Lighthouse, which is open to the public as a museum, and is also a functioning lighthouse. Saint Simon also has nature trails, bicycling, canoeing and kayaking opportunities.
Okefenokee Swamp Park, Waycross
This swamp covers of a half million acres and is home to a large variety of plant and animal species. Visitors to the park can enjoy interpretive exhibits, wildlife shows, wildlife walkways and even Indian Waterways. There are boat tours that take visitors through the Seminole Indian Waterways allow visitors to learn all about the Okefenokee Swamp. Visitors can also take a railroad tour. The "Lady Suwannee" takes visitors on a guided tour along the edge of the wetlands. The swamp allows visitors to get up close to the unique natural plants and animals that make their home in the swamp.
Throughout the state of Georgia there are many attractions and destinations for visitors to enjoy. For those visitors looking for attractions that are a little funky and a lot fun here are a few of Georgia's unique destinations.
The World of Coca Cola, Atlanta
At this Atlanta attraction visitors to Georgia can learn all about the Coca-Cola brand and the drink. The World of Coca-Cola has all sorts of exciting exhibits and attractions. The attraction has a tasting room where visitors can try a large variety of beverages from around the world, there is also a film, a large collection of memorabilia and much more. One of the big attractions at the World of Coca-Cola is the functioning bottle works, where visitors can watch how the drinks are bottled, and can go home with their very own bottle of Coca-Cola.
National Civil War Naval Museum, Columbus
The National Civil War Naval Museum has a really interesting collection of information about the navy during the Civil War. Visitors to this museum can see replica's and actual examples of Civil War naval craft. This museum has an amazing collection of Ironclad remnants and replicas. Visitors to the museum can learn all about how the iron-plated ships that cruised the rivers and bays of the United States during the Civil War.
Rock City, Lookout Mountain
This amazing rock garden is located at the top of Lookout Mountain. Visitors to Rock city get to trek along the walking trail that winds through the 14 acre property. Rock City features amazing rock formations. Rock City's "Enchanted Trail" also has a bridge, amazing views, a waterfall and even caverns.
Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area, Lumpkin
Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area is home to "Georgia's Little Grand Canyon." This park has amazing gullies, going as deep as 150 feet. Hikers can explore the beautiful canyon, see the wildflowers and other flora and fauna. The park also has some great backcountry options for exploration.
Pasaquan, Buena Vista
Pasaquan is a great example of folk art. The site is a 7 acre compound, which was created by an artist named Eddie Owens Martin, also known as St. EOM. Pasaquan is now on the National Register of Historic Places. Visitors to Pasaquan can enjoy the amazing structures, concrete sculptures and painted walls. Pasaquan is open on the first Saturday of the month from April through November.
Uniquely Hawaii: The Green Sand Beach on Hawaii's Big Island
Must-See: USS Arizona Memorial
Most Unusual: Ka Lae, the most southern point in the United States
Highest Point: Mauna Kea, 13,796 feet
Food to Try: Kona Coffee and Luau
Take a helicopter tour to see the active volcano on Hawaii
Tour a coffee plantation
Enjoy the sun on one of Hawaii's many beautiful beaches
Learn how to surf in the beautiful waters at the state of Hawaii
See the beauty of Waimea Canyon on Kauai, called "The Grand Canyon of the Pacific"
The beautiful state of Hawaii is an amazing destination year-round. Hawaii's climate is perfect for vacationing throughout the year, visitors can enjoy the sun, the beaches and all of the excellent activities. Hawaii has six main islands, Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Maui and the Big Island of Hawaii. All six of these islands have beautiful beaches, excellent spots for water recreation and many stunning natural wonders.
Poipu Beach, Kauai
Widely considered to be one of the most beautiful beaches in the United States if not the world, Poipu Beach is located on the south shore of Kauai and is part of Poipu Beach Park. The beach is composed of a string of golden sandy crescent shaped beaches. Visitors to Poipu can have hours of fun snorkeling, boogie-boarding, swimming, and surfing. The best surfing spots are located slightly offshore, the reef establishes wavebreaks which make good surfing for surfers of all experience levels.
Pearl Harbor, Oahu
This National Historical Landmark honors the tragic turning point in America's history. Pearl Harbor has five historic sites that honor the events of December 7th, 1941. Each of these memorials is an awe-inspiring experience for visitors to Oahu. The USS Arizona Memorial, is a floating memorial built over the sunken hull of the USS Arizona, which sunk in nine minutes. Visitors to the USS Arizona Memorial has a marble wall with the names of the men who died on the USS Arizona. Visitors to Pearl Harbor can also visit the Battleship Missouri Memorial, which is the ship where the Japanese unconditionally surrendered ending the war. The USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park is a great spot for visitors to learn about submarine warfare during the war. The Pacific Aviation Museum is located within the former World War II airplane hangars, and is an amazing aviation museum that has simulators and many exhibits. Visitors can also stop at the USS Oklahoma Memorial, which honors the men who lost their lives on the battleship during the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Moomomi Dunes, Molokai
The Moomomi Dunes are located on a 920 acre preserve, located on the northwest region of Molokai. These dunes are an important part of Molokai and Hawaii's history. Ancient Hawaiian sites have been found in the dunes, as well as endangered plant species, and evidence of flightless prehistoric birds. Visitors can travel into the Moomomi Dunes on the jeep trails that weave through the preserve. Those visitors to Molokai that explore the Moomomi Dunes should be prepared for the rugged conditions, but it is a truly amazing place, rich with the history of Molokai.
Also know as the Garden of the Gods, Keahiakawelo is an absolutely stunning garden on the northwest side of Lanai. Visitors to Keahiakawelo will see the stunning rock garden. Throughout the landscape there are rock towers and formations. Visitors have to have 4-wheel drive in order to access this interesting spot, and it is worth noting that the landscape is most stunning at dusk when the rock formations are lit by the colors of the setting sun.
Hana Highway, Maui
A road trip along the Hana Highway is a great way to explore some of Maui's amazing sights and activities. The Highway travels along the northern shore of Maui, ending in the town of Hana. Along this road, travelers will find stunning beaches, gardens, and much more. During the winter time visitors should stop to see the expert surfers braving the waves at Jaws, off of Pauwela Point. This area is known for its gigantic waves, which only the very best surfers brave. Travelers along the Hana Highway can also stop at the Keanae Arboretum has fascinating examples of Hawaiian flora. Visitors should also stop at the Waianapanapa State Park, on the edge of Hana, this park has a beautiful black sand beach and also has a trail to explore the area. All along the Hana Highway there are many beautiful places to explore and things to experience and the town of Hana also has many excellent places to visit.
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii
During a visit to Hawaii, if you are looking for some spectacular natural sights, then Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is one of the country's must see destinations. At this park you can look over the edge into some ancient volcanic craters. If you only have time for a drive, the Crater Rim Drive will take you through a rain forest and desert, you will encircle the summit of Kilauea caldera and pass through the caldera floor. Maybe you have time for some hiking, try the Kilauea Iki Trail, where you can cross the crater. You can also go to the East Rift Zone to see the most recent lava flow. Lava flow is always changing, so find out what is going on before stopping for a visit.
Waipio Valley, Hawaii
This valley is one of Hawaii's truly stunning vistas. Waipio Valley stretches almost six miles into the island from the beach at its mouth. The valley's walls are almost a mile high. Throughout the valley there are waterfalls and streams. Waipio Valley is a place filled with Hawaiian history and it is an excellent opportunity to recreate and explore an amazing bit of Hawaii. The Waipio Valley is somewhat difficult to access, if you don't want to attempt the trip into the valley you can instead stop at the Waipio Valley Lookout to enjoy the view from the top of the valley. For the more adventurous travelers, there are a few options to get into the Waipio Valley. Visitors can take the Waipio Valley Shuttle, which is a guided tour of the valley, or the Waipio Valley Wagon Tour, a mule-drawn surrey tour of the Valley.
Hawaii is a beautiful state, each the islands are filed with stunning scenery, amazing recreation and plenty of sun and relaxation. For those visitors that love to explore some of the funky and fun places during their vacation, here are some of the fun and funky destinations found throughout Hawaii.
Captain Cook Monument
Visitors to the island of Hawaii can stop to visit the spot where Captain James Cook, the first westerner to land on the Big Island of Hawaii, first landed on the island. Within the Kealakekua Bay there is a white obelisk memorializing the death of Captain Cook, which occurred a year after his arrival during a fight with the native Hawaiians. In addition to the memorial, there is also plenty of excellent recreation opportunities to be enjoyed at the park.
This scenic cove, located at Hanauma Bay on the island of Oahu. Not only is the spot a scenic one, but it also has an amazing blowhole. Visitors can drive to a scenic overlook, which has an excellent view of the unique lava configuration that creates the blowhole. The blowhole is caused by a lava tube and the surf, which causes the blowhole to erupt. Depending on the surf action, the blowhole eruption can be very impressive.
Found throughout the islands of Hawaii, Hilo Hattie is a fantastic store to find all sorts of Hawaiian souvenirs and treasures. Every visit to Hilo Hattie is sure to be fun and an excellent destination to find fun gifts for your friends back home, and memorabilia to help preserve the memories from your trip.
Polynesian Cultural Center
Located on the northeast shore of Oahu, the Polynesian Cultural Center is a fun destination to learn about all of the many different cultures in the Pacific Ocean region including the Hawaiian Islands. Within the Center visitors will find a variety of village replicas from different cultures, which feature craft demonstrations and more. This destination is a fantastic family attraction and is a fun way to learn more about the cultures of the region of the Pacific Ocean.
Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park
Visitors to Hawaii that are interested in learning about Hawaiian culture should be sure to stop at Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park also known as the Place of Refuge. This park preserves and important part of Hawaiian culture, which visitors can see first hand during a visit. Within the park there was once royal grounds as well as the place of refuge where lawbreakers in the Hawaiian culture could try to evade their pursuers and participate in a ceremony of absolution. This historical destination provides a fun destination and an excellent opportunity to learn about Hawaiian culture.
Uniquely Idaho: Rafting down the Snake River
Must-See: the Spud Drive-In in Driggs
Most Unusual: Craters of the Moon National Park
Highest Point: Borah Peak, 12,662 feet
Food to Try: Idaho’s famous potatoes
1 Tour the Shoshone Ice Caves
2 Go boating on Lake Coeur d'Alene
3 Hike North Idaho
4 Ski in Sun Valley
5 Go trout fishing in the Lost Rivers region
Idaho is fun state filled with great destinations, from nature to history. Visitors can find all sorts of fun attractions, funky attractions and much more. Here are a few of the funky and fun destinations that visitors will find.
Idaho Potato Museum
The Idaho Potato Museum is a great museum to learn about the importance of Idaho potatoes. Potatoes are an important part of Idaho's agriculture. The Museum celebrates everything about Idaho's potatoes from the first potato to potato chips. In addition to potato history the museum has information about the whole potato industry.
Shoshone Indian Ice Caves
This attraction is a lava tube that stretches for 1,000 feet. Visitors to the Shoshone Indian Ice Caves enter through a collapsed entrance. When the cold air enters the cave all of the water freezes creating a sheet of ice. Visitors can explore this amazing natural feature while walking on the wooden bridge covering the cave floor.
Geyser Park, Soda Springs
Visitors to Soda Springs will find a geyser at Geyser Park. This is actually the captive geyser in the world. Residents in Soda Springs found the geyser when drilling for a hot water source. The geyser was unleashed and today visitors can visit the the controlled and timed geyser.
The city of Arco Idaho was the very first city in the world to receive electricity from nuclear power. Visitors can learn about the history of nuclear power in Idaho and in Arco. Today nuclear power is still an important part of the town's culture and heritage.
Dog Bark Park Inn
This Bed & Breakfast in Cottonwood is actually located in the World's Biggest Beagle. Those visitors that stay at the Inn enter the Beagle through their personal second story deck. Within the Beagle there are all sorts of amazing furnishings many made by the creators of the dog.
Idaho is a stunningly beautiful state, filled with amazing vistas and excellent attractions. The state also has a very wide ranging and diverse history. No matter what you enjoy doing you are sure to find some attraction or destination that you love. Here are just a few of Idaho's great attractions.
Bayhorse Ghost Town and Trails System
History buffs will love this 1880s era ghost town. The town is preserved in the Yankee Fork State Park. Visitors get the chance to see the preserved site of Bayhorse town. Visitors also can enjoy the extensive trail system for ATV use.
This 25-mile long lake is a great recreational destination. Priest Lake is actually only two lakes, connected by a 2.5 mile river. The river is filled with beautiful clear mountain water, Priest Lake is surrounded by forests and more. Priest River's surrounding forests have a wide range of tree species including ponderosa pines, as well as, lots of wildlife. Visitors can enjoy the excellent fishing, camping, boating, hiking and much more recreation.
Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area
The Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area was created in order to protect a unique concentration of birds of prey. Within the vast acreage of this Conservation Area there are both nesting and migrating birds of prey. The species prevalent here include, eagles, falcons, hawks and owls, there are in fact 24 species of raptors in the area. For visitors hoping to enjoy some bird of prey watching, spring is the best time to visit the Conservation Area. This area also has other fun recreational activities, which can be enjoyed throughout the year.
Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve
This National Monument is 750,000 acres, and it has amazing volcanic formations. Visitors can enjoy seeing the cinder cones, lava tubes and more. The monument has good hiking, bird watching, backpacking and even caving. During the summer there are guided cave walks, and during the winter visitors can have fun snowshoeing, cross-county skiing and more.
Hells Canyon National Recreation Area
Hells Canyon is the deepest gorge in North America. Located in west central Idaho and crossing into northeaster Oregon, Hells Canyon is a great Idaho destination. Visitors to Hells Canyon can explore by boat, which is the best way to see the canyon. There are also sightseeing tours that visitors can take to enjoy the amazing sights of Hells Canyon.
Bitterroot National Forest
This 1.6 million acre forest straddles Idaho and Montana, it is also the largest expanse of continuous pristine forest in the lower 48. Visitors to the forest can see the Bitterroot Range, see the steep canyons and much more. The Selway and Salmon rivers also flow through the forest.
Basque Museum and Cultural Center, Boise
Visitors to the Basque Museum and Cultural Center will learn that Boise has the highest concentration of Basque in the country. This Museum illustrates the history of the Basque population in Idaho, as well as the origin of the Basque culture. The Museum is located in the Cyrus Jacobs-Uberuaga house, which was also a Basque boarding house from 1910 to 1969. Visitors to the museum can enjoy the exhibits, archives and even tours.
Uniquely Illinois: Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum
Must-See: The Gateway Geyser
Most Unusual: Leaning Tower of Niles
Highest Point: Charles Mound, 1,235 feet
Food to Try: Chicago Style Pizza
1 Admire the impressive architecture at the Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio
2 Explore Illinois wildlife at the Wildlife Prairie State Park
3 Learn about Lincoln's life at the Lincoln Home National Historic Site
4 Enjoy the fascinating history of the Mississippi River at the National Great Rivers Museum
5 Spend some time exploring the wonderful Main Street in Galena
Illinois is an amazing state filled with fun and funky attractions. In addition to the many destinations that people usually enjoy in Illinois, here are a few of those destinations that are a bit out of the ordinary.
Smiley Face Water Towers
Visitors to Illinois should keep an eye out for the Smiley Face water towers that are found in various towns throughout the state. These water towers, painted yellow with large smiling faces are difficult to miss. In fact visitors to Calumet City can see two Smiley Face water towers.
Purple Martin Capital of the World
The town of Griggsville, Illinois is known as the "Purple Martin Capital of the Nation." Visitors to this town will see all sorts of bird houses. In the center of the town there is even a bird high-rise for the Purple Martin's. These birds, once endangered, thrive in this area during the summer due the large quantity of mosquitos. Griggsville is unique in its claim to the "Purple Martin Capital of the Nation" because the town's main industry is the manufacture of the bird houses seen throughout the town.
Chester, Illinois is home to a large six-foot bronze statue of Popeye. This town's Popeye statue was built to commemorate the creator of the character. Elzie Segar, creator of Popeye, was born in Chester. Today visitors can enjoy the large statue of the cartoon character, and during certain times of the year attend the Popeye Picnic.
Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum
Appropriately located in Springfield, Illinois, this museum is a fun spot to learn all about the life of the president. Although this museum does not have the most genuine artifacts from Lincoln's life, the museum still has plenty to see. Visitors se life-sized wax figures of the Lincoln family and other historic figures during the time. The museum also has 4-D theaters, pictures, paintings and much more.
Villa Katherine is located on the banks of the Mississippi near Warsaw, Illinois. It is actually a Moorish castle built in the late 1800s. The interior is filled with ornate woodwork and carvings. Villa Katherine has a very authentic feel of the Moorish Castle and is a great, fun, Illinois attraction.
Illinois is an amazing state, filled with great vacation destinations. Visitors will find nature, history, culture, and much more. From Civil War history to the Leaning Tower of Niles, there is something to interest everyone. Here are a few of the fascinating attractions that visitors to Illinois can enjoy.
Frank Lloyd Wright Home & Studio, Oak Park
Oak Park has an amazing collection of Frank Lloyd Wright architecture. Visitors to Oak Park can see how the style of Wright's architecture developed over the years, and see his signature style, Prairie Style. Those visitors to Illinois that are interested in great American architecture should be sure to enjoy the guided tour of the home and studio of Frank Lloyd Wright.
Leaning Tower of Niles, Niles
Visitors to Illinois can see a replica of the Leaning Tower of Pisa. This is a great stop for those visitors who have not visited Pisa, Italy, as it is an opportunity to see a replica of the amazing site. Built in 1934, the Leaning Tower of Niles is about half the size of the original Leaning Tower of Pisa.
Rock Springs Conservation Area, Decatur
This area is a beautiful destination for visitors to Illinois that love nature. Throughout the large area there are many types of terrain, including grassland, forest, wetlands and more. Visitors to the Conservation Area can stop at the visitor center, the museum and a farmhouse. In addition, the Rock Springs Conservation Area has hiking trails and bike trails, making it a great destination for recreating.
The Gateway Geyser, St. Louis
Located in East St. Louis, the Gateway Geyser is a magnificent attraction in Illinois. The geyser shoots water over 600 feet in the air. The fountain also has four additional fountains. Together the fountains make a spectacular St. Louis sight.
Ulysses S. Grant Home, Galena
Visitors to Illinois can experience a bit of Civil War history during a trip to Galena. Here, they will find the home of Ulysses S. Grant. The Union General lived in Galena prior to becoming a General, and he returned to Galena in 1865 after the Civil War was over. Today visitors can take a tour through the house, which is located at 500 Bouthillier Street.
Washington Park Botanical Garden, Springfield
Nature lovers are sure to enjoy spending some time at the Washington Park Botanical Gardens. Here they will find a wide variety of plant species. There are over 1,200 different species of plants at the gardens. In addition, visitors can also enjoy the tropical plants in the domed Conservatory.
The Field Museum, Chicago
This is a great destination in Chicago. Visitors will find a wide array of exhibits with amazing history and culture. The Field Museum has permanent exhibits about nature, animals, fossils, culture, and much more information. The museum also has temporary exhibits that regularly change.
Uniquely Indiana: The Indianapolis 500
Must See: The Limestone Heritage Trail, which showcases the Bedford Limestone that contributed to the Empire State Museum and other national structures
Most Unusual: The World's Largest Sycamore Stump in Kokomo
Highest Point: Hoosier Hill, 1,257 feet
Food to Try: Pork and Beans, Sugar Cream Pie
1 Catch the Indianapolis 50 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway over Memorial Day weekend
2 Enjoy the the beauty of Indiana nature at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
3 Visit the town of Santa Claus
4 Explore Indiana's Amish Country which extends from Elkhart to LaGrange
5 See Indiana's Bedford Limestone in its natural state on a tour of Bluespring Caverns
Indiana is one of the beautiful Great Lakes States. Visitors will find that the state is full of amazing destinations to explore. Here are a few of the state's more unique and unusual attractions that any traveler to Indiana can enjoy.
Covered Bridge Capital of the World
Parke County, Indiana is considered the Covered Bridge Capital of the World. Visitors to the are can see the 31 covered bridges. While exploring the many covered bridges in this area, visitors can also enjoy the beautiful setting, and all of the local attractions.
This is an amazing free standing rock formation. Located in Shoals, Indiana this table rock is the largest table rock formation of its kind east of the Mississippi River in the United States. Jug Rock is a great place to experience some of Indiana's great geological formations.
RV Hall of Fame
The RV Hall of Fame commemorates leaders in the RV and mobile home industries, as well as preserving the history and memorabilia of the industry. The museum has many vintage examples of RVs and mobile homes. There is also an exhibit of new models. Visitors to these Hall of Fame and Museum can enjoy learning all about the great pastime of RVing the the country.
Any visitor to Indiana that loves the culture and excitement of Christmastime, should come to Santa Clause, Indiana. This town is filled with the excitement of Christmas throughout the year. The town features the amusement park, Holiday World & Splashin' Safari, as well as the Santa Claus Land of Lights, Santa's Candy Castle and much more.
World's Largest Sycamore Tree
The town of Kokomo, Indiana is home to the World's Largest Sycamore Stump. Some time ago Kokomo was home to a gigantic Sycamore tree, that was almost 800 years old. After a storm broke the tree, the town of Kokomo started displaying the stump of the tree. The stump is an impressive sight at over 50 feet in circumference.
Beautiful Indiana is a wonderful state to spend some time exploring. Throughout the state there are many places of beauty to visit, as well as arts, culture and much more. Visitors can enjoy both the excitement of outdoor recreation and the pleasure of the arts and culture in the city.
Conner Prairie in Fishers is an excellent interactive destination, especially for families. Throughout Conner Prairie there are five different themed exhibits, each of which exemplifies a different time period in Indiana history. Visitors can enjoy the themed exhibits to learn about history, by exploring all of the sights and sounds of history. The Animal Encounters Barn is a fun place to see all of the farm animals. Conner Prairie also offers a historic hot air balloon ride.
Falls of the Ohio State Park
This amazing Indiana State Park is a beautiful destination in Clarksville. Not only is the park an excellent spot to enjoy hiking, fishing, nature viewing and more. Falls of the Ohio Sate Park is best know for its amazing fossil beds. Although the fossil beds are protected, there is a great interpretive center with examples of fossils and history of the area.
Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
Along the shores of Lake Michigan, this National Park is a fantastic year-round recreation destination. During the summer it is great for hiking, camping, boating, swimming and more. The winter is also an excellent time to visit the park, with opportunities to cross-country ski, snowshoe and more. Throughout Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore there are sites with fascinating geology, excellent wildlife viewing in the unique habitat and much more.
Another great attraction to enjoy learning about historic Indiana is the Indiana Historical Society's Indiana Experience. The interactive exhibit in Indianapolis, allow visitors to have a more participatory experience with Indiana history. Visitors to Indiana Experience get to interact with interpreters introducing them to the history of the byway, the state, and showing the amazing natural scenery of the state of Indiana.
Indiana's Historic Pathways
One of the best ways to experience the beauty and character of a state is to take a road trip. Indiana's Historic Pathways is an excellent choice for a road trip. The route crosses the southern end of Indiana from east to west. Travelers on this route will be traveling on the same route as many people for the past hundred years. Today the route is a great choice for accessing Indiana's history as well as enjoy the beauty the the
Turkey Run State Park
This fantastic Indiana park is a great spot to enjoy some beautiful outdoor recreation. The park has some amazing examples of old giant trees, which survived logging throughout history due to the difficulty of the terrain. The terrain has beautiful ravines and much more. Visitors to this park can hike on trails that travel through all of the spectacular natural features and more.
White River State Park
Located in Indianapolis, this amazing park. Not only does it offer some beautiful gardens, paths and other features of a fantastic city park, but it is also home to some of the premiere attractions in Indianapolis. Visitors to Indiana and Indianapolis should be sure to spend at least a day enjoying and exploring the attractions in the park. White River State Park is home to the Indianapolis Zoo, which is great for kids, the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians, live music series and much more.
Uniquely Iowa: Iowa State Fiar
Must-See: The Lone Star Steamboat, the last wooden-hull stern wheeler on the Mississippi
Most Unusual: Snake Alley in Burlington, the most crooked street in the world
Highest Point: Hawkeye Point, 1,670 feet
Food to Try: Loose Meat Sandwich and Dutch Sugar Cookies
1 Visit the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines, one of the best in the country, and see the famous Butter Cow
2 Learn about the history of ballooning at the National Balloon Museum
3 Drive along the eastern border of Iowa, following the Mississippi, on the Great River Road National Scenic Byway
4 Explore the Effigy Mounds National Monument in Harpers Ferry
5 Recreate and learn about Iowa history at the Mines of Spain Recreation Area/Julien Dubuque's Mines
Iowa is a fantastic mid-western state. Visitors can enjoy the traditions and history of the state, as well as the influence of the evolving agricultural industry on the state's attractions and development. Throughout the state there are fascinating destinations to interest any traveler. Here are just a few of the great places to visit in Iowa.
Burlington, Iowa is a city filled with excellent destinations for travelers to explore. This city has excellent history museums, attractions and more. Visitors should be sure to stop at the Apple Tree Museum to learn more about the history of the region. Burlington is also home to Snake Alley, one of the crookedest streets found in the world.
Effigy Mounds National Monument
The Effigy Mounds National Monument preserves over 200 mounds built by American Indians. These mounds are considered sacred sites by the American Indian tribes from the region and the National Monument affords visitors the chance to learn about the natural and cultural history of the region. In addition, the site also has excellent hiking opportunities while allowing visitors to explore the fascinating mounds.
Great River Road
One fantastic way to explore any state is to take a road trip. Iowa's Great River Road provides visitors with an ideal path to explore some of the state's amazing scenery and culture. The Great River Road byway winds with the Mississippi River, from Lansing to Keokuk. Along this road there are stunning examples of Iowa's natural beauty, opportunities to hike and recreate, museums, unique Iowa towns and more.
Iowa State Fair
The Iowa State Fair held in Des Moines is a great Iowa tradition, and is an absolute must-see when it is being held. One fun attraction at the fair is the Butter Cow. This is a life-sized cow sculpted from butter. It takes about 600lbs of butter and every year one of the main breeds of dairy cows is the model for the sculpture.
Mines of Spain State Recreation Area
Those visitors to Iowa looking to enjoy some of the beautiful natural features should be sure to stop and explore the Mines of Spain State Recreation Area. This area preserves the natural plants and animal species of the region. Visitors should be sure to see the burr oak trees and try to catch a glimpse of some of the rare animals like the flying squirrel and red-shouldered hawk. The E.B. Lyons Interpretive Center is a good starting point to gather information and learn about the region, the Horseshoe Bluff Interpretive Area is also a must-see spot to learn about the geology of the region as well as the floating wetland trails.
Located at the entrance to Iowa State University in Ames, the Reiman Gardens are one of the largest public gardens in the state. These gardens feature an indoor conservatory, outdoor gardens and even a butterfly exhibit. Visitors to these gardens can also see the varying visiting exhibits to the gardens.
Silos and Smokestacks National Heritage Area
Northeast Iowa has a rich history, and the Silos and Smokestacks National Heritage Area preserves the agricultural history of the area through museums, farms and more. Visitors can explore historic sites, museums, working farms, and more. Each site tells an important story about Iowa's history and the history of our country.
Throughout the great state of Iowa there are many fantastic destinations for any traveler. Those travelers seeking roadside oddities or destinations that are just a bit funkier than the usual Iowa attractions should stop and see a few of these fun destinations.
Albert the Bull
Located in Audubon, Albert the Bull is the largest bull in the world. This gigantic replica of a Hereford bull is made primarily from concrete. Visitors to Iowa can come to Audubon to visit Albert and learn more about his history before taking a photo and finding some Albert the Bull Souvenirs.
Grotto of the Redemption
The Grotto of the Redemption is truly an impressive structure, especially after learning that it was one man's devotion to his faith and hard work that created it. One of the largest grotto's in the world, visitors can see an amazing collection of rocks, minerals and other interesting items.
National Motorcycle Museum
Motorcycle enthusiasts are sure to enjoy a visit to this museum. With approximately 200 motorcycles, including some vintage examples, this is a great spot to learn about the history of the motorcycle. The museum also has excellent exhibits featuring photos and more.
Visitors to McGregor can take a fun boat tour of Spook Cave. This cave got its name from the noises that were once heard from the hole that would become Spook Cave. Today, there are boat tours taking visitors through the cave. Visitors get to see the formations and learn about the cave, all while enjoying a nice boat ride.
World's Largest Strawberry
Point Strawberry, Iowa is home to a giant strawberry statue. Travelers looking for the world's largest things, should be sure to stop at this World's Largest Strawberry. This strawberry actually has all of the details of a real strawberry and is a fun destination in Iowa.