I want to make everyone aware of a great website I stumbled upon in my travel research — Atlas Obscura
I am about to embark on a multi-day road trip (exact destination still unknown) and I wanted to take advantage of my driving time by mapping a course that ensures I hit upon some unusual spots around the country. Enter, Atlas Obscura. It’s tagline is “A Compendium of the World’s Wonders, Curiosities and Esoterica”. Perfect!
You can narrow down your search by continent, country, state/region, and city. You are then provided with a detailed description of different places in that city, opening hours and other useful information, a map to the location, etc. If you don’t have a trip planned but are looking for something random to do to spice things up then visit their home page and see if either their featured places or recently added places inspire you to take a trip! Or, pick a city you’ve never visited and check out the multitude of ideas to see what intrigues you.
For example, you could decide to see famous inventor, John Hayes Hammond, Jr.’s Castle Museum in Gloucester, MA. I had never heard of him but after a quick read on this website I learned that he studied under Edison and is the second person, under Edison himself, to have the most invention patents filed. An avid lover of travel, he decided to build a house that looks like a medieval castle complete with “a renaissance dining room, round library, a War room, secret passageways and even an indoor pool with a ‘weather control’ system which Hammond could set whenever he felt like swimming in the rain.”
Cool! I wanna go! What else is in the area that I could see, Mr. Obscura?
Well, would you look at this! I could visit the Mapparium at the Mary Baker Eddy Library in Boston which is the only place in the world in which the surface of the earth can be seen without distortion. Sounds good to me! And now that I think about it, I’ve never seen Harvard’s campus in person so I could drive over to Cambridge for a nice, leisurely stroll. Oooh, I’ll see if I can wear my purse like it’s a backpack and seem young enough to blend in with the students. Perhaps I’ll wear my hair in a ponytail to help the illusion. But I digress…
Throw in a couple of restaurant recommendations from friends and now I have myself a very interesting weekend excursion!
You can plan a trip in just a couple hours that will give you stories to talk about for a long time to come.