With summer in the wings, that old urge for hitting the road grows stronger. And, while an awesome Travel Nursing job is your final destination, you know enough to appreciate that it’s also about the journey of getting there.
Sure everyone goes to Mount Rushmore and Graceland, but you can distinguish yourself by visiting the strangest of the strange destinations on your journey as a Travel Nurse. You know, those peculiar, American-made curiosities found from coast to coast.
Whether you take an excursion from your location or simply stop on the way there, here is Travel Nursing Blogs’ roundup of ultimate roadside attractions for Travel Nurses to guide your way to all the weird gems nationwide:
Cadillac Ranch — Amarillo, Texas
This atypical ranch was created in 1974 as a public art project, with Cadillacs partially buried in the ground at the same angle of the Great Pyramid of Giza. Nowadays, it’s a public art project in the truest sense, as most visitors literally leave their mark with spray paint. Visitors and graffiti are welcome at this strange site.
Largest Ball of Twine — Cawker City, Kansas or Darwin, Minnesota
In the long-running biggest twine ball rivalry — yes, that’s a thing — Cawker City is the reigning champ, with the distinction that its ball is the largest built by a community while Darwin’s is the largest built by an individual.
The Fremont Troll — Seattle, Washington
This whimsical local landmark constructed from 13,000 pounds of concrete and rebar lives under the George Washington Memorial Bridge.
Oregon Vortex — Gold Hill, Oregon
Possibly paranormal and certainly interesting, you’ll want to check out these pop culture famous gravity hill optical illusions if you’re in the area.
Drive Through a Redwood Tree — off U.S. Hwy 101, California
Drive through one of three massive trees — or collect all three: Shrine Tree, Chandelier Tree, and Klamath Tree. Sure, it’s kitschy, but just think about the Instagram possibilities.
Dinosaur Park — Rapid City, South Dakota
This park is old, but not quite prehistoric. Dedicated in 1936, seven huge dinosaur sculptures dot the hill overlooking the town. Cabazon, California also boasts some huge dinosaurs, for those looking to get their prehistoric fix, especially as Chris Pratt brings back the dino trend by awakening the Jurassic World franchise.
Jimmy Carter Peanut Statue — Plains, Georgia
During the 1976 presidential campaign this super strange statue was built to honor Carter as he traveled through Georgia. At 13 feet tall, the statue pays tribute to Carter’s iconic grin and his early days as a peanut farmer.
Mapparium — Boston, Massachusetts
If you’ve ever wanted to step inside the world map circa the early 1930s, this colorful attraction should do it for you!
Desert of Maine — near Freeport, Maine
While it’s not technically a desert, this 40-acre expanse of glacial silt mimics one. There’s lots of fun to be had here, including trails, tours, giant sand dunes, and more.
Longaberger Basket Headquarters — Dresden, Ohio
This building, shaped like a massive picnic basket, is enough to make Yogi Bear drool. There’s no mistaking what business Longaberger’s in!
Market Theater Gum Wall — Seattle, Washington
Nurses will likely see only the germs when checking out his gross monument to used chewing gum. This brick walled alleyway exists near the Market Theater box office — but you’d swear the wall was made of gum.
World’s Only Corn Palace — Mitchell, South Dakota
The one and only! This corn palace was built to advertise South Dakota’s rich farmland and to entice folks to move to the area. New murals made from corn are constructed annually.
Dr. Seuss House — Willow, Alaska
One look at this architectural wonder of the north and you’ll see why it’s named the Dr. Seuss house … one house, two house, how many more houses?!
Carhenge — Alliance, Nebraska
Why travel all the way to Europe when good ol’ Nebraska has Carhenge? Dedicated during the June 1987 summer solstice, the strange roadside destination is a replica of Stonehenge created from various vintage American cars.
Leaning Tower — Niles, Illinois
A half–sized replica of the Leaning Tower of Pisa created in 1934 in Pisa’s now sister city of Niles.
World’s Largest Six-pack — La Crosse, Wisconsin
Changes have been made to this attraction over the years, but one fact remains: That’s a heckuva lot of beer!
The Thing — along Interstate 10, Arizona
What is The Thing? That’s the question that draws in curious road warriors — and we’re not telling, because the mystery is half the fun.
Biosphere 2 — Oracle, Arizona
This unique place was used by scientists to learn more about Earth and its systems. Now run by the University of Arizona, it’s open for public tours. We hope this Earth systems research facility comes free of Pauly Shore and Stephen Baldwin!
Hole n’ the Rock — Moab, Utah
This 14-room house was excavated from a huge boulder, and among its other weird happenings, it has a petting zoo complete with camels, ostriches, and pygmy donkeys.
That’s a pretty fun bundle of weirdness, but what did we miss? Please share anything you would add to this list of ultimate roadside attractions for Travel Nurses.
Happy trails, everyone!