woman looks at a map outside of her Zipcar
August 12, 2021

Hidden Gems of American Roadside Attractions

Cars make it so much easier to see America's most amazing roadside attractions, famous landmarks, historic buildings and entertaining oddities exist just off the beaten track, all over the country. One could be right near you and you didn’t even know it. 

Need a change of scenery? Find one of the below attractions near you and hop into a Zipcar to see one of these incredible destinations. 

Weird Roadside Attractions near Miami 

Located in South Flora, Coral Castle was carved over a period of 28 years by an eccentric artist called Edward Leedskalnin. This collection of oolite limestone megaliths sits just off South Dixie Highway in Homestead. 

If you've ever wondered what life might be like if crustaceans were about 40 feet long, pay Big Betsy the Giant Lobster a visit. Created by sculptor Richard Blaze in the early 1980s, Big Betsy is potentially the largest lobster on the planet. Nowadays, she stands guard outside the Rain Barrel Village down in Islamorada. 

American Roadside Attractions close to Houston 

You don't have to be a citrus lover to appreciate the Orange Show Monument down in Houston's East End. Put together by a local postman called Jeff McKissack, the Orange Show Monument is a fascinating collection of winding walkways and hidden exhibits, each of which have something slightly different to say. 

If you're in the mood for something newer, yet older, head to Lucky Land. Open since 2017, this funny little place is home to 6,000 one-third scale warriors made to emulate Emperor Qin's 2,200-year-old terracotta army. 

Best Roadside Attractions near Denver 

While Colorado is known for glimmering lakes, historic mountain towns and the majestic mountains, it also has its fair share of funky attractions. If you live in Denver and you're in the mood for something a little offbeat, why not drive down to Colorado Springs and visit Herkimer, the world's largest West Indian Hercules beetle, at the May Natural History Museum

Or, check out Tiny Town in Morrison. Located just 13 miles away from downtown Denver, this teeny replica of an Old West town includes an itsy-bitsy railway. Tiny Town is a 1/16-scale miniature masterpiece, and it makes a great picnic destination. 

Creepy Roadside Attractions by Seattle 

Washington has some interesting roadside attractions. If you haven't already seen it, the 60-foot-long crow outside the old Yard Birds Mall in Chehalis is worth a visit. Recently restored, this avian oddity marks the entrance to one of the area's most interesting swap meets. 

Speaking of giant things, Hat 'n' Boots park in the Georgetown neighborhood is a quirky gem. The hat and the boots were once part of a 1950s cowboy-theme gas station; now, the gigantic hat is a park shelter, and the boots...well, they're still just a giant pair of boots. 

Largest Roadside Attractions close to Austin 

A must see is Tom Friedman's "Looking Up" right in Austin. Made of stainless steel, this 33-foot-tall humanoid statue is meant to look like it's actually made of crushed aluminum foil roasting pans. 

Other interesting roadside attractions in Austin include the Cathedral of Junk on Lareina Drive. As the name implies, it's made of junk, but it's extremely impressive nonetheless, and big, too. 

Feeling inspired yet? In that case, why not go somewhere a little different this week?