The weirdest places in the USA

We’ve come to expect the unexpected in the land of superlatives, but to be honest: Some places in the USA are odd! From ice mazes to creepy clown motels, we'll show you the most absurd landmarks and works of art across the United States!

Neon cemetery in Las Vegas

The Neon Museum (also known as the Neon Cemetery) is the final resting place for the legendary neon signs of the gambling city of Las Vegas. The exhibits here date back to the 1930s, when the cityscape of the desert metropolis was already dominated by all kinds of glowing art pieces.

If you have the chance, go and see this bizarre place both by day and by night, as these are two very different experiences! The special "Brilliant!" show, which uses light projection and music to bring the old neon signs back to life, has brought many a visitor to tears!

The history of the Neon Museum

The Neon Museum nonprofit organization was founded in 1996 because it was difficult for many locals to see the elaborately designed, artistic neon lights gradually being replaced by modern models.

Some of the world's most beautiful neon signs, such as the Hard Rock Café Guitar, the Silver Slipper, and the Hacienda Horse and Rider, would have simply disappeared if not for the team's dedication to collecting, restoring, and exhibiting iconic Las Vegas signs.

Visit the Neon Museum

  • US state: Nevada
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport is McCarran International Airport. From there, you can take a cab or rent a car to reach the museum. The journey from the airport to the museum takes around 20 minutes.
  • Highlights: Hard Rock Café Guitar, Silver Slipper, Hacienda Horse, and Rider, "Brilliant!" show
  • Admission: Fee for a guided tour required
  • Travel tips: Book tickets in advance*, especially for the popular night tours. Wear comfortable shoes as the tour is on foot.

Antelope Canyon

Antelope Canyon in Page, Arizona, is a fascinating labyrinth of sandstone whose winding passages and undulating structure are a photographer's dream and a traveler's wonder. The play of light and shadow at different times of day makes each visit unique.

Antelope Canyon, Page, Arizona

The history of Antelope Canyon

Antelope Canyon was formed by the erosion of the Navajo Sandstone. Over millions of years, rainwater flowed into the canyon, picking up velocity and sand as it flowed through the narrow passages. Over time, this process smoothed the canyon walls and formed the flowing shapes in the rock.

Historically, the canyon was and is a sacred place to the Navajo people, who called it "Tse' bighanilini," meaning "the place where the water flows through the rocks." Today, the canyon is not only a testament to the power of natural forces but also a symbol of the Navajo Nation's rich cultural heritage.

Visit Antelope Canyon

  • US state: Arizona
  • How to get there: The closest major airport to Antelope Canyon is Page Municipal Airport in Arizona. After landing, you can rent a car. The canyon is only a 10-minute drive away.
  • Highlights: Sandstone labyrinth with winding passages and undulating structure
  • Admission: A fee is required for a guided tour.
  • Travel tips: For optimal light, it is best to come during midday. Book your trip to Antelope Canyon here!*

Salvation Mountain

The colorful California Salvation Mountain in the Colorado Desert near Niland is a tribute to spiritual love and devotion. Every inch is covered with color, loving messages to God, and colorful artwork.

Salvation Mountain, California

The history of Salvation Mountain

Salvation Mountain was created by Leonard Knight, who began the project in the 1980s. Using clay, straw, and thousands of gallons of paint, Knight created a hill about 15 m high and 46 m wide, decorated with religious messages and vivid biblical scenes.

Over the years, more sculptures and murals have been added, reflecting Knight's spiritual message. Today, Salvation Mountain is a testament to one man's commitment and vision that attracts visitors from around the world and has become a symbol of hope and love.

Visit Salvation Mountain

  • US state: California
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport is Palm Springs International Airport. Rent a car and drive about an hour and a half Southeast to Salvation Mountain.
  • Highlights: Colorful man-made mountain
  • Admission: Free of charge
  • Travel tips: Respect the artwork and avoid climbing in sensitive areas. Book your trip to California!*

Bonneville Salt Flats

The Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah stretch over 300 km2 and offer a surreal landscape that feels quite out of this world. Among other things, the vast white expanse is famous for setting speed records.

Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah

The history of the Bonneville Salt Flats

The Salt Flats are the remains of what was once Lake Bonneville, a prehistoric rainfall lake that once covered much of the Great Basin in North America. Over time, the lake dried up, leaving behind huge salt deposits that formed the unique and extensive salt flats we see today.

These flats have been shaped over thousands of years by varying water levels, precipitation, and evaporation cycles. Today, the Bonneville Salt Flats are not only a geological wonder but also an icon for motorsport fans who want to test the limits of speed.

Visit Bonneville Salt Flats

  • US state: Utah
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport is Salt Lake City International Airport in Utah. From there, it is recommended to rent a car and drive West; the Salt Flats are about two hours away.
  • Highlights: Wide white landscape
  • Admission: Free of charge
  • Travel tips: Visit Speed Week to see the legendary races!

Bubblegum Alley

Bubblegum Alley in San Luis Obispo, California, is a whimsical testament to human creativity, as the walls of the small alley are completely covered in gum. A sticky (and perhaps somewhat unsavory) attraction that invites you to leave your own mark!

Bubblegum Alley, San Luis Obispo, California

The history of Bubblegum Alley

The origins of Bubblegum Alley are obscure, but the tradition of sticking gum on walls apparently dates back to the post-World War II era, around the 1940s or 1950s.

One of several legends has it that the chewing gum glue business began with a rivalry between students at San Luis Obispo High School and California Polytechnic State University. Over the decades, the alley has transformed into a colorful, sticky mosaic of salivated chewing gum.

Visit Bubblegum Alley

  • US state: California
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport is the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport. Upon arrival, you can rent a car and drive to downtown San Luis Obispo. Bubblegum Alley is located in the heart of the city.
  • Highlights: Colorful gum on the walls
  • Admission: Free of charge
  • Travel tips: Bring a piece of gum to add to the collection!

Carlsbad Caverns

The majestic Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico are a network of underground chambers where stalactites and stalagmites have taken millions of years to form.

Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico

The history of Carlsbad Caverns

The Carlsbad Caverns were formed during the dissolution of limestone by sulfuric acid. The caverns were known to Native Americans long before they were discovered by Europeans, and there is evidence that they existed thousands of years ago.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, settlers were drawn to the caverns to mine bat guano for fertilizer. Carlsbad Caverns, declared a national monument in 1923 and a national park in 1930, still fascinates with its underground wonders.

Visit Carlsbad Caverns

  • US state: New Mexico
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport is El Paso International Airport in Texas. From there, you can rent a car and drive east to Carlsbad Caverns, which is about a two-and-a-half-hour drive away.
  • Highlights: Majestic underground chambers with stalactites and stalagmites
  • Admission: Entrance fee required
  • Travel tips: Wear comfortable shoes and bring a jacket as it is cooler underground.

Cadillac Ranch

Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, Texas, is an iconic art installation featuring ten Cadillacs buried nose down in the ground. This pop culture monument invites you to spray paint the cars, creating an ever-changing work of art!

Cadillac Ranch, Amarillo, Texas

The history of Cadillac Ranch

Cadillac Ranch was created in 1974 by the artist group Ant Farm, led by Chip Lord, Hudson Marquez, and Doug Michels. The artwork was originally intended to illustrate the rise and fall of the tail fin in automotive design but has since become a symbol of American pop culture.

Over the years, visitors have been encouraged to put their own stamp on the cars by spray-painting them, keeping the installation constantly in motion.

Visit Cadillac Ranch

  • US state: Texas
  • How to get there: Amarillo Rick Husband International Airport is the closest major airport to Cadillac Ranch. Rent a car and drive about 15 minutes West.
  • Highlights: The Cadillacs, buried nose down in the ground, may be sprayed and brushed with their own paint!
  • Admission: Free of charge
  • Travel tips: Bring color to leave your own mark! Book your flight to Texas!*


Speaking of car art: Carhenge in Alliance, Nebraska is a whimsical homage to England's Stonehenge and consists entirely of vintage cars painted gray.

Carhenge, Alliance, Nebraska

The history of Carhenge

Carhenge was designed and realized in 1987 by quirky engineer Jim Reinders. The work of art consists of 39 vintage cars arranged in a circle that mimics the position of the stones of Stonehenge.

Reinders built Carhenge as a memorial to his father and as a playful commentary on American car and innovation culture. Over the years, the site has become a popular roadside attraction that draws visitors from around the world.

Visit Carhenge

  • US state: Nebraska
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport to Carhenge is Rapid City Regional Airport in South Dakota. Rent a car and make your way to Alliance, which is about three hours away.
  • Highlights: Replica of Stonehenge with cars
  • Admission: Free of charge
  • Travel tips: During the summer solstice, there are special events.

Driftwood Beach

Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island in Georgia is a hauntingly beautiful stretch of coastline dotted with old, weathered trees and driftwood. In addition to being a popular photo hotspot for tourists, the beach is also a testament to the ever-changing landscape of the Georgia coast.

Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia

The history of Driftwood Beach

The unique appearance of Driftwood Beach is the result of decades of erosion, where the waves of the Atlantic Ocean have uprooted and eroded the island's coastal forest. Jekyll Island itself has a rich history, from its days as an exclusive retreat for the American elite in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to its current status as a state park.

Visit Driftwood Beach

  • US state: Georgia
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport is Jacksonville International Airport in Florida. From there, you can rent a car and drive North to Jekyll Island, which is about an hour away.
  • Highlights: Old bleached trees on the boardwalk
  • Admission: Free, but paid parking
  • Travel tips: Visit the beach at sunrise or sunset for breathtaking views.

Clown Motel

The Clown Motel in Tonopah, Nevada, offers adventure seekers (non-coulrophobics) a stay like something out of a scary movie! Surrounded by a cemetery and filled with clown memorabilia, the motel is a unique blend of horror and fascination.

Clown Motel, Tonopah, Nevada


The history of the Clown Motel

The Clown Motel was established in the 1980s and quickly gained notoriety for its clown decor and its location at the old Tonopah Old Cemetery dating back to the early 1900s.

This combination earned the motel a reputation as one of the scariest motels in America. Today, it remains a popular attraction and is a testament to America's love of the bizarre and offbeat.

Visit Clown Motel

  • US state: Nevada
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport is Reno-Tahoe International Airport in Nevada. Rent a car and drive about four hours South to Tonopah.
  • Highlights: Unique motel surrounded by a cemetery and filled with clown memorabilia
  • Admission: Room prices vary
  • Travel tips: Not for the faint-hearted or people with clown phobia!

Grand Prismatic Spring

The Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone National Park is the largest hot spring in the USA and offers a dazzling display of nature's colors. The rainbow-colored water is a fascinating sight from every angle!

Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park

The history of the Grand Prismatic Spring

The warm water of the Grand Prismatic Spring comes from the underground magma chamber of the Yellowstone supervolcano. The bright colors, ranging from a deep blue in the center to bright orange, yellow, and green at the edges, are the result of microbial mats and varying temperatures.

The Native Americans knew about the spring long before its discovery by Europeans in the late 19th century. Even today, the Grand Prismatic Spring is one of the most famous and photographed sights in Yellowstone National Park.

Visit Grand Prismatic Spring

  • US state: Wyoming
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport is Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming. Rent a car and drive North to Yellowstone National Park.
  • Highlights: Largest hot spring in the USA with a rainbow of colors!
  • Admission: Yellowstone National Park entrance fee
  • Travel tips: Always follow the instructions of the park rangers and warning signs! Book your trip to Yellowstone National Park!*

Haiku Stairs

Known as the "Stairway to Heaven," the Haiku Staircase on Oahu in Hawaii offers a challenging (or rather breakneck?) climb that is rewarded with a breathtaking panoramic view. Here you need stamina and strong nerves!

Haiku Stairs, Oahu, Hawaii

The history of Haiku Stairs

The Haiku Staircase consists of nearly 4,000 steps leading up the Ko'olau mountain range. Originally, the path was built during World War II to allow the military access to a top-secret radio station that transmitted signals to naval ships operating in the Pacific.

In the 1950s, the wooden steps were replaced with metal steps, and over the years, the stairs became an unofficial hiking trail that offers great panoramic views of the Windward Side of Oahu.

Unfortunately, the trail has been closed to the public since 1987 for safety reasons. Hikers risk trespassing charges if they enter the stairs. Do you still want to go for it?

Visit Haiku Stairs

  • US state: Hawaii
  • How to get there: The nearest major airport is Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu. From there you can rent a car and drive to Haiku Steps, which is about 30 minutes away.
  • Highlights: Demanding hike with panoramic view
  • Admission: Currently closed to the public
  • Travel tips: Observe local regulations. Book your trip to Hawaii!*

Mendenhall Glacier Caves

The Mendenhall Glacier Caves in Alaska are a natural wonder inside the Mendenhall Glacier near Juneau. Here you can immerse yourself in a world of blue ice and listen to the whispers of a retreating glacier.

Mendenhall-Gletscherhöhlen, Alaska

The history of the Mendenhall Glacier Caves

The Mendenhall Glacier, which is over 20 kilometers long, has receded considerably in the last century. The beautiful caves were formed by the meltwater flowing under the glacier, creating fascinating blue chambers and tunnels. Unfortunately, this is why the Mendenhall Glacier Caves are a fleeting beauty that changes along with the climate. Today, the caves are not only a breathtaking experience but also a poignant reminder of impermanence in the face of global warming.

Visit Mendenhall Glacier Caves

  • US state: Alaska
  • How to get there: Juneau International Airport in Alaska is the nearest major airport. From there, it's best to rent a car and drive about 20 minutes North.
  • Highlights: Blue ice caves in receding glacier
  • Admission: Fee for a guided tour
  • Travel tips: The approach and the glacier cave experience are more comfortable and safer during the summer months. Visit the Mendenhall Glacier!*

Are you ready for the craziest USA trip of your life? Then quickly check if your ESTA is still valid, book a flight to your dream destination in the USA, and off you go!

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